The Business Book

The Business Book

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 (Big Ideas Simply Explained) 

by DK Publishing

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Book Details
 354 p
 File Size 
 40,719 KB
 File Type
 PDF format
 2014 dorling Kindersley Limited  

Ian Marcousé lectures in business and economics education at
the Institute of Education in London. He has written a host of
business text books for A-level and BTEC students, including
the popular A–Z Business Studies handbooks, and is the founder
and director of A–Z Business Training Ltd.

Philippa Anderson is a communications consultant and business
writer who has authored articles, magazine features, and books on
numerous aspects of business, from market research to leadership.
She also provides communications consultancy for multinational
firms, including 3M, Anglo American, and Coca-Cola.

Alexandra Black studied business communications before
embarking on a writing career that led her to Japan and stints
with financial newspaper group Nikkei Inc. and investment bank
J. P. Morgan. She later worked for a direct marketing publisher in
Sydney, Australia, before moving to Cambridge, UK. She writes
on a range of subjects, from business to history and fashion.

Denry Machin is an associate tutor at Keele University, UK,
and is working at doctoral research on the application of business
thinking within education. He also works for Harrow International
Management Services as projects manager, assisting in the
development of Harrow School’s presence in Asia. He is the author
of several business books, journals, and magazine articles.

Nigel Watson has taught business and economics for A-Level and
International Baccalaureate students for 25 years. He has authored
and co-authored books and magazine articles in both subjects.

From the time that goods
and services began to be traded in early civilizations,
people have been thinking about business. The emergence of
specialized producers and the use of money as a means of exchange
were methods by which individuals and societies could, in modern
terms, gain a “business edge.” The ancient Egyptians, the Mayans, the
Greeks, and the Romans all knew
that wealth creation through the mechanism of commerce was
fundamental to the acquisition of power, and formed the base on
which civilization could prosper. The lessons of the early traders
resonate even today. Specialism revealed the benefits of economies
of scale—that production costs fall as more items are produced. Money
gave rise to the concept of “value added”—selling an item for more
than it cost to produce. Even when barter was the norm, producers still
knew it was advantageous to lower costs and raise the value of goods.
Today’s companies may use different technologies and trade on a global
scale, but the essence of business has changed little in millennia.

Table of Contents
20 If you can dream it, you can do it
Beating the odds at start-up
22 There’s a gap in the market, but is there
a market in the gap? Finding a profitable niche
24 You can learn all you need to know about the
competition’s operation by looking in his
garbage cans Study the competition
28 The secret of business is
to know something that nobody else knows
Stand out in the market
32 Be first or be better Gaining an edge
40 Put all your eggs in one
basket, and then watch
that basket Managing risk
42 Luck is a dividend of sweat. The more you
sweat, the luckier you get Luck (and how to get lucky)
43 Broaden your vision, and maintain stability while
advancing forward Take the second step
44 Nothing great is created suddenly
How fast to grow
46 The role of the CEO is to enable people to excel
From entrepreneur to leader
48 Chains of habit are too light to be felt until
they are too heavy to be broken
Keep evolving business practice
52 A corporation is a living organism; it has to
continue to shed its skin Reinventing and adapting
58 Without continuous growth and progress,
success has no meaning The Greiner curve
62 If you believe in something, work nights
and weekends—it won’t feel like work
The weightless start-up

68 Managers do things right, leaders do the right thing
Leading well
70 None of us is as smart as all of us
The value of teams
72 Innovation must be invasive and perpetual:
everyone, everywhere, all of the time
Creativity and invention
74 Dissent adds spice, spirit, and an
invigorating quality Beware the yes-men
76 No great manager or leader ever fell from
heaven Gods of management
78 A leader is one who knows the way, goes the
way, and shows the way Effective leadership
80 Teamwork is the fuel that allows common
people to attain uncommon results
Organizing teams and talent
86 Leaders allow great people to do the work
they were born to do Make the most of your talent
88 The way forward may not be to go forward
Thinking outside the box
90 The more a person can do, the more you
can motivate them Is money the motivator?
92 Be an enzyme—a catalyst
for change Changing the game
100 The worst disease that afflicts executives is
egotism Hubris and nemesis
104 Culture is the way in which a group of people
solves problems Organizational culture
110 Emotional intelligence is the intersection of
heart and head Develop emotional intelligence
112 Management is a practice
where art, science, and craft meet
Mintzberg’s management roles
114 A camel is a horse designed by committee
Avoid groupthink
115 The art of thinking independently, together
The value of diversity

120 Do not let yourself be involved in a fraudulent
business Play by the rules
124 Executive officers must be free from avarice
Profit before perks
126 If wealth is placed where it bears interest, it comes
back to you redoubled Investment and dividends
128 Borrow short, lend long Making money from money
130 The interests of the shareholders are our own
Accountability and governance
132 Make the best quality of goods at the lowest
cost, paying the highest wages possible
Your workers are your customers
138 Utilize OPM—Other People’s Money
Who bears the risk?
146 Swim upstream. Go the other way. Ignore the
conventional wisdom Ignoring the herd
150 Debt is the worst poverty Leverage and excess risk
152 Cash is king Profit versus cash flow
154 Only when the tide goes out do you discover who’s
been swimming naked Off-balance-sheet risk
155 Return on equity is a financial goal that can
become an own goal Maximize return on equity
156 As the role of private equity has grown, so have
the risks it poses The private equity model
158 Assign costs according to the resources consumed
Activity-based costing

164 Turn every disaster into an opportunity
Learning from failure
166 If I had asked people what they wanted, they would
have said faster horses Leading the market
170 The main thing to remember is, the main
thing is the main thing Protect the core business
172 You don’t need a huge company, just a computer
and a part-time person Small is beautiful
178 Don’t get caught in the middle
Porter’s generic strategies
184 The essence of strategy is choosing what not to do
Good and bad strategy
186 Synergy and other lies Why takeovers disappoint
188 The Chinese word “crisis” is composed of two
characters: “danger” and “opportunity” Crisis management
190 You can’t grow long-term if you can’t eat short-term
Balancing long- versus short-termism
192 Market Attractiveness,
Business Attractiveness The MABA matrix
194 Only the paranoid survive
Avoiding complacency
202 To excel, tap into people’s
capacity to learn The learning organization
208 The future of business is
selling less of more The long tail
210 To be an optimist ... have a contingency
plan for when all hell breaks loose
Contingency planning
211 Plans are useless, but
planning is indispensable Scenario planning
212 The strongest competitive forces
determine the profitability of an industry
Porter’s five forces
216 If you don’t have a competitive advantage,
don’t compete The value chain
218 If you don’t know where you are, a map
won’t help The capability maturity model
220 Chaos brings uneasiness, but it also allows for
creativity and growth Coping with chaos
222 Always do what is right. It will gratify half of
mankind and astonish the other
Morality in business
223 There is no such thing as
a minor lapse in integrity Collusion
224 Make it easier to do the right thing and
much harder to do the wrong thing
Creating an ethical culture

232 Marketing is far too important to leave to the
marketing department The marketing model
234 Know the customer so well that the product fits
them and sells itself Understanding the market
242 Attention, Interest,
Desire, Action The AIDA model
244 Marketing myopia
Focus on the future market
250 The cash cow is the beating heart of the
organization Product portfolio
256 Expanding away from your core has risks;
diversification doubles them Ansoff’s matrix
258 If you’re different, you
will stand out Creating a brand
264 There is only one boss: the customer
Make your customers love you
268 Whitewashing, but with
a green brush Greenwash
270 People want companies to believe in something
beyond maximizing profits The appeal of ethics
271 Everybody likes something extra for
nothing Promotions and incentives
272 In good times people want to advertise; in bad
times they have to Why advertise?
274 Make your thinking as funny as possible
Generating buzz
276 E-commerce is becoming mobile commerce
278 Trying to predict the future is like driving
with no lights looking out of the back window Forecasting
280 Product, Place, Price, Promotion Marketing mix

288 See how much, not how little, you can give for
a dollar Maximize customer benefits
290 Costs do not exist to be calculated. Costs exist to
be reduced Lean production
294 If the pie’s not big enough, make a bigger pie
Fulfilling demand
296 Eliminate unnecessary steps Simplify processes
300 Every gain through the elimination of waste is
gold in the mine Juran’s production ideal
302 Machines, facilities, and people should work
together to add value Kaizen
310 Learning and innovation go hand in hand
Applying and testing ideas
312 Your most unhappy customers are your
greatest source of learning
Feedback and innovation
314 Technology is the great growling engine of change
The right technology
316 Without big data, you are blind and deaf and in the
middle of a highway Benefitting from “big data”
318 Put the product into the customer’s hands—
it will speak for itself Quality sells
324 The desire to own something a little better,
a little sooner than necessary
Planned obsolescence
326 Time is money Time-based management
328 A project without a critical path is like a ship
without a rudder Critical path analysis
330 Taking the best from the best Benchmarking


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First American edition, 2014

published in the United states by
dK publishing
375 Hudson street
new York, new York 10014

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