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The Oz Principle: Getting Results Through Individual and Organizational Accountability (Smart Audio) Audio CD – Audiobook, 4 Feb 2011


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Product details

  • Audio CD
  • Publisher: Oasis Audio; Una Rev Up edition (4 Feb. 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1609812867
  • ISBN-13: 978-1609812867
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 2.5 x 16.5 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,965,742 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x8c2f28dc) out of 5 stars 21 reviews
35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8c310c0c) out of 5 stars Elevate with Accountability 12 Aug. 2002
By Robert Morris - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The authors' central metaphor is eminently appropriate. They correlate L. Frank Baum's plot and characters with situations in the contemporary business world inorder to answer this question: How can accountability enable individuals and thereby their organizations to achieve the results they seek? The metaphor is developed as follows: The Yellow-Brick Road: "Getting Stuck in the Victim Cycle"; There's No Place Like Home: "Focusing on Results"; The Lion: "Mustering the Courage to Accept Accountability" The Tin Woodsman: "Finding the Heart to `Own' Accountability for One's Self"; The Scarecrow: "Obtaining the Wisdom to Assume Full Responsibility for Solving One's Problems"; and Dorothy: "Exercising the Means Needed to Solve Those Problems."
Granted, Dorothy and her three companions (four if counting Toto) proceed together on the journey to the Emerald City and, along the way, depend upon each other to overcome all manner of obstacles. However, keep in mind that the Emerald City is not the ultimate objective for any of them. Dorothy's, for example, is to return home to Kansas. The purpose of that journey, Baum suggests, is to learn what they do not know inorder to recognize what they already have.
The authors suggest that the same is true of most (if not all) of those who comprise a "cult" of victimization which ducks responsibility while telling everyone else what to do. According to Charles Sykes, "Crisscrossing the trip wires of emotional, racial, sexual, and psychological grievance, American life is increasingly characterized by the plaintive insistence, I am a victim." (Those with any direct and extensive experience with 4-7 year olds immediately recognize this as the adult version of "the blame game.") Connors, Smith, and Hickman examine what they characterize as "the destructive force of victimization" and suggest a step-by-step process by which to overcome it. Specifically, they explain HOW to proceed from consciously or unconsciously avoiding accountability for individual or collective results "Below the Line" to accepting accountability for individual and collective performance "Above the Line." I agree with the authors that a majority of workers choose to believe that they have no control over their jobs. They view themselves -- and justify themselves -- as "victims of circumstance."
This book can be invaluable both to individuals and to teams because it will help them to understand how and why "the destructive force of victimization" results in low productivity, customer dissatisfaction, ineffectiveness, wasted talent, and dysfunctional teams. Those who saw the film no doubt recall the scene in which Dorothy and her companions learn that the Wizard of Oz has no magical powers whatsoever. Only then do they grasp the meaning and importance of the Oz Principle: Assume full responsibility for your thoughts, feelings, actions, and results inorder to direct and control your destiny. Most of those who see themselves as victims have a choice: remain "Below the Line" and suffer while blaming others for that suffering, or, rise "Above the Line" to fulfill what Maslow describes as "self-actualization." In this thought-provoking as well as eloquent book, the authors explain HOW to rise above denial, self-pity, and recrimination; better yet, HOW to to draw upon sources of wisdom and strength within to achieve health, happiness, and prosperity. To paraphrase Pogo, "We have met the Wizard and he is us."

If at all possible, read this book in combination with Bossidy and Charan's Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done; Hammer's The Agenda: What Every Business Must Do to Dominate the Decade; and Canfield, Hansen, and Hewitt's The Power of Focus: How to Hit Your Business, Personal and Financial Targets with Absolute Certainty.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8c8641c8) out of 5 stars Great, if you live in Oz... 2 Nov. 2008
By Erik J. Meyer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Sadly, the principles in this book are almost entirely unrealistic. Oz offers some wonderful ideology about being productive, handling crisis, and accepting responsibility, but in the end, it seems written by managers for employees. Managers and executives don't like to hear excuses, no matter how real they are. They just want results. This sort of 'go team go' book is music to their ears...and completely out of touch with the real world.

The fact of the matter is, there will always be slackers. And if you pick up the slack they leave, you will find yourself working at %150 while they work at %50. According to this book, that's just fine and dandy as long as the work gets done. Yes, emergencies happen. Bad things happen. Taking it on the chin and pressing onward can be a good thing in these cases. But daring to complain or feel abused is 'thinking below the line', even if your complaints and frustrations are real, at least according to Oz. And of course if someone else drops the ball, you are supposed to simply pick it up and run...again and again if need be. Yay you! Meanwhile the guy who dropped the ball is laughing and leaving work early.

Executives would find this book a lot more helpful than the standard wage slave at the bottom of the totem pole. Executives see immediate and positive results with these philosophies. We peons won't. I found it very telling that throughout the book there was never any mention of any real, positive, measurable reward for doing more than your fair share, just a pat on the back and a "good job dude". I'm sorry, but if I have to go above and beyond, I expect more than a certificate, a photo op, or a "Thanks...er..what's your name again?" from the CEO. Selflessly sacrificing for the good of the company sounds great, but not if it becomes standard practice and I don't get paid for it...while others making as much or more than I do snicker at my herculean efforts to clean up others' messes.

The bottom line for this book is "Suck it up and don't complain. You'll be a better person for it, and your BOSS--not you--will reap many rewards for it." Hey, enjoy living in Oz. I'll be over here in Kansas trying to pay my bills and keep my kids fed.
16 of 19 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8d16b780) out of 5 stars Funny thing...this really works! 29 Jan. 2002
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I was fortunate enough to be captivated by the title of this book when it first appeared in 1994. I read, enjoyed, and applied the principles of this book in my own professional and personal life. Before saying anything more, I strongly recommend this book to anyone who thinks there is room for improvement in their own life. If you believe you can be a better person by becoming more accountable for all your thoughts, feelings and actions, then you need to read this book. The concepts are not subject to the vagaries of time and society. They are simple truths and common sense.
Rereading the latest edition of The Oz Principle has helped cement its rightful place among "easy to read books that pack an impactful message."
The book follows a metaphor with which we are all familiar. This metaphor allows us all to see how easily we get caught in the role of the victim and how easily we play and perpetuate the blame game in our lives.
The Steps to Accountability are placed before the reader in a way that invites him or her to see a situation for what it really is, own his or her role in that situation, solve the challenges presented by the situation and then to finally proactively act on the situation and do whatever needs to be done.
I have recommended this book to hundreds of people over the years. I have yet to have anyone tell me it was a waste of time to read. Most of the time, people tell me how easy it was to read and grasp the concepts within it.
This is truly one of the few books that has proven its worth professionally and personally over time. I rank it among the top ten best books written on how to get the most out of life.
If you believe in personal integrity, if you believe in honor and virtue in the workplace and home, if you think there is room to improve and grow in your life, then this book is for you. You will always be accountable to yourself. Find out how to make the most of your time.
60 of 81 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8c75918c) out of 5 stars Blaming is Assigning Accountability 22 Aug. 2001
By David Morgan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Blame: The Assignment of responsibility, accountability, and ownership to a debt. Right from the outset, the cover of this book purports a contradiction: accountability and not being obsessed with the "blame game". The contradiction continues inside. If you are an intellectual of any kind, prepare to be insulted. Apparently, it's only wrong to try to assign responsibility if you are an employee, or someone being managed. So I imagine this book is very popular with management. It purports "getting results" through accountability, which basically translates to "motivating your employees by expecting more from them". Basically, it continues with mostly arguments for a workplace filled with stress, high turnover, and fear of honest status reporting. This book seems to be missing genuine concepts for motivating one's managees with anything but the expectation of motivation. The case studies included have causal links which are tenuous at best. The only possible difference between "blame" and "assigning accountability" is that "blame" may perhaps include the communication of disapproval. But this book doesn't even bother with that distinction. It's all black and white. Managers "assign accountability" and managees "blame". If someone in your organization starts passing out this book, then it is a clear sign that they have little or no effective strategies for, or understanding of, motivation.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x8c181534) out of 5 stars This is a MUST for anyone that wants results, not excuses! 19 Oct. 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I've read a lot of "how to" books on goal setting and managment, but this cuts to the chase and doesn't leave any room for whinning. It is easy to read and the examples are real life that hit very close to where you live/work! It is now required reading for all of our new employees. They might as well know what we expect from the very beginning!
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