James Martinos – Books Reviewed

Introduction:

Welcome to James Martinos’ Books Reviewed, where I share my thoughts on recent published books on various topics, ideas and concepts. Sometimes I will go back to some of the old standard management leadership books and highlight how things have changed and yet in some instances, stayed the same.

In this section I’ve summarized recent books that I’ve read and encapsulated my impressions, collective thoughts and opinions on the authors work and premise.

The books and authors I review cover topics from Business Management, Strategic Planning Best Practices, to Business Cultural ideas (past and future), Digital Marketing Best Practices to Industry Trends using technology as a competitive weapon against your competition.

I work to identify the critical and key talking points I’ve discovered, and by no means assume that I’ve identified all possible outcomes. However, I do identify additional areas that the author (in my opinion) should have expanded upon further or missed the mark entirely on.

Theory vs Practical Application:

I prefer authors who blend the two ideas of Theoretical and Practical Application experience in their work. Often times professors write a business management book on ideas that they have no practical experience in. They basically, in my opinion, are experimenting and teaching students things that just don’t work in the real-world of business.

I prefer professors and specifically authors who have worked in the real-world, gotten their hands dirty and then come back to the university and expand their management theories further. They should repeat that process throughout their careers every 3-5 years so they don’t miss the mark on their understanding and teaching.

A great example of someone who wrote a great business book, who was on the front lines of shaping the technology industry landscape but hasn’t been as widely recognized in the media is Andy Grove. He wrote the book “Only The Paranoid Survive” in 1996.

Grove stated that “you are making decisions about what the information technology world will want five years into the future …”[15] He created a culture within Intel that allowed innovation to flourish. As CEO, he wanted his managers to always encourage experimentation and prepare for changes, making a case for the value of paranoia in business. He became known for his guiding motto: “Only the paranoid survive,” and wrote a management book with the same title.[20]

According to Grove, “Business success contains the seeds of its own destruction,”[15] explaining that “Success breeds complacency. Complacency breeds failure. Only the paranoid survive.”[20] As a result, he urges senior executives to allow people to test new techniques, new products, new sales channels, and new customers, to be ready for unexpected shifts in business or technology.[15]

Andy had practical experience that helped him teach and expanding the management best practices of those around him. I feel that that level of practical application experience is lacking in today’s education system. But when authors and professors apply both the Theoretical and Practical experiences into their teaching and books, it’s a powerful teaching moment. That is what I’m looking for as I read and review these books.

I hope you find this helpful and rewarding!

James Michael Martinos

7 thoughts on “Books”

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