The Circle of Innovation

Tom Peters, Author, Donada Peters, Author, Dean LeBaron, Foreword by Alfred A. Knopf $35 (544p) ISBN 978-0-375-40157-2
Far from offering a systematic guide on how companies can sustain innovativeness, management guru Peters's scattershot excursion nevertheless yields potent insights and valuable nuggets. Splicing slides from his seminars with conversational text, this scrapbook combines splashy typography, attention-grabbing graphics, boxed insets and a high-energy delivery. Peters's freewheeling tour circles around 15 catchy ""Big Ideas""--for example, ""Little things are the only things,"" ""We are all Michelangelos,"" ""Destruction is cool."" He gives pith and point to concepts, using examples from industries such as computers, fast food, retail, hotels and airlines. The enemy, as he sees it, is ""commoditization,"" the routinization of thinking or managing, a blight that undermines innovation and thwarts talent. His keen attention to the human element in organizational growth and change shines through as he stresses the importance of company decentralization, of product design, of empowering customers, of making corporate structures transparent. Some may find Peters's approach hectoring and his free-associational style at times maddening, yet his redefinition of innovation as a form of ""strategic forgetfulness"" makes this a primer no cutting-edge manager can afford to ignore. 200,000 first printing; Random House audio. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 11/03/1997
Release date: 11/01/1997
Genre: Nonfiction
Book - 978-0-676-54900-3
Paperback - 978-0-676-77051-3
Paperback - 544 pages - 978-0-679-75765-8
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