Scaling Up Excellence: Getting to More Without Settling for Less

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Wall Street Journal Bestseller

"The pick of 2014's management books." –Andrew Hill, Financial Times

"One of the top business books of the year." Harvey Schacter, The Globe and Mail

Bestselling author, Robert Sutton and Stanford colleague, Huggy Rao tackle a challenge that determines every organization’s success: how to scale up farther, faster, and more effectively as an organization grows.
 

Sutton and Rao have devoted much of the last decade to uncovering what it takes to build and uncover pockets of exemplary performance, to help spread them, and to keep recharging organizations with ever better work practices. Drawing on inside accounts and case studies and academic research from a wealth of industries-- including start-ups, pharmaceuticals, airlines, retail, financial services, high-tech, education, non-profits, government, and healthcare-- Sutton and Rao identify the key scaling challenges that confront every organization.  They tackle the difficult trade-offs that organizations must make between whether to encourage individualized approaches tailored to local needs or to replicate the same practices and customs as an organization or program expands. They reveal how the best leaders and teams develop, spread, and instill the right mindsets in their people-- rather than ruining or watering down the very things that have fueled successful growth in the past. They unpack the principles that help to cascade excellence throughout an organization, as well as show how to eliminate destructive beliefs and behaviors that will hold them back. 

Scaling Up Excellence is the first major business book devoted to this universal and vexing challenge and it is destined to become the standard bearer in the field.
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About the author

Robert I. Sutton is professor of management science and engineering at Stanford University, where he is co-founder of the Center for Work Technology and Organizations, Stanford Technology Ventures Program, and Institute of Design (“the d.school”).  Sutton was named as one of 10 “B-School All-Stars” by BusinessWeek, which they described as “professors who are influencing contemporary business thinking far beyond academia.”  His books include The Knowing-Doing Gap (with Jeffrey Pfeffer), Weird Ideas the Work, and two New York Times bestsellers, The No Asshole Rule and Good Boss, Bad Boss
 
Huggy Rao is the Atholl McBean Professor of Organizational Behavior, Stanford University, where he studies the social and cultural causes of organizational change. His honors include the W. Richard Scott Distinguished Award for Scholarship from the American Sociological Association and Sidney Levy Teaching Award from the Kellogg School of Management.  He is the author of Market Rebels: How Activists Make or Break Radical Innovation,” Which Intel’s Andy Grove praised for providing “shrewd analysis” and an “aha moment.”
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Additional Information

Publisher
Crown Business
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Published on
Feb 4, 2014
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Pages
368
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ISBN
9780385347037
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Language
English
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Genres
Business & Economics / Entrepreneurship
Business & Economics / Leadership
Business & Economics / Management
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Great individuals are assumed to cause the success of radical innovations--thus Henry Ford is depicted as the one who established the automobile industry in America. Hayagreeva Rao tells a different story, one that will change the way you think about markets forever. He explains how "market rebels"--activists who defy authority and convention--are the real force behind the success or failure of radical innovations.

Rao shows how automobile enthusiasts were the ones who established the new automobile industry by staging highly publicized reliability races and lobbying governments to enact licensing laws. Ford exploited the popularity of the car by using new mass-production technologies.


Rao argues that market rebels also establish new niches and new cultural styles. If it were not for craft brewers who crusaded against "industrial beer" and proliferated brewpubs, there would be no specialty beers in America. But for nouvelle cuisine activists who broke the stranglehold of Escoffier's classical cuisine in France, there would have been little hybridization and experimentation in modern cooking.


Market rebels also thwart radical innovation. Rao demonstrates how consumer activists have faced down chain stores and big box retailers, and how anti-biotechnology activists in Germany penetrated pharmaceutical firms and delayed the commercialization of patents.


Read Market Rebels to learn how activists succeed when they construct "hot causes" that arouse intense emotions, and exploit "cool mobilization"--unconventional techniques that engage audiences in collective action. You will realize how the hands that move markets are the joined hands of market rebels.

Some images inside the book are unavailable due to digital copyright restrictions.

A breakthrough in management thinking, “weird ideas” can help every organization achieve a balance between sustaining performance and fostering new ideas. To succeed, you need to be both conventional and counterintuitive.

Creativity, new ideas, innovation—in any age they are keys to success. Yet, as Stanford professor Robert Sutton explains, the standard rules of business behavior and management are precisely the opposite of what it takes to build an innovative company. We are told to hire people who will fit in; to train them extensively; and to work to instill a corporate culture in every employee. In fact, in order to foster creativity, we should hire misfits, goad them to fight, and pay them to defy convention and undermine the prevailing culture. Weird Ideas That Work codifies these and other proven counterintuitive ideas to help you turn your workplace from staid and safe to wild and woolly—and creative.

In Weird Ideas That Work Sutton draws on extensive research in behavioral psychology to explain how innovation can be fostered in hiring, managing, and motivating people; building teams; making decisions; and interacting with outsiders. Business practices like "hire people who make you uncomfortable" and "reward success and failure, but punish inaction," strike many managers as strange or even downright wrong. Yet Weird Ideas That Work shows how some of the best teams and companies use these and other counterintuitive practices to crank out new ideas, and it demonstrates that every company can reap sales and profits from such creativity.

Weird Ideas That Work is filled with examples, drawn from hi- and low-tech industries, manufacturing and services, information and products. More than just a set of bizarre suggestions, it represents a breakthrough in management thinking: Sutton shows that the practices we need to sustain performance are in constant tension with those that foster new ideas. The trick is to choose the right balance between conventional and "weird"—and now, thanks to Robert Sutton's work, we have the tools we need to do so.
To get the best answer-in business, in life-you have to ask the best possible question. Innovation expert Warren Berger shows that ability is both an art and a science.

It may be the most underappreciated tool at our disposal, one we learn to use well in infancy-and then abandon as we grow older. Critical to learning, innovation, success, even to happiness-yet often discouraged in our schools and workplaces-it can unlock new business opportunities and reinvent industries, spark creative insights at many levels, and provide a transformative new outlook on life. It is the ability to question-and to do so deeply, imaginatively, and “beautifully.”

In this fascinating exploration of the surprising power of questioning, innovation expert Warren Berger reveals that powerhouse businesses like Google, Nike, and Netflix, as well as hot Silicon Valley startups like Pandora and Airbnb, are fueled by the ability to ask fundamental, game-changing questions. But Berger also shares human stories of people using questioning to solve everyday problems-from “How can I adapt my career in a time of constant change?” to “How can I step back from the daily rush and figure out what really makes me happy?”

By showing how to approach questioning with an open, curious mind and a willingness to work through a series of “Why,” “What if,” and “How” queries, Berger offers an inspiring framework of how we can all arrive at better solutions, fresh possibilities, and greater success in business and life.
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