Great business books recently received

Syndetics book coverThe freaks shall inherit the earth : entrepreneurship for weirdos, misfits, and world dominators / Chris Brogan.
“Valuable for entrepreneurs and “employeepreneurs”….An easy read with a lot of lessons and practical advice that you can implement right away. Even if you work in a large organization, there is something here for you as you look to improve yourself and your organization. The book is broken into small enough pieces that it is easy to digest. Well worth it….If you want to improve what you are doing every day — and how you are going about it — read this book.” (Amazon reviewer)

Syndetics book coverThe frugal innovator : creating change on a shoestring budget / Charles Leadbeater.
“Frugal innovation is a powerful new model for creating solutions for a world struggling with rapid population growth, exploding demand from consumers on modest incomes, and global pressure to minimize environmental damage. This new wave of innovation started in the developing world but is spreading globally. This inspiring book provides an insight into what promises to become a worldwide movement as large companies in developed economies start to learn from entrepreneurs in the developing world, who are coming up with radical solutions to pressing challenges. Frugal innovators follow four design principles to create these solutions: ‘lean, simple, clean and social’. Frugal innovators are devising these new solutions for clean water and energy, affordable housing and health care, because the constraints they work give them no option but to think radically and challenge conventional wisdom. By unpicking the principles, drivers and methods for frugal innovation, Leadbeater’s analysis and case studies lead to practical ‘how-to’ strategies for applying frugal innovation wherever you work. “– Provided by publisher.

Syndetics book coverThe hard thing about hard things : building a business when there are no easy answers / Ben Horowitz.
“*Starred Review* It’s fairly evident that this is a collection of blogs, loosely strung together, united in their varied perspectives on start-ups, CEO-dom, and business in general. Though Horowitz is a cofounder of Andreessen Horowitz and his credentials reside mainly in Silicon Valley, he’s imparted some valuable insight on hard lessons learned that apply to any manager, whether in the executive suite or not. As with most experiential books, it is all about him but it’s written in such an engaging and universally acceptable manner that no one could object. Leave aside his background, for the moment. Who would realize, for instance, that executives worry about things like initiating layoffs, hiring the right people, training, and minimizing politics, among others? It’s a refreshingly honest take, and his colorful (and, yes, profanity-laced) language breaks down any other misperceptions about the role and the person. Plus, his imagination is compelling, such as the comparisons between peacetime and wartime CEOs: Peacetime CEO always has a contingency plan. Wartime CEO knows that sometimes you gotta roll a hard six. After all, the success equation is easy: the hard thing is getting it done.–Jacobs, Barbara Copyright 2010 BooklistFrom Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.” (Booklist)

Syndetics book coverThe curve : turning followers into superfans / Nicholas Lovell.
The concept of the Curve starts as a seemingly niche idea, focused on a few specific industries. By the end of the book it feels both common sense and revolutionary in the potential breadth of its applicability. It has provided a new lens through which to evaluate and understand corporate strategy. A ‘must read’ for anyone needing to understand the future of business. In addition it is packed with fascinating anecdotes and observations, which makes it a compelling and enjoyable read.” (Amazon UK reviewer)

Syndetics book coverFire : how fast, inexpensive, restrained and elegant methods ignite innovation / Dan Ward.
“Ward’s military career led to his expertise in high-speed, low-cost innovation, and he transposes his military principles and techniques into a marketplace-innovation system he calls FIRE (fast, inexpensive, restrained, and elegant). He explains his marketplace acronym: fast is about defining a project objective that can be satisfied on a short time line; inexpensive means delivering meaningful capabilities on a shoestring, a respected skill; restrained means self-control, tight budgets, small teams, activities focused on the short-term; and elegant values simplicity over complexity in design of organizations and processes, relying on experience and rules of thumb to solve specific problems as they arise rather than adhering to rigid rules. FIRE is an approach to innovations that focuses on outcomes rather than compliance. Ward concludes, By placing a premium on speed, thrift, simplicity, and restraint, we can deliver first-in-class and best-in-class products without spending decades and billions. This thought-provoking book, developed with a military perspective, offers valuable insight for those striving for innovation in their business activities.–Whaley, Mary Copyright 2010 BooklistFrom Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.” (Booklist)

Syndetics book coverBig data @ work : dispelling the myths, uncovering the opportunities / Thomas H. Davenport.
” From prior content on big data, there is some welcomed new information that frames the field as it continues its maturity. BD is not going away. Definitely worth the read. Davenport is a good writer, excellent researcher and provides a nice compendium of where big data is today from new sources as a seasoned expert in analytics. Despite some of the other sub-par assessments among other reviewers, you have to understand the intent of this book; it is NOT intended to move you into becoming a data scientist but rather providing you a very current snapshot on the current state of the technology and most recent developments for the organization in big data readiness. For the exec wanting to get a refreshed update on the technology, start here you will not be disappointed.” (Amazon reviewer)