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The thesis of this book is one that I love, and can relate to emotionally as well as intellectually. Work keeps getting more complicated, unless we keep simplifying it. At the same time, making work simpler is hard work. But it is work that Must Be Done!
The survey of problems in companies rings a bell because it parallels our own research on the stalls that delay progress in organizations of all kinds. Poor communication is the worst culprit. In extreme forms, that poor communication is complicated by difficulties in understanding that lead to misconceptions. Other human emotions and habits get in the way, too.
Jensen makes three very valuable points that you should learn if you want to be much more effective: (1) focus on what will make a difference (basically an application of systems thinking from The Fifth Discipline, etc.) (2) reorganize the processes in your company to make understanding of what needs to be done and the doing to be as simple as possible and (3) communicate much more effectively following 5 simple rules when your give and review assignments.
The strength of this book is that its appeal to the frustration that almost everyone feels related to complexity will help make people pay attention when they read the book.
The weakness of this book is that it is a tough read for a book on simplicity and simple communications. The book uses a variety of formats and displays to get the point across. To me it felt disjointed and scrapbook-like. If you like unusual formats, you'll love this book. If you like simple formats, you may find this one confusing and distracting. The pearls of wisdom are there, though, if you make the effort to wade through to get them.
The key limitation of this book is that it deals with dated practices in communications and business design. The best companies have moved beyond this model in a variety of ways. Dell Computer is an excellent company to study in the year 2000 on these points. But if your company is like most, you will find this book very valuable.
Good related books are The 80/20 Principle, The Fifth Discipline, The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook, and The Dance of Change.
I recommend you buy and read this book. As other reviewers have suggested, you will need to share the book with others to get the most benefit.
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