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Predictable Success: Getting Your Organization On the Growth Track--and Keeping It There Hardcover – June 7, 2010


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group Press; 1 edition (June 7, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608320316
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608320318
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.6 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #136,516 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

McKeown is the president and CEO of Predictable Success and an expert in how to start up companies. In a book that is essentially an infomercial for his own company, he addresses groups of people who have common goals and guides them in the achievement of their united goals—and, just as important, instructs them in sustaining success once it has been achieved. The author acknowledges the elusiveness of success in business, and to that end, he bases his ideas on the premise that it is fundamentally untrue—but almost universally believed—that success will just happen if we land on the right procedures. Guessing what those procedures are, or trying different ones on a Russian-roulette kind of basis, is simply wrong; what is right is to abide by the code McKeown prescribes. Sound advice. --Brad Hooper

Review

''Predictable Success provides an incredibly useful blueprint for any leader who is looking for sustainable growth.''
--Marshall Goldsmith, million-selling author of Succession Are You Ready? and What Got You Here Won't Get You There-a WSJ #1 bestseller

''Les really captures the integration of key business processes, people, and leadership to consistently deliver a compelling vision, comprehensive plan, and profitable growth for the benefit of all stakeholders.''
--Alan Mulally, President and CEO, Ford Motor Co.

''Predictable Success isn't a textbook - it's a sensible and strategic playbook for any leader seeking to take their organization to the next level, and provides the conceptual framework to ensure a successful outcome.'' --David A. Brandon, Chairman and CEO, Domino's Pizza

''I learned more from Les than in my cumulative 15 years previous business experience. Les came in from the outside and was able to both accurately identify our current and future business challenges as well as provide us with strategies and solutions for dealing with them effectively. It was like he had been there all along!''
--Gregg White, Vice President, Finials Doors & Windows

''It's difficult to predict success. Failure is far easier to predict because it's where most people end up. But if you want predictable success, then this book is for you. And, you might find that Les' formula for predicting success is not what you think.''
--Michael Port, author of the NY Times bestseller, The Think Big Manifesto

''Les McKeown has an intuitive understanding of why and how business works. Predictable Success is practical and easy to understand - exactly what any executive needs to grow his business.''
--Keith Ferrazzi, #1 NY Times Bestselling author of Never Eat Alone & Who's Got Your Back

''I've experienced first-hand the positive impact and lasting change that Les McKeown's Predictable Success brings to a growing business - and to its leaders. If you want to structure your organization to get to the next stage in growth, and also want to develop personally as a leader, I strongly recommend you get started with Predictable Success.''
--Matt Long, President, J.E. Higgins Group

''Predictable Success is the 'ah-ha' book. Les's insight and real-world stories are not only entertaining, they clearly detail the different stages in the lifecycle of a company, and more importantly, how to avoid declining into 'treadmill' and 'death rattle'. A 'don't-miss' business book!''
--David Greer, CEO, Wire Belt Company, Inc

''Les is the Butch Harmon of business consulting.''
--Graydon Bevis, President, Pella Windows and Doors, Colorado

''Over the past three years, Les McKeown's Predictable Success has completely revolutionized how I and my team manage our business. Working with Les vastly accelerated our success, and saved us from a multitude of potential 'dead-ends'. I'm convinced our investment in Predictable Success has repaid itself many times over. I thoroughly recommend Les McKeown and the Predictable Success program for any business wanting to break through to the next stage in growth.'' --John Estabrook, CEO, Horne Building Specialties, Inc.

''Using the Predictable Success process, Les helped us identify the changes we needed to make in how we were running the business, guided us each step of the way, and held us accountable for implementing the actions we agreed. With Les's facilitation, we re-defined our management roles, brought in new expertise to the management team, and restructured our group interactions and communications. If you're a business owner or a CEO looking to take your business to the next level, I'd str --Jeff Stanley, SVP Human Resources, Wells Dairy, Inc.

''I learned more from Les than in my cumulative 15 years previous business experience. Les came in from the outside and was able to both accurately identify our current and future business challenges as well as provide us with strategies and solutions for dealing with them effectively. It was like he had been there all along!''
--Gregg White, Vice President, Finials Doors & Windows

''It's difficult to predict success. Failure is far easier to predict because it's where most people end up. But if you want predictable success, then this book is for you. And, you might find that Les' formula for predicting success is not what you think.''
--Michael Port, author of the NY Times bestseller, The Think Big Manifesto

''Les McKeown has an intuitive understanding of why and how business works. Predictable Success is practical and easy to understand - exactly what any executive needs to grow his business.''
--Keith Ferrazzi, #1 NY Times Bestselling author of Never Eat Alone & Who's Got Your Back

''I've experienced first-hand the positive impact and lasting change that Les McKeown's Predictable Success brings to a growing business - and to its leaders. If you want to structure your organization to get to the next stage in growth, and also want to develop personally as a leader, I strongly recommend you get started with Predictable Success.''
--Matt Long, President, J.E. Higgins Group

''Predictable Success is the 'ah-ha' book. Les's insight and real-world stories are not only entertaining, they clearly detail the different stages in the lifecycle of a company, and more importantly, how to avoid declining into 'treadmill' and 'death rattle'. A 'don't-miss' business book!''
--David Greer, CEO, Wire Belt Company, Inc

''Les is the Butch Harmon of business consulting.''
--Graydon Bevis, President, Pella Windows and Doors, Colorado

''Over the past three years, Les McKeown's Predictable Success has completely revolutionized how I and my team manage our business. Working with Les vastly accelerated our success, and saved us from a multitude of potential 'dead-ends'. I'm convinced our investment in Predictable Success has repaid itself many times over. I thoroughly recommend Les McKeown and the Predictable Success program for any business wanting to break through to the next stage in growth.'' --John Estabrook, CEO, Horne Building Specialties, Inc.

''Using the Predictable Success process, Les helped us identify the changes we needed to make in how we were running the business, guided us each step of the way, and held us accountable for implementing the actions we agreed. With Les's facilitation, we re-defined our management roles, brought in new expertise to the management team, and restructured our group interactions and communications. If you're a business owner or a CEO looking to take your business to the next level, I'd strongly recommend you contact Les McKeown. The best investment you can make in your future growth is in the Predictable Success program.''
--John Higman, President & CEO, Pacific Architectural Millwork

''If you want a road map to get the next stage with your organization, I urge you to get on board with Les McKeown. Quite simply - there is no better, more intuitive, results.'' --Jeff Stanley, SVP Human Resources, Wells Dairy, Inc.


More About the Author

Les McKeown is the President & CEO of Predictable Success. He has has started over 40 companies in his own right, and was the founding partner of an incubation consulting company that advised on the creation and growth of hundreds more organizations worldwide.

Since relocating from his native Ireland to the US in 1998, Les advises CEOs and senior leaders of organizations on how to achieve scalable, sustainable growth. His clients range from large family-owned businesses to Fortune 100 companies, and include Harvard University, American Express, T-Mobile, United Technologies, Pella Corporation and Chiron.

Based in Marblehead MA, Les now spends his time consulting, writing, teaching, and speaking. Les has appeared on CNN, ABC, BBC, Inc, Entrepreneur magazine, USA Today and The New York Times.

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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I was skeptical, but then I read the book.
Ron Kaufman
I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone looking to manage a team, group, or business effectively.
Kyle E.
Thank you for a great learning experience Les.
Myles Hopkins

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Carol Roth on June 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
While it is often easy to see patterns of failure in business, it is very challenging to replicate success. That is why I was so intrigued with the methodology behind Les McKeown's new book Predictable Success. I have engaged with over a thousand entrepreneurs and businesses in my career and Les' insights on how to structure and manage an organization would provide value to every single one of them, from start-up to Fortune 500.

Les describes seven stages of the business lifecycle, with Predictable Success being at the peak.

First he describes how every business starts out in a struggle to find a sustainable and profitable market for your products/services before your capital runs out. This can take up to three-five years to master and there are pretty much two options- you succeed and move on to the next stage or if your capital runs out you fail, which happens to upwards of 85%+ of all new businesses. I know there are a lot of folks professing bootstrapping strategies, but as Les's model demonstrates, if you run out of capital before you find that sustainable, profitable market, you will end up in that majority end of the statistics. The compromise: be frugal and scrappy in your expenditures, but still have that capital available to give your business enough time to get its legs underneath it.

If you make it out of the early struggle, Les says you get to a high-growth stage called "Fun" (his highly technical term for it). The business grows rapidly, you begin to see the fruits of your labor, but as you grow, your business becomes more complex. Eventually, in your business' growth, you will get to a point where systems and processes are needed and the entrepreneur(s) can't just manage the business viscerally.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Julie Lenzer Kirk on June 8, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Being a recovering entrepreneur myself and having taught entrepreneurship for the last 6 years, I've read a lot of books and reviewed a lot of frameworks. After a while, they all tend to sound the same. Not so here.

Les describes the stages of business growth (and decline!) in a simple but powerful way. With his ability to express complex business phases in a way that is easy to relate to, you can't read this book and NOT find yourself nodding as you get to the stages you've experienced in business. For me, the Whitewater phase in my own business sent me cowering into the middle of the boat and running back to Fun. Reading his description of how I got there (and why I ran away!) was incredibly insightful and it gave me ideas on how to approach it differently the next time.

Regardless of where you are in your business cycle, there is value here. With actionable examples and recommendations throughout the book, Les presents a clear framework to help you get to or stay in Predictable Success - a place where businesses should aspire to live!
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Rajesh Setty on June 7, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I have to admit that I started "Predictable Success" with a lot of skepticism. I have read a lot about Organization Lifecyles and was wondering what new information could be there in this book.

I was pleasantly surprised and by the end of the book, I was glad that I read it. This is a book that will make learning and more importantly using that knowledge about "Organization Lifecycles" - plain and simple.

For those of you who may be new to this topic - let me elaborate a bit. Every organization goes through a lifecycle ( Les takes you through seven different stages in the book ) and what works in one stage may or may not work in the other stage. So having that knowledge will help you prepare well and the "do" the right things that will work for "that" stage.

I am giving a copy of this book to founders of all the companies that I am involved with.

Five stars for sure!!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Peter Casebow on June 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
The book has been a great help in helping me clarify my thinking and developing three key areas of focus for moving us forward. The key input for me from PS was helping me realise that I need to do more with the decision making process and formalise it. I could no longer get away with my more impromptu style; having spent too long in corporate life I'd been holding onto the fun of the start-up style.

I'd highly recommend this very readable book.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Larry Underwood on June 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
When a professional athlete is "in the zone", they become nearly unstoppable - from amazing three point proficiency in basketball to startling consistency at the plate during postseason major league baseball games - the elite performer clearly has what it takes to excell, especially under pressure.

In corporate America, most organizations are operating at a level far below "the zone"; they frequently have difficulty communicating to their employees what needs to be done to achieve long-term success; as a result, those employees aren't fully engaged in the process called "work", and productivity inevitably suffers. It's quite a mess out there.

It doesn't have to be that way. Les McKeown has identified the qualities successful enterprises employ to get on the growth track - "the zone" - and he was kind enough to put the instructions together in this terrific book. I've read hundreds of management books dealing with organizational success, and this one may be the best of them all. Certainly, the advice is beautifully simple and pragmatic, and it should benefit any sized entity; as long as the CEO has a desire to get on the right track; and stay there.

As McKeown notes, many orgnanizations are either operating in a total state of chaos, or they've become lifeless bureaucracies with little or no innovation; mired in the safe status-quo because nobody wants to get in trouble for making a mistake. Ironically, that way of doing business - which is so prevelant throughout corporate America - is a huge mistake; and it's why so many corporations are struggling, and why our economy has been on life-support in recent years.

It's time for a real "change", America; the blueprint is contained right here in the pages of this wonderful book.
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