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The Essential Drucker: The Best of Sixty Years of Peter Drucker's Essential Writings on Management (Collins Business Essentials) Paperback – July 22, 2008
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Reaching back as far as 1954 with his treatise "Management by Objectives and Self-Control" ("Each manager, from the 'big boss' down to the production foreman or the chief clerk, needs clearly spelled-out objectives" that clarify expected contributions "to the attainment of company goals in all areas of the business"), Drucker's now-established ideas take on a surprising new relevancy when remixed equally pioneering ideas from the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. Between the thoughtful "Management as Social and Liberal Art" through the provocative "From Analysis to Perception--The New Worldview" (both originally published in 1988's The New Realities), this book revisits some of modern management's most inspired writing and presents it in a way that should appeal to both newcomers and those needing a refresher course on Drucker's basic beliefs. --Howard Rothman --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
As great as his ideas about management are, his observations about how to think are even more valuable. The book contains no material from his autobiography, Adventures of a Bystander. You cannot hope to fully appreciate this material until you read that book.
What the book does contain is a fairly easy to follow series of 26 excerpts from the ten books, organized into three sections: Management, Individual, and Society. These books date back to 1954, so you get an overview of part of his work over the last 47 years. This overview will mainly be valuable to managers who have read very little Drucker, since there is essentially no new material in the book. The excerpts are also not connected by any transitions, so there is no additional perspective available from the book's organization.
Here are the sources of the chapters:
The New Realities, Chapters 1 and 26;
Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices, Chapters 2, 3, 5, and 18;
Managing for the Future, Chapters 4 and 19;
Management Challenges for the 21st Century, Chapters 6, 15, 21;
Managing in a Time of Great Change, Chapters 7 and 23;
Practice of Management, Chapter 8;
Frontiers of Management, Chapter 9;
Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Chapters 10-12, 20, and 24;
The Effective Executive, Chapters 13, 14, 16, and 17; and
Post-Capitalist Society, Chapters 22 and 25.Read more ›
I am amazed at the breadth and depth of this compilation. It includes several topics (categorized in sections for Management, The Individual and Society). In the first few chapters Drucker defines management through its tasks and states that "there is only one valid definition of business purpose: to create a customer" (page 20). In the other chapters you will learn Management by Objectives (MBO), the process of making effective decisions, the importance of focusing on contributions and results, get introduced to the "knowledge worker" (page 304), a term Drucker created in the 60s, and learn about the "post-capitalist society" with knowledge as the central resource (page 288). This book has five chapters on Innovation & Entrepreneurship. And more.
While there is a lot of wisdom in each chapter, I will share below my thoughts from 4 chapters that were originally published in "The Effective Executive" (1966):
In Chapter 13: Effectiveness must be Learned, Drucker explains the diferrence between efficiency and effectiveness - efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things. For manual work, efficiency was enough. In today's world, the center of gravity has shifted from the manual worker to the "knowledge worker". For knowledge work, effectiveness is more important than efficiency.
An executive is ... a knowledge worker who is ... responsible for contributions (decisions, actions) ... that have significant impact on ... performance and results of the whole organization (derived from Chapter 13).Read more ›
Anyway, I think there is a couple situations for which this book will be especially useful. First, it may be most valuable to people (like me) who have read a number of Drucker's books. In essence, the Essential Drucker can act as a short refresher on many of Drucker's important concepts without having to go back and reread all of the original books. For this purpose the book was highly valuable to me. Also, the book may be valuable to those that have read a little Drucker and want to read more, but are unsure which of his many books to start with. Since the introduction lists the book that each chapter was originally published in, you can easy go to the source to expand upon something that interests you.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Likely one of the greatest books within my library.
This is not a book that you read quickly or within a few days. Read more
Thank you its a great book and i am loving it. Nice doing business with you.Published 3 months ago by ksb34
The source of inspiration and the tool to clear the mind, which is very useful in my 12-year business management life.Published 6 months ago by Dennis ILIN
This would be a great book to start with if you haven't already read some of Drucker's work. It also provides an historical account of how the business world has changed in the... Read morePublished 7 months ago by lindarabbit
Drucker has long been known as one of the premier business and management philosophers of all time. I found The Essential Drucker to be a simply amazing combination of the best of... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Eric Simmons