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Creativity, Inc. : overcoming the unseen forces that stand in the way of true inspiration
by Catmull, Edwin E. and Wallace, Amy

9780812993011Ed Catmull; Amy WallaceCreativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True InspirationFrom Ed Catmull, co-founder (with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter) of Pixar Animation Studios, the Academy Award-winning studio behind Inside Out and Toy Story, comes an incisive book about creativity in business--sure to appeal to readers of Daniel Pink, Tom Peters, and Chip and Dan Heath. Fast Company raves that Creativity, Inc. "just might be the most thoughtful management book ever." NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER | NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY  The Huffington Post *  Financial Times *  Success * Inc. * Library Journal Creativity, Inc. is a book for managers who want to lead their employees to new heights, a manual for anyone who strives for originality, and the first-ever, all-access trip into the nerve center of Pixar Animation--into the meetings, postmortems, and "Braintrust" sessions where some of the most successful films in history are made. It is, at heart, a book about how to build a creative culture--but it is also, as Pixar co-founder and president Ed Catmull writes, "an expression of the ideas that I believe make the best in us possible."   For nearly twenty years, Pixar has dominated the world of animation, producing such beloved films as the Toy Story trilogy, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Up, and WALL-E, which have gone on to set box-office records and garner thirty Academy Awards. The joyousness of the storytelling, the inventive plots, the emotional authenticity: In some ways, Pixar movies are an object lesson in what creativity really is . Here, in this book, Catmull reveals the ideals and techniques that have made Pixar so widely admired--and so profitable.   As a young man, Ed Catmull had a dream: to make the first computer-animated movie. He nurtured that dream as a Ph.D. student at the University of Utah, where many computer science pioneers got their start, and then forged a partnership with George Lucas that led, indirectly, to his founding Pixar with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter in 1986. Nine years later, Toy Story was released, changing animation forever. The essential ingredient in that movie's success--and in the thirteen movies that followed--was the unique environment that Catmull and his colleagues built at Pixar, based on philosophies that protect the creative process and defy convention, such as:   * Give a good idea to a mediocre team, and they will screw it up. But give a mediocre idea to a great team, and they will either fix it or come up with something better. * If you don't strive to uncover what is unseen and understand its nature, you will be ill prepared to lead. * It's not the manager's job to prevent risks. It's the manager's job to make it safe for others to take them. * The cost of preventing errors is often far greater than the cost of fixing them. * A company's communication structure should not mirror its organizational structure. Everybody should be able to talk to anybody.   Praise for Creativity, Inc.   "Over more than thirty years, Ed Catmull has developed methods to root out and destroy the barriers to creativity, to marry creativity to the pursuit of excellence, and, most impressive, to sustain a culture of disciplined creativity during setbacks and success." --Jim Collins, co-author of Built to Last and author of Good to Great   "Too often, we seek to keep the status quo working. This is a book about breaking it." --Seth Godin - Description from Syndetics
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Fortune tellers : the story of America's first economic forecasters
by Friedman, Walter A

9780691159119Walter FriedmanFortune Tellers: The Story of America's First Economic ForecastersThe period leading up to the Great Depression witnessed the rise of the economic forecasters, pioneers who sought to use the tools of science to predict the future, with the aim of profiting from their forecasts. This book chronicles the lives and careers of the men who defined this first wave of economic fortune tellers, men such as Roger Babson, Irving Fisher, John Moody, C. J. Bullock, and Warren Persons. They competed to sell their distinctive methods of prediction to investors and businesses, and thrived in the boom years that followed World War I. Yet, almost to a man, they failed to predict the devastating crash of 1929. Walter Friedman paints vivid portraits of entrepreneurs who shared a belief that the rational world of numbers and reason could tame--or at least foresee--the irrational gyrations of the market. Despite their failures, this first generation of economic forecasters helped to make the prediction of economic trends a central economic activity, and shed light on the mechanics of financial markets by providing a range of statistics and information about individual firms. They also raised questions that are still relevant today. What is science and what is merely guesswork in forecasting? What motivates people to buy forecasts? Does the act of forecasting set in motion unforeseen events that can counteract the forecast made? Masterful and compelling, Fortune Tellers highlights the risk and uncertainty that are inherent to capitalism itself. - Description from Syndetics
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The hard thing about hard things : building a business when there are no easy answers
by Horowitz, Ben

9780062273208Ben HorowitzThe Hard Thing about Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy AnswersBen Horowitz, cofounder of Andreessen Horowitz and one of Silicon Valley's most respected and experienced entrepreneurs, offers essential advice on building and running a startup--practical wisdom for managing the toughest problems business school doesn't cover, based on his popular ben's blog. While many people talk about how great it is to start a business, very few are honest about how difficult it is to run one. Ben Horowitz analyzes the problems that confront leaders every day, sharing the insights he's gained developing, managing, selling, buying, investing in, and supervising technology companies. A lifelong rap fanatic, he amplifies business lessons with lyrics from his favorite songs, telling it straight about everything from firing friends to poaching competitors, cultivating and sustaining a CEO mentality to knowing the right time to cash in. Filled with his trademark humor and straight talk, The Hard Thing About Hard Things is invaluable for veteran entrepreneurs as well as those aspiring to their own new ventures, drawing from Horowitz's personal and often humbling experiences. - Description from Syndetics
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Virtual teams : mastering communication and collaboration in the digital age
by Kurtzberg, Terri R.

9781440828379Terri R. KurtzbergVirtual Teams: Mastering Communication and Collaboration in the Digital AgeTo advance in today's workplace requires virtual team skills. Most individuals assume their face-to-face skills will translate, but competency with virtual communication and teamwork requires an entirely new set of skills. This book guides readers down the path to success. * Explains how virtual communication has significantly changed the way people interact and rewritten many aspects of the "rulebook" on how business is done * Defines how team dynamics change when the interaction shifts from in-person to electronic and how to correct for these tendencies to avoid unintended offense or misunderstanding * Instructs readers on building trust, addressing fairness, and dealing with conflict in an online environment * Provides relevant, instructive anecdotes based on the experiences of dozens of managers, allowing readers to learn from their real-world successes (and disasters) - Description from Syndetics
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Building your business the right-brain way : sustainable success for the creative entrepreneur
by Lee, Jennifer

9781608682560Jennifer Lee; Michael Port (Foreword by)Building Your Business the Right-Brain Way: Sustainable Success for the Creative EntrepreneurIf you've started a business, you know that the journey toward success can be both invigorating and confusing, so where can you find advice that is practical and focused but still as playful and passionate as you are? Look no further than this book, which combines solid business expertise with a right-brain perspective that inspires creativity and innovation. Jennifer Lee's fresh, empowering approach emphasizes taking action and continually improving to achieve extraordinary long-term results. Building Your Business the Right-Brain Way offers real-world-tested techniques that can benefit all sorts of businesses, whether you're a sole proprietor running a coaching practice, a crafter looking to license products, a wellness professional with a team of employees, or any creative soul making a meaningful difference with your work. You'll discover how to:* assess your business's unique "ecosystem"* build your brand and attract, engage, and keep ideal customers* develop new income streams that better leverage your time and resources* promote your products and services with authenticity and ease* grow your team (virtual and in-person) and manage staff and vendors* establish infrastructure and procedures to keep operations running smoothly* carve out vital white space to pause, reflect, and celebrate - Description from Syndetics
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Conscious capitalism : liberating the heroic spirit of business
by Mackey, John and Sisodia, Rajendra

9781422144206John Mackey; Rajendra Sisodia; Bill George (Foreword by)Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of BusinessAs seen on Oprah's Super Soul Sunday A New York Times and Wall Street Journal Bestseller In this book, Whole Foods Market cofounder John Mackey and professor and Conscious Capitalism, Inc. cofounder Raj Sisodia argue for the inherent good of both business and capitalism. Featuring some of today's best-known companies, they illustrate how these two forces can--and do--work most powerfully to create value for all stakeholders: including customers, employees, suppliers, investors, society, and the environment. These "Conscious Capitalism" companies include Whole Foods Market, Southwest Airlines, Costco, Google, Patagonia, The Container Store, UPS, and dozens of others. We know them; we buy their products or use their services. Now it's time to better understand how these organizations use four specific tenets-- higher purpose , stakeholder integration , conscious leadership , and conscious culture and management --to build strong businesses and help advance capitalism further toward realizing its highest potential. As leaders of the Conscious Capitalism movement, Mackey and Sisodia argue that aspiring leaders and business builders need to continue on this path of transformation--for the good of both business and society as a whole. At once a bold defense and reimagining of capitalism and a blueprint for a new system for doing business grounded in a more evolved ethical consciousness, this book provides a new lens for individuals and companies looking to build a more cooperative, humane, and positive future. - Description from Syndetics
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The three rules : how exceptional companies think
by Raynor, Michael E. and Ahmed, Mumtaz

9781591846147Michael E. Raynor; Mumtaz AhmedThe Three Rules: How Exceptional Companies ThinkFinally, an answer to the ultimate business question: How do some companies achieve exceptional performance over the long term?   In every sector, there's an outlier. In the phar#65533;maceutical industry, it's Merck. In discount retail, it's Family Dollar. It used to be Wrig#65533;ley in candy and Maytag in appliances. Other superstars have been hidden in plain sight, like Heartland Express in trucking or Linear Technology in semiconductors. How do these exceptional companies deliver superior perfor#65533;mance over the long run despite facing the same constraints as competitors? What are they doing differently? What can we learn from them?   Michael E. Raynor and Mumtaz Ahmed have analyzed data on more than 25,000 com#65533;panies spanning forty-five years. Their five-year study began with a sophisticated statistical analysis to identify which companies have truly exceptional performance, 344 in all.   In collaboration with teams of researchers, Raynor and Ahmed then put a carefully chosen representative sample of twenty-seven com#65533;panies under the microscope to uncover what made the stand-out performers different. They found that exceptional companies, when faced with difficult decisions, follow three rules: Better before cheaper. They rarely compete on price. Revenue before cost. They drive profits through price and volume, not thrift. There are no other rules. Everything else is up for grabs, and they are willing to change anything to remain true to the first two rules.   The rules provide an indispensable compass that any company can use to chart its own path to greatness. Is it better to keep price down or invest in creating value that commands a higher price? Should you focus on talent and develop#65533;ing the abilities of your people or build processes to extend the capabilities of your organization? How about acquiring a sizable competitor to secure economies of scale--or a small start-up to gain access to new technology? According to Raynor and Ahmed, the right answers to these and just about every other question are the ones most closely aligned with the rules.   The Three Rules is built on a powerful combina#65533;tion of large-scale data analysis and in-depth case studies. Its guidance will increase the chance that your organization can become truly exceptional. - Description from Syndetics
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Brick by brick : how LEGO rewrote the rules of innovation and conquered the global toy industry
by Robertson, David C. (David Chandler) and Breen, Bill

9780307951601David Robertson; Bill BreenBrick by Brick: How LEGO Rewrote the Rules of Innovation and Conquered the Global Toy IndustryBrick by Brick takes you inside the LEGO you've never seen. By following the teams that are inventing some of the world's best-loved toys, it spotlights the company's disciplined approach to harnessing creativity and recounts one of the most remarkable business transformations in recent memory. Brick by Brick reveals how LEGO failed to keep pace with the revolutionary changes in kids' lives and began sliding into irrelevance. When the company's leaders implemented some of the business world's most widely espoused prescriptions for boosting innovation, they ironically pushed the iconic toymaker to the brink of bankruptcy. The company's near-collapse shows that what works in theory can fail spectacularly in the brutally competitive global economy. It took a new LEGO management team - faced with the growing rage for electronic toys, few barriers to entry, and ultra-demanding consumers (ten-year old boys) - to reinvent the innovation rule book and transform LEGO into one of the world's most profitable, fastest-growing companies.  Along the way, Brick by Brick reveals how LEGO: - Became truly customer-driven by co-creating with kids as well as its passionate adult fans - Looked beyond products and learned to leverage a full-spectrum approach to innovation - Opened its innovation process by using both the "wisdom of crowds" and the expertise of elite cliques - Discovered uncontested, "blue ocean" markets, even as it thrived in brutally competitive red oceans - Gave its world-class design teams enough space to create and direction to deliver built a culture where profitable innovation flourishes Sometimes radical yet always applicable, Brick by Brick abounds with real-world lessons for unleashing breakthrough innovation in your organization, just like LEGO. Whether you're a senior executive looking to make your company grow, an entrepreneur building a startup from scratch, or a fan who wants to instill some of that LEGO magic in your career, you'll learn how to build your own innovation advantage, brick by brick. - Description from Syndetics
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Promote yourself : the new rules for career success
by Schawbel, Dan

9781250044556Dan Schawbel; Marcus Buckingham (Foreword by, Introduction by)Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success New York Times and Wall Street Journal Bestseller " Promote Yourself is a perfect read for young people starting their 'real' job, or veterans who want to up their game." ---Daniel H. Pink, #1 New York Times bestselling author of To Sell Is Human and Drive How people perceive you at work has always been vital to a successful career. Now with the Internet, social media, and the unrelenting hum of 24/7 business, the ability to brand and promote yourself effectively has become absolutely essential. No matter how talented you are, it doesn't matter unless managers can see those talents and think of you as an invaluable employee, a game-changing manager, or the person whose name is synonymous with success. So, how do you stand out and get ahead? The subtle and amazingly effective art of self-promotion is the razor-thin difference between success and failure. By drawing on exclusive research on the modern workplace and countless interviews with the most dynamic professionals, career guru and founder of Millennial Branding Dan Schawbel's Promote Yourself gives you the new rules for success, and answers your most pressing questions about your career: * What are managers really looking for? * What do you do if you're stuck at work? * How do you create a personal brand for professional success? * How do you use social media for networking to propel your career? Promote Yourself frees you from the outdated rules for getting ahead and lays out a step-by-step process for building a successful career in an age of ever-changing technologies and economic uncertainty. By basing your personal brand on the rock-solid foundation of hard, soft, and online skills that are essential to get the job done right and by knowing exactly what managers value, Schawbel provides you with the unique skills and message that you'll need today and for the rest of your career. Promote Yourself: The New Rules for Career Success is the definitive book on marketing yourself and building an outstanding career. - Description from Syndetics
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The small business turnaround guide : take your business from troubled to triumphant
by Steinman, Sandy

9781614482574Sandy SteinmanThe Small Business Turnaround Guide: Take Your Business from Troubled to TriumphantThere is probably nothing more exhilarating, nothing that gets one's adrenalin flowing than when a business owner's plans come together and the business becomes a reality. The feeling of being "your own boss" brings on genuine euphoria. The proud new business owner is walking on air. Unfortunately, there is not always a happy ending. All too soon reality sets in and it is not always pretty. Reality takes the form of bills that have to be paid, customers who have to be satisfied and payroll deadlines that have to be met.These shattered dreams are not unusual. According to the United States Census Bureau 10% of United States businesses close each year and with them come shattered dreams and shattered lives. But it doesn't have to end this way. In "The Small Business Turn Around Guide: Take Your Business From Troubled To Triumphant," Sandy Steinman gives struggling business owners hope and he takes them through the steps to implement processes that solve the most common small business problems. These are the same processes that Steinman has actually implemented and which have added millions of dollars to his client companies' bottom line. Additionally, he makes available at no cost, the spreadsheets and forms that are integral to the successful turnaround of your individual business.If you are a small business owner and are struggling with: * cash shortfalls* employees who are unmotivated and have no idea what is expected of them* reports that are not actionable* or dozens of other issues common to other struggling business owners"The Small Business Turn Around Guide" is for you. From the moment you read the first chapter and learn how to stop the bleeding and how to get control of your cash, you will know that there is real hope for your situation. - Description from Syndetics
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Zero to one : notes on startups, or how to build the future
by Thiel, Peter A., and Masters, Blake G.

9780804139298Peter Thiel; Blake MastersZero to One: Notes on Start-Ups, or How to Build the Future #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER If you want to build a better future, you must believe in secrets. The great secret of our time is that there are still uncharted frontiers to explore and new inventions to create. In Zero to One , legendary entrepreneur and investor Peter Thiel shows how we can find singular ways to create those new things. Thiel begins with the contrarian premise that we live in an age of technological stagnation, even if we're too distracted by shiny mobile devices to notice. Information technology has improved rapidly, but there is no reason why progress should be limited to computers or Silicon Valley. Progress can be achieved in any industry or area of business. It comes from the most important skill that every leader must master: learning to think for yourself. Doing what someone else already knows how to do takes the world from 1 to n, adding more of something familiar. But when you do something new, you go from 0 to 1. The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won't make a search engine. Tomorrow's champions will not win by competing ruthlessly in today's marketplace. They will escape competition altogether, because their businesses will be unique. Zero to One presents at once an optimistic view of the future of progress in America and a new way of thinking about innovation: it starts by learning to ask the questions that lead you to find value in unexpected places. - Description from Syndetics
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