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The Circle of Innovation: You Can't Shrink Your Way to Greatness Paperback – May 25, 1999

4.1 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Business guru Tom Peters has been recognized for his originality and perception since coauthoring one of the most influential management books of all time: 1982's In Search of Excellence. Now, in his seventh work, The Circle of Innovation: You Can't Shrink Your Way to Greatness, he presents a provocative new vision for prospering in the "permanent state of flux" ruling today's business world. By juxtaposing short text passages and bold graphic images, Peters simply but passionately offers his prescription--perpetual innovation--in a nontraditional manner intended to foster individual interpretation. --Howard Rothman --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Peters (The Pursuit of Wow! LJ 2/15/95) advances here a barrage of ideas on what it takes to succeed in an ever-changing marketplace. His book, derived from 60 or so iterations of his seminars, has a frenetic, almost attention-deficit quality, taking a decidedly McLuhan-like approach and, like McLuhan, proving prophetic and poignant even if, in the final analysis, it is wrong. A shrewd observer, Peters offers trenchant observations. For example, he gloms onto the interesting idea of great design as the corporate advantage over quality and price. This book will have wide appeal, and more than one organization will attempt to experiment with some of the author's theses. Recommended for all libraries.?Steven Silkunas, SEPTA/FRONTIER, Lansdale, Pa.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; 1st Vintage Ed edition (June 15, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679757651
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679757658
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1.1 x 7.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #789,704 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 19, 2000
Format: Paperback
Be warned that if you like unusual formats, you'll find this book refreshing. If you hate anything unusual, you may not like this book.
The Circle of Innovation is written in slide book form. This is the form that consultants use for seminars. Each exhibit that the seminar attendees will see is included, along with a page of script that covers the content of the exhibit. The result is highly enjoyable, as you vicariously imagine being in the room with Tom Peters, the world's most sought-after business speaker.
The exhibits are wonderfully funny and evocative, and use all kinds of visual tricks to get and keep your attention. I had people all over the plane looking over my shoulder to see them, as I read the book on a recent flight.
Tom Peters also walks his talk, and really lives with passion -- which strongly comes through in this book. His interpretations of the world are almost always tied to quotes from important thinkers and business leaders, which gives the book a relevance and immediacy that a more intellectual book would have lacked.
I found this book to be very satisfying to read. It affected me at a very fundamental level, so I could tell that I was "getting" the message. The result is a most impressive example of a way to communicate through books. The principles seem to be sound in most cases (although not all markets are dominated by women purchasers -- such as boxing gloves, football tickets, Viagra, etc. -- but many are, such as cars), and they should stimulate your thinking to expand the scope of the innovations you think about.
The book could have been improved with a consideration of processes that work better than others for getting the innovation work done. For that assistance, you will have to look elsewhere. In the meantime, do read, think about, enjoy, and apply the lessons of The Circle of Innovation.
Another good book on innovation is Peter Drucker's Innovation and Entrepreneurship.
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Format: Hardcover
THE CIRCLE OF INNOVATION is written in slide book form. This is the form that consultants use for seminars. Each exhibit that the seminar attendees will see is included, along with a page of script that covers the content of the exhibit. The result is highly enjoyable, as you vicariously imagine being in the room with Tom Peters, the world's most sought-after business speaker. The exhibits are wonderfully funny and evocative, and use all kinds of visual tricks to get and keep your attention. I had people all over the plane looking over my shoulder to see them, as I read the book on a recent flight. Tom Peters also walks his talk, and really lives with passion -- which strongly comes through in this book. His interpretations of the world are almost always tied to quotes from important thinkers and business leaders, which gives the book a relevance and immediacy that a more cerebral book would have lacked. I found this book to be very satisfying to read. It affected me at a very fundamental level, so I could tell that I was "getting" the message. The result is a most impressive example of a way to communicate through books. The principles seem to be sound in most cases (although not all markets are dominated by women purchasers -- such as boxing gloves -- but many are such as cars), and they should stimulate your thinking to expand the scope of the innovations you think about. The book could have been improved with a consideration of processes that work better than others for getting the innovation work done. For that assistance, you will have to look elsewhere. In the meantime, do read, think about, enjoy, and apply the lessons of THE CIRCLE OF INNOVATION.
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Format: Hardcover
Peters zeros in on innovation as the touchstone for success, along with a passionate presentation of fifteen other related ideas such as: distance is dead; destruction is cool; we are all Michelangelos; welcome to the white - collar revolution; the intermediary is doomed; and the system is the solution. The book's visual layout model's its theme which is - It is the end of the world as we know it, so whatever made you successful in the past won't in the future. What, then, can you do? The answer is...innovation! This is another WOW book, exuding the excitement and novelty that makes Tom Peters, himself, a living example of what he passionately and entertainingly writes about. Peters delivers content in a form that breaks all book 'rules,' using a plethora of P. T. Barnum pizazz. Among business books, that's innovative! I don't think Peters expects or wants you to read this book, but to experience it. It is a bit more like a roller-coaster than a book, with zigs and zag! s and lots of zip. Still, for all its flare, this is not a ground-breaking work, falling short of Peters' Liberation Management.
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Format: Hardcover
Save your money because there are far better business books available. I purchased Tom Peters' Circle of Innovation based on the recommendation from a business associate. As soon as the book arrived I realized that I had wasted nearly $25.00. Tom Peters saw an opportunity and has packaged his business notes in order to earn another million. There are few new thoughts in the book. The writing style is breathless like the evening news, and the graphical presentation is similar to a comic book.
Other business books are far better. Tom Peters, with his top-tier business school and consulting credentials, may claim to understand enterprise but Tom Peters needs to get his hands dirty with honest experience. Other authors such as Ricardo Semler in Maverick actually accomplished what Tom Peters discusses. Instead of reading Tom Peters talk about change and the future, read Ricardo Semler describing implementing actual change in a company. And then look out if a compa! ny following Semler's ideas decides to compete in your industry.
Tom Peters has great promise, but I believe that he needs actual business experience to complete his resume. He appears to lack the commitment, passion, and the deeper understanding that can only come from actually implementing ideas and living with the results and the criticism.
After reading Circle of Innovation, my one overriding desire was to ask Mr. Peters for a full price refund.
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