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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
This is one in a series of several dozen volumes that comprise the Harvard Business Review Paperback Series. Each offers direct, convenient, and inexpensive access to the best thinking ("ideas with impact") about the given subject in articles originally published by the Harvard Business School Review. I strongly recommend all of the volumes in the series. The individual titles are listed at this Web site: [...] The authors of various articles are among the world's most highly regarded experts on the given subject. Each volume has been carefully edited. Supplementary commentaries are also provided in most of the volumes, as is an "About the Contributors" section that usually includes suggestions of other sources that some readers may wish to explore. In this volume, the reader is provided with eight articles whose authors provide a variety of perspectives on how to maker smarter decisions. All but one of the articles first appeared in the HBR in 2006. Here are brief excerpts from four of the articles:

"Related to the desire for `new' is the desire for `big' - the big idea, the big study, the big innovation. Unfortunately, `big' rarely happens. Close examination of so-called breakthroughs nearly always reveals that they're preceded by the painstaking, incremental work of others...the tiny, excruciating steps they took over the years to develop their ideas and hesitate to declare breakthroughs, while - like snake oil salesmen - one business guru after another claims to have developed a brand-new cure all." Evidence-Based Management, Jeffrey Pfeffer and Robert I. Sutton

Note: Pfeffer and Sutton later published a book developed from this article, Hard Facts, Dangerous Half-Truths And Total Nonsense: Profiting From Evidence-Based Management.

"Companies questing for killer apps generally focus all of their firepower on the one area that promises to create the greatest competitive advantage. But a new breed of company is upping the stakes. Organizations such as Amazon, Harrah's, Capital One, and the Boston Red Sox have dominated their friends by deploring industrial-strength analytics across a wide variety of activities. In essence, they are transforming their organizations into armies of killer apps and crunching their way to victory." Competing on Analytics, Thomas H. Davenport

Note: With Jeanne Harris, Davenport later developed a book, Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning, based on this article.

"Ultimately, changing a culture of indecision is a matter of leadership. It's a matter of asking hard questions: How effective and robust are our social operating mechanisms? How well are they linked? Do they have the right people and the right frequency? Do they have a rhythm and operate consistently? Is follow-through built in? Are rewards and sanctions linked to the outcomes of the decisive dialogue? Most important, how productive is the dialogue within these mechanisms? Is our dialogue marked by openness, candor, informality, and closure?" Conquering a Culture of Indecision, Ram Charan

"So where do bad decisions come from? In many cases, they can be traced back to the way the decisions were made - the alternatives were not clearly defined, the right information was not collected, the costs and benefits were not accurately weighed. But sometimes the fault lies not in the decision-making process but rather in the mind of the decision maker. The way the human brain works can sabotage our decisions." The Hidden Traps in Decision Making, John S. Hammond, Ralph L. Keeney, and Howard Raiffa.

These brief excerpts are representative of the thrust and flavor of all of the material provided in this volume. Once proper decisions have been made, it will probably be necessary to persuade others to support them. For cutting-edge thinking on that, I highly recommend HBR on Business Communication as well as Power, Influence, and Persuasion: Sell Your Ideas and Make Things Happen (Harvard Business Essentials). Also Stephen Denning's The Leader's Guide to Storytelling: Mastering the Art and Discipline of Business Narrative, Howard Gardner's Five Minds for the Future, and Robert B. Cialdini's Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 23, 2009
Although not ground breaking this book had some pretty interesting points. I like the format of Harvard Business Review books. There are five or six different essays/studies so it is more of a collection of ideas from different authors. I like having several different perspectives on the same topic. I particularly liked analogy of business leaders making evidence based decisions like medical doctors do. However, I am also young so I am not sure that some of the more seasoned professionals will find anything original in these essays. It is worth looking at.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Like any HBR review book, this just provides articles on decision making, some are thought provoking and very useful, the one I did not like was the article "Competing on Analytics" but the other 7 articles were good, with 5 of them being great. Each article provides a great read for a 1 hour plan flight.
It is funny how poorly companies execute decision making, this book should help you rethink how you make decision making in your own company.
Dr. Brian Glassman
Ph.D in Innovation Management from Purdue University (2009)
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on April 29, 2011
By Harvard Business School Press (Harvard Business School Press, 2007)

This book is a collection of several Harvard Business Review articles focusing on aiding readers on how to make great decisions. Each article delves into various aspects of the decision-making process, and evaluates the available opportunities of each potential decision. The first article, "Who Has the D?: How Clear Decision Roles Enhance Organizational Performance," by Paul Rogers and Marcia Blenko, mention, "Decisions are the coin of the realm in business. Every success, every mishap, every opportunity seized or missed is the result of a decision that someone made or failed to make." This book discusses pertinent research and statistics that will enable you to view real decision selections in effect.

"Even if you can't eradicate the distortions ingrained into the way your mind works, you can build tests and disciplines into your decision-making process that can uncover errors in thinking before they become errors in judgment. And taking action to understand and avoid psychological traps can have the added benefit of increasing your confidence in the choices you make," stated John S. Hammond, Ralph L. Keeney, and Howard Raiffa, in the last article, "The Hidden Traps in Decision Making." People tend to see only one option when making decisions and this book will open up one's mind to the other options when making decisions. This book will assist individuals at any stage in their career and might help one in more efficiently thinking through life decisions.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Harvard Business Review Press book review program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255vf: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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on May 31, 2015
I received the book excellent condition
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 27, 2010
Poor paper quality, non standard size for the book.

in overall Amazon's performance every shipment is done in US and customer need to pay a big money for the shipment. why can you do a small press in each continents and ship within?. the order can be placed on the web and the central press can print the book remotely on nearest print station?. this will reduce the cost and time.

otherwise Amazon is good for ordering books to read at leisure (not any serious buys) !!!.

Packaging and covering are excellent.

thanks
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