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Maverick!: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace Hardcover – 1 Sep 1993

4.8 out of 5 stars 58 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Warner Books; Hardcover edition (Sept. 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446516961
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446516969
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 15.9 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 457,760 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

"The way that Ricardo Semler runs his company is impossible; except th at it works, and works splendidly for everyone. I relish this book. It revived my faith in human beings and my hope for business everywhere" (Charles Handy)

"In this book, Ricardo Semler tells how Semco, Latin America's fastest growing company, uses a revolutionary way of working to run a profit-making company with a work force who love their jobs." (The Sunday Times)

"Are there real-life lessons to be learned? The answer is yes...Pragmatic, inspirational and intriguing advice." (The Times)

"Ricardo Semler is our kind of capitalist" (Guardian)

"Semco takes workplace democracy to previously unimagined frontiers" (The Times) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

The international bestseller that tells how Ricardo Semler created one of the most successful and inspirational companies in the world. Con tains a new introduction by the author --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By KP on 12 Mar. 2017
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very good quality - as described.
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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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Format: 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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Format: 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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Format: 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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By Charles TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 16 Feb. 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is a very interesting read and could change the way we think about running business.

The main points is to have a work place based on trust, democracy and openness.

Trust:
The author fired three quarters of the management and let people be their own boss, when a boss is needed they are called Coordinators who are not necessary better payed or higher ranking than the people they organize. Also Coordinators cannot hire/fire workers. Each worker decides their own working hours and pay.

Democracy:
Workers vote on such topics as who gets to be their Coordinators and hiring/firing. There has been research into how people behave in groups and it has been found that democratic groups get better creativity and are more happy than authoritarian run groups.

Openness:
The author states that only source of power in an organization is information, and withholding, filtering, or retaining information only serves those who want to accumulate power through hoarding.
Once a month Semco holds open meetings for the employees of each unit, where all the numbers in the business are presented for open examination and debate. The company also offers courses to help employees better understand financial reports such as balance sheets, Profit-and-loss reports, and cash flow statements.

The author recommends businesses are deliberately kept small ( not more than 150?) so that people feel their opinion still makes a difference. He feels the economies of scale that big business have is over rated and actually creates many opportunities for wastefulness.

25% of the profits are given to the workers as bonuses with everybody getting the same bonus.
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Format: 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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