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Finance for Managers (Harvard Business Essentials) [Paperback]

Harvard Business School Press
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)

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Book Description

January 2, 2003 1578518768 978-1578518760
Harvard Business Essentials are comprehensive, solution-oriented paperbacks for business readers of all levels of experience. Calculating and assessing the overall financial health of the business is an important part of any managerial position. From reading and deciphering financial statements, to understanding net present value, to calculating return on investment, Finance for Managers provides the fundamentals of financial literacy. Easy to use and nontechnical, this helpful guide gives managers the smart advice they need to increase their impact on financial planning, budgeting, and forecasting.

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Finance for Managers (Harvard Business Essentials) + Finance for Non-Financial Managers (Briefcase Books Series) + Budgeting for Managers
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Harvard Business Essentials The Reliable Source for Busy Managers The Harvard Business Essentials series is designed to provide comprehensive advice, personal coaching, background information, and guidance on the most relevant topics in business. Drawing on rich content from Harvard Business School Publishing and other sources, these concise guides are carefully crafted to provide a highly practical resource for readers with all levels of experience. To assure quality and accuracy, each volume is closely reviewed by a specialized content adviser from a world class business school. Whether you are a new manager interested in expanding your skills or an experienced executive looking for a personal resource, these solution-oriented books offer reliable answers at your fingertips.

Product Details

  • Series: Harvard Business Essentials
  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press (January 2, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1578518768
  • ISBN-13: 978-1578518760
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #27,513 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
34 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential, Yes, and for Many, Invaluable February 6, 2003
This one of the volumes in the new Harvard Business School Essentials Series. Each offers authoritative answers to the most important questions concerning its specific subject. The material in this book is drawn from a variety of sources which include William J. Bruns, Michael J. Roberts, and Robert S. Kaplan as well as Harvard Business School Publishing and Harvard ManageMentor®, an online service. Each volume is indeed "a highly practical resource for readers with all levels of experience" but I think those who have only recently embarked on a business career will derive the greatest benefit.
This volume explains the basic concepts of finance to managers who are not financial managers. As Richard Luecke notes in the Introduction, "Knowing how to finance assets, forecast future cash flows, maintain a budget, determine which operations are profit generators and which are not, and judge the real economic merits of different investment opportunities will help you stay in business and turn a profit." Samuel L. Hayes served as subject advisor to Luecke, writer of this and other books in the Harvard Business School Essentials Series and author or developer of more than 30 other books as well as several dozen articles.
There are ten chapters followed by an Appendix: Activity-Based Budgeting. (More about that material in a moment.) Each chapter is introduced by a list of "Key Topics" to be covered in it. For example, in Chapter 5, the focus is on start-up financing, financing current operations, financing growth, establish a proper match of assets with financing, and typical financing arrangements.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice Overview- Not so nice coverage September 9, 2004
I bought this book to rehash some of the necessary and critical financial concepts learnt in school. Objective was to a. Make informed decision with knowledge of some finance terms (like top-line growth) B. Make more familiarity with the standard yet not so frequently used financial tools (like cash flow statement).

The book does reasonably well to fulfill these criterion with and optimal degree of satisfaction. Nice organization, one chapter flows onto next one and examples related to one business entity (fictitious yet realistic) run through. Numerical examples explaining the basic as well as relatively difficult financial concepts are easy to understand and make a good reading.

This trend continues pretty much throughout the book except in few chapters. I would actually point out two chapters where details and flow are not as lucid. The chapters explaining Internal Rate of Return (IRR) and Net Present Value (NPV) (Chapter 9: Time value of Money) and Budgeting process (Chapter 7: Budgeting) lacks the depth even at a conceptual level and does not help the reader to form a clear impression of the topics. I would say it in some cases it presents too less a detail (ex. definition and explanation of IRR) and it some cases it tries to present too much (Budgeting process/type and factors consideration)

Overall a good buy and definitely nice value for money!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good place to start September 1, 2005
Explains the basics, not so detailed that a novice can't follow it. If you're already a finance manager (as opposed to a manger without a finance background), I suggest something a little more advanced.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Book, Wrong Audience December 8, 2009
"Finance for Managers" is short and clearly-written. It's a good book for non-business people (like me) who want to be smarter readers of business and economic news. However, it strikes me as too elementary to be of value to real non-financial managers (the supposed audience), who studied business at college and already know the basics of discounted present value, ratio analysis, the risks and rewards of leverage, and so forth. The good thing about "Finance for Managers" is that it NEVER goes beyond the bare basics. But that's also the bad thing.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very accessible coverage of basics December 11, 2010
For those who have never studied finance but need to understand the basics, this is by far the best book available: intelligent, concise, and easy to understand. I recommend it to my consulting clients (entrepreneurs and small-business owners in creative industries), and use it as a framework and primary resource in an undergraduate course in finance for designers. Students often prefer this to a conventional textbook, as it highlights the most important aspects of financial understanding and management, presents the material in a very accessible style with concrete examples, and de-emphasizes mathematical aspects.
I hope Harvard will update this book with a new edition, as their more-recent "Understanding Finance" provides insufficient depth.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Primer or Refresher March 23, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book is an excellent primer or refresher course on the basics of finance and accounting in business. This book is clearly not aimed at finance or accounting folks working in business today as the presented material is far too high level and basic. However, if it has been some years since you have dealt with this material in school, if you have always been on the periphery of this material at work, or if you have never encountered these subjects, then this is a great book to get you going.

The very thought of the subject matter might make some sleepy, but credit to the authors for covering this subject in a short, concise, and relevant way. To the extent that a book of this type could be considered a "page turner" I think this book is it. The subjects are covered using every day language in an efficient and quick moving manner. You never get bogged down in any one subject or esoteric detail and there is nothing academic about the writing style.

On the back cover of the book it is mentioned that the Harvard Business Essentials is designed to provide "comprehensive advice"... While this is clearly marketing speak, it is still quite untrue. There is nothing comprehensive about this book so folks should be careful about taking the Harvard name and the notion of "comprehensive advice" as if this is some sort of definitive text on the subject of finance in business. The material is at the level of the most basic introductory course and if you go in understanding this and desire something to either get you going on the subject or refresh your memory from long ago study, I think this book will fit the bill nicely.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars A must for managers
A must for every manager, whatever may be the industry. Must read even for most senior managers. Sin to ignore.
Published 11 days ago by ARIF ANSARI
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book
If you need a good and simple finance 101, this is the finance book to buy in the real world
Published 2 months ago by gabby
5.0 out of 5 stars Good resource...............
I used this as a resource in a graduate school finance course I took about 6 years ago. It really was helpful
Published 4 months ago by Don Hubbard
4.0 out of 5 stars Overall good
Shipping/receiving was all great, so I would recommend the seller.

Content of the book is give and take. Read more
Published 15 months ago by Berk
5.0 out of 5 stars Expectations fully covered
I'm an enterprise architect in a telecom company. I heard about this book from the lecturer of my first financial course. Read more
Published 20 months ago by Alexander Atanasow
5.0 out of 5 stars Easy read
For non-financial managers or supervisors, this is a clear cut, easy to understand terminology book that makes a very difficult subject quite easy to navigate and understand.
Published on October 4, 2011 by Hattie Hedrick
2.0 out of 5 stars Not the best solution
The book was purchased because i found it in the list of recommended reading of ISM (Institute of Supply Management), so I thought that it will be something rather thorough,... Read more
Published on July 7, 2011 by Ivan Gushchin
3.0 out of 5 stars A nice survey of financial reporting
The book contains a number of good articles, introducing some important, basic accounting and finance concepts for non-financial managers. Read more
Published on November 26, 2009 by David Franzetta
5.0 out of 5 stars Highly reccomended
If your knowledge of Financial Management is limited or shallow this is your book: Clear, direct, brief, full of examples and easy to read.
Published on September 14, 2009 by Ivan Rodriguez Rodrig
1.0 out of 5 stars Finance for Managers (Harvad Business Esssentials)
It wasn't all what I had expected - I thought it would have given a deeper insight also to the financing aspects.
Published on September 28, 2008 by Anders Grano
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