Simply Brilliant: How Great Organizations Do Ordinary Things in Extraordinary Ways

Simply Brilliant: How Great Organizations Do Ordinary Things in Extraordinary Ways

by William C. Taylor

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Cofounder of Fast Company magazine and bestselling author of Mavericks at Work and Practically Radical shows how true business innovation can spring from the unlikeliest places.
Far away from Silicon Valley, in familiar, traditional, even unglamorous fields, ordinary people are unleashing extraordinary advances that amaze customers, energize employees, and create huge economic value. Their secret? They understand that the work of inventing the future doesn't just belong to geeks designing mobile apps and virtual-reality headsets, or to social-media entrepreneurs hoping to launch the next Facebook. Some of today's most compelling organizations are doing brilliant things in simple settings such as retail banks, office cleaning companies, department stores, small hospitals, and auto dealerships.

William C. Taylor, cofounder of Fast Company and best-selling author of Practically Radical, traveled thousands of miles to visit these hotbeds of simple brilliance and unearth the principles and practices behind their success. He offers fascinating case studies and powerful lessons that you can apply to do ordinary things in extraordinary ways, regardless of your industry or profession. Consider, for instance, how...
·Miami Beach's dazzling 1111 Lincoln Road reimagined the humble parking garage as a high-profile public space that hosts weddings, yoga classes, and celebrity gatherings.
·USAA, the financial-services giant that provides soldiers and their families with insurance and banking products, inspires frontline employees to deliver legendary service by immersing them in military culture.
·Pal's Sudden Service, a fast-food chain with a cult following, serves up burgers and fries with such speed and accuracy that companies from other industries pay to learn from its astonishing discipline. 
·Lincoln Electric, a manufacturer based in Euclid, Ohio, dominates its ultracompetitive markets with a fierce devotion to quality and productivity. But the key to its prosperity is a share-the-wealth model that gives everybody a sense of security and a piece of the action. It has maintained a strict no-layoff pledge since 1958.
As Taylor writes: “The story of this book, its message for leaders who aim to do something important and build something great, is both simple and subversive: In a time of wrenching disruptions and exhilarating advances, of unrelenting turmoil and unlimited promise, the future is open to everybody. The thrill of breakthrough creativity and breakaway performance . . . can be summoned in all sorts of industries and all walks of life, if leaders can reimagine what’s possible in their fields.” Simply Brilliant shows you how.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9785001008958
Publisher: Mann, Ivanov and Ferber
Publication date: 09/27/2017
Sold by: Bookwire
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 238
File size: 1 MB

About the Author

Bill Taylor is a cofounder of Fast Company, author of Practically Radical, and coauthor of Mavericks at Work. He has published essays and interviews with CEOs in the Harvard Business Review, and blogs regularly for HBR. He has written management columns for the Sunday Business section of the New York Times and for the Guardian. A graduate of Princeton and the MIT Sloan School of Management, he lives in Wellesley, Massachusetts, with his wife and two daughters.

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Chapter 1

Excerpted from "Simply Brilliant"
by .
Copyright © 2016 William C. Taylor.
Excerpted by permission of Penguin Publishing Group.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Prologue: The New Story of Success 1

"The Possible, Is Immense"

Part I Stop Trying to Be the Best; Strive to Be the Only 9

The most successful organizations champion the most compelling ideas, and do things that other organizations can't or won't do

Chapter 1 What's Your Values Proposition? 11

"Competition Is Not the Same as Choice"

Chapter 2 Why Missionaries Beat Mercenaries (And Passion Beats Drive) 35

"Some Things Have to Be Believed to Be Seen"

Part II Don't Let What You Know Limit What You Can Imagine 61

In a world being remade before our eyes, leaders who make a big difference are the ones who challenge the logic of their field-and of their own success

Chapter 3 Beyond the Paradox of Expertise 63

"Too Often, Pride in Your Most Recent Idea Becomes a Barrier to Seeing the Next Idea"

Chapter 4 Interesting Matters, Interested is Mandatory 87

"When's the Last Time You Did Something for the First Time?"

Part III It's Just as Important to be Kind as to be Clever 113

In an era of brash ideas and disruptive technology, simple acts of connection and compassion take on outsized importance

Chapter 5 Civility is Not the Enemy of Productivity 115

"People Deserve, to Be Treated Like People"

Chapter 6 The Tough-Minded Case for Leading with Love 141

"We Want People to Know What True Happiness Feels Like"

Part IV The Allies You Enlist Matter More Than the Power You Exert 163

Organizations that make the most dramatic progress are the ones that invite ordinary people to make extraordinary contributions, and whose leaders are as humble as they are hungry

Chapter 7 Serendipity as a Way of Life 165

"We Prize Collisions Over Convenience"

Chapter 8 Nobody Wins Unless Everybody Wins 193

"Create More Value Than You Capture"

Epilogue: What's Your Story? 221

"Work Hard at Work Worth Doing"

Acknowledgments 231

Notes 235

Index 247

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