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In this short, engaging, but ultimately frustrating book, McGehee, a consultant with Cap Gemini Ernst Young, broadly sketches a strategy for remaining competitive in business in coming years: constant, radical innovation through breaking down barriers between an employee's achievements and those of the company. His advice boils down to these recommendations: "a leadership style that emphasizes freedom, not control... an understanding that success means creating the new and not replicating the old" and a "work style that values individual expression and collaborative work [rather than conformity and individual work]." While these concepts are sound and presented clearly, they're practically clichs in the management world. Managers who want to know how to make their organization into what the author calls a "Creation Company," one that understands its past successes and builds off of them instead of maintaining the status quo, may find the book short on nuts-and-bolts advice. McGehee is a lively writer who has extensive experience with large organizations, such as British Petroleum, Johnson & Johnson, Genentech and American Airlines, but this book won't mark his breakout.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
A consultant for Cap Gemini Ernst &Young's Accelerated Solutions Environment, McGehee defines "whoosh" as the feeling one gets at the moment of creative business success. To unleash this energy, companies need to change from "compliance companies" (companies that try to replicate past successes) to "creation companies" (companies that look to the future). A "creation company" values collaboration, freedom, focus, networking, the Internet, and distributed judgment. In this management scheme, argues McGehee, beginners are more important than experts because of their fresh, open viewpoint. The author is willing to jettison such standards as best practices, mission statements, and policy manuals if they get in the way of innovation. With a committed staff, this method will work as well as any other to transform the workplace. This breezy read offers fewer examples than most management books, no scholarly apparatus, and as much enthusiasm and superficiality as any in the field. The word responsibility is hardly mentioned. Neither unique enough nor good enough to recommend highly, it is nonetheless a harmless, acceptable purchase for a public library if someone asks for it. Patrick J. Brunet, Western Wisconsin Technical Coll., LaCrosse
Copyright 2001 Reed Business Information, Inc.