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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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on April 15, 2002
As the back cover of this book says, go ahead, read those other books by high-profile celebrity CEOs to get motivated. Then read this book to see HOW it is done. I say, skip the celebrity CEO du jour books, and go straight to this 5-star book for "Level 5" people.
This is a clear, consise, and exceptionally well proofread and published book (not one error in this book - as opposed to Moore's Crossing the Chasm - a terrible proofreading job). C. Ray Johnson cuts to the chase as to just what and how an effective CEO does and conducts him/herself, and in so doing convinces the reader quickly that anyone has the capacity to do pursue the principles of CEO logic if they really have the will and desire.
Johnson's incredibly clear early chapters lay out the effective CEO melds business understanding with personal principles. From there he goes through each aspect of key business functions and uses his CEO Logic approach for the right direction in each. His chapter on turnaround management is great.
Another very important note, this book and Jim Collins' Good to Great compliment each other. Collins makes the key point early on that companies that go from good to great are rarely run by celebrity big-ego CEOs brought in from the outside, but are instead run by generally quiet, unassuming people who are nevertheless deeply rooted in their convictions and desire to be great and have a winning team working with them. This is what Collins refers to as a "Level 5" leader.
You can think of Johnson's book as a primer on how a Level 5 leader conducts business and takes on leadership. Buy both books! You'll be glad you did. And, while you are at it, leave the self-aggrandizing celcb CEO books on the shelf ;-)
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on June 9, 1998
CEO LOGIC is a great resource for executives looking to improve how they think through both the day-to-day challenges of running a business and the "big picture" issues of how to stay competitive. Most useful is Johnson's emphasis on systematic, clear, and focused thinking about the true purpose of a company's resources--a mental discipline he calls "CEO Logic." This discipline allows one to stay focused on the key elements that make a business successful--not just while making major decisions about core competencies and competitive edge, but in improving everyday support operations as well (e.g. cash management, management development, or banking relationships). The book works at several levels: as a sort of primer of business fundamentals for those new to management; as a challenge to a more sophisticated, integrated approach to management for those increasing their scope of responsibility; and as a diagnostic tool for experienced CEOs and managers looking to improve results in particular aspects of their businesses (acquisitions, turnarounds, leadership, business operations planning, etc.). Readers will appreciate the book's "user-friendly" format, which features real-world stories, self-assessment tools, and concise, to-the-point writing.
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on June 4, 1998
CEO LOGIC is a great resource for executives looking to improve how they think through both the day-to-day challenges of running a business and the "big picture" issues of how to stay competitive. Most useful is Johnson's emphasis on systematic, clear, and focused thinking about the true purpose of a company's resources--a mental discipline he calls "CEO Logic." This discipline allows one to stay focused on the key elements that make a business successful--not just while making major decisions about core competencies and competitive edge, but in improving everyday support operations as well (e.g. cash management, management development, or banking relationships). The book works at several levels: as a sort of primer of business fundamentals for those new to management; as a challenge to a more sophisticated, integrated approach to management for those increasing their scope of responsibility; and as a diagnostic tool for experienced CEOs and managers looking to improve results in particular aspects of their businesses (acquisitions, turnarounds, leadership, business operations planning, etc.). Readers will appreciate the book's "user-friendly" format, which features real-world stories, self-assessment tools, and concise, to-the-point writing.
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C. Ray Johnson analyzes the thought processes used by successful CEOs and breaks them down into a simple, step-by-step formula anyone can practice. Focusing on the fundamentals, this book is an excellent overview for any manager eyeing advancement, and can help average managers become extraordinary managers. Use it to help you identify the simple decisions that underlie the complex particulars of any given business situation. The organization of the book makes it easy to find information relating to specific disciplines, yet it flows smoothly if you want to read it cover to cover. This is not an academic book, but a practical one, which the author developed based upon 25 years of lessons learned while managing diverse public and private companies with annual revenues ranging from $5 million to $500 million. We at getAbstract recommend this book to managers at any level, especially those who are working hard toward a promotion.
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on December 31, 2006
A lot of times when a person starts out at an entry level job, he sees only his direct working environment but sometimes doesn't understand why certain departments or people have priorities over others. CEO Logic is a great reference for those who want to understand what goes on or should go on in the CEO's mind.

I highly recommend it to a new or young CEO to understand what their priorities should be and how to handle them accordingly. Some of the questions answered:

Why is it so imiportant to have and operate a company by a set of principles?

Why is it so important to have an open dialogue with workers and staff in a non-threatening environment?

Why is cash flow so important?

These and many other questions are posed to provoke the reader to think and most of the answers are used in real life examples of CEOs who have either made the mistake and corrected it or those who belong to the business obituaries page. The book is broken down into 4 parts with 19 Chapters:

Part 1: The Foundation

Ch1: Thinking Like a CEO

Ch2: Planning Strategy and Making Decisions

Part 2: Manageing Organizations and Execution Discipline

Ch3: Business Operations Plannning: Define the Risks Worth Taking

Ch4: People Management: Never Try to Teach a Pig to Think

Ch5: Career Management: Control Your Own Desitny

Ch6: Sales: Keep it Simple and Understand it Completely

Ch7: Numbers: Don't be Fooled by the "Accounting"

Part3: Cash, Crisis and Opportunity

Ch8: Banking: Master Their Rules

Ch9: Cash Management: Keep the Lifeblood Flowing

Ch10: Tough Times and Turnarounds: Match the Cure to the Illness

Ch11: Acquisitions: Don't Bujy it if You Can't Improve it

Part4: Character, Ethics, Communication and Wisdom

Ch12: Leadership: Nothing Mystical, Nothing Magical

Ch13: Secrets: Wit and Wisdom from the Trenches

Ch14: Final Thoughts: Simple Truths from Great Compelexities
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on July 12, 2005
The reason I read this book is that I wanted to learn to be an effective chief executive officer (CEO) and how CEOs think and make decisions, as I aspire to be one in the next two to three years.

CEO Logic provides a wide perspective about the challenges of being at the top of an organisation. C. Ray Johnson provides the knowledge of how to rise to the top of an organisation; how to think like a successful CEO, how to run an organisation successfully and how to turn a faltering organisation around from a loss making company, to a profitable entity, among other interesting topics.

CEO Logic explains what drives the actions of successful CEOs. It explains how to think clearly and perceive the fundamental management issues that influence business decisions and the habits of mind needed to achieve success in business.

The book gives an exposition of the foundations of business success, development of a business philosophy that works, and the strategic application of that philosophy in an organisation. CEO Logic teaches the operating disciplines required to establish and grow a business.

What I particularly liked in the book was the information on how a CEO can effect a turnaround. Ray Johnson provides, in chapter 10 of CEO Logic, ten steps of turning an organisation around. Based on the ten steps, those responsible for changing the fortunes of a company have an excellent blue print they can rely upon.
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on July 30, 1998
This book should be a useful tool for managers-whether in the top slot or at various other levels of responsibility. Johnson's idea is that businesspeople at all levels can perform better when they learn to look at a company like an effective CEO does: by realizing that the company's competitive edge is the basic premise from which the whole "logic" of the company should flow. The rest of the book helps managers to see how to apply this logic productively to all areas of their work: from extending credit to hiring new employees to revising business plans and so on. Keeping focused on this logic, the real reason why you do what you do, means that all aspects of your company's work add to its overall effectiveness-and financial success
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on July 14, 1998
I'd recommend the book for managers looking for practical ways to improve the way they do business. Though the book is based on thinking more clearly about business, it's not just a theoretical book. It also offers chapter after chapter of tools for better carrying out your business plan--on the ground, right now. Though I've been at this a number of years, my thinking was challenged several times.
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on July 20, 2007
This book has some good gems in terms of dealing with the challenges of being a CEO. It comes from a place of knowledge unlike several more academic business books.

I liked this book and recently finished another book that I think is also an excellent CEO primer and tool-kit for CEOs called, "Kiss Theory Good Bye" by Bob Prosen. It was published last year and offers some very actionable takeaways in each chapter as well.
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on January 3, 2007
This is a great primer for a new CEO...someone in a small company moving into the role because of being a top producer or maybe by buying in but has never had any serious management experience. It is an easy read, and because of that, doesn't have a lot of depth. However, if the new CEO has what it takes to grow into the job, this book should spark an interest to acquire more knowledge.
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