- Hardcover: 256 pages
- Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (September 26, 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0471463221
- ISBN-13: 978-0471463221
- Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.9 x 9.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 20 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #994,975 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Guts: 8 Laws of Business from One of the Most Innovative Business Leaders of Our Time Hardcover – September 26, 2003
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"Read it for no other reason than to learn Bob's Seven Immutable Laws of Business.... This is vintage Bob--contrarian, thoughtful, and he's really fun to read."
From the Inside Flap
What do you do with a book thats filled with controversial,counterintuitive, and downright contrarian statements that standconventional wisdom on its ear and claim, lightheartedly, to beimmutable "laws of business?" If the author is Robert Lutz, youread the book very carefully, probably several times, learn all ofthe "laws" by heart, and follow them to the letter every chance youget. You also find yourself laughing out loud, shaking your head inwonder, and nodding in agreement.
Revised and updated, this is a mavericks primer on thebusiness philosophy that revolutionized Chrysler and is nowpowering dramatic new product development at General Motors. In it,Lutz reexamines his iconoclastic maxims to see how they havewithstood the test of time. With hard evidence, hilariousanecdotes, and his characteristic frankness, the high-flyingchairman of GM North America challenges his own contention thatbusinesses should deliberately construct a "schizophrenic"corporate culture that combines rock-solid financial controls witha highly creative, no-holds-barred product development process.
Concluding that his laws have served him well and are generallyreliable in any business situation and any industry, he goes on toexplain why:
- The customer isnt always right
- The primary purpose of business isnt "to make money"
- When everybody else is doing it, dont
- Too much quality can ruin you
- Financial controls are bad
- Disruptive people are an asset
- Teamwork isnt always good
If Lutzs first seven laws arent provocative enoughfor you, wait until you read the new one that he formulated forexecutives charged with managing mergers and takeovers orrehabilitating failing companies. Suffice it to say, it involvesthe use of a flamethrower.
Enriched by Lutzs deep store of business wisdom acquiredover three-plus decades in the automobile industry, Guts combines afascinating, behind-the-scenes look at some of the most importantevents in the industrys history, with an outside-the-box viewon the nature of leadership and success. This insightful,unorthodox, and thoroughly enjoyable discourse will change the wayyou think about product development and marketing, financialmanagement, strategy, and managing people. It will redefine the wayyou think about successand make you all the more eager andlikely to achieve it.
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Top customer reviews
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Lutz is very forward and does not sugar coat any of his opinions. If you don't agree with his viewpoint, I can see how you might get offended. I thought most if not all of his views were in line with my own, so I enjoyed the book thoroughly.
It may be the first eBook I've seen with zero typos.
Mr. Lutz names names and give examples of his points.
Most refreshing was his run down of the points of personal behavior needed in business.
I was a participant in the Auto industry a bit earlier and thru the 1980's and found the book very clear on many of the things I observed.
If you enjoyed Car Guys vs. Bean Counters and plan to buy this book to get a more complete picture of Lutz's ideas - don't do it. It is the same story, not as well told, with a focus on Chrysler instead of General Motors.
The parallels are everywhere. When he was with Chrysler he saw the Viper as the car that should represent the company in consumers' minds, not the Neon. At GM he saw the Corvette in that role, not the Malibu. After preaching, in both books, the critical importance of having good products to sell, he blames Chrysler's sales decline after it was purchased by Daimler on bad publicity. He blames the more recent GM sales decline that led to their eventual bankruptcy on the federal government. This could be the basis for Law 9. - Don't accept responsibility for your failures; find someone else to blame.
Only one quarter of the book is spent on the 8 Laws of Business in the title. They are all stated in sensational terms that Lutz spends the forward and half of that section of the book explaining. The biggest disappointment in this section is his discussion of rule 4. Too Much Quality Can Ruin You. The Neon as a perfect example of this concept - give each market segment only the level of quality that those buyers will pay for. Instead Lutz uses this chapter to explain that his definition of quality is not the absence of defects but the ability of a car to delight its buyers.
The last half of the book is the usual list of things in society that cranky old business executives love to whine about - environmentalists, trial lawyers, the media, public education, business buzzwords, casual business dress, misspelled words, and hippies at Berkley. Lutz adds the difficulty of getting a good martini at expensive restaurants in Europe to the list. His solution to society's ills is Marine Corps officer training for everyone.