The Lost Art of Closing PDF Summary

The Lost Art of Closing PDFWinning the Ten Commitments That Drive Sales

It’s said that a great product sells itself, and finding the right channels comes naturally.

Marketing efforts only add to the overall quality and provide the users with an amazing experience.

We try to present the key findings in a way that you’ll understand what it takes to close a sale.

Who Should Read “The Lost Art of Closing”? And Why?

It really is an art, or perhaps a skill crafted for special occasions. Anyway, it’s not something that can’t be learned or digested!

The Lost Art of Closing” emphasizes the 10-step process for converting skeptical prospects into long-term collaborators.

It really is something you wouldn’t want to miss, especially if you are a salesperson in the making.

About Anthony Iannarino

Anthony Iannarino

Despite being a writer, Anthony Iannarino is also the founder of The Sales Blog.

He is also a part-time teacher at Capital University School of Management and Leadership.

“The Lost Art of Closing PDF Summary”

Let’s get this straight: Without these 10 commitments it’s literally impossible to close sales:

  1. The commitment for time – Breaking that ice requires psychological readiness, especially when it comes to scheduling a meeting. Experienced salespersons realize that e-mailing is not the best option for this endeavor. Instead, you should prefer a phone call to ask only for time, and don’t get into details about the product. Ask no more than three times and stick to what’s been agreed prior to the meeting.
  2. The commitment to exploring – Salespersons love the image of a business-person and can’t stand being labeled as pushy; interested in nothing other than commission. Your job is to make the client more comfortable with your presence and gradually reduce the aversion towards change. In these first contacts, you should avoid pitching about the product and rather focus on the threats of remaining rigid in a fast-paced environment.
  3. The commitment to change – Why would anyone be interested in buying what you’re offering if the service they use instead is satisfying their needs to the limit? It makes no sense, so your job is to ask the right questions and see where the problems are and how your service/product can help them capitalize on these pitfalls.
  4. The commitment to collaborate – The fundamentals in this step, revolve around a simple statement – change your solution into a “Solution.” In other words, don’t deliver your final product without even taking into account the clients’ needs. Adjust your solution to be their weapon, which they would use to accomplish their goals. The salesperson and the client must become strategic partners, both carrying for each other’s interest!
  5. The commitment to build consensus – Sometimes the sales solution is wrapped in a complex B2B network including multiple stakeholders. In such a situation, finding general agreement is a must. At first, your job would be to single out all major stakeholders and put yourself in their shoes. Such a decision may help you understand the big picture and define a proposal that may eventually develop into a win-win situation. If you can’t reach out to them, the least you can do is explain your contact why is important to build a relationship with them. But not all are willing to hear your battle cry.
  6. The commitment to invest – Every sales process encompasses several parties which must invest their time, energy and capital. Your position, on the other end of the tunnel, is to discuss the price after several meeting sessions. You have to beware of a bidding war with your competitors and to avoid such a scenario; it’s advisable that you present your price early on. This approach will help you weed out all unprofitable prospects.
  7. The commitment to review – When the time comes to showcase your presentation skills, you have to gear yourself up with mental sharpness. Don’t skip any step and secure a commitment from the client to find a generally acceptable proposal. To do so, you need to solicit feedback from all the stakeholders in the process and then form the final solution.
  8. The commitment to resolve concerns – The bottom line is – clients don’t fear your product, but the changes deriving from it. So, basically you must encourage them to share their concerns to close the sale. For instance, do you think that your clients are eager to implement your solution if the service you are providing is only a slightly better option than the one already in place? – No! Because it’s not worth the effort! Tackle their fears by offering something 5x times better and provide support during the enforcement of the new idea.
  9. The commitment to decide – The 9th commitment arrives spontaneously if you have successfully executed all previous 8. Securing a commitment from the client is not a straightforward task, especially when it comes to making the final decision. If you succeed, the relationship will reach a whole different level.
  10. The commitment to execute – A sale that is not able to deliver a product of unparalleled quality, damages the reputation of the salesperson and puts him/her in an inferior position. Not satisfying the clients to the full extent, may obstruct the process of winning additional sales. Therefore, you must make an effort to present the offerings straightforwardly, and provide the users with valuable info on how to utilize all the features contained in the product. This final step can be marked as a commitment to execute.   

Key Lessons from “The Lost Art of Closing”

1.      Secure the necessary commitments in the shortest timespan possible
2.      Embrace gradual transition from one stage to the next
3.      Integrate clients’ needs into the development of a solution

Secure the necessary commitments in the shortest timespan possible

Sales managers are duty bound to supervise the process and gauge possible deals.

The execution of the 10 commitments will serve as a backbone for nurturing lucrative relationships with clients and other key personalities.

Embrace gradual transition from one stage to the next

It’s no secret that not a small portion of salespeople opt for skipping some of the commitments to get the part where they can actually earn money.

For them, the process can be reduced to 4-5 key steps, and all the extra stages are just adding to the complexity.

Don’t become one of them!

Integrate clients’ needs into the development of a solution

Use your business expertise to pain a partnership picture; don’t opt for a one-way communication style.

In other words, increasing customer retention by 5% can generate roughly a 75% increase in profits!  

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“The Lost Art of Closing Quotes”

You can’t wait until your dream client experiences the negative impact of not changing before you decide to help them. You have to be…helping them understand the need to change. Click To Tweet Your dream client wants…problems to be solved, challenges overcome, opportunities pursued and greater outcomes obtained. Click To Tweet Although you may think that your client is only buying the value in your product, service or solution, the truth is that you are the larger part of the value proposition. Click To Tweet Sales can be a very rewarding career because, properly done, it requires that you help people get results they couldn’t have achieved without you. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

We are always on the lookout for practical and applicable tips that present an actionable solution. This book is the embodiment of such a reality.

We were really thrilled to participate in something so profound and share our thoughts on the topic!

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Woo, Wow, and Win PDF Summary

Woo, Wow, and Win PDFService Design, Strategy, and the Art of Customer Delight

Everybody wants to please the customer nowadays.

The point is – to delight him!

Thomas A. Stewart and Patricia O’Connell give the full details in “Woo, Wow, and Win.”

Who Should Read “Woo, Wow, and Win”? And Why?

By its own profession, “Woo, Wow, and Win” is a thorough investigation of the “what, why and how of service design and delivery.”

Consequently, it’s a book which specifically targets the service sectors.

So, if you are in retail or banking, health care or other public services – do consult this book and try employing the strategies it offers.

About Thomas A. Stewart and Patricia O’Connell

Thomas A. StewartThomas A. Stewart is the Executive Director of the National Center for the Middle Market at The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business.

A summa cum laude Harvard graduate, Stewart is a respected management thinker, ranked #17 in European Foundation for Management Development’s “Thinkers 50” list in 2005.

He has authored two more books: the 1997 seminal classic, “Intellectual Capital” and the 2003 “The Wealth of Knowledge.”

Patricia O’ConnellPatricia O’Connell is a writer and the president of Aerten Consulting.

In addition to this one, she has co-authored (with Neil Smith) one more book: “How Excellent Companies Avoid Dumb Things.”

“Woo, Wow, and Win PDF Summary”

For all intents and purposes, Disney is the paragon of customer service.

And Thomas A. Stewart could only back this claim when he arrived, exhausted after a long flight, at a Walt Disney World hotel in Orlando, Florida.

He couldn’t wait to go to his casita to lie down a bit, so he was more than grateful to see how much the front-desk clerk was professional and how quickly he was able to register.

And then came the problems: in the absence of markings and employees, Thomas Stewart wandered for more than 20 minutes around the hotel in an attempt to find his room.

This had nothing to do with customer service, though – that part was excellent; however, it had everything to do with customer experience, which almost all companies neglect.

Even though it may seem like they the same thing, customer service and customer experience are pretty different; in fact, even though you’ve read hundreds of books about the former, chances are you haven’t read one about the latter.

Well, “Woo, Wow, and Win” is interested in changing that – in addition to your mindset regarding customer service and experience.

What Walt Disney World lacked in the case just described above was something Stewart and O’Connell dub “service design and delivery,” or SD2, for short.

In the words of Victor Ermoli from the Savannah College of Art and Design:

Service design is a system for developing the relationship between an entity – a bank, a law firm, a health care system, a store, a church – and its customers.

And this system starts with a simple equation:

Ahhh + Ow = Aha

An Ahhh moment is the moment your customers experience something positive enough about your company to instill in them confidence that you are going to provide them with the experience they asked for – and some more.

An Ow moment is the very opposite of an Ahhh moment, i.e., the moment when your customers realize that “something is broken.” True, they may complete the deal – and may even come back – but the bittersweet feeling guarantees that they will never recommend you.

Finally, an Aha moment is the result of your analyses of all Ahhh and Ow moments you’ve noted. An Aha moment, should be followed by an appropriate remedy, and Stewart and O’Connell believe that they have a panacea:

SD2.

It’s based on ten elements and five principles.

The ten elements of SD2 form a neat mnemonic: E10!

They are:

#1. Empathy – put your customers first.
#2. Expectation – understand what you are expected to deliver and what you can realistically deliver.
#3. Emotion – never take the customer’s emotions out of the equation.
#4. Elegance – take a lesson from Steve Jobs’ book: make everything clean and simple.
#5. Engagement – include your customers in the design.
#6. ExecutionDon’t be a politician: deliver on your promises.
#7. Engineering – your products and services should always demonstrate technical excellence.
#8. Economics – don’t exaggerate with your prices.
#9. Experimentationtest and innovate.
#10. Equivalence – may your customers be happy as much as you and vice versa.

The five principles of SD2 are the following:

#1. The Customer Is Always Right – Provided the Customer Is Right for You
Basically, the first principle boils down to THIS: focus on your most valuable customers. Don’t spend any of your time on retaining demanding clients.

#2. Don’t Surprise and Delight Your Customers – Just Delight Them
Surprises are fine for birthday parties; but not for customer service. Simply meet the expectations of your customer over and over again.

#3. Great Service Must Not Require Heroic Efforts on the Part of the Provider or the Customer
Your goal is to provide service which is “efficient, effective, scalable and, if not error-proof, error-resistant.” Which means: minimal effort with maximum results. Think of the intuitiveness “designed into an iPad” – that’s great service.

#4. Service Design Must Deliver a Coherent Experience Across All Channels and Touchpoints
“Wherever and however you choose to play, you must play well.” It’s pointless to have a great telephone customer service, but a bad online platform.

#5. You’re Never Done
SD2 is a cycle. Constantly check your service against its 10 elements and improve wherever possible.

Key Lessons from “Woo, Wow, and Win”

1.      In Service Design, Ahhh + Ow = Aha
2.      Make Yourself a Report Card Using the 10 Elements of SD2
3.      Always Heed the Five Principles of Service Design

In Service Design, Ahhh + Ow = Aha

Your customers experience either ahhh or ow moments in relation to the products you offer.

The former are a signal of positive experience and should inspire you to improve in the same direction.

The latter indicate trouble, and you should correct the areas which have caused them.

Analyzing the ahhhs and ows results in your aha moment.

Make Yourself a Report Card Using the 10 Elements of SD2

Give yourself a score on a zero-to-four scale in each of these 10 categories and see how well your service ranks on an SD2 scale: empathy, expectation, emotion, elegance, engagement, execution, engineering, economics, experimentation, equivalence.

A score about 30 means that you’re doing a good job; but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t improve until you score 4 in each of the categories.

Always Heed the Five Principles of Service Design

No matter what you do, always adhere to these five principles:

#1. Focus all your energy on your most valuable customers.
#2. Delight your customers by meeting all their needs – don’t surprise them even if you think it’s for the better.
#3. Always aim for minimum effort on the part of your customers – and try to achieve this with minimum effort on the part of your employees as well.
#4. Be coherent – offer the same quality of service across all checkpoints.
#5. You’re never done: always modernize and improve.

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“Woo, Wow, and Win Quotes”

Service design presents an exciting opportunity to explore something that is new to management thinking, new to business practice, new to many business leaders. Click To Tweet

Companies that apply the principles of service design will create…strategic strength. Click To Tweet

The three foundational questions of strategy – where to compete, what to sell, how to win – are inextricably bound up with design. Click To Tweet

What are you doing about your customer capital? Are you growing it, or are you living off it? Are you actively managing it or letting it fend for itself, like money in a checking account? Click To Tweet

When you make it hard for employees, they take shortcuts – and customers leave. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“Woo, Wow, and Win” may have a somewhat silly title and an unattractive cover, but it’s actually a pretty great manual to have on hand if you are in the service sector.

To quote Steve Case, the author of “The Third Wave,” “Woo, Wow, and Win” is “a roadmap for success in a landscape being rapidly transformed by technology and entrepreneurship.”

Don’t be afraid to use it.

 

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Mapping Innovation PDF Summary – Greg Sattel

Mapping Innovation PDFA Playbook for Navigating a Disruptive Age

With the digital revolution, a new era of innovation begun, brutally and succinctly summed up in the dictum “innovate or die.”

In “Mapping Innovation,” Greg Satell provides a lifeline for the companies on their deathbeds or in the maternity ward, by systematizing “the strategies of the world’s most inventive startups, corporations, and scientific institutions.”

Your only job: to apply them.

Who Should Read “Mapping Innovation”? And Why?

“Mapping Innovation” is not especially innovative in its first part – where it counters innovation “Eureka” fairytales with stories of collaboration and combination – but it is satisfactorily novel in Parts 2 and 3, where it offers a powerful framework for mapping innovation space and introduces you to the challenges of innovating in the digital age.

Read the first part if you are interested in the history of innovation and memorable anecdotes; read the latter two for their applicability and practical value.

Greg SatellAbout Greg Satell

Greg Satell is a bestselling author and innovation advisor.

After spending a decade and a half building and managing business in Eastern Europe (Poland, Ukraine, Russia, and Turkey), he got a job as SVP at Moxie Interactive, a division of Publicis Groupe.

He is currently a regular contributor to “Inc” and “Harvard Business Review.”

“Mapping Innovation” is his first and, so far, only book.

“Mapping Innovation PDF Summary”

On December 9, 1968, something miraculous happened at the Association for Computing Machinery / Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (ACM/IEEE) in San Francisco.

About thirty years later – when, retroactively, many could see the revolutionary significance of the event – Steven Levy (in his book about the life and times of the Macintosh, “Insanely Great”) would dub the happening “the mother of all demos.”

So, what was it?

Some Dr. Strangelove-inspired Doomsday weapon capable of trouncing the Soviets in a second? A Vietnam-related report which resulted in the Vietnamization program? The key insight which helped NASA go from Apollo 8 (about to be launched) to Apollo 11 in half a year?

No, of course not – you would know if it was one of those!

And, believe it or not, “the mother of all demos” was something even more notable.

Namely, a demonstration of “augmented human intellect” by “a mild-mannered engineer” named Douglas Engelbart.

To understand the context, just don’t forget that it is 1968 and that, in those days, very few people had ever seen a computer, let alone used one. To almost everybody on the planet, computers were about as mysterious then as, say, quantum physics is today.

But here was Engelbart, dressed in a short-sleeved white shirt and a thin black tie, standing in front of a 20-foot-high screen and explaining in his low-key voice how ‘intellectual workers’ could actually interact with computers. What’s more, he began to show them. As he began to type a document on a simple keyboard, words started to appear, which he could then edit, rearrange, and add graphics and sound to, while all the time navigating around the screen with a small device he called a mouse. Nobody had seen anything remotely like it before.

Unsurprisingly, the people present in the audience were fascinated.

Two of them – Bob Taylor and Allan Kay – would use Engelbart’s ideas to develop the Xerox Alto, which, when introduced on March 1, 1973, became the first computer capable of supporting an operating system based on GUI, aka, the first truly personal computer.

Six years later, in exchange for Apple stocks, Steve Jobs would receive a demonstration of the technology behind the Xerox Alto, and, with great fanfare, the Macintosh was launched in 1984, 16 years after the mother of all demos!

Add to all of this the fact that Engelbart himself was inspired by Vannevar Bush’s 1945 essay “As We May Think” which, in turn, could have only been written at the time John von Neumann was working the Von Neumann architecture model and only after Alan Turing devised the concept of the “universal computer.”

We could go on, but the point should be already blatantly obvious by now:

Innovation is never a single event, and… rather than following a linear path, effective innovators combine the wisdom of diverse fields to synthesize information across domains. If a problem is difficult enough, it needs to borrow from multiple fields of expertise. Innovation, more than anything else, is combination.

As Walter Isaacson has beautifully shown, rather than a recent radical event in the mind of a single intellect, the digital revolution was actually a process lasting for more than two centuries and needing the brilliance of “a group of hackers, geniuses, and geeks.”

Ironically, owing to the success of this very same revolution, now you and your company don’t really have the luxury of innovating (or recognizing innovation) with such a slow pace anymore.

On the contrary, you have to act as fast as possible.

And “Mapping Innovation” offers a few valuable tools which can help you do that.

We look over them in our “Key Lessons” section.

Key Lessons from “Mapping Innovation”

1.      Innovation Is All About Defining the Problem
2.      The Four Innovation Domains
3.      The Innovation Playbook

Innovation Is All About Defining the Problem

As Greg Satell notes, “it is only by framing problems effectively that you can find the approach most likely to solve them.”

Consequently, all innovation starts with you defining the “innovation space” particular to your needs and expertise, by giving an answer to the question: “How well is the problem defined?” Only then you can answer the second question of crucial importance: “Who is best placed to solve it?”

For example, the iPod was invented when Steve Jobs relayed his personal vision to the Apple team with the sentence: “I want to carry 1,000 songs in my pocket.”

This, obviously, meant two things: a hard drive small enough to fit in a person’s pocket, but with sufficient space for 1,000 mp3 files. One company – Toshiba – could provide that, so Apple formed a partnership with the Japanese conglomerate.

The rest is history.

The Four Innovation Domains

Once a problem is identified, its solution should be assigned to the most appropriate innovation “domain” your company has.

In the optimal case, it should have four:

#1. Basic research. Unlike, say, IBM and Microsoft, most firms don’t have the money to establish this domain, which is not really a problem, since basic research is constantly done by scientists and academics, so companies are able to simply monitor it. Use either strategy.

#2. Sustaining innovation. If you want to stay competitive, you need to constantly upgrade your technology. “New and improved” is the modern way of saying “we’re still in the game.”

#3. Breakthrough innovation. Charles Darwin formulated the theory of evolution under the influence of Thomas Malthus, and Albert Einstein was inspired by David Hume for his theory of relativity. IN a nutshell, everything evolves – but some of the steps along the ladder spell “breakthrough.”

#4. Disruptive innovation. Clayton Christensen devised the concept of “disruptive innovation” in his 1997 classic “The Innovator’s Dilemma,” demonstrating that successful companies may lose their market leadership even if they do everything right, on account of some other less successful startups capable of offering brand-new business models through their products.

The Innovation Playbook

You can build your own innovation playbook, but, when doing that, be sure to adhere to these six basic principles:

#1. Actively seek out good problems. As we stated above, innovation is all about defining the right problem.

#2. Choose problems that suit your organization’s capabilities, culture and strategy. There’s no point in copying someone just because that someone is successful.

#3. Ask the right questions to map the innovation space. Then, just choose the right domain.

#4. Leverage platforms to access ecosystems of talent, technology and innovation. In that order.

#5. Build a collaborative culture. You need a cross-disciplinary team. Emphasis on both words.

#6. Understand that innovation is a messy business. Or: you’ll fail many times before you reach a breakthrough. To quote Thomas Edison: “If I find 10,000 ways something won’t work, I haven’t failed. I am not discouraged, because every wrong attempt discarded is another step forward.”

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“Mapping Innovation Quotes”

A disruptive strategy is fundamentally iterative. It is not a purposeful march toward a set of tangible strategic objectives but thrives on experimentation and agility. Click To Tweet

It takes more than a single big idea to change the world, and it can take decades after the initial breakthroughs for the true impact of an idea to become clear. Click To Tweet

Big thoughts are fun to romanticize, but it’s many small insights coming together that bring big ideas into the world. Click To Tweet

We teach people that everything that matters happens between your ears, when in fact it actually happens between people. (Via Sandy Pentland) Click To Tweet

Our brains are, in fact, a billion times more efficient than today’s computer architectures. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“Mapping Innovation” is a pretty neat innovation manual that should be helpful to both start-ups and large firms.

And it’s well-written, so you should have no problems differentiating theory from practice or understanding which parts of it refer to your needs specifically.

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Lose the Resume, Land the Job PDF Summary

Lose the Resume, Land the Job PDF Almost Everyone Gets It Wrong. This Is How You Can Get It Right.

Experiencing problems while looking for a job?

Even more when trying to find the job?

Gary Burnison says:

Lose the Résumé, Land the Job.”

Who Should Read “Lose the Resume, Land the Job”? And Why?

The way you know them, resumes are a thing of the past – not because they are not important, but because they have transformed into something better: the story of you.

As “The New York Times Book Review” writes in its review” “Lose the Résumé, Find the Job” breaks down every aspect of job hunting, explaining what matters and what doesn’t.

As such, it should help everybody who has problems finding a job. And even those who do have one, but it is not really the one of their dreams.

This book has strategies for that as well! 

Gary BurnisonAbout Gary Burnison

Gary Burnison is the CEO of Korn Ferry International, with 2,500 employees across 40 countries, the world’s largest executive recruiting company.

After joining Korn Ferry in 2002 as CFO, Burnison served as COO for four years, before becoming the company’s CEO in 2007.

In 2011, he published “No Fear of Failure,” the first of his five books, which also include “The Twelve Absolutes of Leadership,” “Lead,” and “The Leadership Journey.”

“Lose the Resume, Land the Job PDF Summary”

You wonder why you got an automatic reply to your application or, even worse, that nobody called you even though you have such a great résumé?

Well, do you know that 98% of the candidates for a job position are eliminated basically before the employing process even beings, their CVs not given a second look, their résumés thrown in the trash can barely few minutes after they arrive?

Why, you ask?

Simply put, because nobody wants to lose his time and money.

And it’s not like there are five applications for a job!

Also:

The cost of replacing a manager six to 12 months after he or she is hired is equal to 2.3 times that person’s annual salary.

In other words, companies can’t afford to risk.

So, the process of choosing the right applicant is actually a fairly serious process (monitoring, background checks, testing, etc.) on the part of those who choose.

Consequently, it should be a serious process on your part as well!

And what do you think a company is most interested in when hiring you?

Turns out: it’s your passion.

Use Burnison’s ACT strategy to find out how much of it you have for the position you want to apply for – and save yourself the trouble of applying if it turns out that you have none.

ACT stands for:

Being authentic – which means that lying isn’t going to get you far! After all, you’re certainly present in the online world, so you can be sure that if there is some discrepancy between the information you give about yourself to a company and the ones you share with your closest friends – it will be used against you!

Making a connection. If things go well, you are going to stay at the company where you’re applying for a job for at least a couple of years. The painful truth is that nobody wants to work with someone who doesn’t make a good first impression. This works both ways!

Giving people a taste of who you are, what you can do best, and how much of a contribution you can make.

Speaking of which:

Your résumé should concisely and compellingly illustrate one major message point: This is how I made things better for my employer while I was there.

Résumés are not as important as you think; in fact, as we hinted above, they are merely a small part of a large package which includes your online presence and even – if it gets to an interview – your body language.

Since hiring managers rarely have time to cast more than a look or two on your CV, if you want to make it effective, then you need to follow certain résumé-writing rules:

#1. Don’t lie!
#2. Avoid buzzwords and clichés: when everybody is a “team player” and “innovative,” nobody is.
#3. Don’t leave any unexplained time gaps in your experience!
#4. Tell your story: it matters more than the layout.
#5. May your objective be discernible from your story: don’t state one instead.
#6. List your experience and accomplishments in the middle – and in reverse chronological order.
#7. Use most of this space (three-fourths of it) to describe your current job.
#8. Tell three relevant stories from your current job in the format challenge-action-outcome; use bullet points.
#9. Ask for some feedback from a professional before sending the résumé.
#10. Always – always – be prepared to provide references.

Once you’re finished with the résumé, it’s time to clean up your online media presence. Which boils down to at least a few no-brainers:

#1. Polish your LinkedIn profile and embellish it with a relatively recent photo of the well-groomed smiling you.
#2. Delete all inappropriate photos and tweets you can find.
#3. Investigate how often you post: excessive posting means you’re not that busy; the opposite that you are too passive.

Since it abounds in practical advice, we’ve reserved our “Key Lessons” section for three more important messages from this book.

Key Lessons from “Lose the Resume, Land the Job”

1.      Assess Yourself with the KF4D Test
2.      Be a Connector to Be Connected
3.      Avoid the “Deadly Sins of Interviewing”

Assess Yourself with the KF4D Test

Korn Ferry’s Four Dimensions of Leadership test is a useful tool which assesses four areas of utmost importance:

#1. Traits. These are your personal qualities. In a nutshell, the ones which companies usually search for should be pretty obvious: engaging people with a vision who can act and influence others.
#2. Drivers. Ask yourself: what drives you in life? Don’t work for a company which doesn’t address this drive.
#3. Competencies. Everybody has his own strengths and weaknesses. Find yours.
#4. Experiences. What have you done in the past that proves you can do the job you apply for in the future?

Be a Connector to Be Connected

“The biggest misconception,” writes Gary Burnison, “is that networking is about you. It’s the opposite. It’s about the other person.

It’s as simple as the golden rule: help other people, and you’ll be helped too when the time comes.

Connect friends to other friends (not for your own, but for their benefit), and, soon enough, you’ll be part of a large circle of people.

When networking, don’t think about anything past this.

Do it because you want to see the people you like happy.

Avoid the “Deadly Sins of Interviewing”

Most of these are fairly obvious, but you’ll be surprised at how many people have lost a job opportunity because of simple mistakes.

So, without further ado:

#1. Don’t lie! (We can’t overemphasize this!)
#2. Dress appropriately.
#3. Don’t be late!
#4. Research the company beforehand.
#5. Don’t talk too much, but don’t talk too little either.
#6. When asked if you have any questions, be sure to have them. “Replying, ‘I’m good, thanks’ as if someone had offered to refill your iced tea, shows a lack of preparedness and engagement.”
#7. Reiterate your enthusiasm and passion for the job before leaving: the last impression counts almost as much as the first one.
#8. Treat every interview as if it is your first – even if it’s your fifth for the day.

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“Lose the Resume, Land the Job Quotes”

Be honest and transparent about who you are, your background, your current job and responsibilities, and your current compensation. Never lie or exaggerate. Click To Tweet

The best time to find a new job is when you have a job. Click To Tweet

The often-quoted statistic is that people form an impression about others within seven seconds. But it may be even shorter than that. Click To Tweet

To be skilled at anything requires some knowledge and know-how. But more than that, you must possess the ability to adjust, adapt and respond. Click To Tweet

The workplace world is always smaller than you think. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“Lose the Résumé, Land the Job” has a somewhat misleading title; fortunately, the misleading part is the first half of it.

Because almost everything that Gary Burnison says is applicable in the real-world, so we seriously believe that heeding his tips may help you land the job you like.

Worst-case scenario: you’ll do your best.

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The Four Lenses of Innovation PDF Summary

The Four Lenses of Innovation PDFA Power Tool for Creative Thinking

Want to become an innovator?

The trick is to look at the world a bit differently.

And Rowan Gibson says that all you need to do that are “The Four Lenses of Innovation.”

Who Should Read “The Four Lenses of Innovation”? And Why?

There’s an innovator inside all of us,” writes Rowan Gibson, adding that “literally everyone on Earth has the potential for creative thinking because it’s an innate human capability.

“The Four Lenses of Innovation” attempts to awake this innate capability and is for everyone who wants to make the world a more advanced or, simply, a better place.

Rowan GibsonAbout Rowan Gibson

Rowan Gibson is a consultant and bestselling author, one of the world’s leading experts on business innovation.

Labeled “Mr. Innovation,” “the Innovation Grandmaster,” and “the W. Edwards Deming of innovation” Gibson has delivered keynote speeches and seminars in over 60 countries and has authored three books translated into over 20 languages.

In addition to “The Four Lenses of Innovation,” these are “Rethinking the Future” and “Innovation to the Core.”

Gibson is also the co-founder of http://innovationexcellence.com/, one of the world’s most popular innovation websites.

“The Four Lenses of Innovation PDF Summary”

Most ancient cultures had no discernible concept of genius whatsoever.

In fact, that’s why we don’t know the name of the author of, say, “The Epic of Gilgamesh,” the very first work of literature in history.

It’s not that it was difficult to put the name of the poet above the first line of the work!

However, according to the Sumerians and many other cultures throughout history, this would have been all but a blasphemy.

After all, talents were the very definition of divine gifts, and presenting something that doesn’t belong to you as yours, is certainly not something people would admire.

Hell, even the Ancient Greeks weren’t that much above this notion!

Plato specifically, who not only didn’t like poets but also believed that it is quite easily demonstratable that they had absolutely no control over their artistry, being nothing more than simple “instruments of the Muses.”

The Romans inherited this belief, modifying it a bit and eventually ascribing all creative powers of an individual to his tutelary deity suitably named genius, i.e., household guardian spirit.

Put simply, the Romans believed that each person is part human, part divine, and that, logically, his divine nature (the genius) is the one responsible for all great works of the mind or the heart.

After the collapse of the Roman Empire, the Catholic Church ruled most of Europe for the following ten centuries, now appropriately remembered as the Dark Ages.

Following the Judeo-Christian tradition, the Catholic Church made sure that it transformed into vice all of the things we now consider virtues: individuality, originality, innovation.

During this period, it was sinful not to conform, and it was egotistic to think that you are capable of creating something: God was the only Creator, and artists and scientists were merely mediums of His Will.

And then the Renaissance came and radically changed everything!

Suddenly, God stopped being the center of the Universe, and inventiveness, all-embracing curiosity and a yearning for to-the-ends-of-the-world exploration became highly desirable traits:

Whereas the medieval mind had been severely suppressed, the Renaissance mind was set free to discover the beauty and the wonder and the significance of every possible phenomenon.

It is to the great thinkers of the Renaissance that we owe the four modes of innovative thinking or, as Rowan Gibson labels them, the four lenses of innovation which you can still use today to break through the known barriers.

These are: “challenging orthodoxies,” “harnessing trends,” “leveraging resources” and “understanding needs.”

Let’s have a look at each of them.

Key Lessons from “The Four Lenses of Innovation”

1.      The First Lens: Challenging Orthodoxies
2.      The Second Lens: Harnessing Trends
3.      The Third Lens: Leveraging Resources
4.      The Fourth Lens: Understanding Needs

The First Lens: Challenging Orthodoxies

Etymologically, “orthodoxy” means “right opinion” or “right belief” – and there’s a reason why it was considered reasonable to be orthodox for millennia.

Orthodoxies codify concepts, ideas, and best practices and they work great on the collective level.

After all, why should you question the way something is done if millions of people before you have used the same method to do it?

Orthodoxies eliminate the need to think which is great if you like to preserve mental energy for something else.

However, it is obviously not if you want to be an innovator.

And this is where many innovators start: challenging conventional modes of thinking.

Have this in mind every time somebody says that “some things are done certain way for a reason.” Analyze: what could that reason be? Is there any other way to do it? Has technology changed in the meantime to make this other way a feasible solution?

And that crazy idea that guy had some time ago… well, let’s see if it was crazy enough to work!

The Second Lens: Harnessing Trends

You don’t have to be the first to be the best.

The iPhone, the iPod, the iPad, the Apple Watch – these are all merely adaptations of products which existed before them.

And, don’t know if you remember, but Yahoo was here before Google.

The point – in many cases – is to recognize the emerging trends and focus your attention in their direction.

Innovators have been doing this for centuries: in the 1870s, no less than 23 people worldwide worked on inventing the light bulb!

In other words, be perceptive!

Analyze the trends and discover which product seems most likely to revolutionize and/or disrupt an industry.

Then, simply go for it!

The Third Lens: Leveraging Resources

They say that necessity is the mother of invention for a reason!

Case in point: when Steven Spielberg realized that he didn’t have enough money to make a mechanical shark, he decided to film the action of “Jaws” from its viewpoint!

The result?

Some of the scariest scenes ever filmed!

Similarly, even though Corning developed its Ribbon Machine process to make light bulbs, soon it started using it to make radio vacuum tubes.

So, reevaluate your resources, reexamine your skills and assets!

See what you have and whether some of the things you already own or have devised can be readapted in a way which will help you take advantage of the new markets.

More often than not, you’ll be surprised to see how much of your potential you’re not using!

The Fourth Lens: Understanding Needs

Understanding needs basically means “innovating from the customer backward.”

Or: instead of using the third lens – selling what you already have – you can also use the fourth one: providing what the others would buy.

After all, that’s why even McDonald’s is not the same everywhere: in India, you can buy Paneer Wraps from its restaurants, and in Japan there’s also a chicken veggie burger on its menu!

Why?

Because the Indian and the Japanese people said so!

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“The Four Lenses of Innovation Quotes”

Creative ideas don’t just occur to us spontaneously. (Our minds actually build them from a unique chain of associations and connections, sometimes over a considerable period of time.) Click To Tweet

Our brains save mental energy by learning and storing familiar patterns for automatic recognition and use. Click To Tweet

Many executives are afraid of the kind of reflective thinking that could lead to disruption. Click To Tweet

Try to identify and systematically question the fixed patterns that exist inside your own company and across your industry. Click To Tweet

Innovators try to solve common problems and frustrations in ways that make life easier, more convenient and more enjoyable for the customer. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“The Four Lenses of Innovation” demystifies innovation as something much more methodical and systemic than it is usually thought and presents itself as a power tool for creative thinking.

That may be true, but we kind of feel that it treats innovation as something much simpler than it actually is and that it inadvertently starts from a position it takes someone years to achieve.

Namely, the position of the highly competent and skillful intellectual with at least some kind of a vision for the future.

And that is not everyone.

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Make Mentoring Work PDF Summary

Make Mentoring Work PDFThe very core of creating value for your community revolves around the idea of having someone to teach you and gear you up for the unavoidable clash.

Each organization requires a person with expertise to handle the toughest challenges!

In this book summary, we turn our heads towards finding the secret recipe in delivering the ultimate solution to every problem.

Who Should Read “Make Mentoring Work”? And Why?

If at some point, you’ve shown promising signs of developing into a smart leader or manager, this book comes as a blessing to you.

Each leader in-the-making should explore the depths of it and learn how to make the most of each activity.

In other words, “Make Mentoring Work” questions the traditional styles of managing human resources and provides revolutionized ideas you can use.

About Peter Wilson

Peter Wilson currently has the role of national president of the Australian Human Resources Institute Ltd.

He is also an author and a mentorship expert.

“Make Mentoring Work PDF Summary”

Top-notch organizations are totally aware of the necessity of recruiting and most-importantly spotting talents to help them launch their mentoring ideas. Nurturing these programs takes more than just proper planning and even better execution.

Nowadays, job applicants and employees in various companies look ahead to perceiving mentorship as some sort of a job benefit. To bring these demands into line with the digital age, corporations are prepared to initiate planned programs.

Laying the groundwork for the mentoring program requires a certain dose of expertise and discipline to abide by these guidelines:

  • The person who is in the spotlight must be aware of its role in the mentorship agenda.
  • People who thrive in mentorship situations, and those being coached should specialize in all features related to management and building such relationships.
  • Regardless of your position, you should wholeheartedly enroll in programs to understand the big picture in an often-neglected race against time.
  • Although many organizations skip this step, it’s vital for the mentor and the student to reach a state of full-compliance and blend their ideas into the overall objective.
  • Mentors should actively support their students and show them how to destroy their shallow limitations. Seize the day and don’t dread the idea to endorse your new concepts and give them a go.
  • The bottom line is – the mentor should allocate some time in writing and defining the final report.
  • Both need to perpetrate acts which lead to finding a final resolution to job-related issues.
  • Mentoring requires supervision, control, and higher understanding.

It’s needless to say that without integrity and honesty, mentors can’t carry out the fundamental activities on a daily basis. In other words, they have to be friendly and honest regarding all matters that involve human management. Moreover, they have to put themselves in the shoes of their subordinates and look at things differently.

For instance, every noteworthy mentor is aware that its responsibilities are stretched out to the maximum. Basically, without wisdom, hard work and credibility they can’t enforce rules or enact specific ideas.

Today’s top workers are looking for an employer prepared to invest in their skill levels and career learning.

They should always lean towards active listening and deep understanding, instead of promoting their official status on every occasion. A good mentor spends 80% listening and only 20% talking.

Most importantly, skillful mentors place emphasis on filling the atmosphere with hope and welcoming approach. For instance, many companies now pay their employees to generate ideas. For every bad idea, each employee gets a reward.

So, encouraging your mentees to speak up and share their views leads to profits; and ultimately, satisfaction at the end of the sales funnel. Mentors must not step outside the lines of decency and protocols. Behaving positively at meetings will give the mentees the vital edge they require.

Expanding the network of associates and partners is one of the few things you should strive to achieve.  

It’s not all butter and milk. Friendly mentors must sometimes go for a hard pep talk, which can lift the spirits of all parties involved in the process. You have to feel the situation and provide a response that is in tune with the environment.

The mentor must show understanding and interest in paving the way with healthy habits and even better management skills. Mentees, on the other hand, must display a commitment to follow the lead and thus increase their input. Proficient mentors are a valuable gem for up-and-comers in these activities:

  • Handling complex relationships and dealing with complicated characters.  
  • Managing the corporate framework and the needs of the stakeholders.
  • Lean towards the idea of becoming a full-equipped manager who tackles social, economic and political ambiguities.
  • Looking for answers that cast doubt on ethical norms.

Here are the three crucial roots:

  1. Socratic philosophy – Socrates had a huge base of students, who perceived him as a figure of authority whose actions revealed great wisdom. Mentors have the same role and act with the same dose of mystery. They provide guidance and instruct younger mentees on how to improve their performance.  
  2. Parental behavior – It comes as no surprise why many people refer to mentors as “second parents” who guide them through life.
  3. Spiritual vibes – Last but not least – mentors are spiritual gurus. Whenever an employee/mentee has a problem, a mentor should be willing to listen and find time to resolve the issue.

Key Lessons from “Make Mentoring Work”

1.      The harder you train, the easier the game
2.      Discover new forms of leadership
3.      Explore the depths of the relationship-building process

The harder you train, the easier the game

Face-to-face meetings are pivotal and unavoidable routine for every four-start mentor. Why’s that?

In these gatherings, the students learn how to act with decorum, because in the foreseeable future they may have to test the burden of being a mentor.

Discover new forms of leadership

You must not allow direct interference in the company’s long-term prosperity by any newbie, and on such occasions – the ends do justify the means.

It’s fair to say that coaching, is the embodiment of proper leadership because it directs the employees’ efforts and puts the mentor’s expertise to the test.

Explore the depths of the relationship-building process

In the traditional sense of mentor-mentee relationships, the mentor often takes the role of an older brother.

However, in the modern era, the age difference is melting, and co-mentoring emerges as a method way of coping with the increased pressure.

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“Make Mentoring Work Quotes”

Good mentors help you to walk in your own shoes, even if you start out just wanting to walk in theirs. Click To Tweet Listening to how the challenges of the mentee would have been handled at a similar stage in the mentor’s own working life is hugely powerful. Click To Tweet Mentoring is also about life leadership. It’s about becoming a leader in your own life with a little help from someone who has already shown leadership on their own. Click To Tweet Mentoring is a proactive bespoke art that confers rights but also places obligations on both mentor and mentee. Click To Tweet Mentors need to telegraph that their purpose is to give unconditional positive support and encouragement. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

Mentoring is a real struggle. A fierce psychological battle that you have to win.

Peter Wilson makes it easier for you by developing a full system that can guide your efforts. Don’t miss it and understand the benefits of it!

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Barking Up the Wrong Tree PDF Summary

Barking Up the Wrong Tree PDFThe Surprising Science Behind Why Everything You Know About Success Is (Mostly) Wrong

Achieving success is both much more complex and simpler thing than people say it is.

At least that’s what Eric Barker believes.

And he has a book-length apology of his belief:

Barking Up the Wrong Tree.”

Who Should Read “Barking Up the Wrong Tree”? And Why?

Wide-ranging and abounding in practical advice, “Barking Up the Wrong Tree” is for everybody who needs a manual for success and happiness.

It’s not a book you read – it’s a book you reread and constantly employ.

Eric BarkerAbout Eric Barker

Eric Barker is an American blogger.

The content of his “Barking Up the Wrong Tree” blog is syndicated by “Time Magazine,” “Business Insider,” and “The Week;” the blog, updated once a week, has over 300,000 subscribers to its newsletter.

A sought-after speaker featured in “The New York Times” and “WSJ,” Eric Barker has so far authored only this book.

“Barking Up the Wrong Tree PDF Summary”

Let’s start our summary with an eye-popping statistic:

A study of 700 American millionaires has revealed that their mean grade point average was 2.9!

In other words, the valedictorians didn’t do as well as the outliers!

In fact:

Research shows that what makes students likely to be impressive in the classroom is the same thing that makes them less likely to be home-run hitters outside the classroom.

Why?

Because to excel at school, you need to conform; and it’s very likely that this will teach you to be that kind of a person even after graduating and getting a job.

Which may get you a top job, and even a few “employee of the year” titles.

However, the ones that actually change the world are the non-conformists, the people capable of defining success in their own terms.

The earlier they do that, the earlier they realize that many of the activities they are made to do while young are actually extraneous to their goal.

So, they choose not to do them.

And, in the long run, this focus gives them just enough grit to come out on top!

If you want to follow them and build just enough perseverance to succeed, then a good idea will be to use the WGNF guidelines and transform your struggles into a game:

#1. Make the games winnable: you’ve played a lot of games in your life and, chances are, you’ve lost at least half of them; however, the very fact that you know a game was winnable has motivated you to play out the game until the very end.

#2. Attach goals: just like a video game, split the game of your life into levels which gradually become more difficult and have a clear goal on each of them; splitting up your goals into smaller chunks will motivate you to move and move you will – with the right pace.

#3. Build in novelty: each level should be not just more difficult than the last, but also introduce something new; just like a character in a video game, acquire new skills as you go along the road to success.

#4. Give/ask for Feedback: in the absence of feedback, you may be tempted to give up; interaction is a great way to keep track of your progress.

Of course, there’s no point in playing a game the outcome of which will not make you happy.

So, how do you discover whether a future objective is worth your time, effort, and attention?

Eric Barker has a solution for that as well!

If you don’t want to bark up the wrong tree, then constantly check your decisions against the WOOP process.

WOOP stands for wish, outcome, obstacle, plan, and, once broken down like that, it seems pretty self-explanatory.

So, when you have a wish to do something, first start with a specification of the outcome you want.

After that, it’s time to see which could be the obstacles preventing you from reaching that outcome.

Once you get to know them, it’s time to make a plan to circumvent them or, even better, jump over each of them.

If the last one is impossible (due to lack of competence, lack of time, etc.), then it’s best if your wish stays a wish until some better moment arrives.

However, when there is a plan, and that plan is doable – it’s time to be gritty!

One thing you should know in advance is that even though a plan is doable, it doesn’t mean that it will work out in the end: some level 10 bosses are just unbeatable!

What should you in cases such as that?

Simply: quit.

Don’t be afraid to do some experiments and quit the ones that don’t work… you need to try stuff knowing you might quit some of it to open yourself up to the luck and opportunities that can make you successful.

However, while trying to do that, never forget the real objective of success: allowing you to lead a balanced life.

And a balanced life means scoring high on the four metrics that matter most:

#1. Happiness
#2. Achievement
#3. Significance
#4. Legacy

Key Lessons from “Barking Up the Wrong Tree”

1.      The WGNF Guidelines for Success in Life
2.      The WOOP Decision-Making Process
3.      HASL: The Four Metrics Which Matter the Most

The WGNF Guidelines for Success in Life

“Homo sapiens” may just as well be called “homo ludens,” i.e., the game-playing man: that’s how much people like to play games!

So, use this to your own benefit and transform your struggles into games.

However, as always in games, there are certain rules you need to follow, or, in Barker’s opinion, the WGNF guidelines.

WGNF is short for winnable, goal-based, novelty-ridden, feedback-centered – and these are all adjectives which should describe each of the games you need to devise.

Do that – and your road to success will be much less thorny, and much more enjoyable!

The WOOP Decision-Making Process

If you are not sure which project you should take, be sure to check it with Barker’s WOOP tool before you embark upon it.

WOOP stands for wish, outcome, obstacles, and plan, which means that you should only try to make your wish come true if you can devise a plan specific enough to address each probable obstacle and, eventually, reach the wished-for outcome.

Otherwise, try to direct your energy on something else.

HASL: The Four Metrics Which Matter the Most

Always measure your life against these four metrics:

Happiness: find a way to live a pleasurable and content life;
Achievement: set yourself meaningful goals and try to achieve them;
Significance: try to have a positive impact;
Legacy: live your life in such a way that others may say that they have benefitted from your existence.

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“Barking Up the Wrong Tree Quotes”

When you align your values with the employment of your signature skills in a context that reinforces these same strengths, you create a powerful and emotionally engaging force for achievement, significance, happiness and legacy. Click To Tweet

Success is not the result of any single quality; it’s about alignment between who you are and where you choose to be. Click To Tweet

College grades aren’t any more predictive of subsequent life success than rolling dice. Click To Tweet

You do need to be visible. Your boss does need to like you. This is not proof of a heartless world; it’s just human nature. Click To Tweet

Hard work doesn’t pay off if your boss doesn’t know whom to reward for it. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“Barking Up the Wrong Tree” is not so much innovative, as it is thorough in its research.

Well-structured and humorously written, it’s easily digestible and straightforwardly applicable; certainly a book worth reading and rereading.

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Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does PDF Summary

Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work... and What Does PDFThe New Science of Leading, Energizing, and Engaging

The good old carrot-and-stick method doesn’t work anymore?

Well, times have changed!

And there’s a new science of leading, energizing, and engaging!

Time to find out “Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does.”

Who Should Read “Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does”? And Why?

Traditional motivational techniques may have worked in the past, but, to expect them to work still would mean to ignore how much the world has changed over the past several decades.

In “Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does,” Susan Fowler urges leaders and managers to move beyond outdated motivational tactics and embrace the new science of energizing.

Start-up entrepreneurs and small business owners will find plenty of advice here as well!

Susan FowlerAbout Susan Fowler

Susan Fowler is a sought-after speaker and motivational trainer, the lead developer of The Ken Blanchard Company’s Optimal Motivation program.

Throughout her career, Fowler has co-authored numerous books, including “Self Leadership and The One Minute Manager” (with Ken Blanchard and Laurie Hawkins), “Achieve Leadership Genius” (with Drea Zigarmi and Dick Lyles) as well as “Leading at a Higher Level” and “Empowerment” (both with Ken Blanchard).

In addition, Fowler also blogs regularly for SmartBrief on Leadership, the Huffington Post, and LeaderChat.

She has coached in over 30 countries.

“Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does PDF Summary”

In a way, there are only two types of motivation.

People are motivated to do something either because they must do it or because they want to do it.

In the former case, it’s all about ambition, rewards, and goal; the motivation of the must-doers is an ego-grounded motivation.

In the latter, the point is to grow, to learn, to excel; the motivation of the want-doers is a values-based motivation.

What science has recently discovered is that the values-based motivation is the only one which actually makes sense in the long run.

Because:

Peak performers are not goal driven. Peak performers are values-based and inspired by a noble purpose.

It took science a long time to reach this conclusion.

Why?

Well, because just a few years after the Second World War, B. F. Skinner – possibly the most influential psychologist of the 20th century – did quite a few experiments with pigeons, investigating phenomena such as superstitions and motivation.

A radical behaviorist, he came to a startling conclusion: you can make a pigeon do absolutely anything if it knows that there’s a reward; in addition, you can visibly inhibit some aspects of its behavior if you punish it by holding back on the food pellets.

What did this mean in terms of motivation at the workplace?

In an idiom (which, coincidentally, dates back to around the same time when Skinner was conducting his pigeon experiments): carrots and sticks.

And for many decades, managers believed that if you reward your employees for their good work and punish them for their bad behavior, you’ll eventually carve out the perfect worker out of them.

The problem is – it doesn’t work that way.

For even when they do, rewards only work in the short term – and cause plenty of problems in the long run.

That is, when there is a lack of money in the company, and you must put an end to the reward program, the reward-oriented employees will start doing a lot less work.

In fact, Drs. Richard Ryan and Edward Deci have demonstrated all but conclusively that real long-term motivation has nothing to do with carrots and sticks – but everything with “hope and promise.”

In other words, most people are already motivated but usually in a much more abstract way than the market would want them too.

Consequently, the job of leaders and managers is practically mission impossible: they need to motivate their employees to do things which may not be aligned with the employees’ inherent motivation.

It’s almost like a Catch-22:

The motivation dilemma is that leaders are being held accountable to do something they cannot do –motivate others.

But, if people are already motivated, how motivated are they?

And is there anything you can do?

According to Susan Fowler, there are six motivational outlooks, which can be easily illustrated by examining the reaction of six different employees to a routine work meeting:

#1. Disinterested: Employee n. 1 thinks that the meeting was a waste of time.
#2. External: Employee n. 2 thinks that this (like any other) meeting was a venue for him to exercise his power and position; he now expects a reward for being there.
#3. Imposed: Employee n. 3 was under severe pressure to attend the meeting because, well, everybody did; otherwise, he wouldn’t have come.
#4. Aligned: Employee n. 4 believes that he learned one or two valuable lessons at the meeting.
#5. Integrated: Employee n. 5 loved the meeting: he/she sincerely believes in the things discussed during this meeting and would want many more meetings such as this one in the future.
#6. Inherent: Employee n. 6 loves being around people, and meetings are his thing. This one? It was (like all the others) fun and enjoyable!

Now, as is obvious at first sight, the first three motivational outlooks are suboptimal drivers which can physically drain a person. Fowler calls them “motivational junk food.”

The last three motivational outlooks are energetic: they are the “motivational health food.”

Now, someone likes his burgers and Nachos, but others prefer broccoli and spinach. And, if you have a child, you know that it is pretty difficult to motivate it to eat the latter if it likes the former.

Scientific research has discovered that the same is true with motivation as well.

The good news?

Just like children feed themselves better by themselves, employees seem more motivated when they feel that three fundamental psychological needs of theirs are satisfied:

#1. Autonomy: I’m free to choose what you can do;
#2. Relatedness: I care about other people, and they care about me as well;
#3. Competence: I am capable of doing this job – and I am capable of doing it better than many.

So, the way out of the motivation dilemma is quite counterintuitive: instead of trying to motivate your employees to do something, just discover what they are already motivated about.

And, afterward, allow them to do exactly that.

Key Lessons from “Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does”

1.      External Motivation Undermines Internal Motivation
2.      The Internally Motivated Live Under an ARC of Freedom
3.      There Are Six Motivational Outlooks – and Only Three Are Good

External Motivation Undermines Internal Motivation

In a nutshell, there are two types of motivation: either you must do something, or you want to do something.

In the case of the former, even though mostly in the short run, external motivation works; however, in the case of the latter, it is, in fact, an impediment.

Why?

Because money and promotions motivate people only to a certain extent; everything after that is intrinsic.

The Internally Motivated Live Under an ARC of Freedom

An internally motivated person will move mountains for you and ask for nothing in return.

The reason is quite simple: the three fundamental psychological needs (autonomy, relatedness, and competence – ARC) are already satisfied in his case.

In other words, when people feel competent to do something, have complete freedom to do it the way they want to and have evidence that their work brings some good in the lives of others – then they’ll do it without any external incentives.

In fact, they may feel these as a sort of an insult:

People who experience ARC are thriving. They do not need something or someone else doing the driving.

There Are Six Motivational Outlooks – and Only Three Are Good

There are six motivational outlooks.

The disinterested, external and imposed are the junk food of motivation, while its health food is the aligned, integrated, and the inherent motivational outlook.

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“Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does Quotes”

The motivation dilemma is that leaders are being held accountable to do something they cannot do – motivate others. Click To Tweet

Misunderstanding what motivation means leads to a misapplication of techniques to make it happen. Click To Tweet

Devoting time and effort to help people shift their motivational outlook pays off in countless ways for them, your organization and you as a leader. Click To Tweet

Leaders are so immersed in five motivation-eroding beliefs that they find it difficult to hear, see, or do something different. Click To Tweet

Motivation is a skill. People can learn to choose and create optimal motivational experiences anytime and anywhere. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“Why Motivating People Doesn’t Work… and What Does” seems to borrow a lot from Daniel H. Pink’s classic “Drive.”

However, this doesn’t make Susan Fowler’s book obsolete.

Because, what it lacks in originality, it compensates in applicability.

And that is at least as important.

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The Accidental Investment Banker PDF Summary

The Accidental Investment Banker PDFInside the Decade that Transformed Wall Street

Want to learn more about investment banking?

Interested to find out more about its fabulous past and its speculative present?

Then delve inside the decade that transformed Wall Street – the 1990s.

With Jonathan A. Knee, the “The Accidental Investment Banker.”

Who Should Read “The Accidental Investment Banker”? And Why?

“The New York Times” has described “The Accidental Investment Banker” as “a rare, ringside seat inside the madcap and often egomaniacal world of Wall Street’s Masters of the Universe” adding that for would-be bankers, the book is an excellent primer on what it’s really like; for current bankers it will be a guilty pleasure.

And even if you are neither, we truly believe that you’ll find a lot of enjoyment in peeking behind the curtain and seeing what’s really happening on the fabulous stage of Wall Street.

General readers will marvel, noted “The Wall Street Journal.”

Jonathan A. KneeJonathan A. Knee

Jonathan A. Knee is the Michael T. Fries Professor of Professional Practice of Media and Technology at Columbia Business School and a Senior Advisor at Evercore Partners.

He has earned a BA from Boston University, MSc from Trinity in Dublin, MBA from Stanford and JD from Yale. Before joining Evercore Partners, Knee was a Publishing Sector Head in the Communications, Media and Entertainment Group at Goldman Sachs and, then, a Managing Director and Co-head of Morgan Stanley’s Media Group.

In addition to “The Accidental Investment Banker,” he has authored one more book, “Class Clowns,” and co-authored another, “The Curse of the Mogul.”

“The Accidental Investment Banker PDF Summary”

Before we delve briefly into the quiet beginnings and the wild decades of investment banking, it’s only appropriate to explain what an investment bank actually is.

By strict definition, an investment bank is usually a private company which provides various financial (and finance-related) services to individuals, corporations, and even governments.

Mostly these all boil down to two primary functions: corporate finance and sales and trading.

Corporate finance is what investment banks traditionally do (and have done for centuries).

In a nutshell, it means helping customers raise funds (via mutual funds, pension funds, etc.) so that they can develop new capabilities or purchase new assets.

In the latter case – i.e., mergers and acquisitions (M&A) – investment banks can also give advisory services to companies on how to best consolidate the new assets under one entity.

In its sales and trading function, an investment bank basically serves as the middleman, buying and selling securities on behalf of itself and its clients, earning some percent of the funds it raises.

On IPOs, for example, an investment bank’s “spread” can be up to 7% of the raised finances!

Now, even though investment banking began with the activities of the Dutch East India Company a few centuries ago, it actually became something big in the United States in the early 20th century.

More or less just as today, the leading investment banking houses at the time were Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, closely followed by Merrill Lynch.

Behind them, four investment banks which, for one reason or another, don’t exist anymore: First Boston, Lehman Brothers, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ), and Salomon Brothers.

After the Great Depression of 1929, investment banks entered a golden era.

How could they not?

In a world practically bereaved of financial euphoria, the investment banks of the time were all but the only model financial institutions, so everybody respected them as such.

Loyal to their customers and as conservative as possible, the investment banks of this period prized integrity above all and didn’t want to blow their own horns that much:

With roots going back over a century, the major investment banking houses largely eschewed publicity and had developed their own idiosyncratic cultures built on notions of exclusivity, integrity and conservatism.

And if there is one man who embodies golden-era investment banking, then that man is certainly Goldman Sachs’ long-time leader, Sidney Weinberg, Mr. Wall Street himself.

Widely respected, Weinberg was both a shrewd and an honest man, with a keen eye for business, but also with the integrity to stay away from speculative businesses; for example, he refused to underwrite gambling-related businesses.

However, soon after Weinberg’s death in 1969, views such as these became not only outdated but also a competitive disadvantage.

And the relatively humble white-shoe conservative investment banker of the war years morphed into the unorthodox M&A rock star with a lavish lifestyle and a six-figure paycheck.

J.P. Morgan Jr. may have advised doing “first-class business in a first-class way,” but the Wall Street motto of the 1990s spelled anything but: “IBG-YBG” (i.e., “I’ll be gone, you’ll be gone.”) meant that “short-term thinking,” was now the only valid way to run an investment bank.

And, as usual, short-term thinking resulted in a disaster in the long run.

Investment banks did rebound a few years after the crash of 2000 rattled the industry, but, expectedly, they never regained their reputation of the golden-era Weinberg years.

Key Lessons from “The Accidental Investment Banker”

1.      The Two Primary Functions of Investment Banks
2.      The Golden Era of Investment Banking
3.      The Boom and the Bust of the 1990s

The Two Primary Functions of Investment Banks

Investment banks have two primary functions: corporate finance and sales and trading.

The corporate finance function includes raising funds for their clients, be they individuals, corporations, or governments. It also incorporates giving valuable advice concerning mergers and acquisitions (M&A).

The sales and trading function means underwriting the clients’ assets, i.e., buying and selling securities, and earning a percentage of it.

The Golden Era of Investment Banking

After the Great Depression, investment banks were conservative institutions, mostly interested in long-term plans and staying away from speculations.

Sidney Weinberg – Goldman Sachs’ CEO from 1930 to his death in 1969 – typified the era: an honest and reliable man, he stayed away from hostile takeover bids and refused to underwrite gambling businesses.

Most investment banks followed suit, making them the most reliable financial institutions of the war (Second World War, Cold War) years.

The Boom and the Bust of the 1990s

However, the 1980s infamously turned Wall Street into a den of thieves, and during the 1990s things really spiraled out of control.

First – for the better; and then – for the worse:

Just as the investment banks were ill-prepared to deal with the boom of the 1990s, they had no road map to manage the bust of the new millennium.

Unsurprisingly, investment banks haven’t recovered their golden-era reputation of trusted, loyal advisers.

In fact, nowadays, there’s “an unprecedented level of cynicism, suspicion, and distrust of investment banks” among CEOs.

Probably for a very good reason.

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“The Accidental Investment Banker Quotes”

What sends an investment banking firm into decline is typically a major scandal, a capital crisis, a mass exodus of productive partners, or usually some combination of the three. Click To Tweet

Investment banks and investment bankers had always thought of themselves as providing a highly differentiated value-added service – strategic advice selected based on quality. Click To Tweet

Investment banking, at bottom, is a sales job. Click To Tweet

The ‘spin’ involved in any sales job has a comic aspect that takes on an even more absurd quality when the financial stakes are as high as in investment banking. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“The Accidental Investment Banker” is, by all accounts, a rare book: an insider’s look into the world of investment banking.

Written by someone who has worked at both Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley, the book chronicles the madness of the boom and the bust of the 1990s with appropriate flair and panache and abounds with engaging intrigues and memorable anecdotes.

To quote “Fortune” magazine, “For anyone who remembers the crazy boom times, and the even crazier bust, Jonathan A. Knee’s ‘The Accidental Investment Banker’ is a must.”

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A Short History of Financial Euphoria PDF Summary

A Short History of Financial Euphoria PDFReady for a new speculative bubble?

Because as John Kenneth Galbraith’s “A Short History of Financial Euphoria” demonstrates, if there’s one thing history has taught us it’s that there will surely be one very soon.

Read ahead to find out why.

Who Should Read “A Short History of Financial Euphoria”? And Why?

In “A Short History of Financial Euphoria,” John Kenneth Galbraith offers “dourly irreverent analyses of financial debacle from the tulip craze of the seventeenth century to the recent plague of junk bonds.”

Chances are you’ll forget the origin and the effects of all of them in the blink of an eye, which will expose you to the manipulative schemes of charlatans and cons in no time.

Which is why it’s all but necessary to not merely read, but also constantly reread Galbraith’s 100-page classic.

John Kenneth GalbraithAbout John Kenneth Galbraith

John Kenneth Galbraith was a Canadian-born economist and diplomat, one of the leading proponents of American liberalism of the 20th century.

A long-time Harvard faculty member and professor, Galbraith served in the administrations of four American presidents (Roosevelt, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson).

One of the few people to receive both the Medal of Freedom and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, Galbraith was USA’s Ambassador to India under Kennedy and a widely respected public intellectual for the duration of the Cold War.

A prolific author, he wrote numerous books, including a few successful novels. His trilogy on economics – “American Capitalism,” “The Affluent Society” and “The New Industrial State” – is still hotly debated and thoroughly analyzed.

“A Short History of Financial Euphoria PDF Summary”

There is nothing in economic life,” writes John Kenneth Galbraith near the end of his “Short History of Financial Euphoria,” so willfully misunderstood as the great speculative episode.

And this, even though on the face of it, everything should be quite plain and simple.

It all starts with a bidding war over some asset a few people believe is so rare and important that its value should only increase in the future.

That’s, after all, the basic economic rule: when supply is low, and demand is great, prices rise.

Add to this the yearning desire of many people to become rich overnight, and you get a recipe for disaster!

Because soon enough, investors join in.

Why should they not?

It’s their job to get the most out of anything, and bubbles are the perfect way for them to earn some money.

And since they are usually the earliest players, they actually do – and they do it big time!

Of course, these investors are not exactly humble people, so they start tooting their own horns, and soon even more people start investing in the asset the price of which, in the meantime, has blown ridiculously out of proportions.

The scary thing is that in this second group of people there are usually even quite a few intelligent analysts who are aware that at some point in the future this bubble must burst, but who, nevertheless, expect to be able to take their money back before that happens.

Some do. Most don’t.

And when the inevitable happens – the market crash – many lose substantial amounts of money; many more lose absolutely everything.

The strange thing: in a decade or so, financial euphoria strikes again.

Why?

In the opinion of Galbraith, it is because of several unchanging factors.

Since these are probably the most important insights of his book but are mostly scattered through brilliant historical analyses of many speculative bubbles, we tried to systematize them so that you can follow them better.

#1. Short-term fiscal memory

When it comes to money, Galbraith says, people never seem to learn anything. “There can be few fields of human endeavor,” he says, “in which history counts for so little as in the world of finance.”

In other words, when it comes to get-rich-fast schemes, you can burn yourself numerous times, because wanting more is part of your very human nature.

Rationality is just a note on the margin.

#2. The fallacious link between wealth and intellect

Most people believe that wealthy investors are, by definition, smart.

Which is why they have devised all those fancy epithets about the likes of Warren Buffet, Peter Lynch, and George Soros!

However, since almost everything that happens in life and in the markets is governed by chance, it’s all but crazy to believe that some people have found a surefire way to earn money.

In fact, most of the time, they have just been lucky.

The majority doesn’t think so.

So, it is inclined to be the victim of Ponzi schemes and speculative bubbles.

#3. Nobody believes the pessimists

Almost every bubble comes with a Cassandra or two.

Before the market crash of 1929, Paul M. Warburg foresaw the collapse and the depression, but his warnings fell on deaf ears, with the public claiming that he (a Jew) was “sandbagging American prosperity.”

Most wanted to believe Irving Fisher who famously proclaimed that the “stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau.”

Just a few days before the market crashed.

#4. Everyone chooses to ignore the real reasons

Charles Mackay, in his remarkable 1841 classic “Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds” (a defining influence on Galbraith’s book which thoroughly recounts its three chapters), commenting on the South Sea Company bubble, writes thus:

[In the autumn of 1720,] public meetings were held in every considerable town of the empire, at which petitions were adopted, praying the vengeance of the legislature upon the South Sea directors, who, by their fraudulent practices, had brought the nation to the brink of ruin. Nobody seemed to imagine that the nation itself was as culpable as the South-Sea company. Nobody blamed the credulity and avarice of the people-the degrading lust of gain…or the infatuation which had made the multitude run their heads with such frantic eagerness into the net held out for them by scheming projectors. These things were never mentioned.

The truth is – these things never are.

Even though:

#5. Bubbles are an inherent part of the market

Speculation is part of the market, and it will always be that way.

Contrary to what many will say, the market is not infallible, since humans are not infallible as well.

Regulations can help, but even they can’t contain mass euphoria and gullibility.

So, as long as there are people and markets, there will be bubbles as well.

Key Lessons from “A Short History of Financial Euphoria”

1.      People Suffer from a Short-Term Fiscal Memory
2.      Believe the Pessimists – for Your Own Sake
3.      Bubbles Are Inherent Part of the Free-Enterprise System

People Suffer from a Short-Term Fiscal Memory

When it comes to money, people tend to forget everything, including the most disastrous financial crashes in but a few decades.

That’s why it’s too optimistic to hope that people will ever learn their lesson when it comes to speculative bubbles.

Believe the Pessimists – for Your Own Sake

Every speculative bubble comes with a Cassandra or two: a prophet of disaster whose prophecies nobody believes until it’s too late.

Unfortunately, more often than not – or, rather, for most of the people involved – they are the only ones who are actually right.

Could it be that the pessimists are also right in the case of, say, Bitcoin?

Bubbles Are Inherent Part of the Free-Enterprise System

Markets are not perfect.

Bubbles are a part of them, and, as long as there are markets, it is inevitable that many people will lose huge amounts of money due to ruinous speculation.

The earlier you realize this, the better for you.

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“A Short History of Financial Euphoria Quotes”

The circumstances that induce the recurrent lapses into financial dementia have not changed in any truly operative fashion since the Tulipomania of 1636-1637. Click To Tweet

The world of finance hails the invention of the wheel over and over again, often in a slightly more unstable version. Click To Tweet

There is nothing in economic life so willfully misunderstood as the great speculative episode. Click To Tweet

Speculation buys up, in a very practical way, the intelligence of those involved. Click To Tweet

In a world where for many the acquisition of money is difficult and the resulting sums palpably insufficient, the possession of it in large amounts seems a miracle. Click To Tweet

Our Critical Review

“Financial Euphoria” – to quote a great review – is a keeper, the sort of book you’ll recommend to other investors. It is brief, readable, with a statesman-like style, yet not above the heads of small investors.

Originally, Galbraith wrote it as a warning. Unfortunately, as he explains in the Foreword to the book’s second edition, a warning he grew to believe that has no value whatsoever:

In the first foreword to this volume, I told of my hope that business executives, the inhabitants of the financial world and the citizens of speculative mood, tendency or temptation might be reminded of the way that not only fools but quite a lot of other people are recurrently separated from their money in the moment of speculative euphoria.

I am less certain than when I then wrote of the social and personal value of such a warning. Recurrent speculative insanity and the associated financial deprivation and larger devastation are, I am persuaded, inherent in the system. Perhaps it is better that this be recognized and accepted.

Unsurprisingly, Galbraith ends his book with a depressing question: “When will come the next great speculative episode and in what venue will it recur?”

That was 1994.

Unfortunately, we know now the answer.

And, yet – frighteningly – the question is still valid.

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