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Screw Business As Usual Hardcover

ISBN-13: 978-1591844341 ISBN-10: 1591844347

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Frequently Bought Together

Screw Business As Usual + Like a Virgin: Secrets They Won't Teach You at Business School + Losing My Virginity: How I Survived, Had Fun, and Made a Fortune Doing Business My Way
Price for all three: $40.98

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover (December 8, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591844347
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591844341
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #89,543 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A tantalising glimpse into the workings of the global elite ... as well as plenty of food for thought for the new generation of business leaders who say they want to make the world a better place as well as turn a profit." The Economist --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Sir Richard Branson is the founder of the Virgin Group. With around 200 companies in more than 30 countries, the Virgin Group has now expanded into leisure, travel, tourism, mobile, broadband, TV, radio, music festivals, finance, health, and renewable energy. Branson’s autobiography, Losing My Virginity, and his books on business, Screw It, Let's Do It and Business Stripped Bare, are all international bestsellers.

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Customer Reviews

I've read a few business books in my time, some good, some bad.
nzerinto
In Branson's view business is the vehicle that will change the world for the better because it has the manpower and the capital to do what needs to be done.
Srikumar S. Rao
Some of the parts of the book seemed to me like he was bragging about what he has done.
Arfner

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 31 people found the following review helpful By C. Smith on December 9, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
This is a must-read for anyone interested in business, entrepreneurship, social issues, the future of capitalism, and the current challenges that face the world today. Despite its playful title, this is a substantive book that advises without preaching, that is idealistic by providing real-world examples, that tells stories about famous people by focusing on their deeds not their fame, that is a highly entertaining read at the same time as dealing with challenging issues.

Branson builds a strong case for the business world's potential to address social, economic, political and environmental issues by creating new business models and new ways of doing business. He does this not by some theoretical or pie-in-the sky fluff, but rather by stories of organizations and businesses that have done it. So his narrative is planted firmly in the real world and that is what is so inspiring and concrete - a departure from the usual nonsense that fills so many business, self-help and do-good tomes that fill the shelves these days.

Despite the underlying gravitas, the book is an easy read. The big picture is built by narrating stories about new organizations, leadership groups and businesses that are combining business and social causes. The cases are mostly related to what has been done in the Virgin Group, but also include stories about people that Branson knows personally, which includes a network of extraordinary breadth. He seems to be able to call virtually any world leader, politician, musician, movie producer or activist to form a team to deal with issues ranging from healthcare to poverty to environmental issues.

Reading a book in an interaction between writer and reader.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Arfner on December 24, 2011
Format: Hardcover
First off, I agree wholeheartedly with the premise of the book. I agree that businesses can and should do more with the environment and social issues. This is what drove me to read this book. I was disappointed in how the book was written. I was hoping for a book explaining how to set up a sustainable business, or what companies can do to become more sustainable. Instead, the book is all stories. If you want a feel good book, this is a great one to read. If you are looking for a more serious discussion of corporate social responsibility (CSR), then this is not the book for you. Some of the parts of the book seemed to me like he was bragging about what he has done. I had to put the book down a couple of times because I got so tired of stories, and stories about what he and his company has done. Stories should provide the emotional support to a well thought out and argued book. This book was not well thought out and argued.
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17 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Srikumar S. Rao VINE VOICE on December 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I can't put it on the required reading list at business schools but I will make it required reading in my course - more info at [...] - and I have lots of folks from top business schools who take it.

Richard Branson has said what sorely needed to be said - that the function of business is to "do good", to solve some social problem and profits are a by-product of doing this well. He says bluntly "The focus on profit being king has caused significant negative, unintended consequences."

Amen!

Branson is a billionaire and that means he has a Stentorian voice when speaking to MBAs and would be Masters of the Universe. He has also spawned - under the Virgin name - hundreds of wildly profitable enterprises and that means that lots of folks in the private equity and hedge fund world will pay attention to him even if they presently don't agree with him.

And his message is one that badly needs to be aired.

There is a pernicious doctrine floated by some economists and assiduously propagated by top business schools to the effect that it is the function of a business to concentrate on profits and "maximizing shareholder value" and any attempt to focus on social good is a dereliction of duty on the part of managers. Supposedly this "maximum profit" will enrich the shareholders who will then use it in private philanthropy for the good of society and do it better than the business could have.

There is a still more pernicious doctrine that uses "agency theory" to "align" the interests of managers with that of shareholders in this quest. The way to do this is to award senior executives massive blocks of stock.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Toan Vu Phan on February 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
As a founder of a social and environmental think-tank, I wholeheartedly recommend this book to my colleagues in the world who would like to start up something that makes the world a better place. Everytime I open the book, my mind starts to spin and my heart beats faster as I get inspired by the many stories and examples Richard gave. I have learned, for example, about Skoll Foundation and his Participant Media, or about Re*Generation (youth homelessness), or about the Elders.
Caveat: this is not a social science book, so those of you who expect a rigorous treatment (with data and formulae) will not find your rigorous evidence here. If, however, you read it to find ideas and inspirations to better this world we live in, then I recommend you buy this book right away. Simply the most valuable book I have ever bought and read.
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