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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best management practice now made easy!
As a management consultant I found this book very useful indeed - much of it is directly applicable to shop-floor and pressure-politics situations - the 20-page cartoon "rulebook" at the end is more than worth the price of the book itself - buy it! And if you have the courage, apply what it says, too: It's been known for some time that organizations are designed according...
Published on 9 Oct 2004 by Jack Feeney-Author / Analyst

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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Upside down and Inside Out - A truly Flexible Organisation.
A company where the managers are appraised by the staff,where staff decide the production schedules, the manager's salaries are public knowledge,where staff have a say in the hiring and firing of management, and the CEO comes back off holiday to a smaller office. Impossible? Not at Semco. Ricardo Semler provides an honest insight into how he brought about a fundamental...
Published on 20 May 1999


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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best management practice now made easy!, 9 Oct 2004
By 
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
As a management consultant I found this book very useful indeed - much of it is directly applicable to shop-floor and pressure-politics situations - the 20-page cartoon "rulebook" at the end is more than worth the price of the book itself - buy it! And if you have the courage, apply what it says, too: It's been known for some time that organizations are designed according to "command and control" principles that very poorly match how humans are really built to behave. More complex self-ordering behavior is always observed when any lack of hierarchy exists, and the hierarchies that do emerge tend to be more effective than those that were designed by managers with experience in previous eras. Semler just chose to trust it more than, say, Tom Peters. Prof. Nicholson, head of London Business School recently wrote (in the Harvard Business Review) that Semler's model was the only one to really respect "stone age nature" of human behavior (the many insights from evolutionary psychology that tell us that we're far more often feeling our way through decisions than thinking our way through).
Semlers assessment of Human Resource Management (HRM) practice is truly radical but built on a foundation of good management practice and a healthy dose of common sense. HRM managers and departments confuse traditional and successful hierarchies and should be the first thing to be axed if any organisation is serious about survival in the 21st Century.
Excellent book and guide, highly practical and an enjoyable read.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Business Too Good To Be True?, 15 Mar 2004
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
It's almost unbelievable - an experiment in culture change that worked wonders. This inspiring tale of Ricardo Semler's successful 'quest' to run his company in the interest of all it's stakeholders is tremendous. It may well be easier to influence the direction of a business when you're the owner (as per Semler), but this great read helped me look at and adapt my own management style in an entirely new way (even within a large organisation). I only put it down in order to start implementing many of the ideas it contains. Well written and thought provoking.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring!, 2 July 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
I've read a lot of success story business books - many of them are full of motivational phrases which mean very little; many of them are badly written (just because someone is successful in business doesn't make them a great writer!).
This book is different. You can really feel the author's vision through his writing. As well as talking about his philosophy he gives concrete examples of how he implemented his ideas. Also, he tells us all his mistakes and how he learnt from them. I found this inspiring as I've realised you don't have to be perfect from the start to create something amazing.
You must read this!
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, 17 Dec 2002
By 
Zahid Malik (London United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
I love this book. It doesn't read read like a business book at all but is more like a fascinating biography. I would recommend it to anyone not just people with an interest in business. I am slightly embarrassed to admit that I've probably bought around 50 copies of this book (over the years) for friends and colleagues.
Wonderful you must read it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, challenging, thought provoker., 1 Sep 2002
By 
P Shields (Bradford, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
You might have read lots of management & leadership books before written by has-beens and academic 'experts'. This book and the organisation it chronicles probably defies the vast majority of them (though John Maxwell & Julian Richer are from a similar ilk - though not so radical!)

I really couldn't believe that some of the procedures & practices this organisation implements could work. But they do - spectacularly! Has some very challenging repercussions for the way I do things in my own little sphere. Have I got the guts & conviction to carry them out?!

Minor grumble - books with spelling & grammar mistakes are a real bug-bear of mine. They're basically faulty goods. Hence it loses a star!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential Reading, 26 Sep 2001
By 
Andy Matheson (Southsea, Hants United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
I can't believe I am the first to review this. Maverick is essential reading. Not only does it present some radical ideas but Semlers style is highly entertaining. If you are running a business, this will seriously challenge your thinking. If you are a student of business, this will make you think very hard about the lessons you have learned...Buy it
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Smart Thinking For Large or Small Organisations., 10 Jan 2002
By 
J. Burgess "John Burgess" (London, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
A very enlightening book, and an inspiration for managers committed to breaking open the way their colleagues, superiors and associates think. While Semler's strategies are clearly going to work best in the smaller companies, the book can work well on a departmental level too, if that department has enough autonomy. Just reading it brightened up my day, and its the kind of book you will want to pass on to your colleagues - so buy two..
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A remarkable corporate story of how to do it so differently, 10 Dec 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
Truly remarkable autobiographical account that demonstrates how a company can be run with all its staff behind it. It refreshingly shattered all of the assumptions of how a modern successful business must operate in order to succeed, by challenging every assumption at every opportunity.
A lighthouse that stands to guide business men, if they only care to notice it!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can Entrepreneurial spirit exist in the Corporate Arena?, 22 Oct 2001
By 
hjinuk@aol.com (Whaddon, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace (Paperback)
Ricardo Semler has produced an account of his bravery in introducing a entrepreneurial spirit into the traditions of the corporate arena.
The book takes you into the journey of the Semco Company under the leadership of Ricardo Semler and it makes superb reading and is most thought provoking for those wishing to think outside of the box. Read it with a highlighter, as it will be a constant reference companion.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing read!, 15 Dec 2000
By A Customer
This account of the development of every employee's dream company reads like a novel. In our increasingly materialistic and workaholic society, the knowledge that companies like Semco exist is truly a breath of fresh air. This is the incredible story of the transformation of a rigid, bureaucratic organization into the most democratic and people-oriented company of all times - not to mention the additional recipe for dropping a workaholic lifestyle, which Semler himself incarnates. The book made me want to fly off to Brazil and apply for a job with Semco! A truly inspiring read.
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