How Will You Measure Your Life? (Anglais) Broché – 15 mai 2012
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Descriptions du produit
Revue de presse
“The book encapsulates Christensen’s best advice to keep high achievers from being disrupted in their own lives....[P]rovocative but reassuring: Peter Drucker meets Mitch Albom.” (Bloomberg Businessweek)
“[M]ore genuinely a self-help book than the genre it disparages. Instead of force-feeding readers with orders on how to improve, it aims to give them the tools to set their own course” (Financial Times)
“[W]ell researched and thought through material. (Forbes)
“…a gripping personal story with lessons from business mixed in.” (Bloomberg BusinessWeek)
“…Clayton Christensen’s new book has the business world buzzing.” (Deseret News)
“Recommend the book to friends and family who have no connection to the business world. They will thank you for it.” (Harvard Business Review)
‘’A Business Student’s New Required Reading’’ (Huffington Post)
“[R]evealing and profound.” (Inc. Magazine)
“I wish this book was around when I started my carreer. I bought copies for my kids and other young adults I know. $16 is not a lot to spend to get them thinking about their future and how to live responsible, ethical and successful lives.” (Small Business Labs)
Présentation de l'éditeur
In 2010, the world-renowned innovation expert and bestselling author Clayton M. Christensen delivered a short but powerful speech to the Harvard Business School graduating class. He presented a set of personal guidelines that have helped him find meaning and happiness in his life - a challenge even the brightest and most motivated of students find daunting. The speech was particularly memorable, not only because it veered into intimate terrain usually reserved for therapists, family members, and religious advisors, but also because it came at a time of grave personal crisis for Christensen himself: in the period of three years, he'd survived cancer, a stroke, and a massive heart attack. As he faced down these life-altering events, this question-how do you measure your life? -never felt more urgent and persistent. Christensen was compelled to share his insights with others-family and friends, of course, but also with his students and eventually with a wider audience.
That speech, a subsequent, hugely popular article in the Harvard Business Review, and now this inspiring and groundbreaking book put forth a series of questions and models for success that have long been applied in the world of business, but also can be used to find cogent answers to pressing life questions: How can I be sure that I'll find satisfaction in my career? How can I be sure that my relationships with my spouse, my family and my close friends become enduring sources of happiness? How can I avoid compromising my integrity (and stay out of jail)?
How Will You Measure Your Life? is a highly original, surprising book from a singular business figure. It's a book sure to inspire and educate readers-companies and individuals, students of business, mid-career professionals, and even parents-the world over.
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This is a business view of life, not in terms of profit or loss, but more in terms of ideals, ethics, integrity and brutal honesty about yourself, who you are and where you are going. Such deep moral subject matter could be dry and preachy, but Christensen and his co-authors are anything but. They explain their position in a series of theories -- simple ideas that you can use as tools to inspect and apply to your own experience. They avoid simple formulaic answers like you would find in some books and generic principles about success contained in others. This is a book that exposes the theory behind the issues below, the sources of conventional business and management wisdom and offers new ways of thinking about these important issues.
The book is organized into parts with a particular focus on core questions
Part 1 -- Finding happiness in your career, discusses the true basis of motivation and reward
Part 2 -- Finding happiness in your relationships, concentrates on spending time consistent with your priorities, patience and how they apply
Part 3 -- Staying out of Jail, about living with integrity and the pitfalls of marginal versus full thinking.
The chapters are short, well written and feature some of the material Christensen's prior talks -- for example the question of what is the job of a milkshake. The book is pure Christensen and that says its focused, educational and equips rather than preaches to the the audience.
This is not a self help book, but it is a book for people wanting to think about how to help themselves. The difference is subtle but important as after all is said and done, we all have to measure our own lives, and change based on what we see and believe using the tools we have. This book is chocked full of such tools.
1. FINDING HAPPINESS IN YOUR CAREER--Readers familiar with the book "Drive" by Daniel Pink or the two factor theory will find similar advice here. Most people think getting rewards for jobs (i.e. money, benefits, vacation) will increase happiness. Instead these factors merely reduce dissatisfaction. Whereas, Challenging work, recognition, and responsibility will increase our satisfaction in a job. Christensen urges us not to focus on the result of our career, but on the process (which is a running theme throughout the book). I felt this simple cliche was clouded in Academic language. When I state "Academic," - I merely mean using too many words or new jargon to describe simple concepts. For example, he states if you are currently unhappy in your job, try out new things on the side or use an "emergent strategy," while if you are happy in your career, use a "deliberate strategy" to get better. Despite using the words "emergent", "deliberate", and "strategy", I felt this was pretty common advice.
2. FINDING HAPPINESS IN YOUR RELATIONSHIPS--this section is particularly useful if you are a parent, as much of part II is dedicated to raising better children. Instead of rewarding children for the result (i.e. getting an A), we should congratulate them on their work ethic. I found the point of treating ourselves and people in our lives as "jobs" a particularly fascinating way to look at life. For example, we "hire" school so children can feel successful and have friends. Think of your relationships as "what jobs does this person need me to do?" Christensen also reemphasizes the need for parents to be present in a Child's early years, as research has shown, they gain a vast cognitive advantage (become smarter earlier). The main takeaway I got from part II was to stop placing so much emphasis on building a career and THEN focus on relationships--instead make the time and apply the effort to building both--even if that means an engaging project has to wait until tomorrow.
3. STAYING OUT OF JAIL--The shortest section of the book, this part deals with living a life of integrity. This chapter in summary states: set a boundary (i.e. going to Church on Sundays), and never violate it...not even "just this once."
EPILOGUE: The last part of this section contains "The Three Parts of Purpose," which Christensen attributes to Likeness, Commitment, and metrics. This part alone exemplifies the unnecessary long winded writing found throughout. "The Three Parts of Purpose" which comprises numerous pages, is more or less "Set a goal based on your values, commit to it, and measure it" advice in disguise.
As a twenty something self-employed business owner, I realize I am not the target demographic for this book. This book is more suitable for managers or employees of a large corporation, parents, or both. While perhaps the book's aim was not to be another self-help book, it merely turns out to be one disguised under academic language. Those new to the concepts of the "two factor theory," or overworked parents may find this book to be particularly useful. As a whole, it brings common self-help themes and career advice under one roof.
His first key point is that when people ask what he thinks they should do, he has learned to rarely directly answer their question. Instead, he runs the question through one of his models involving an industry quite different from their own. Then, more often than not, they'll say "I get it,' and answer their own question more insight fully than he believes he could have.
On the last day of class Christensen asks his students to apply the models he's presented during the course to themselves to answer three questions: 1)How can I be sure I'll be happy in my career? 2)How can I be certain my relationships with my family become an enduring source of happiness. 3)How can I be certain I'll stay out of jail. (Not a facetious question - Jeff Skilling was Christensen's classmate at HBS, and two of the 32 in his Rhodes scholar class spend time in jail.)
Addressing the first question, Christensen references Frederick Herzberg's assertion that money isn't the most powerful motivator in our lives - it's the opportunity to learn, grow in responsibilities, contribute to others, and be recognized for achievements. He also points out that if management is practiced well it helps others learn and grow, take responsibility and be recognized. Doing business deals doesn't provide the deep rewards that come from building up people.
Clayton's recommended approach to the second question is based on his own having spent an hour each night reading, thinking, and praying about why God put him on this earth. Finding a purpose is essential to avoiding a hollow life. Personal decisions then can be seen as involving the allocation of time, energy, and talent - just like in a business. His assessment of why some lives end up hollow and unhappy - they had a short-term perspective.
The simplest tools that parents can use to elicit cooperation from children are power tools - eg. coercion. But these no longer work at some time. Building an appropriate culture from the start would have been more effective.
As for the third question - Christensen suggests thinking of marginal costs, always alluring low for 'just this once' situation. The problem is that after 'that once,' repeating the mistake becomes much easier in the future. It's easier to hold on to one's principles 100% of the time than 98% of the time.
Finally, he also adds that if one's attitude is that only smarter people have something to teach you (eg. such as parents, professors), one's learning opportunities will be very limited. Humility, however, allows learning from everybody and unlimited learning.
Others who know Professor Christensen believe he could add three other keys for success, based on his own conduct over the decades:
1)Have an eternal quest for truth, and focus on high-impact issues.
2)Believe in basic goodness - this helps identify root problems.
3)Persistence - his 1997 'The Innovator's Dilemma" won the Global Best business book award. He could have stopped there. Instead he continued and wrote seven mass-market books, and an additional 13 HBR articles, including three that won McKinsey awards.
Bottom-Line: An incredibly valuable book from an outstanding human being and teacher.
Here's where this book shines. Instead of telling you what you have to do, the authors present a completely different strategy. They present the idea of the "theory." Basically, every problem or situation can be looked at through one or more theories. But a theory doesn't give general answers. It provides a specific way of looking at a situation, and gives an answer specific to the theory.
This means that you get an answer that's a lot more useful than the one-size-fits-none platitudes that fill most self help books. But applying a theory to any situation requires discipline and clarity of thinking. So this book provides the mental tools necessary to properly use theories.
Highly recommended for people interested in improving their lives -- not by easy answers, but by clear and systematic understanding.
Why, ask the authors, are so many Harvard Business School graduates (those arguably with the world at their feet) leading unhappy lives littered with broken relationships and chained to professional power rather than the dynamic passions they graduated with? The book opens up vistas into this question, and along the way offers outstanding insights on entrepreneurship - Christensen's academic power alley. As an entrepreneur always on the hunt for insights and meaning, I was hooked. I had been eagerly awaiting the Kindle edition since one of my favorite thinkers is one of the co-authors (Karen Dillion).
If you are an entrepreneur reading this book, your mind will be altered by the example of what "job does the milkshake do?" I immediately scheduled a team meeting of my organization to reframe the "job" of a new product we are launching. The milkshake example changes the way you see business, and it is such a memorable and entertaining example, you will never forget it.
A few chapters later, reading the section on "not sequencing your life" I was reminded that I am always working (and loving every moment) and that I keep postponing playing with my family. Rather than take my notebook, newspaper, phone and computer to the pool and work while the kids played, I chased them all around the pool as a shark on the hunt - one of our most fun afternoons. Now afternoons involve the much requested shark hunt.
The real challenge I took from the book is to actively engage in each domain of life, rather than sequence them or "outsource" some of the functions to others (we are reminded not to "outsource" the future). My greatest inspiration comes from co-author Karen Dillion, former Editor of the Harvard Business Review, who while writing the book with Chritensen, gave up the prestige and security of the Harvard Business Review and moved her family from Boston to London for a life without boundaries.