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Out-Executing the Competition: Building and Growing a Financial Services Company in Any Economy Hardcover – July 31, 2012

5 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

Irv Rothman knows a thing or two about the financial services industry. As President and CEO of HP Financial Services, he oversees a multibillion-dollar global operation with over 1,200 employees. In Out-Executing the Competition, Rothman explains how he got to where he is now and what he's learned along the way, revealing exactly what it takes to successfully build and grow a financial services company—no matter what the economic climate.

Part autobiography, part how-to guide, this book takes you behind the scenes of Rothman's remarkable experiences leading some of the most important—and profitable—financial services businesses in recent memory. With over forty years on the front lines, Rothman has seen firsthand what makes a great leader, and in Out-Executing the Competition, he explains how the lessons he's learned—an unwavering commitment to core principles coupled with open-minded adaptability and a passion for innovation—have informed his career.

A captivating look at how remaining true to your values despite the challenges of social and corporate change is essential for success. The book is filled with invaluable learnings on leadership techniques Rothman has used to help companies not only survive financial uncertainty, but to thrive in any economy.

Lively and accessible, the book paints a fascinating picture of what makes a profitable and stable financial services company. From AT&T Capital Corporation—then the second largest captive leasing company in the country—to Compaq Financial Services, which he grew into a $3.7 billion business, and, of course, HP, Rothman's incredible track record and insider perspective make him the ultimate authority on the secrets to succeeding in the financial services industry. Now, in Out-Executing the Competition, he shares what he's learned so that you can improve your own company, whatever the industry.

From the Back Cover

Praise for Out-Executing the Competition, Building and Growing a Financial Services Company in Any Economy

"'You can't sell from an empty wagon.' Irv Rothman fills his wagon, personally and professionally, for his (and our) stunning success. He proves, while giving data its due, judgment is the glue. Hide this book from the competition."
—Jack R. Harrison, Pulitzer Prize–winning writer and retired vice president, New York Times Company

"In this autobiographical book, Irv Rothman provides a set of simple, yet highly effective practices that leaders can use to successfully navigate their firms in these turbulent times."
—Das Narayandas, James J. Hill Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School

"Irv Rothman and I have been business associates and good friends for over twenty-five years—I thought I knew the man well. But, through Irv's book, I learned a lot more about him, including his exceptional organizational, motivational, and negotiating expertise. This is a must-read for those wishing to greatly enhance their management skills and techniques."
—Larry Prendergast, former VP and treasurer, AT&T Inc.

"Irv blends a delightful mix of moxie, observation, and a quest for self-improvement in a fast-paced, yet engrossing tale of business success and leadership. His entertaining prose style is perfectly reflective of his management style—bold, confident, and one of a kind. Wonderfully anecdotal, there is much to be gleaned from this compendium of experiences by a down-to-earth CEO who has outperformed over an exemplary career in finance."
—Robert H. Clymer III, Managing Director, Berenson & Company, Inc.

"Through his own life experiences and his perspective as a successful CEO during 'boom and bust,' Rothman provides an enjoyable tutorial on hard-nosed, results-oriented leadership and management in the highly competitive world of equipment finance."
—William G. "Woody" Sutton, CAE, President and CEO, Equipment Leasing and Finance Association

"In a style that is uniquely his own, Irv Rothman reminds us of the time-tested keys to success, including hard work, that leaders should incorporate into their approach even today."
—Wayne Robinson, former managing director, Wachovia Capital Finance

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (July 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118312619
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118312612
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 0.9 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,808,335 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By John Chancellor TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 1, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Out-Executing the Competition by Irv Rothman is the story of Irv Rothman's professional life and the lessons he learned along the way in a highly successful career.

In the book, Mr. Rothman tells his life story as a youngster growing up in New Jersey and then he leaves the personal side and traces his career from his first job on Wall Street to his current job as President & CEO of HP Financial Services.

While the sub-title might lead you to believe this is a how to or very detailed book, it is really more about the guiding principles that Mr. Rothman lived and worked by. "I've always believed that the key guiding characteristics are doing the right thing, using sound judgment, following instinct tempered by experience, relying on a strategic foundation, and negotiating effectively once you've chosen your path, no matter how uncertain."

Mr. Rothman was been unusually successful in each position he has held. Success does not happen by accident. So there is a lot to learn from the principles he has followed. I do not believe the principles apply just to the financial services industry. The guiding principles that made Mr. Rothman successful are universal leadership principles. If you are in senior management or aspire to be, you will gain some valuable insights into what it takes to be successful at a major multi-national company.

There were a couple of things that stood out for me. First, Mr. Rothman had a staff he could count on. He understands the need for people who can see and accept his vision and are willing to do what it takes to achieve it. He surrounded himself with people he could rely on and trust. No one builds a significant business alone. He understood the need for a team. He also understood the needs of employees at all levels.
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Format: Hardcover
Years ago, I realized that out-executing the competition was a key to success. My role models for that had been Vince Lombardi and John Wooden when I coached football and basketball; later, my role models were Alfred Sloan and Jack Welch when I held a series of C-level positions. I also realized along the way the most formidable competitor is what you do and how you do it. Marshall Goldsmith expressed it well when asserting that "what you got you here won't get you there." In fact, what got you here won't even keep you here, no matter where "here" may be.

This seems to be what Irv Rothman has in mind as he reviews his own career and his efforts to achieve and then sustain continuous improvement. What he offers a hybrid: autobiography/memoir/business commentary. I think its material will be of special interest and value to those now preparing for a business career or who have only recently embarked upon one.

Roth is currently president and CEO of HP Financial Services. Previously, he was the first president and chief executive officer of Compaq Financial Services Corporation (CFS). He led CFS from its founding in 1997, growing the business to greater than $3.7 billion in total assets prior to the HP-Compaq merger. His prior positions were with U.S. Leasing International and Thomson McKinnon Securities before joining AT&T in 1985. As a group president of AT&T Capital Corporation, he helped build an organization that ultimately grew to be the second largest leasing company in the country.

I need to stress, at this point, that Roth draws upon his wide and deep experiences to provide information (context) as well as insights (lessons he learned), and counsel (how his reader can benefit from his mistakes as well as failures).
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Irv provides a very insightful view on how to grow a business and be an entreprenur within a Corporation. He not only makes some points about key things to be considered but he is able to put real life examples on how it indeed happen. Some take aways as talent selection, get"dirt into the nails", and stick to your philosophy, when everyone is asking for change (as in the dot.com) are very important, and they are usually difficult to execute as he did. The reading is ameanable, with some stories and you can picture life in the corporate world as you read.
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Format: Hardcover
As a young entrepreneur I highly recommend this book. I found it fascinating how Irv managed to come from meager beginnings to becoming the ceo of HPFS. Following him through his youth, years at Rutgers university, armed forces, and professional career inspired me and reminded me that Rome was not built in a day. In addition to inspiring me I also learned some important business lessons through Irv's experiences. If you are a student or are in any type of business I highly recommend that you pick this book up.
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Format: Hardcover
Regardless of age or experience level, there's a lot to be gleaned from Out Executing the Competition. Rothman holds your attention throughout as he mixes vignettes from his personal and professional life to provide effective guidelines for how to be successful in an ever changing, ever challenging world. He doesn't overwhelm with technical jargon as is the case in many other works of this type; quite the opposite, the insights into his philosophy and style lead you effortlessly from chapter to chapter. You'll be energized by this book!
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