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But Evolve! stands out among the vast spate of e-commerce how-tos of the past few years because of the meticulous, rigorous research on the part of Kanter and her legion of Harvard Business associates. Here, coupled with Kanter's always-keen prose, that research translates into perhaps the most vivid, probing, and instructive anthology of e-commerce success (and failure) stories yet to appear in one book. Kanter & Co. conducted over 300 interviews, plus surveys with nearly three times as many companies worldwide, to tease out their conclusions on what works and what doesn't when doing business online--with brash start-ups as well as brick-and-mortar giants. That serious-minded, Harvard-quality sleuthing is reflected in the long narratives that make up the meat of the book, detailing the complete online journeys of some of the world's most high-profile companies, from venerable offliners venturing online (among them, Arrow Electronics, Barnes & Noble, NBC, Hewlett-Packard, Honeywell, IBM, Williams-Sonoma, and Sun) to the Net-born (Amazon, eBay, Razorfish, EarthWeb, iXL, Renren.com, and Abuzz, which clearly emerges here as Kanter's pet model of how to do it right in entrepreneurial cyberspace). If you've followed the start-up scene with eagle eyes every day for the past five years, you might already be familiar with these companies' twisting, turning story lines. If, more likely, you haven't, you're in for some illuminating object lessons on what works (and what doesn't) on the precarious, often uncharted terrain of e-commerce--not to mention some really good reading.
Shortly before Evolve! went to press, Kanter added two new chapters to address the latest changes in the e-commerce market. That's a valuable update, but even if she'd skipped the postscript, Evolve! is blessedly free of reckless cybermania. And, unlike many such dot-com how-tos, it's wise enough to know that, far from having completely rewritten the rules of good business, the callow world of e-commerce has much to learn from the offline forbears it often scoffs at. For these reasons, the observations and advisories in Evolve! should transcend the inevitable fluctuations of the e-commerce market in the years to come. In other words, this is the real thing: smart, deeply researched advice from a pro whose talents are evident on every page. Well, except for the rap lyrics she's penned for "Evolve!--The Song," which kick off the book, and run along such lines: "You're not alone, so start placing your bet/On finding lots of partners throughout the Net!" Cole Porter she's not. Then again, maybe they wouldn't sound so lame if only we could get that other old pro, Eartha Kitt, to slip into her catsuit and purr her way through them. --Timothy Murphy
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
Needed the book in two days - it arrived on time and was in good condition.Published on November 9, 2010 by Lisa L. Roberson
Choosing the right metaphor is one of the best ways to assure your ideas (if you have any) will endure. Read morePublished on August 24, 2007 by Dennis During
Author Kanter is the Ernest L. Arbuckle Professor of Business Administration at Harvard (or was when she wrote the book), She has been named as on eof the 50 most powerful women in... Read morePublished on June 19, 2006 by Joyce Schwarz
This book is to some extent out-of-date. It is written in the dot-com era. And there is indeed a lot of hype on the young start-ups' heroic characteristics such as speed,... Read morePublished on January 25, 2005 by Peter Leerskov
This review is not so much about the book but rather about the author. I had the chance to have Rosabeth Moss Kanter as a Professor for a semester last year while doing an MBA at... Read morePublished on March 21, 2004
I thought the naration was terible on this CD, author was not to the point. More of a one sided observation presented as a story rather than a complete analysis.Published on March 8, 2003
Throughout human history, most revolutions share a common cause, a shared commitment, courage, passion, sacrifice, determination, and varying degrees of impact. Read morePublished on September 2, 2002 by Robert Morris
I have recently held several positions working in e-business units at some major companies in the New York city area. Read morePublished on November 5, 2001
Evolve by Professor Moss Kanter at Harvard Business School has transformed my way of thinking about the dot-com revolution. Read morePublished on November 2, 2001