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Great Boss Dead Boss Paperback – September, 2003
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Top Customer Reviews
What I didn't expect was that this book would change the way I thought about organization and communication down, across and up. If management is about two things then organizational structure and communication are perhaps the two most basic. Great Boss, Dead Boss has made me rethink both of those. I'm deliberately not telling you what the book is about because that would spoil it for you. What I can say is that it takes the form of a novel similar to Eli Goldratt's The Goal. However, despite the fact that Ray Immelman is part of the TOC community and works for Realization Software. This is not a TOC book. It's a book about people, about relationships, about affiliation, motivation, loyalty and leadership. It's a book which is very applicable to the agile software community. If agile's unique contribution to software development was the inclusion of people related factors then Great Boss, Dead Boss offers us that same contribution for management.
And finally, if you are going through a merger or acquisition then this story of the merger of two leading silicon chip manufacturers is required reading.
The reason I don't give it a give star rating, is that it's a tad too American style for my European liking. Also, presenting the insights through a story works very well, but from time to time it's apparent that the author is more a management consultant than a professional writer.
Finally, I have to admit that I still haven't quite worked out the meaning behind the title of the book... 😉
I have noticed over the years that management books recommend a lot of activities but the subtext was always this: communication is the heart of a good environment.
My psychological training (sorry tom cruise) has also given me great insights into what motivates and what demotivates people. But those mechanistic models of action and reaction were always searching for a unifying construct.
Ray's construct is tribal behavior and balancing our need to feel good about ourselves and the groups to which we belong.
In essence, people tend to gravitate toward groups that reinforce their self-worth. Traditional business structures tend to rigidly group people and, by doing so, people identify with smaller groups of their own design rather than their larger corporate or office group. The results are seldom good.
When I was working for a large consulting company, I was initially part of and later the lead of their Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) Group. We had millions of dollars in contracts every year and, despite the work we put into educating the planners and engineers of what we did - they would routinely sub out ITS work.
At first we thought they were not getting what it was we were doing. But in reality what was happening was that they got much more value from subbing out our work.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Everything you intuitively knew when interacting and leading people is explained in an structured fashion with many hands on examples that will become you thinking of IS+ ot TV- a... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Amazon Customer
Book was ok and I liked the idea that a great boss needs to understand his tribe's features, but I think the writing was a bit old and outdated; it felt boring and too long.Published 10 months ago by Jeremie
As the owner of an investment advisory practice, and someone that often deals with how to guide and motivate employees - this book was a fresh perspective the blends common sense,... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Michael J. Carlin
One of the best books on tribes. Written in story form, the first 70 pages are skim reading, then the real stuff starts. Read morePublished on July 6, 2014 by Daniel Kehoe
Such a different approach to a very common problem. No, no, I won't help you.
Greg is one of my heroes.
I am a huge fan of this book, I have read this book two times and it keeps getting better. A must read for serious managers who want to run a top notch business.Published on April 6, 2014 by Jeff
Excellent analogy using tribal behavior to highlight the behaviors of individuals within a company structure. Read morePublished on March 19, 2014 by fan of avatar
Haven't read the books as yet. Arrived in as new condition as described in Amazon.com. Great would definately purchase againPublished on March 6, 2014 by Anthony Bryant