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In Search of Excellence: Lessons from America's Best-Run Companies (Anglais) Broché – 7 février 2006

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

“One of those rare books on management that are both consistently thought-provoking and fun to read.” (Wall Street Journal)

Présentation de l'éditeur

The "Greatest Business Book of All Time" (Bloomsbury UK), In Search of Excellence has long been a must-have for the boardroom, business school, and bedside table.

Based on a study of forty-three of America's best-run companies from a diverse array of business sectors, In Search of Excellence describes eight basic principles of management -- action-stimulating, people-oriented, profit-maximizing practices -- that made these organizations successful.

Joining the HarperBusiness Essentials series, this phenomenal bestseller features a new Authors' Note, and reintroduces these vital principles in an accessible and practical way for today's management reader.

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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 98 commentaires
54 internautes sur 56 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
selecting on the dependent variable 26 juillet 2000
Par Un client - Publié sur
Format: Broché
I don't have much to add to the other reviews here on the content, but as a couple of reviewers here have pointed out, there's a problem with the way they reached their conclusions. They chose a series of metrics as indicators of "excellence": they ranked companies on these metrics to identify a sample of "excellent companies": they then profiled these companies to find common features. Statisticians call this "selecting on the dependent variable": all excellent companies might have a certain feature, but you can only say that the feature has something to do with their excellence if non-excellent companies don't have it. The features that Peters picks out might be important, but the research they do doesn't in any way prove that.
There was a follow-up piece of research done some years later (not by the authors) in a paper called "excellence revisited", which argued that excellence was basically a temporary phenomenon, and that even these companies reverted to the mean. This looked at the "excellent companies" subsequent performance and found that on average, they had deteriorated significantly in all measures of performance. They then picked a sample of "non-excellent companies" using the same ranking criteria as the original book did at the time that the original research was done. Sure enough, these on average improved significantly in performance.
91 internautes sur 98 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Management as Science 27 décembre 2000
Par Walter Nicolau - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This publication is a survey written by a couple of McKinsey consultants that seek to define the characteristics of successful, I mean excellent, organizations using the McKinsey 7-S framework; Structure, Systems, Style, Staff, Skills, Strategy, and Shared Values.
Their findings suggest that eight attributes are common for an excellent organization; bias for action, close to the customer, autonomy and entrepreneurship, productivity through people, hands on, value driven, stick to the knitting (=focus on what you do best), simple form lean staff, and simultaneous loose-tight properties (balance between centralized/decentralized organization). This is it.
Although the authors have a pleasant narrative style and are eloquent in making their point, I hesitate to buy into the arguments presented, first and foremost because I question the all encompassing validity of the McKinsey 7-s approach. Secondly, the authors cite companies such as Digital and Wang as qualifying for excellency. Whatever these companies did during the eighties, it wasn't good enough in the end since their advantage was not sustained and hence I wouldn't call them excellent. Thirdly, the best before stamp is obvious.
I do find the introduction and management theory review very well written and enjoyable. Ironically, (for me) the authors find that chapter the least important part of the book. I beg to differ. Overall, this would make a good intro for those interested in management theory. While you're at it, try to also take a look at Michael Porter's and Peter Drucker's work. In my view they are the authority in the field.
29 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Good from historical perspective, faulty in hind-sight 9 mars 1999
Par Un client - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This book was the 1982 best-selling look at what were then excellent companies and an attempt to distill the eight attributes they had in common. It still ranks high as an important historical contribution, but two-thirds of the "excellent" companies disappeared, got acquired and disassembled, or went through extreme difficulties. Hindsight tells us the eight attributes were simply things those companies did well at the time, but were not the answer to longevity. In fact, at least five of the eight attributes appear to be detrimental now. However, this book is still a good read for those wishing to track the evolution of management thinking from at least early Drucker to the present.
64 internautes sur 73 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
The first management blockbuster and still a classic 4 mai 2000
Par Michael Gering - Publié sur
Format: Broché
Few people can lay claim to having created an industry. TomPeters can.
Tom Peters is widely credited with having created themanagement guru industry. Before him it is said that "management thinkers wrote articles in academic journals, gave the occasional seminar, and worked as consultants for a few large corporations". The biggest blockbusters sold under five hundred thousand books.
`In Search of Excellence', co-authored with Bob Waterman, is Tom Peters first book and sold over 6 million copies. Its success surprised their colleagues at McKinsey, who had laughed at the idea that Peters and Waterman would keep the royalties, "should the book sell 50 000 copies".
Two decades later, `In Search of Excellence' is still one of the most readable management books. The eight characteristics of excellent companies, a bias for action, close to the customer, autonomy and entrepreneurship, productivity through people, hands-on values driven, stick to the knitting, simple form and lean staff, simultaneous loose-tight properties are all still relevant and still ignored today. It is written clearly, painting vivid pictures with anecdotes and examples from real companies.
Peters went on to become a megastar in the field of management entertaining, able to charge up to $80 000 for a one day show. The management guru industry is estimated to exceed a billion dollars and management books, including several by Peters himself, now regularly find their way into the best seller list. Peters'later writings have sometimes inspired and sometimes puzzled a new generation of managers.
This book is a classic. Great companies struggle to remain on top over an extended period. But the lessons learned endure. END
12 internautes sur 12 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
International Bestseller 11 juin 2006
Par Elijah Chingosho - Publié sur
Format: Broché
"In Search of Excellence" is an interesting book to read which was an international bestseller when it was first published in 1982. The book was written for the general public in simple and easy to understand language and explores the art and science of management used by leading companies with records of long-term profitability and continuing innovation. However, the information presented was not based on hard data (or based on faked data), which was its main weakness.

This controversial book had a widespread impact on Wall Street analysts and corporate management at its time of publication. The word Excellence appeared on many American corporate strategy statements.

However, some few years later, a significant number of the companies highlighted in this book as fine examples of Excellence, particularly high technology companies including Atari, Data General, DEC, IBM, Lanier, NCR, Wang, Xerox and others failed to produce excellent results. The book "In search of Stupidity by Merrill Chapman" chronicles some of the fallacies propounded in the book especially with respect to the high technology companies profiled in the book.

The book is divided into eight chapters which correspond with the main themes which Peters and Waterman argued were responsible for the success of the cited corporations, as follows:

* A bias for action: active decision making or getting on with the job.

* Close to the customer: learning from the people served by the business.

* Autonomy and entrepreneurship: entails nurturing innovation and promoting champions.

* Productivity through people: treating ordinary employees as a source of quality.

* Hands-on, value-driven: a management philosophy that guides everyday practice - management showing its commitment.

* Stick to the knitting: settle for the business that you know.

* Simple form, lean staff: some of the best companies have minimal overhead personnel particularly at head office.

* Simultaneous loose-tight properties: giving autonomy in shop-floor activities whilst maintaining centralised values.

The book has some interesting features as can be seen from the themes highlighted above that it is still worth buying.
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