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Traction; Get a Grip on your Business Paperback – January 1, 2011

4.7 out of 5 stars 282 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Since implementing the entrepreneurial operating system outlined in [Traction], my company has been more productive than ever. . . . The book brings proven business best practices from the top thought leaders in business into one hands-on manual that you can apply today."
Dan Moshe, founder and CEO of Tech Guru, for The Business Journals’ “The most important business books ever written”

"Implementing [Traction’s] structured approach at Avondale has had a tremendous impact on our leadership's productivity and has improved operations throughout the organization."
Karl Stark and Bill Stewart, cofounders, Avondale

“The concepts and tools that have been masterfully captured in the pages of this book have provided some of the magic that has helped us grow our business 300 percent over the last five years. Don’t miss it!”
Craig Erlich, CEO, pulse220

“The concepts in this book have changed my life! I’m now able to let go of the day to day, knowing I have developed a team that can efficiently handle the details. We have consistently grown every year for the last four years in a very tough market, while the competition has struggled.”
Ronald A. Blank, President, The Franklin Companies

“Having coached and trained over 13,000 entrepreneurs, I know the challenges they face. This book is a must for any business owner and their management team. Traction provides a powerful, practical, and simple system for running your business.”
Dan Sullivan, President and Founder, The Strategic Coach

“With the Traction tools in place, we now have faster growth, increased profitability and great people that we enjoy working with. Our growth rate has averaged over 20 percent per year. These results put us in a position to sell our company to a public company for above-normal multiples and reacquire the company after just a year and a half.”
Rob Dube, President, Image One

“The Traction principles have helped me build a solid leadership team, crystallize our plan, and create the discipline to take the organization to the next level.”
Sam Simon, President & CEO, Atlas Oil Company

Traction is far and away the most potent and useful approach I’ve ever seen for running a successful company. The content is bulletproof! You have to read this book.”
Vince Poscente, Bestselling author of The Age of Speed

“The concepts in this book have revolutionized our enterprise. We are highly profitable, adroit, flexible, and have a results-oriented culture. Working with Gino’s tools has made a meaningful difference in who we are today.”
Albert M. Berriz, CEO, McKinley

“The tools are sensible, effective, and a must for any organization, entrepreneur, or leader. I personally use them within my national real estate valuation company and this year we grew 150 percent, after being in business for more than 14 years.”
Darton Case, President, The Entrepreneurs’ Organization

“The concepts in Traction saved our company from mediocrity and propelled us to excellence. They have provided us with the tools to deal with any situation that might arise and better yet, to head off some situations at the pass. We now have all the right people in the right seats doing the right jobs.
Rob Tamblyn, President, The Benefits Company

“By applying the Traction disciplines we have been able to grow revenue by 50 percent over the last three years and profit exponentially more.”
Robert Schechter, C.L.U., Ch.F.C., Chairman, Schechter Wealth Strategies

Traction is a must-read. What you will learn are the same tools that have enabled me to grow my business 100 percent over the last three years while staying balanced and having fun. This book will change your life.”
Bernie Ronnisch, President, Ronnisch Construction Group
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

About the Author

An entrepreneur since the age of 21, Gino Wickman has dedicated his life to learning what makes businesses thrive. At 25 he took over the running of the family business, which was deeply in debt and in need of help. After turning the company around and running it for seven years, he and his partners successfully sold the company. Based on his years of real-world experience, Gino developed the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS), a practical method for helping companies achieve greatness. Over the last six years, he has taught the EOS process to hundreds of business leaders in more than 90 companies. The results speak for themselves: companies that implement EOS grow by an average of 18% per year while eliminating common frustrations and experiencing more enjoyment. Gino is one of the original 10 members of the Detroit chapter of the Entrepreneurs Organization and served twice on its board of directors. His belief: "You cannot build a great organization on multiple operating systems. You must choose one." He is the founder of EOS and offers powerful and practical keynote speeches and workshops for small business leaders across the country.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Virtual CEO (January 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0979799031
  • ISBN-13: 978-0979799037
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (282 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,781,302 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read Traction in April 2010 and started applying it to my consulting business. We are an information technology consulting firm, with 10 consultants (including me) working on around 5 projects at any given time. Applying the EOS has brought about a big change in the way I approach my business. Our situation is typical of other consulting firms: 99% of the energy in the firm is spent on serving our clients, so not much attention is paid to "working on the business."

Rather than write a review of the book, I think some readers might benefit from seeing the practical application of the EOS model described in the book:

I did the Organizational Checkup candidly and scored 53%. Here's the status of the other areas:
1. Vision: Complete. Has been reviewed and updated with the input of the team. The V/TO is a very useful tool.

2. People: In progress. The Get It / Want It / Capacity assessment has been completed (with the team). The right person/right seat is a challenge because currently one person is occupying most of the seats. The book has given us the framework for right person/right seat and we are determining how to apply it without asking our team to overcommit themselves.

3. Data: We've created our initial scorecard, and we jointly reviewed it in May and June. The next monthly review is in mid-July, and we will be adding more metrics. More info here on my blog post: [...]

4. Issues: We had an external consultant spend time with us in June to observe our operations and provide us a candid assessment. As a result, we've got a list of issues and recommendations. The implementation of the major items is not yet certain. We have to face the choice between focusing on client work versus working on the business.
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Format: Paperback
This is essentially a self-help book for business executives. While there are many useful items in here it is ultimately steered towards generating more consulting business for the author and his fellow consultants. Much of the the useful advice listed in here is already understood by most employees at the most basic of companies under different names. Having worked at companies that implemented the processes discussed in this book and the former front runner From Good to Great I have some advice for business executives to ensure success in getting traction:

1. Read the entire book and comprehend.
2. If you use the quote "getting the right people into the right seats on the bus" in meetings with specific people in mind it is you that are in the wrong seat, the bus has no driver, and the wheels rotted away long ago. It may also be a shorter bus than you want.
3. Do not pick and choose sections to implement that fit your agenda.
4. Your "rocks" should not consist of delegating ill-conceived rocks to lower level employees.
5. If there is systemic failures within your company that have gone addressed for any significant duration, they will likely remain in place after implementing the processes in this book. This book exists simply to help you feel better that you "did something", much like any self help book.

This book is very similar to From Good to Great and is in fact referenced in this book. From Good to Great was, in its time was lauded as the self-help book for business leaders. From Good to Great recommended 11 companies business models as the absolute pinnacle of success for everyone to hold in high esteem. These were to be the companies that shifted from being just good enough (level 4) to great (level 5).
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Format: Paperback
I liked it. The book is well organized and does a nice job of expounding on its points. As I read it another book from 2007 came to mind: No Man's Land: What to Do When Your Company Is Too Big to Be Small but Too Small to Be Big. Both books are written for the small business owner who has gotten his company to a certain level, but things are not growing or moving forward. The book has an Intro and nine chapters as follows:

0. Introduction
1. The "Entrepreneurial Operating System"
2. Letting go of the vine
3. The vision component
4. The people component
5. The data component
6. The issues component
7. The process component
8. The traction component
9. Pulling it all together

The book basically is a discussion of a diagram the author calls the Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS) which consists of six components discussed in chapters three through eight. As I say above, I found the organization of the book to be good. However, I did not find the organization of the EOS to be particularly sound. Not too long ago I read and reviewed Be Bodacious: Put Life in Your Leadership which I thought would have been better written if it had promoted the following leadership system: (1) Dream, (2) Strategize, (3) Take Action, & (4) Persist. The vision component in EOS is comparable to the dream component, and the traction component in EOS is comparable to the take action component. So, in my humble opinion, the EOS is missing two components at a minimum: (2) strategize & (4) persist.
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