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Wednesday, September 30, 2009

 

Awesomely Simple by John Spence - Book review



Awesomely Simple

Essential Business Strategies for Turning Ideas Into Action


By: John Spence

Published: September 2009
Format: Hardcover, 208pp
ISBN-13: 9780470494516
ISBN: 0470494514
Publisher: Jossey-Bass





"What I have learned is that business is much less complicated than I thought", writes consultant, speaker, and entrepreneur John Spence in his management complexity removing book Awesomely Simple: Essential Business Strategies for Turning Ideas Into Action. The author describes how businesses that get more simple, and become less complicated, will be more efficient, productive, and have stronger customer loyalty.

John Spence understands how increasing complexity, within an organization's management and customer relationships, results in lower profitability, less productivity, lower staff morale, and dissatisfied customers. In the place of more complex systems, that often dilute a company's values and mission, the author provides a more simple, and also much more effective plan of action. His six basic strategies for simplicity are:

* Vivid Vision
* Best People
* Robust Communication
* Sense of Urgency
* Disciplined Execution
* Extreme Customer Focus



John Spence (photo left) recognizes that many organizations practice one or more of the strategies for simplicity, but the truly successful and growing companies practice them all to some degree. The author's simplified approach to business management is to take care of the crucial issues, and avoid the unnecessarily complicated processes and systems that stand in the way of productivity, employee morale, and customer service. By breaking the key issues facing business down into the six most vital strategic areas, John Spence sharpens the focus of everyone in the organization on what is truly important for the company. A failure to maintain that focus on simplicity can result in disaster for a business. The six critical strategies remove the obstacles to a company's success.

For me, the power of the book is John Spence's uncanny ability to remove the extraneous, and unnecessarily complex ideas and processes that have found their way into so many companies today. These complicated issues have diverted talent and energy away from the organization's core values and vision. Complexity, for John Spence, stands in the way of business success. Not only does the author outline and explain each of his core strategies in a separate chapter, but provides a valuable self assessment tool at the end of each chapter discussion. By taking an honest audit of one's own company, it's easy to see where simplicity is needed to make the business more effective. At the same time, John Spence doesn't lose sight of other key components of business success including providing high quality products and services, maintaining a positive cash flow, and accepting the inevitability of change.

I highly recommend the business strengthening book Awesomely Simple: Essential Business Strategies for Turning Ideas Into Action by John Spence, to anyone seeking to place stronger emphasis on the core strategies that make a company great. At teh same time, the book presents a hands on approach to self assessment of where complexity has slipped into the organization, helping the executive to find areas where simplification concepts can be applied most effectively.

Read the complexity removing book Awesomely Simple: Essential Business Strategies for Turning Ideas Into Action by John Spence, and put the six core strategies to work in restoring simplicity to your company. Instead of complex systems that waste time, money, personnel, and other valuable resources, your business will be more focused, more efficient, more productive, and more profitable.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

 

Bob Beaudine: The Power Of Who - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Consultant, speaker, and CEO of Eastman & Beaudine, and author of the conventional wisdom challenging book The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know, Bob Beaudine, describes how we already have the key relationships in our lives to achieve our dreams. He points out how everyone has a powerful existing network of friends, family and colleagues. Bob turns networking upside down by helping you to connect to what he calls your Who. Your dreams, and the dreams of those around you, will soon follow.

Bob Beaudine is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Tuesday, September 29, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Speaker, consultant and CEO of Eastman & Beaudine, and author of the conventional wisdom challenging book The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know, Bob Beaudine, describes how we already have the key relationships in our lives to achieve our dreams. You will learn:

* Why traditional networking advice might not be working for you

* Why everyone you need to know is already in your current network

* How to identify the proper goals to fulfill your destiny

* How to be more effective at interviews to land that job or contract



Bob Beaudine (photo left) is the CEO of Eastman & Beaudine, and manages the nation’s leading executive search firm in sports and entertainment. Bob has helped shape the leadership teams of some of the world’s most innovative and dynamic businesses- NBA, Major League Baseball, Hockey, Tennis, Rodeo, PGATour, Arena Football, US Olympics, NASCAR, Horse Racing, and Ultimate Fighting Championships.

He has interviewed & coached Senators, Governors, Generals, CEO’s, University Presidents, Top Athletic Coaches and Studio Presidents. He even interviewed President George W. Bush and General Colin Powell when he was handling the search for the Commissioner of Baseball. Bob just recruited Patrick McEnroe (Recent World Champion-Davis Cup Coach) to run Elite Player Development for US Tennis.

Sports Illustrated recently named Beaudine the:
“Top Front Office Matchmaker in Sports.”

Bob also works with major college athletic programs having placed 33 Athletic Directors at major universities across the country as well as 25 Head Coaches in Football and Basketball.

The Wall Street Journal named Bob’s firm the:
“Top Executive Recruiting Firm in College Sports.”

Bob’s leadership also extends into the local community. He recently served as Chairman of the “Doak Walker National Running Back Award”. He is on the Board of SMU’s Cox School of Business. He is a graduate (1977) of Southern Methodist University with a bachelor of business administration degree. He & his wife Cheryl just celebrated their 25th Wedding Anniversary and have three fabulous daughters 23, 22, & 18.

Bob Beaudine is a dynamic, engaging speaker who vibrantly speaks on a multitude of topics centered around his new book, The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know. The Power of WHO is a grass roots movement that’s catching fire all across the nation transforming the way people think about “Networking”.

My book review of The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know by Bob Beaudine.

Listen live on Tuesday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with consultant, speaker, and CEO of Eastman & Beaudine, and author of the conventional wisdom challenging book The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know, Bob Beaudine, as he describes how we already have the key relationships in our lives to achieve our dreams. He points out how everyone has a powerful existing network of friends, family and colleagues. Bob turns networking upside down by helping you to connect to what he calls your Who. Your dreams, and the dreams of those around you, will soon follow on Blog Business Success Radio.

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Monday, September 28, 2009

 

The Sari Shop Widow by Shobhan Bantwal - Book review



The Sari Shop Widow

By: Shobhan Bantwal

Published: August 25, 2009
Format: Trade Paperback, 352pp
ISBN-13: 9780758232021
Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation








Anjali Kapadia is an independent businesswoman in Edison, New Jersey's "Little India" district, and her family clothing boutique is in serious financial trouble. Desperate for financial assistance and advice, Angeli's father turns to his wealthy, but often tyrannical brother Jeveen. Anjali fears the worst, and expects disaster to befall the family business, engulfing her life savings in the process. Since she was widowed, a decade earlier, she has poured her life and effort into the boutique, and her efforts might have only been in vain. In the insightful East-West cultural novel The Sari Shop Widow by Shobhan Bantwal, the arrival of her terrifying uncle and his mysterious friend Rishi Shah, marked only the beginning of Anjali's journey.

The story of Anjali takes the form of an ethereal fairy tale, moving seamlessly between the grounded business culture of the United States, and the traditional and often exotic, traditional culture of India. As Angali lives her life, she is most at home in the Silks & Sapphires boutique, where her elite fashion designs are on display. The harsh reality of competition and a changing marketplace combined to create severe financial problems for the store. For the widowed Angali, still grieving the loss of her husband Vik, the boutique symbolizes her one hope in life. Financial problems, and the impending arrival of her powerful uncle, threaten to destroy the one hope remaining in her life.



Shobhan Bantal (photo left) creates a world that is both real and magical, and that sense of the miraculous exudes from every page. The beautiful descriptions of Indian culture in America, juxtaposed with the bottom line world of commerce, provide a wonderful backdrop for this modern day fairy tale. Indeed, Angali is the true princess of the family, and like the story of Cinderella, the family kingdom is in disarray as Angali continues to mourn her loss. Until the princess is restored to true happiness, the family fortunes will suffer. Her uncle's cash and the advice of his friend Rishi, could mean the start the transformation of the princess back to her rightful place, unless some unforeseen events intervene in her life.

The book features very well drawn characters, especially Angali, and the mysterious Rishi Shah, whose advice is crucial to the commercial success of the troubled boutique. The novel is a story of love, but also of redemption, of duty, and of second chances. The love that bonds the Kapadia family is deep and vital to the story. Without that powerful love of family, despite some setbacks, the fairy tale would have ended before Angali could achieve her destiny. The business is offered a second chance by the wealthy Uncle Jeevan, and that opportunity for renewed hope provides the catalyst for redemption for many of the characters. Second chances abound in the story, and form a powerful theme within the novel.

I highly recommend the enchanting The Sari Shop Widow by Shobhan Bantwal, to anyone seeking a real life fairy tale, that transcends cultures and uplifts the human spirit. The novel is a world where dreams can come true, but often painfully, and as fitting for a boutique, with a hefty price tag attached. The story will sweep the reader up, into the near mystical world of East and West, for a page turning delight.

Read the marvelous The Sari Shop Widow by Shobhan Bantwal, and share in the lives, loves, and business ventures of a family desperate for a miracle. The story and the intricate lives of its memorable cast of characters, will stay with the reader, long after the book is closed.

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Saturday, September 26, 2009

 

The Power Of Who! by Bob Beaudine - Book review



The Power of Who!

You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know


By: Bob Beaudine

Published: January 2009
Format: Hardcover, 192pp
ISBN-13: 9781599951539
ISBN: 1599951533
Publisher: Center Street







"What if each of us had been given key relationships in our lives that have been specifically placed there to help us in ways we never imagined?" writes Eastman & Beaudine CEO Bob Beaudine, in his conventional wisdom challenging book The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know. The author recommends strongly that a person cast aside well known ideas about networking, and concentrate on working with the people already in a person's circle of family, friends, and closest associates.

Bob Beaudine turns popular ideas about networking upside down. Instead of recommending the usual practice of meeting more people, in order to achieve one's dreams, the author suggests looking to your closest friends and family first. Bob Beaudine recognizes that only a small percentage of people end up living their dreams, partly because they believe they have to build their future on their own. Nothing could be farther from the truth, writes the author. People need other people to help them build their ideal life, and that means asking others for assistance. Because family and friends are the most likely to help, either directly or through their own personal network, they are the best source of what Bob Beaudine calls your Who.



Bob Beaudine (photo left) understands that people are often reluctant to ask for help, especially from family and friends. All too often, feelings of shame, guilt, and inadequacy work to prevent that important request for assistance. The author points out that no one achieves their destiny on their own. Everyone who succeeds in life receives help. Teams build success and not lone wolves. At the same time, people aren't always certain as to what they really want to achieve in life. Discovering one's personal goals, and recognizing the true dream and path to destiny are essential to achieving happiness. For Bob Beaudine, there is no one more likely to help reach those goals than your family and closest friends. They are the Who that will make your dreams come true.

For me, the power of the book was Bob Beaudine's crucial, but often overlooked insight, that everyone already knows the right people to help in making their dreams a reality. All too often, people are steered away from their destiny by chasing personal contacts who may not ever be willing or able to help them. The best and most effective recommendations and personal introductions will always come from those people in your personal Who. They are the people with your best interests at heart. Another power of the book is the powerful interview advice given to job hunters or those seeking business contracts. In both cases, the support of the Who in one's life will lead to the best opportunities, as well as provide the finest references.

I highly recommend the career and life transforming book The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know by Bob Beaudine, to anyone seeking to reach their life goals and their personal destiny. The message in the book, that everyone already knows the people who can make those dreams a reality, is liberating to the spirit. In place of the fear of not knowing the allegedly right people, the best people for you are already there in your own circle of close friends and associates. Their concentric rings of other friends and associates is brought into play, by those in your life who care the most about you and your success.

Read the insightful book The Power of Who! You Already Know Everyone You Need to Know by Bob Beaudine, and get to know and work more closely with your own personal Who. They not only want to help your make your dreams a reality, they are willing to do everything in their power to assist you along your journey to your personal destiny. The Who in your life is a very powerful force indeed.

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Thursday, September 24, 2009

 

Michael Sand & Linda Lysakowski: Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Professional nonprofit fundraising experts and co-authors of the definitive and action oriented book The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies, Michael A. Sand and Linda Lysakowski, share ideas for boosting your nonprofit organization fundraising efforts. The describe how to develop a clear, effective plan, how to ask for funds from individuals and corporations, and how to hold special events. They discuss ideas for conducting large capital campaigns, including approaching governments, foundations, and business effectively. They also describe the secrets for more effective grant applications that get approval.

Michael A. Sand and Linda Lysakowski are my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Thursday, September 24, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Professional nonprofit fundraising experts and co-authors of the definitive and action oriented book The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies, Michael A. Sand and Linda Lysakowski, share ideas for boosting your nonprofit organization fundraising efforts. The describe how to develop a clear, effective plan, how to ask for funds from individuals and corporations, and how to hold special events. You will learn:

* How to develop a nonprofit organization fundraising plan

* How to select and motivate the right volunteers for the campaign

* How to approach funding agencies, corporations, and government for money

* How to ask for donations of amounts both large and small from individuals



Linda Lysakowski (photo left) is one of fewer than one hundred people world-wide to hold the coveted Advanced Certified Fundraising Executive (ACFRE) designation. She is the founder and President/CEO of Capital Venture. Her company celebrates its 15th anniversary this year.

Linda is an internationally recognized author, speaker and trainer. She has trained more than 10,000 professionals in Mexico, Canada and Egypt as well as in almost all of the fifty states in the United States. Linda is the author of several books and has also led numerous web conferences and audio conferences for AFP, Charity Channel, Affinity Seminars, and the Philanthropy Journal.

Linda also has over twenty years experience as a fundraiser and personally consults with two to three selected organizations each year. In her role as President/CEO of CAPITAL VENTURE, Linda is proud of the team of expert consultants she has assembled on both coasts. She is closely involved with each consultant in their work with our clients. Together, her team has led successful campaigns that have raised more than $75,000,000 and consulted to more than 100 clients in our 15 year history.




Michael Sand (photo left) is the founder of Sand Associates. Mr. Sand has had an extensive career that began in 1966 when he served as Program Planner for Philadelphia's anti-poverty program and then Assistant Director of Montgomery County's anti-poverty program. Before founding V in 1979, Mike Sand served as Executive Director of the Community Action Association of Pennsylvania, Deputy Director of the Pennsylvania Bureau of Consumer Protection, and Administrator of the Law Bureau of the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission.

Michael Sand is the author of How to Manage an Effective Nonprofit Organization (Career Press, Franklin Lakes, NJ, 2005). He leads workshops throughout the United States in areas such as Strategic Planning, Grant Writing, Fundraising and Effective Supervision.

My book review of The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies by Linda Lysakowski and Michael A. Sand.

Listen live on Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with professional nonprofit fundraising experts and co-authors of the definitive and action oriented book The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies, Michael A. Sand and Linda Lysakowski, as they share ideas for boosting your nonprofit organization fundraising efforts. The describe how to develop a clear, effective plan, how to ask for funds from individuals and corporations, and how to hold special events. They discuss ideas for conducting large capital campaigns, including approaching governments, foundations, and business effectively. They also describe the secrets for more effective grant applications that get approval on Blog Business Success Radio.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

 

The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook by Michael A. Sand & Linda Lysakowski - Book review


The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook

Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies


By: Michael A. Sand, Linda Lysakowski

Published: July 2009
Format: Paperback, 224pp
ISBN-13: 9781601630728
Publisher: Career Press





"Many organizations that do not have professional development staff get caught up in a variety of activities that may not be appropriate for their organization, are time- and labor-intensive, and may not reap the expected financial benefits", write respected nonprofit development experts Michael A. Sand and Linda Lysakowski in their definitive and action oriented book The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies. The authors Present a clear, and easy to understand multi-faceted fundraising development system, that covers all aspects and avenues of raising money. The book and its powerful advice is useful for any size of nonprofit organization, but the information is especially targeted to smaller organizations, that need funding on an ongoing basis.



Linda Lysakowski (photo left) and Michael A. Sand are both very experienced fundraisers with years of experience with the nonprofit sector. They recognize the crucial importance of fundraising for nonprofit organizations, and that need for cash is even more critical today, in a world of corporate and government budget cutbacks. The need to reassess how funds are acquired, and where to get that needed money, forms the core of this timely book. The authors start with outlining how to create a workable organizational development plan. Without that action plan in place, to serve as a guide for the board of directors, the staff, and the organizational volunteers, very little will happen. For that reason, the book contains several valuable chapters on planning for fundraising needs in both the short and longer terms.



Michael A. Sand (photo left) and Linda Lysakowski understand the process of fundraising as well, within the structure of a nonprofit organization. The authors describe how to get the board of directors to approve fundraising campaigns, and to incorporate the development plan into the overall direction of the organization. The book contains advice for staff members to do their job in supporting the board and the volunteers in carrying out the plan. Every nonprofit organization has a corps of volunteers as its backbone. The authors describe how to find good, dedicated volunteers, and how to include them in all aspects of the fundraising process. The third portion of the book outlines the various sources of funding, and unique approach required for effectively raising money from each of these groups, whether individuals, corporations, granting agencies, or governments.

For me, the power of the book is the very comprehensive approach taken by Linda Lysakowski and Michael A. Sand to the under studied concept of fundraising for nonprofit organizations. The authors take the reader through the entire process from developing an overall development plan, to finding and positioning the right people to carry out the required assignments. Very crucial to the strength of the book, is the important and often overlooked insight, that not all sources of funding should have the same approach for money. The authors know from experience, that obtaining funds from governments, foundations, or granting agencies is very different from requesting corporate support. At the same time, the book covers the many different ways that individual donors, both large and small, should be asked for funds as well.

I highly recommend the essential and must read book The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies by Linda Lysakowski and Michael A. Sand, to anyone in the nonprofit sector who seeks to improve or overhaul completely, their organization's current fundraising program. Whether the need is to develop an overall plan, find and motivate the right volunteers, or identify the best way to receive optimum support from any funding source, this book holds the answers.

Read the definitive and organization transformational book The Essential Nonprofit Fundraising Handbook: Getting the Money You Need From Individuals, Businesses, Foundations, and Government Agencies by Linda Lysakowski and Michael A. Sand, and begin the journey toward a fully developed fundraising plan for your not for profit organization. The survival and growth of your organization, and the achievement of its goals may depend upon it.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

 

John Auger & Jerry Serra - B.S. Business Satire - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Management consultants and co-authors of the hilarious and spot on satire of modern corporations B.S.: Business Satire: Business Culture and How We Can Change It, John Auger and Jerry Serra, take a light hearted look at the absurdities of the modern corporation. They describe the problem of self centered executives, trample badly run meetings, satirize ridiculous job titles, and pillory the proliferation of jargon and buzzwords. The authors share their ideas on replacing these counterproductive wastes of resources with more effective and human management for a more balanced life. Listen and keep score in buzzword bingo, and learn how to rid yourself and your company of the worst traits of bad management.

John Auger and Jerry Serra are my internet radio show guests on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Tuesday, September 22, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Management consultants and co-authors of the hilarious and spot on satire of modern corporations B.S.: Business Satire: Business Culture and How We Can Change It, John Auger and Jerry Serra, take a light hearted look at the absurdities of the modern corporation. You will learn:

* How self important narcissists hijacked the executive suites

* How job titles became inflated and how to remedy that problem

* How to improve business communications in person and with technology

* How to reclaim your life so you no longer have to live to work



Jerry Serra (photo left) graduated from Northeastern University in 1991 with a degree in Criminal Justice. Since then he has worked for Fortune 500 companies in several managerial positions.

Jerry lives in Massachusetts with his wife and four children.



John Auger (photo left) attended the University of Lowell majoring in Criminal Justice. Over the past 17 years John has held a variety of sales and management positions within Fortune 500 companies.

John and his family are natives of Boston and now reside in Greensboro, North Carolina.

My book review of B.S.: Business Satire: Business Culture and How We Can Change It by John Auger and Jerry Serra.

Listen live on Tuesday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

BlogTalkRadio.com

If you miss this very informative show, it will be available for free download as a podcast for iPod, iTunes, and MP3 players; or play it right on your computer. To download this, or any other of my guest interviews, go to the Blog Business Success host page and click on Archived Segments. Once there, click on the podcast icon at the end of the episode description, to download the show free of charge for your listening enjoyment. You can also subscribe to the show feed.

Add to iTunes

To call in questions for my guest, the number is: (347) 996-5832

Let's talk with management consultants and co-authors of the hilarious and spot on satire of modern corporations B.S.: Business Satire: Business Culture and How We Can Change It, John Auger and Jerry Serra, as they take a light hearted look at the absurdities of the modern corporation. They describe the problem of self centered executives, trample badly run meetings, satirize ridiculous job titles, and pillory the proliferation of jargon and buzzwords. The authors share their ideas on replacing these counterproductive wastes of resources with more effective and human management for a more balanced life. Listen and keep score in buzzword bingo, and learn how to rid yourself and your company of the worst traits of bad management on Blog Business Success Radio.

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Monday, September 21, 2009

 

An Extra Hour Every Day by Nicolas Soergel - Book review



Happy About an Extra Hour Every Day

By: Nicolas Soergel

Published: May 1, 2009
Format: Paperback, 106 pages
ISBN: 978-1-60005-140-1
Publisher: Happy About










"At first, you have to realize that you have enough time for all your important matters - if you want", writes CEO and time management expert Nicolas Soergel, in his practical and easy to apply book Happy About an Extra Hour Every Day. The author describes hundreds of easy to use time saving ideas that add up to extra time, that can be put to very good use at home or work, each and every day.

Nicolas Soergel understands that people face many demands on their time. He points out that each day contains only 24 hours, 1440 minutes, or 86,400 seconds, and compares those numbers to a time bank account. Each day, that balance is withdrawn in its entirety, and each day it is replenished. The author shares the valuable insight that time not used properly, is used in vain. Since there is no way to add extra hours, minutes, or seconds to that time account, the only solution to gaining time, is to reorganize how time is being used currently. For the author, that saving can be created through removing the countless time wasters that steal from the daily time account. To this end, the book contains important tips for saving time at home and at work, but also demonstrates how time can be better managed in large projects at work or even on vacations.



Nicolas Soergel (photo left) recognizes that many people will not be able to better manage their time, unless they understand clearly why they need to do so. The author suggests setting goals to be accomplished, and then allocating the time necessary to reach those goals. To find where a person is already squandering valuable time resources, Nicolas Soergel advises the use of a time diary, where times used for various tasks and leisure activities are logged and counted. This useful measuring tool will underline for the diarist exactly where time is not being used to its fullest value. Indeed, many of the most common uses of time are for tasks that are not necessary, and are even counter productive, in terms of goal achievement. Much of the powerful time saving advice offered in the book involves planning activities, and once that concept is understood and applied, it will become as natural as breathing.

For me, the power of the book is the practical hands on approach to time management, and the gaining of extra minutes, that add up to an extra hour or more per day. Included in the list of time savers are tips for gaining quick time gains to advice for reorganizing a work day or vacation time completely. Nicolas Soergel recommends starting the process of time saving slowly, and then adding more and more time management methods over the following weeks and months. In this sense, the book becomes a guide to be kept handy for advice on time management on a continual basis. By following the one step at a time approach, the reader can incorporate each technique into the day until they become automatic behavior. As one idea becomes a habit, additional time savers can be learned and used to maintain that balance in the time account more effectively.

I highly recommend the useful and rewarding book Happy About an Extra Hour Every Day by Nicolas Seorgel, to anyone seeking to regain control over their time at work and at home. From email to meetings to personal care and finance, the author shares valuable tips for preventing time leakage in every area of a person's life. Even experienced time managers will find hidden time saving gems in this information packed book, that can be used over and over in all types of home or office situations.

Read the valuable and ongoing advice offered in Happy About an Extra Hour Every Day by Nicolas Seorgel, and never again find yourself believing that there is not enough time in the day to accomplish what is truly important. The book is a wonderful guide to creating that time, and for using those precious moments wisely, and for living your life to its fullest.

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

 

Barry Conchie: Strengths Based Leadership - Blog Business Success Radio

Listen to Wayne Hurlbert on Blog Talk Radio



Leadership consultant, and head of leadership consulting at Gallup, as well as co-author of the groundbreaking and research based book Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow, Barry Conchie, discusses the findings of a massive 30 study on leadership, conducted by Gallup. The author describes why effective leaders always invest in strengths, surround themselves with the right people and then manage the team effectively, and understand the needs of their followers. Learn as well some of the myths of leadership that were effectively refuted in the study. Discover the next step in the leadership dialogue for the future.

Barry Conchie is my internet radio show guest on Blog Business Success; hosted live on Blog Talk Radio.

The show airs live on Thursday, September 17, at 8:00 pm Eastern Time; 5:00 pm Pacific Time.

Leadership consultant, and head of leadership consulting at Gallup, as well as co-author of the groundbreaking and research based book Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow, Barry Conchie, discusses the findings of a massive 30 study on leadership, conducted by Gallup. You will learn:

* Why people followed who they considered their most effective leader

* What are the four domains of leadership strength

* Why a leader doesn't need all of the strengths, but the team does

* A surprising fact about who leaders choose as their successor



Barry Conchie (photo left) is Principal Leadership Consultant at and co-author of Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow.

A renowned leadership consultant, Gallup's Barry Conchie is sought after by CEOs around the world to assist in aligning business and talent strategies that drive performance. An expert in executive assessment, team diagnostics, and succession planning, he brings objective measurement and insight to these important leadership areas. He is the co-author of Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow.

Barry Conchie was a public sector leader in the United Kingdom before joining Gallup in London. In 2002, he brought his extensive global experience to Gallup's Washington, D.C., headquarters, where Barry now leads Gallup's executive leadership consulting.

Barry Conchie and his wife, Nicola, and children, Amy and Thomas, live in Maryland.

My book review of Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow by Barry Conchie and Tom Rath.

Listen live on Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern, 5:00 pm Pacific time.

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Let's talk with renowned leadership consultant, and head of leadership consulting at Gallup, as well as co-author of the groundbreaking and research based book Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow, Barry Conchie, as he discusses the findings of a massive 30 study on leadership, conducted by Gallup. The author describes why effective leaders always invest in strengths, surround themselves with the right people and then manage the team effectively, and understand the needs of their followers. Learn as well some of the myths of leadership that were effectively refuted in the study. Discover the next step in the leadership dialogue for the future on Blog Business Success Radio.

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

 

Strengths Based Leadership by Barry Conchie & Tom Rath - Book review



Strengths Based Leadership

Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow


By: Barry Conchie, Tom Rath

Published: January 2008
Format: Hardcover, 216pp
ISBN-13: 9781595620255
Publisher: Gallup Press








"Even though you may not notice it in the moment, the most effective leaders forever alter the course of your life", write Gallup research executives Barry Conchie and Tom Rath, in their groundbreaking and research based book Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow. The authors demonstrate, as a result of their extensive research, three crucial findings relating too all successful and effective leaders. The research also uncovered four domains of leadership strength, and how each leaders' personal strengths fit into those four areas.



Barry Conchie (photo left) and Tom Rath describe the three key elements of leadership that respondents indicated were the reasons they followed a particular leader. The authors discovered that the most effective leaders invested in strengths. This focus on strengths within teams and team members resulted in a multiplier effect that enhanced all members of the team. A second finding was that effective leaders surrounded themselves with the right people, and maximized that team. While the best leaders are not well rounded in all areas, they make certain that their teams feature strength in all areas. The research also determined that the most effective leaders understand the needs of their followers. The findings were that followers have four basic needs, and the most understanding leaders recognize and take care of those needs in their team members.



Tom Rath (photo left) and Barry Conchie not only describe the three fundamental areas where effective leaders excel, but also the four domains of leadership strengths, and where great leaders fit within them. The four key domain elements are executing, influencing, relationship building, and strategic thinking. Each of these four domains are further broken down into individual strengths of both the leader and of the team. The authors found that the most effective teams had representation from all four areas. It is not essential that every person possess all four domains or even be well rounded individuals. It is important that the team, as a whole, be well rounded with all four domain areas represented within it.

For me, the power of the book is how Tom Rath and Barry Conchie present research based data in a highly readable and usable format, that can be applied readily by any team leader. Unlike many books on leadership, the emphasis here is not on one person's opinion of ideal leadership, but on extensive research into both leaders and followers, and what makes for an effective leader. The authors demonstrate how to discover personal strengths, and how to select teams that contain all of the four major domain areas. The authors include very useful and practical additional information for maximizing effectiveness through thirty-four themes, based on their StrengthsFinder methodology. Combining massive research findings, with recommendations for applying those leadership aspects, makes the book a valuable asset to any team leader.

I highly recommend the practical and results oriented book Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow by Barry Conchie and Tom Rath, to anyone seeking a more clear understanding of the most critical elements of leadership and team building. The authors point out that the leader doesn't have to be strong in all of the four domains, but rather is a person capable of combining and encouraging those strengths within individual team members. The result will be a more effective leader, and a very successful and productive team.

Read the must read leadership book Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie, and uncover the leadership strengths within yourself, and learn how to recognize and understand them within your team members. Through application of the research findings, a leader can formulate a stronger team, that comprises all four of the leadership domains. The result will be greater productivity and a more cohesive, dedicated, and effective team.


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Monday, September 14, 2009

 

The Missing Keys To Thriving In Any Real Estate Market by Eddie Godshalk - Book review



The Missing Keys to Thriving in Any Real Estate Market

By: Eddie Godshalk, MBA

Published: June 15, 2009
Format: Paperback, 180 pages
ISBN-10: 1890427136
ISBN-13: 978-1890427139
Publisher: Home Value Predictor






"Just like the stock market or any other financial concept, the real estate market is predictable - when you have access to the most accurate, reliable, and relevant information available", writes real estate coach and investor Eddie Godshalk, in his practical and revolutionary book The Missing Keys to Thriving in Any Real Estate Market. The author demonstrates how his system of highly targeted mapping of real estate values better predicts value than relying simply on location, terms, and price.

Eddie Godshalk considers a lack of reliable information on local markets and trends to be a major cause of real estate investment failure. The author points out that the mania of the recently burst housing bubble was fueled by imperfect media reports of constantly rising housing prices. Talking heads would repeat the mantra that housing values, despite ample evidence to the contrary, would always rise in price indefinitely. Because prices in the recent past had risen in general terms, people's levels of risk aversion fell, creating a huge bubble that inevitably reached a bad ending for many investors. Small price decreases, for heavily leveraged and over extended home buyers, resulted in huge financial losses and foreclosures.



Eddie Godshalk (photo left) recognizes that many home buyers relied, not only on their lenders, real estate agents, builders, and the media for information, but on numerous online and offline real estate price reporting services as well. For the author, most of these price reports were too general, and did not contain enough up to date data, for reaching rational decision making conclusions. To counter this often very misleading information, Eddie Godshalk offers an alternative. His computer based system uses much more highly targeted mapping of areas, and uses real time data to generate reports. For real estate agents and investors, the access to dynamic mapping of actual prices as they happen, risk is lowered considerably. Instead of relying on generalized, and often out of date information, mistakes regarding area and pricing can be reduced dramatically.

For me, the power of the book is the author's premise that relying on incomplete, and often very wrong local information, led to many of the abuses in the housing bubble. Eddie Godshalk points out, in detail, how flawed and misleading information was spread through the media, and accepted throughout the entire real estate and lending industries as fact. People became susceptible to glossy and oversimplified charts that fueled greed to make quick money, and fear of missing out on expected profits. In their place, the book describes the crucial importance of examining real time, dynamic information on a street by street basis. Better information helps the home buyer, investor, agents, and lenders to better assess risk and reward for a given locally mapped area. Within areas of collapsing prices, pockets of genuine real estate values can be uncovered, while leaving other areas alone entirely.

I highly recommend the useful and risk lessening book The Missing Keys to Thriving in Any Real Estate Market by Eddie Godshalk, to any real estate investor, home buyer, real estate agent, or lender seeking a more reliable source of local market information. Instead of relying on incomplete, and often dangerously outdated information sources, the author provides access to real time, dynamic pricing information. The calculation charts included in the book provide useful tools for examining local markets, complete with the crucial reminder that no investment is entirely without risk. That risk warning is an important part of the book

Read the real estate value seeking book The Missing Keys to Thriving in Any Real Estate Market by Eddie Godshalk, and discover how to better assess and lower risk in real estate investments. The book is essential reading for anyone serious about real estate markets, whether in sales or for investment purposes. Information is power, and this book demonstrates how to gain access to the latest real time pricing information, on the most local levels. The reader will never have to rely on the usual very general, and often very inaccurate information again.

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Sunday, September 13, 2009

 

The Cost Of Capitalism by Robert J. Barbera - Book review


The Cost of Capitalism

Understanding Market Mayhem and Stabilizing our Economic Future


By: Robert J. Barbera, Ph.D.

Published: April 2009
Format: Hardcover, 240 pages
ISBN-13: 9780071628440
ISBN-10: 0071628444
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional






"Market crises are an integral part of our economic system", writes Executive Vice President and Chief Economist at ITG and Economics Department Fellow at Johns Hopkins University Robert J. Barbera, in his insightful and paradigm challenging book The Cost of Capitalism: Understanding Market Mayhem and Stabilizing our Economic Future. The author supports strong the concept that capitalism is the best economic system, but takes to task mainstream market economists who have embraced the mistaken view that capitalism as infallible.

Robert Barbera presents a solid case that cycles end following excesses in the market, concluding with market upheaval and retrenchment. The author points out that this obvious reality of capitalist markets has been ignored, and even suppressed, by mainstream economists. Robert Barbera applies the important insights of economist Hyman Minsky to his analysis of the current economic crisis. Minsky made the case that stability and economic tranquility led to over confidence that these temporary conditions were permanent features of the economy. As a result, confidence grows leading to the taking of excessive risks, driven by greed and herd instinct. Because many of the investors become over confident, and leverage their investments too heavily, even a very small economic downturn renders large numbers of investors insolvent. Understanding this inherent instability of capitalism, that results in periodic market disruptions, is a crucial element of the book.



Robert J. Barbera (photo left) recognizes that mainstream economists are ill suited to forecasting future economic crises. The author considers their economic theories and forecasting tools to be flawed, in their failure to comprehend that capitalism is prone to cycles. Robert Barbara describes capitalism, when examined in the real world, is inherently unstable. Instead of trending toward equilibrium and a steady state, any widespread belief in permanent stability will cause an increase in risk taking, creating bubbles. Bubbles, by their very nature, discourage careful risk analysis. As a result, even a slightly bursting bubble causes widespread financial ruin. The recent real estate bubble collapse is a clear example of the principle of instability at work, and playing out precisely as Hyman Minsky had forecast.

For me, the power of the book is the authors clear headed analysis of how capitalism really works, and why booms and recessions are a natural feature of capitalism. The denial of conventional economic theory, of the inherent instability of the capitalist economy, causes even dangerous bubbles and more severe recessions than necessary. Robert Barbera believes strongly that capitalism is the best economics system, but also recognizes that capitalism is not infallible, nor has endless growth without interruption. The author's insightful analysis of the economic upheavals of the past decades is essential reading for everyone, whether a professional economist, business person, or average citizen. Acknowledging the obvious flaws in capitalism will help preserve and strengthen the system, while denying these obvious truths could lead to successful attempts to end market capitalism as an economic system.

I highly recommend the important and must read book The Cost of Capitalism: Understanding Market Mayhem and Stabilizing our Economic Future by Robert J. Barbera, to anyone serious about understanding real world capitalist economics, and its inherent flaws. The author provides a very convincing reassessment of the powerful economic thought of Hyman Minsky, about how bubbles are created and resolved in often disastrous fashion. Through understanding the flaws within the system, more effective policies can be implemented by governments and central banks to prevent the creation of dangerous bubbles, and lessening their impact overall.

Read the essential and illuminating book The Cost of Capitalism: Understanding Market Mayhem and Stabilizing our Economic Future by Robert J. Barbera, and discover why there is no such thing as a Goldilocks economy, as everything seeming just right, leads inexorably toward higher risk taking and blowing of unstable bubbles. The author provides the vital analysis lacking in most mainstream discussion of the economy. This book deserves a wide audience, and should be read by anyone who supports a capitalist economy, and has a desire to improve its economic effectiveness.


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Saturday, September 12, 2009

 

Just Food by James E. McWilliams - Book review



Just Food

Where Locavores Get It Wrong and How We Can Truly Eat Responsibly


By: James E. McWilliams

Published: August 26, 2009
Format: Hardcover, 272 pages
ISBN: 9780316033749
Publisher: Little, Brown & Company





"Eating local is not, in and of itself, a viable answer to sustainable food production on a global level", writes Professor of History at Texas State University-San Marcos and award winning agricultural thinker James E. McWilliams in his visionary and thought provoking book Just Food: Where Locavores Get It Wrong and How We Can Truly Eat Responsibly. The author makes a compelling case, that neither locally oriented organic farming or conventional chemical based agriculture, can solve the intensifying global food problem. In their place, the book provides the groundwork for a more balanced approach that takes the best features of both agricultural systems, and combines them to provide a viable third option for solving world hunger.

James McWilliams understands that many myths and outright propaganda, surround both organic farming movement and conventional chemical based food production. The author points out that he is a long time supporter of eating ethically and of supporting organically grown food. At the same time, James McWilliams demonstrates that many of most cherished beliefs and ideals of organic agriculture are just myths. In that mythology, he includes the fallacy of calculating food miles and the mistaken belief that accepted organic pest control is safe for people and the environment. On the other side of the coin, the author takes conventional, chemical based production to task for its waste of resources and environmental degradation, and its emphasis on growing crops that are not intended for human consumption.



James E. McWilliams (photo left) recognizes that the discussion about food production has become very polarized with organic purists on one side and conventional agriculture supporters on the other. in order to break through this extreme division, the author proposes what he calls the Golden Mean, where he recommends combining the best features of local, organic farming with the best practices of mainstream chemical based production. James McWilliams provides evidence that local production, supported by who he calls locavores, can't begin to meet the global demand for food that is rising with population growth. At the same time, he describes how the solutions offered by conventional chemical based agriculture are scientifically, ecologically, and ethically bankrupt. This divisive situation, with neither side speaking to the other, is what the author addresses effectively in the book.

For me, the power of the book is how James McWilliams isn't afraid to tackle the most controversial topics, and offer solutions that fly in their face of the conventional wisdom of both the organic and chemical based communities. For example, he sees the much maligned genetically modified plants and fish species are lowering chemical dependency, as well as lowering strain on depleted pastures by cattle. Indeed, one of his more stunning suggestions is replacing meat in the diet with aquaculturally reared fish. A very far reaching recommendation involves the elimination of all farm subsidies, which the author views as perverse and counterproductive for food production, and actively encourage damage to the environment. The author's purpose is to get people to think differently, from the polarized and antagonistic positions, of both organic supporters and chemical based agricultural adherents.

I highly recommend the challenging and often controversial book Just Food: Where Locavores Get It Wrong and How We Can Truly Eat Responsibly by James E. McWilliams, to anyone seeking practical and workable solutions to improving both local food supplies and for feeding the world as a whole. The author openly challenges the mythology that has grown up around food production from the increasingly polarized organic and conventional camps. The book provides a framework, and proposes real solutions, for taking the best of both worlds, while discarding the less desirable practices of both food production systems. In the end, the author hopes to encourage a balanced approach to addressing global food requirements.

Read the important book Just Food: Where Locavores Get It Wrong and How We Can Truly Eat Responsibly by James E. McWilliams, and discover a fresh approach to food justice and ecologically responsible production and eating. Not everyone will agree with the author's conclusions or recommendations, but his sincerity and dedication to finding solutions to the world food crisis are unimpeachable. James McWilliams provides a powerful starting point for opening discussion between the diametrically opposed factions of organic producers and conventional chemical farming supporters. That worthy goal, if achieved, is a powerful first step toward feeding a growing world population ethically, and for maintaining the health of the environment as well.

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Friday, September 11, 2009

 

Extreme Dreams Depend On Teams by Pat Williams - Book review



Extreme Dreams Depend on Teams

By: Pat Williams

Published: July 22, 2009
Format: Hardcover, 336 pages
ISBN: 9780446407199
Publisher: Center Street










"The world has been transformed and revolutionized, again and again, by people who dreamed extreme dreams - then assembled dynamic teams to turn those dreams into reality", writes motivational speaker and Senior Vice-President and co-founder of the NBA's Orlando Magic, Pat Williams, his inspirational book Extreme Dreams Depend on Teams. The author describes in detail, how seemingly impossible dreams can turn into reality, though understanding the importance of team building as a critical leadership skill.

Pat Williams has made a career out of turning dreams into success stories, through his association with the Philadelphia 76ers and the Orlando Magic of the National Basketball Association. His secret to achieving greatness with these NBA teams was through constructing teams of talented people, and then letting them do their jobs. As a result of the author's record of team building prowess, he was often asked if the same principles could be applied effectively to business as well. For Pat Williams, the response was a resounding affirmative. The book provides analysis of how even seemingly individual success stories had effective and well managed teams working to make those great achievements possible. For Pat Williams, extreme teams depend on great teams.



Pat Williams (photo left) recognizes that modern culture often glorifies individual accomplishments, while downplaying the team aspect of that success. Crucial to the author's powerful insights into teams, is understanding that not only do superstar performers require teams to excel, but that being part of a team has a positive multiplier effect on everyone's skills, as a result of synergy. Being part of a team makes everyone involved more effective, and helps them to achieve far greater and more lasting results than any individual acting alone. Dreamers are also team builders, because without the support of many talented people performing their roles, little can be accomplished in turning grand visions into reality. For Pat Williams, to be a great leader, a person must be a great team builder as well.

For me, the power of the book is how Pat Williams recognizes the universal application of team building, as well as the need for more research into this important concept. Moving beyond his own world of sports, where teams are an obvious part of the culture, the author teaches the same concepts in every field of endeavor. The author understands the importance of a leader selling the idea of team work to everyone, and getting them to buy into the overall vision. Pat Williams knows through experience that not every team member will like every other person on the team. What is really crucial for success is that everyone work together toward the goal, regardless of personal differences. By focusing on the positive and emphasizing common ground between team members, a great team leader can overcome any
personal friction for the benefit of the dream.

I highly recommend the groundbreaking book Extreme Dreams Depend on Teams by Pat Williams, to anyone seeking a greater understanding of the vital importance of teams and team building to achieving greatness in any walk of life. At the same time Pat Williams provides insights into the role of a leader in selecting, mentoring, and developing an effective team, that has the skills necessary to achieve even greater results than even the extreme dreamer had anticipated. The leader's role is to bring out the best in the team members, and create the essential synergy that turns every one involved into star performers.

Read the insightful and motivational book Extreme Dreams Depend on Teams by Pat Williams, and dare to dream even the most extreme of dreams. By learning from the wisdom of the many great team builders referenced in the book, anyone can become a superior team leader. Without an effective and dedicated team, even the simplest of dreams can fail to reach fruition. By adding the power and talent multiplier effect of a team, however, even the grandest vision can become a life changing reality. It's true, as Pat Williams demonstrates so well, that extreme dreams do require great teams.

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