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Contagious Success: Spreading High Performance Throughout Your Organization Hardcover – Bargain Price, November 4, 2004


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Hardcover, Bargain Price, November 4, 2004
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • ISBN-10: 1591840600
  • ASIN: B0008102FE
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,065,715 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Annunzio is chair and CEO of the Hudson Highland Center for High Performance, and the extensive, worldwide research she and her group completed, into how to define and secure "high performance environments that deliver exceptional results," stands behind this energizing guide to sustaining and duplicating such environments. "Success is contagious" is the stated premise of the book; upon concluding, from the research, that only a small percentage of workers are high performers, Annunzio not only explains the traits of a high performer but also recommends that managers "spread the secrets" of these workers so "you can improve the overall performance of your company." The secrets center on high performers' particular styles, techniques, and energy and how they can easily be adapted for lower-performing workers. Managers are the target audience of this book, but the information gathered and the concepts promoted here will have relevance and interest for anyone who finds business philosophy engaging. Brad Hooper
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Susan Lucia Annunzio is chairman and CEO of the Hudson Highland Center for High Performance, a subsidiary of Hudson Highland Group, Inc. The author of Evolutionary Leadership and coauthor of Communicoding, she advises senior executives around the world and is an adjunct professor of management at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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The book is written in a to-the-point, very readable style.
Gerry Stern
Annunzio offers practical solutions on how companies can create a working environment that fosters innovation and growth, which will ultimately affect the bottom line.
Marilyn Kafenstok
One of the more interesting business books to come along in a long time.
Michael Tymkiw, President of Medline Industries' Primary Care Division

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Michael Tymkiw, President of Medline Industries' Primary Care Division on November 13, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Contagious Success is eye-opening, meaty, and filled with advice that can be readily applied to the real business world. Annunzio identifies the factors that distinguish high-performance workgroups, with findings drawn from her team's comprehensive, worldwide study of 3,104 knowledge workers in the U.S., Europe, Asia, and Australia. (A knowledge worker is defined as a full-time manager, professional, or technical expert who holds at least a bachelor's degree and whose earnings are within the top 10% of his or her country.) Annunzio suggests that three main factors distinguish high-performance groups: valuing people, optimizing critical thinking, and seizing opportunities. While these factors are hardly surprising, what is remarkable is the mountain of conventional wisdom that Annunzio challenges. For example, Annunzio found that pay ranked fifth in terms of what makes high-performance groups effective - behind values, teamwork, people, and planning. Another insight is that 40% of respondents could show no evidence at all that their workgroups are doing something tangible. (Remember: these are college-educated professionals in the top 10% income bracket - folks who are at least theoretically rewarded for high performance.) A third revelation is that a mere 10% of workgroups qualify as high performing (high performance is defined by demonstrable revenue/profit improvement as well as product or service innovations). A final key revelation is that most knowledge workers confuse performance with productivity -- a vestige perhaps of the industrial revolution, yet a nugget of wisdom worth remembering in this day of Blackberries, cell phones, and the other accoutrements that offer up a false sense of success simply by making us feel busy.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Gerry Stern on February 24, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Based on a study of 3,104 knowledge workers in the U.S. and 9 other countries, the author has identified the qualities of high-performing groups, i. e., those that get financial results, through being the best in developing and introducing new products, services and markets. The overall conclusion is that knowledge workers who work in environments in which 1) they are valued, 2) can do their best thinking, and 3) have the freedom to seize opportunities, constitute high-performing work groups. Such groups are adaptable, knowledgeable, and resourceful. The book goes into many factors that explain the success of these groups, offering many case examples drawn from the extensive research. The insights of this book are readily accessible. The book is written in a to-the-point, very readable style. But most importantly, it offers some mind-broadening findings that, for some, may appear to be a challenge to conventional thinking. Speaking as an organization consultant ([...] as well as a reviewer, this book shines forth as offering some solid, although not altogether surprising, conclusions. Bottom line: highly recommended-well worth the reading.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Patrick Morris on December 8, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I thought that this book offers common-sense approach to business leaders striving to attain profitable growth in an age of cost-cutting. The author's thought-provoking commentary on the global state of underperformance is a wake up call for management and employees alike. Lessons about creating an environment that inspires employees to high performance are accessible, attainable and well documented with interesting case histories about companies who are doing it right. It is an enjoyable read with solid lessons for rethinking the current business mentality obsessed with quarterly earnings.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Przybycien on March 28, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Contagious Success caught my attention when it was named Fast Company Readers' Choice™ winner in January of 2005.

I was convinced to buy the book after reading, Fast Company magazine's book review. ([...] While reading the book I learned crucial lessons. Here are just a few:

1.) Short-term thinking is the number one killer of performance - "To meet quarterly financial goals, companies are cutting staff and budgets, resulting in overworked, frustrated employees." How true is that?

2.) Contrary to what most people think, the environment, not the leader, is the most important factor in driving high performance. This is a great point.

3.) Even a company's highest performers have room to grow - "the easiest, most efficient way to in increase the overall performance of your company is to increase the performance of those groups already at the top."

I was happy to see Annunzio point out micromanagement is a prominent characteristic of low-performing workgroups and it severely stymies high-performing environments. She states, "The best way to value people is to show respect by treating people as if they are smart people. You don't tell them how to do their job; you trust them to do it well."

This book will appeal to a wide audience - those who would like to look within their company to find the barriers and accelerators to success, those that would like to break away from the misguided norms of "conventional wisdom," and those who just want to work towards cultivating an environment where high-performance thrives.
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