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Learn or Die: Using Science to Build a Leading-Edge Learning Organization (Columbia Business School Publishing) Hardcover – September 30, 2014

4.4 out of 5 stars 67 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

Review

As digital technologies race ahead there is a growing need for creativity and innovation. But how can we build organizations that foster the highest levels of creativity and innovation? Learn or Die is a blueprint for creating such organizations. -- Erik Brynjolffson, Co-author, The Second Machine Age

In Learn or Die Ed Hess knits an impressive fabric of insights from widely disparate strands of thought, experience, research, and real cases. Hess harnesses new evidence to challenge old nostrums. Practical and provocative, this book ranges across vital issues such as learning, innovation, team-building, and leadership. Read this book and prosper; read it before your competitor gets to it. -- Robert Bruner, Dean, Darden School of Business

This book does a beautiful job bringing together the most important ideas in organizational learning, established by academics and practitioners over the past thirty years or more, into one place. -- Amy C. Edmondson, Novartis Professor of Leadership and Management, Harvard Business School

An excellent book. In Learn or Die, Edward D. Hess captures a central element to enhancing and sustaining success as a business organization or as one of its leaders―being a high-performance learning organization. This book is a thought-provoking study of the technological advances making this need ever more relevant and provides a comprehensive roadmap of the culture, leadership, employee learning behaviors, HR policies and other organizational processes necessary to build and lead such an organization. -- Roger Carlile, Executive Vice President and CFO, FTI Consulting

Learn or Die is a thoughtful and easy-to-read synthesis of the leading thinking on organizational and individual learning. Not only does Hess neatly summarizes what a savvy business person needs to know, but he also provides practical suggestions that will allow the reader to take action. This book contains essential lessons on an important topic―I highly recommend it. -- Joe Timko, chief strategy officer, ADP

Learn or Die is a tremendous look into the requirements of high performance individual and team learning. Ed Hess does a masterful job of conveying that learning happens best in a humanistic work environment, enabled by leaders who in reality are great coaches striving to serve others. Learn or Die will help anyone who wants to improve themselves―it changes the game. -- Sam Presti, executive vice president and general manager of Oklahoma City Thunder

The smart money is on innovation, which depends on personal and group learning. Ed Hess combines a tour d'horizon of what is known about individual learning and about conducive environments for organizational learning with fascinating case studies of companies who use learning to win. Any leader who needs to encourage innovation will find information and reflections that will be both humbling and inspiring. -- Michael Balay, head of global strategy, Cargill, Inc.

Learn or Die in a masterful manner makes it clear that consistent business growth can only be achieved through learning―there is no other way―and that the pace of business change today requires a scientific approach to building a high performance learning organization. For those responsible for leading, Learn or Die should be mandatory reading. -- Terry S. Brown, chairman and chief executive officer, Edens Investment Trust

Learn or Die allows the reader to not only to visualize the future, but also, and more importantly, to create the future by unleashing the power and potential of building a learning organization. It has been demonstrated that strategies, systems and processes can be copied by others, yet a company's people, and the way they learn, are true differentiators. Ed Hess captures the essence of a high performing organization and shares his "secret sauce" through an actionable blueprint for becoming a leading-edge learner and creating a high performing organization. -- Jeffrey S. Shuman, senior vice president and chief human resources officer, Quest Diagnostics

Ed Hess is doing some of the most interesting and important work in management today and his newest book, Learn or Die, is already my personal favorite. This book is characteristic of all of Ed's work―providing wise but straight-forward and pragmatic advice on finding the right people, creating the right environment and installing the right processes to embed learning. In a globalizing world, where adapting to and learning from difference is likely to be the most critical source of competitive advantage, Learn or Die is a must read for any manager interested in solid, research-based advice on how to survive the increasingly unpredictable, chaotic world we live in. -- Jeanne Liedtka, coauthor of Solving Problems with Design Thinking

To achieve and sustain real business success in the 21st century―individual and organizational―you need to understand and leverage the new science of learning. Fortunately, there's "Learn or Die" by Ed Hess, who explains the "why" and "how" better than anybody. This deeply informed, yet practical book provides the new road map for a better "you" and a better company. Read or miss out. -- Andy Fleming, CEO, Way to Grow, Inc.

Learn or Die makes a compelling case for the need to create high-performance, human-oriented learning organizations―and for the remarkable degree to which we are all capable of succeeding as leaders by following a path of ongoing, integrative learning. Combining fascinating behavioral research, actionable advice, and superb analysis of real-world business examples, Ed Hess has crafted essential reading for those seeking to prepare their organizations―and themselves―to thrive in a global marketplace characterized by rapid change, fierce competition, and a desperate need for leadership based on principles that are smart, sustainable, and, above all, humane. -- Ming-Jer Chen, former president, Academy of Management

I read Learn or Die and found myself intrigued and frankly, a little uncomfortable. So I read it a second time and found that it made me rethink many aspects of my own management style and the guidance I provide our portfolio companies.

What hit me like a ton of bricks from Ed's research was the realization that the current approach based on traditional management techniques and performance metrics was unlikely to be both effective and sustainable in the rapidly changing, Darwinian world of venture capital investing and technology innovation. His vision of the learning systems and cultural commitments that define a truly high performance organization is a must read for any business that wants to prepare itself to meet the challenges and succeed in todays business environment―before its too late. -- Frank H. Foster, managing partner, Draper Fisher Jurvetson Frontier and the Gideon Hixon Fund

This is by far the best book I've read on the subject of learning. -- Shane Parrish ― Farnam Street Weekly

Learn or Die is a book everyone who is serious about learning and growth - personally or organizationally - should read. If you thought you were serious about it, Learn or Die will take you to a whole new level with tools, case studies, and insights that will challenge your commitment to learning. ― Leadership Now

A must-read for learning professionals. ― TD: Talent Development Magazine

Hess does the great service of examining the processes of both organizational and individual learning.... [He] conducts a dialogue with readers that is refreshingly unobscured by jargon and cant.... How refreshing it is to have a serious discussion of these important issues. Bravo! ― Choice

About the Author

Edward D. Hess is professor of business administration, Batten Faculty Fellow, and Batten Executive-in-Residence at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. His many books include Smart Growth: Building an Enduring Business by Managing the Risks of Growth (Columbia, 2010) and Humility Is the New Smart: Rethinking Human Excellence in the Smart Machine Age (2017).

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ 0231170246
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Columbia Business School Publishing (September 30, 2014)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 280 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 9780231170246
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0231170246
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 1.2 pounds
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 9.1 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.4 out of 5 stars 67 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5
67 global ratings

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Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars A well written book illustrative of learning literature, could ...
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 20, 2015
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4.0 out of 5 stars Generally interesting. Particularly the chapter on Bridgewater
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 21, 2020
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Dominique Arrighi
5.0 out of 5 stars Synthèse de l'état de l'art en matière d'apprentissage organisationnel
Reviewed in France on June 15, 2018
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5.0 out of 5 stars Learn or die
Reviewed in Brazil on December 4, 2015
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Nilanjan Majumdar
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read !!
Reviewed in India on January 8, 2017
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