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Comment: Overall good condition no writing or underlining on pages. Little to no wear. Signature by author on the title page "Best wishes Harry Nolan" Book in great condition, i did not have the signature authenticated, but I personally didn't put it there.
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Airline Without A Pilot - Leadership Lessons/Inside Story of Delta's Success, Decline and Bankruptcy Paperback – October 17, 2005

ISBN-13: 978-0977207602 ISBN-10: 0977207609

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 252 pages
  • Publisher: Targetmark Books (Management Advisory Services) (October 17, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0977207609
  • ISBN-13: 978-0977207602
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,277,103 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"..refreshingly candid and unrestrained." "..story of human drama and shocking corporate malfeasance." "..advice for working with consultants is particularly astute." -- Bookwire (December, 2005)

From the Publisher

Reader feedback shows that the book appeals strongly to a broad array of readers – including CEOs, executives, business students, and anyone who loves a good story.

Naturally, it appeals to aviation buffs along with all those interested in Delta.

Readers are saying the book engages them quickly and, once involved in the book, they want to continue reading. Many report reading it in one or two sittings; some report getting up in the middle of the night to finish it.

A consistent comment has been that the book will be an excellent case study for use in a graduate business school, undergraduate course or an internal company program on leadership and management.

This book makes a special holiday or other gift for a boss; fellow executive; business student; aviation buff; Delta or other airline employee or retiree; any reader who appreciates a good story in a well-written book.

--This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


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Customer Reviews

Nolan has clearly done considerable research and the results show in the book.
VP
The book is a valuable, textbook case study in how a great company can go awry when the leaders lose focus and depart from the values and culture that made it great.
Life After the Corporate World
I was absorbed as I progressed through the book (read in 1 evening), and I could not help but keep repeating to myself, "This guy GETS IT!"
Aileron

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

22 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Aileron on November 10, 2005
Format: Paperback
As a current Delta Air Lines captain with many years invested with the company, I want to express my great appreciation for the book Airline Without a Pilot.

I have long maintained that the story of Delta would be a model case study for any business school wanting to demonstrate how NOT to run a business, with a particular emphasis on the difference between "management" and "leadership". The book effectively does this and is "spot on" in so many areas, particularly in the discussion of the management/employee relationship necessary in a service industry. In the military, we used to say, "Take care of your troops, and they'll take care of you."

Sadly, I have learned that all too often this adage does not transfer into the business world. This does seem strange, since everywhere that philosophy is tried, it meets with incredible success. Again, my experience with the "Harvard MBA's" (Leo Mullin, Michelle Burns, et. al.) has been that they merely learned how to transfer company assets into their pockets and then move on. The book also confirmed my negative instincts about many in the "consulting" industry, but the author's common-sense approaches truly bring a breath of fresh air into those discussions.

I was absorbed as I progressed through the book (read in 1 evening), and I could not help but keep repeating to myself, "This guy GETS IT!" The author effectively recorded and discussed so many events that have been churning in my mind (and stomach) for so long, but had thus far evaded public scrutiny. My sincere hope is that this book will effectively shine a very bright light on the real causes for Delta's demise. My only (constructive!) criticism is that I wish that the author had dealt with Mr.
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Format: Hardcover
I was an executive at Delta during the pre-bankruptcy era, so I have the benefit of inside knowledge and perspective. Nolan's book is right on target in terms of facts, observations, analysis and recommendations.

However, this is not just a story about another bankrupt airline. Instead, it really is about principal lessons of leadership as a value enhancer or destroyer. These lessons, when properly applied, lead to long-term sustainable growth for the company and secure retirements for employees. When the lessons are ignored or violated, they lead you straight to the bankruptcy court.

Although this book is a fine human interest and business story, it is very unique. The author, Nolan, not only describes how Delta got itself into trouble, but also shows them a way out. He points out that a company's long-term strategic and financial success is dependent on selection of competent business leaders who understand how to plan for the unexpected, leverage and respect the value of human capital and respond to business challenges.

Read this book!
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Format: Paperback
The book is an easy read. It is well organized and flows logically. In addition, it has slightly larger type with plenty of white space for improved readability.

The author writes in a style similar to Peter Drucker, one of my favorite business writers. He expresses valuable key management points in a succinct, easy to understand way.

The author brings his vast consulting experience together to very effectively relate to the issues that Delta faced. His perspective is how Delta's leaders - 7 CEOs and their Board - dealt with those issues and the leadership lessons we can all learn from the decisions of those leaders.

From this leadership perspective, he chronicles the company history, starting with C.E. Woolman, founder of Delta and a great leader during the company's early decades. Nolan then graphically shows how the roots and a culture that caused a growing company to flourish and thrive were damaged or abandoned by later leaders, ultimately leading Delta into bankruptcy.

The points made regarding the agenda of some management consultants are right on target. They deserve serious consideration by any CEO, Board or executive.

The book is a valuable, textbook case study in how a great company can go awry when the leaders lose focus and depart from the values and culture that made it great.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an awesome book. It is easy to read and I could not put it down.

My wife, friends and several of my business associates have also read it. Although each has a different level of business knowledge and interest, it appealed to everyone. We all enjoyed reading it and found it meaningful in different ways.

The book effectively gives important lessons for a company to stay healthy. The author provides unvarnished information and recommendations. He does not gloss over any facts. His straightforward, no-nonsense manner is very refreshing.

As a businessperson, I found the book quite meaningful in many ways - particularly in the well-documented lessons on leadership.

In addition, my wife pointed out that the book is written so that even a non-business person can clearly understand it. For example, her eyes were opened to the job of a Board of Directors and what they are supposed to do in running a company.

This book would make a great gift for a businessperson, a student or anyone who likes a good story.
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