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ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW IN BUSINESS I LEARNED AT MICROSOFT: Insider Strategies to Help You Succeed Hardcover – July 1, 1997


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Atria (July 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671009133
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671009137
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 5.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,947,650 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

Bick, a past senior product manager for Microsoft, has written a primer on business. She covers how to do a job well, run the company, be a good boss, communicate effectively, and manage a career. Her book is a collection of examples and anecdotes, with each chapter having several sections of six to ten lessons apiece. It is doubtful whether a successful manager would gain new insights from this book, but the neophyte or wannabe may wish to read it. Microsoft management does not appear to be committed to the "time away from work to have a life" view recommended by the author, as evidenced by all the jokes and comments about working before 8:00 a.m., many evenings a week, and late into the night. On only one page is there mention of the manager as a parent. Interestingly, the author is now a consultant for Microsoft, with a newborn child. An optional purchase for public libraries.?Peggy D. Odom, Texas Lib. Assn., Waco
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

Review

Dr. Stephen R. Covey Author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People "I was both surprised and pleased that such a small, humorous handbook could provide such substantial and intuitive lessons for building a more synergistic business culture -- and what an amazing quilt of insights about one of the greatest business organizations ever!" -- Review

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Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jim Carson on August 30, 2000
Format: Paperback
Though not as trendy as Genghis Khan's (or insert historical leader name here) management book, "All I really need to know..." is a pretty quick read with several interesting anecdotes and points to take away.
Three things that I believe would be directly applicable to any company:
1. Have a direction and be able to articulate it. Everyone within the organization should be able to do the "elevator pitch." This basically means know what you're doing, why it's important, who else is doing it, and why you are (or will be) better at it than they are.
2. Continuously improve. As the joke goes, "they usually get it right by version 3.0." However, you can't deny that Microsoft has excelled at is refinement of its products based on input from customers, developers, and even other vendors. The result is the products get better.
3. Keep everyone challenged. A fault many employers have is they tend to corral an employee good at doing "X" into that role "forever." Assuming your employee had no further ambitions, that's fine. However, you probably wouldn't want an unambitious employee in a high-power organization, you'll have to keep them interested. The answer: move them around to develop their skills and keep them engaged.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By "hking8" on December 26, 2000
Format: Paperback
Sorry folks but this book is junk. Between the "open the door before you go through it" type platitudes and sorely thin anecdotes, there's little substance here. Many of the anecdotes are so out of context it hurts.
I've worked in R&D at Microsoft for a long time, and I just can't find much value in this book. It's like it was sort of made up of things written on sticky notes. I just don't see that the author achieved much at Microsoft, or was more than a ground level marketing person. Big deal.
Note to all budding organizational behavior junkies: this book does contain many clues about the strengths and weaknesses of the company. Read it at a meta-level (ie "why would someone write about this situation in this way?) for lots of interesting take-aways.
Looking for insight into Microsoft? Read Fred Moody's "I sing the body electronic." I know, title sounds dumb but it's a very first hand account of a disastrous product development effort. Even if you don't like the author, there's a real product situation described in enough depth, and with enough direct quotes to know what's going on.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 8, 1998
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed reading this book and learned a great deal about the business environment at Microsoft. I learned a little about how to manage my own career and how to apply Microsoft's philosophy to many situations in the business world. I wanted to send my resume to Microsoft after I finished the book. It gives a positive view of the company and is enjoyable and fun to read.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By jharnaj@microsoft.com on August 11, 1997
Format: Hardcover
This book is a must read for anyone who wants simple strategies for succeeding in business. The advice coupled with the anecdotes makes it fun, insightful and engaging. This is truly the stuff that has been key to the success of Microsoft and is just as applicable to other businesses
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 10, 1998
Format: Hardcover
I suppose it depends on whether you like Microsoft or not as how one might react to this book. I am ambivalent about Microsoft. I like their software, but detest their operating systems. I am a confirmed Apple user. Now for the book, if what Ms. Bick says about Microsoft is true then it would be a truly great place to work. I appreciate learning how Microsoft saved Apple's bacon several times with timely software packages. Having followed the personal computer market for nearly a score of years now and watched Microsoft software go from kludgy to almost unbeatable I believe that Ms. Bick's accounts are congruent with what has accutally taken place. Some of the things that I relearned from the book is that patience is a virtue, that it is all right to make a mistake, and one needs to know more about the competitors product than they themselves know. If you don't believe me ask your self where is WordPerfect and Lotus right now. At one time they dominated their respective markets. Overall, I do not think that you learn anything new from this book, but it does give one an idea on how to run a business and be sucessful especially if you hit the market at the right time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 4, 1998
Format: Hardcover
"All I Really Need to Know..." is a quick read full of cute anecdotes about life at Microsoft (but no insight into the company's success). It's chock full of obvious tips for business managers. This wouldn't be so bad if it were well organized and comprehensive - a primer on how to be a good manager. Instead, it flits from topic to topic and never covers any subject in depth. I don't doubt that many fresh-out-of-college Microsofties could use a management primer, but this is more like shmoozing at the water cooler with your mother. "Be nice to others." "Manage your manager." "Don't run with scissors." Or email, in this case.
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12 of 17 people found the following review helpful By atmj TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 18, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent quick reading that seems like common sense, but if it was we'd all be doing this right?
Julie Bick hits it right on the nose. Some of the items we've all heard before. However, some were very new to me.
I plan on reading the next one. To give you a flavor of the contents below is an outline of the entire book:
-----------------------------------------------------------------
INTRODUCTION
1.All I really needed to know about running a business I learned at Microsoft
a. SETTING UP TO PLAY
i. Eat your own dog food, but don't believe your own press releases
ii. Examine your mistakes
iii. Let people fail
iv. Sometimes tankers can look like speedboats
v. Let your employees hear your customers
vi. Don't bet against your own teams creativity
vii. Tailor your message to your customer
viii. Every process can be improved
ix. Stay small
x. Act like a leader
b. WINNING THE GAME
i. If you can't win, change the rules
ii. Think three moves ahead
iii. Hit em, where they ain't
iv. You can change your image
v. Win-win deals: what they care about and what your care about
vi. Try it out in the real world
vii. Make big bets
viii. Big events make good deadlines
ix. Give your employees a piece of the pie
-----------------------------------------------------------------
2. All I really needed to know to do my job well I learned at Microsoft
a. BECOMING AN EXPERT
i. The elevator test
ii. Know who your customers are and who just isn't yet
iii. The swot team
iv. Know the business inside and out
v. Know the questions your boss is going to ask
vi. Make decisions as if you owned the company
b. GETTING THE JOB DONE
i.
Read more ›
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