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Everything we do is aimed at the future. Like our ancestors who millions of years ago took it upon themselves to do lunch instead of be lunch, the better we are at evaluating all possible futures, the better our future will be. Harvard Business School professor Howard Stevenson argues that predictability is a core human need and the more predictable we can make ourselves, the better we'll be able to predict our future and the futures of those around us.
Do Lunch or Be Lunch is a counterweight to the management trends that have swept business in the last few years. Trends such as reengineering, downsizing, and maximizing shareholder value will in most cases not be successful because they are fundamentally unpredictable for employees and employers alike. On the other hand, the more predictable a company can make itself, the more effective it will be. Stevenson peppers the book with his observations that come from his experience as an entrepreneur and founder of several businesses as well as his tenure on the board of directors for over 25 companies.
In a refreshingly humanistic approach to economic forecasting, Stevenson (mathematics, Harvard Business Sch.) demonstrates how people must work together toward their common good to survive and prosper. From primitive hunting-and-gathering communities whose members can literally be eaten to modern business conglomerates where divisions can be consumed, the need for predictability is a powerful force for action and inaction, states the author. Using examples from law, religion, and mythology, Stevenson dispels the idea that efficient economic models can predict complex outcomes with certainty. However, he does show how we can as individuals and organizations create more predictable environments by recognizing the interconnectivity of our behavior. Highly entertaining, his work is a welcome addition to economics, business, and ethics collections in public and academic libraries.?Robert L. Balliot Jr., East Greenwich Free Lib., R.I.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
This book is full of fluff - lots of words that sound good, but don't really say anything. I read a lot of business and management books - probably 2-3 per month, and have been... Read morePublished on October 17, 2010 by xt
Excellent subject. Poor subject exploitation in the book. Written in pompous professor-style which may amuse his students... I consider it a waste of my time. Read morePublished on September 24, 1998