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Exponential Organizations: Why new organizations are ten times better, faster, and cheaper than yours (and what to do about it) Paperback – October 14, 2014
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"EXPONENTIAL ORGANIZATIONS should be required reading for anyone interested in the ways exponential technologies are reinventing best practices in business.”―Ray Kurzweil, Director of Engineering at Google
“EXPONENTIAL ORGANIZATIONS is the most pivotal book in its class. Salim examines the future of organizations and offers readers his insights on the concept of Exponential Organizations, because he himself embodies the strategy, structure, culture, processes, and systems of this new breed of company.”―John Hagel, The Center for the Edge
About the Author
Salim Ismail is the founding Executive Director at Singularity University, where he moderates most academic programs, and is its current Global Ambassador. Before that, as a vice president at Yahoo, he built and ran Brickhouse, Yahoo’s internal incubator. His most recent company, Angstro, was sold to Google in August 2010. He has founded or operated seven early-stage companies including PubSub Concepts, which laid some of the foundation for the real-time web. He also spent several years as a management consultant with CSC Europe and later with ITIM Associates. Ismail holds a B.Sc. in Theoretical Physics from the University of Waterloo in Canada.
Michael S. Malone is one of the world's best-known technology writers. He has covered Silicon Valley and high-tech for more than 30 years, beginning with the San Jose Mercury News as the nation's first daily high-tech reporter. Malone’s articles and editorials regularly appear in the Wall Street Journal. He was editor of Forbes ASAP, the world's largest-circulation business-tech magazine, at the height of the dot-com boom. Malone is the author or co-author of nearly twenty award-winning books and television series, notably the best-selling The Virtual Corporation, Bill and Dave: How Hewlett and Packard Built the World’s Greatest Company, and The Future Arrived Yesterday: The Rise of the Protean Corporation and What It Means For You. Malone holds an MBA from Santa Clara University, where he is currently an adjunct professor in professional writing. He is also an associate fellow of the Saïd Business School at Oxford University, and is a Distinguished Friend of Oxford.
Yuri van Geest is an international keynote speaker, boardroom consultant, the managing director of the Singularity University Summit Europe, the Dutch Ambassador for Singularity University and a double alumnus of Singularity’s programs. He holds a M.Sc. degree in strategic management and marketing from Erasmus University Rotterdam and has been a key figure, firestarter and organizer in the global Lean Startup, Quantified Self, TEDx and Mobile Monday movements. He has consulted for Google, ING Bank, Vodafone Group, Adidas Global, Philips Global, Heineken Global, Friesland Campina, Samsung and MIT, and was a key member of the Topteam Creative Industry within the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs, Agriculture and Innovation for two years.
Peter H. Diamandis is a serial entrepreneur having co-founded 15 companies, most notably the X Prize Foundation, Singularity University and Planetary Resources. He has a molecular biology and aerospace engineering degree from MIT and an MD from Harvard. He is also the co-author of the New York Times bestselling book, Abundance: The Future Is Much Better Than You Think, which is recommended pre-reading for those interested in Exponential Organizations. CNN and Fortune just named Peter Diamandis one of “The World’s 50 Greatest Leaders.”
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Top customer reviews
Good stuff! What I really like about this book is:
- brain metaphor and acronyms for the internal and external focus. People tend to focus on the external and forget it won't work if you got your internal act together (Steve Jobs and Elon Musk knew/know this best I think).
- the chapters on the types of organisations, where the exponential characteristics are to be implemented. The downside risk and upside gain differ whether you are a real startup, a midsize company or a large multinational. Startup-enthusiasts tend to forget where they are implementing and put existing stuff at unnecessary risk. So good that they warn you to 'copy-cat' the right way.
There is one 'big but' I have on the usage on the usage of term exponential organizations. My objection to the exponential metaphor is that in nature exponential growing stuff is either really bad stuff (diseases such as cancer or ebola) or the end of a bubble (assets in financial markets, ending in a Mynsky Meltup or Meltdown), there are plenty of other examples [armstrongeconomics.com is a fun source for this].
This should also make you wonder on exponential organizations. If you know how to ride the wave towards the top you are fine, but the ride down can be lethal or financially unsound (when not on the shorting end).
When you disrupt something and grow exponential, bear in mind that something allowed you to do so, but might strike you after all (when catching up). Often referred examples Uber and AirBnB are currently predominantly battling with (local) government in the new places they go, and governments. Saying that it now can't be stopped is foolish. History tells us that governments tend to be bad losers, when (potentially) expected tax is involved. So mind your tail(risk).
If you are interested in the subject start-ups you should certainly read book 'Zero to One' of the quoted Peter Thiel. He will share you some 'secrets' to prevent you from attempting to grow before it is good for you.
And IMHO people should stopping using 'disruptive' in every sentence. We sort of know that by now... :-)
> the exponential nature of technological change
> the exponential impact and scale being achieved by organisations exhibiting a distinctive, new set of features (Exponential Organisations)
> the threat this poses to industry incumbents operating business and intellectual systems that are more linear and local than global and exponential
> the implications (recommendations and actions) for people starting new businesses
> the implications (recommendations and actions) for senior executives in industry incumbents
The book is very well written. It's easy to read without being too light and rich in content without being too dense. It's full of examples and case studies and the authors have pulled off the considerable feat of crafting a volume that has something in it for a wide range of audiences. Whether you're a technology boffin, a business strategist, an executive in an industry incumbent, an entrepreneur or a consultant, there are pearls of wisdom and insights in it for you.
The only deficiency in the work is that I think too little consideration is given to the challenge faced by industry incumbents in actually adopting and pursuing development of the features shared by the exemplar organisations described in the book. That may well be a subject for a different volume and in no way detracts from the importance or value of "Exponential Organizations".
If you're serious about building a business that's fit for, and relevant in, tomorrow's world then you need to read this book.