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Rocket: Eight Lessons to Secure Infinite Growth Hardcover – October 6, 2015

4.5 out of 5 stars 39 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

"A powerful book that offers the keys to growth – deep insight into consumer behavior, stories that energize and excite. A primer for marketers, innovators and change agents.  Rocket can help you open doors and drive growth." 
- John Mackey, co-CEO and co-founder of Whole Foods

"A compelling blueprint for realizing your full potential.  A superb guide for re-imagining your approach to driving growth."
- Douglas R. Conant, Founder ConantLeadership, Former President and CEO, Campbell Soup Company, Chairman, Avon Products

"Much has been written about Four Seasons legendary service model and the 40,000+ people that bring it to life every day, but Rocket takes a unique approach. By exploring our deep commitment to employees within the context of growth, Rocket shows exactly how a passionate team of employees can transform any brand and position it for success. Rocket is an essential read for any business leader focused on long-term growth."
- Isadore Sharp, Founder and Chairman, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts.

"Engaging and clever lessons that can be applied in any business."
 -Tony Hsieh, NY times bestselling author of Delivering Happiness and CEO of Zappos.com, Inc.

"Rocket will help guide you towards the critical factors that cause apostle brands to stand out and thrive. The authors illustrate the necessary traits to build, maintain, and grow successful brands. Very interesting and practical stories covering some of the best brands in the world. A great read for anyone building a brand."
- Bob Carter, Senior Vice President, Automotive Operations,Toyota

Rocket is an extraordinary book. The book tells the stories and secrets of so many successful companies.   The “secrets” are fascinating and extremely thought-provoking.  Rocket emphasizes the values of integrity and human dignity; values which we consider to be the keystones of our operations.
- Brunello Cucinelli, founder and CEO of Brunello Cuccinelli

"Powerful stories from real people who are delivering extraordinary results. Practical ideas that can be implemented immediately.  If you have one business book to read this year, this is the one!” 
-Irene Rosenfeld, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mondelez International


About the Author

Michael J. Silverstein is a senior partner and managing director of the consumer practice at The Boston Consulting Group. He is the bestselling author of Trading Up, The $10 Trillion Prize, Women Want More, and Treasure Hunt.

Dylan Bolden, Rune Jacobsen, and Rohan Sajdeh are all senior partners and managing directors at BCG.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education; 1 edition (October 6, 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1259585425
  • ISBN-13: 978-1259585425
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.3 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #281,062 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Chen Sun on September 1, 2015
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is a funny book. It’s about how to increase market share, using very-brief, case-studies of large corporations, and deriving 8 growth precepts. About 80% of content feels like these case studies are authors’ customers or prospective customers, and authors are overly effusive with praise.

I’ve read about 140 pages, skimmed remainder, and learned little. The 8 precepts are business ideas the reader likely already read before—in summary, Innovate, Build Customer Advocates, Welcome Customers’ Criticisms, Aesthetic Appearances Matter, Transform Employees, Ramp Up Relationships, Take Giant Leaps, and Handle Schisms in Relationships.

Guess you already knew about these precepts too? One can simply read these precepts’ explanations (which constitute 5% of the book), and understand 85% of the book. The 140 pages I read has ZERO teaching on how Time Limitations affect creating branding experiences, and it is these time limitations that is challenging to accomplish branding effects for not-wealthy companies.

Can a reader really benefit from learning in the mini-case studies, which constitute 80% of this book? First consider authors’ biased interpretation of what the entrepreneur did. Then, consider, that the entrepreneur’s temperament, thought processes, and circumstances are likely very different from the reader’s. For example, Armand Hammer of Occidental Oil had an effusively praise biography book. His ex-public relations agent then wrote “Dr. Hammer and Mr. Hyde, the Dark Side of Power: the Real Armand Hammer.” Rocket feels like the first, unrealistic biography case studies.

Book’s first case study is of Lee Wexner of Victoria Secret, and its precept is-- “Don’t Ask Your Customers What They Want (Because They Don’t Know Till You Show Them)”.
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Format: Hardcover
I think this book’s subtitle is a tad overcooked (promising “infinite growth”) but the eight lessons are eminently sound, based on the Boston Consulting Group’s decades of real-world experience with hundreds of organizations. The abundance of information, insights, and counsel provided is “dedicated to the proposition that mere mortals can create immortality. You can build a brand that lasts forever. You can grow faster than your rivals. To do this, however, you need to understand the theory that a very few people -- the very few focused consumers -- create most of the value in any business.” They are the “fuel” on which the “propulsion” of any organization depends.

Years ago, Jackie Huba and Ben McConnell co-authored a book in which they explain how to create what they characterize as “customer evangelists. This is what Michael Silverstein, Dylan Bolden, Rune Jacobsen, and Rohan Sajdeh have in mind when observing that if you have loyal customers, “and you turn them into your apostles, they will spread the word about you, and they will, propel you to growth.” That, in essence, is the physics of commercial growth. The equation is “2/20/80: 2 percent of your customers directly contribute 20 percent of your sales and drive 80 percent of the total volume by their recommendations.”

These are among the several dozen passages of greatest interest and value to me, also listed to suggest the scope of the book’s coverage:

o The Interview: How Howard Schultz Applies the Eight Branding Rules at Starbucks (Pages xiv-xvii)
o Eight Branding Rules (xxi-xxv)
o Schismogenesis: Why Brands Fail (xxix-xxxii)
Note: From Gregory Bateson: "progressive differentiation through culture contact.
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Format: Hardcover
Who doesn’t want massive growth at their business, except of course your competitors! This is an interesting, actionable and charming book that tells how many businesses developed and grew into great monster companies. The takeaway for the reader is hopefully some advice and guidance to help transform their own companies, as well as a great general read.

This is more than just yet another corporate history/look at this success-type of book. You get that, of course, too but it is topped and tailed by an authoritative yet concise series of “how-to” lessons. Even if you don’t think that your business has the potential to be the next Amazon or Victoria’s Secrets, maybe it would benefit from a bit of an under-the-hood service in any case? You can contrast your own ways of working to that of proven successful enterprises. Even a modest change could be worthwhile. You are getting a fair bit of advice from the principal author, who works as senior partner and managing director of Boston Consulting Group’s consumer practice – so even an hour of his time would cost a lot, lot more than this book. Seize the opportunity with both hands!

Central to the author’s message is the value of your customer; with a loyal customer on your side you can seek to turn them into your apostles so they will hopefully spread the word about you, and this can propel you to growth. You know the story about how one unhappy customer will tell a lot more people than a happy customer about their experience, so you need to really maximise and focus on the goodwill a really happy, active, customer can generate and positively encourage them to share the good word.
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