Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Start thinking of the unthinkable

BookValue
Dare to Design Your Life
Jagdish Joshi
( http://www.wonderlandbooks.co.in/)

Scorpions at work

Don't lose heart when you come across people who emanate so much negative energy, cheers Jagdish Joshi in Dare to Design Your Life. In your everyday work-life, you will find more than one scorpion, which will sting you even if you try to be good and helpful, he observes. “For, such people do not know that you are someone with good intentions. But the challenge here is not to be bogged down with such incidents and to continue working at your own pace.”

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‘Six pathways of life'

BookValue
Double your Income doing what You Love
Raymond Aaron
( http://www.wiley.com/)

Order and wealth

How can you create ‘the richest and fullest possible life'? Try MAINLY, suggests Raymond Aaron in Double your Income doing what You Love. The acronym stands for ‘six pathways of life' for each month, he explains: Mess (choosing to clean a mess); Acknowledgement (expressing gratitude); Increase in wealth (improving your financial situation); New (doing something new); Learn (learning something); and Yourself (doing something just for yourself).

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`Currencies' with which to bargain

Book Mark
Rocking the Boat
Debra E. Meyerson
(http://www.hbspress.org/)

Four negotiation strategies

Be it a job offer or a car purchase, business deal or restaurant choice, people negotiate constantly, says Debra E. Meyerson in Rocking the Boat: How to effect change without making trouble. Most negotiations, however, do not initially seem likenegotiations, she cautions; they feel more like threats, criticisms, affronts, or outright attacks.

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Success factor for retail innovation

Book Mark
Distribution Channels
Julian Dent
(http://www.vivagroupindia.com/)

Dealing with retailers

Many suppliers find retailers, especially the major chains, brutal to deal with and feel that they are squeezed by the retailers' power to control access to the consumers they need to reach, writes Julian Dent in Distribution Channels: Understanding and managing channels to market.

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Friday, February 19, 2010

Effective leaders

Manage Mentor
Leadership and Change Management
Annabel Beerel
(http://www.sagepublications.com/)

Signals of destructive leadership

Aberrations in leadership can be traced both to the so-called leaders and the so-called followers notes Annabel Beerel in Leadership and Change Management. Our fascination with and projections on leaders often result in us selecting the wrong people to lead us, she writes.

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The ‘insulation mortgage'

Books of Account
Energy Efficiency and Climate Change
B. Sudhakara Reddy et al
A major hurdle to the adoption of energy-efficient practices is the greater influence of current situation on decision-making than future wellbeing. An example, as cited in Energy Efficiency and Climate Change, is of the first energy-efficient houses built in the 1970s, which looked like common, ordinary houses, though with higher initial costs.

The different aspects of audit

Books of Account
Technical Guide on Internal/Concurrent Audit of Investment Functions of Insurance Companies
Institute of Chartered Accountants of India
( http://www.icai.org/)

Insurance investment

The internal or concurrent auditor may not sit in judgment of the decision taken by the authorised official; yet, the auditor will have to see that the transactions or decisions are within the policy parameters laid down by the Board/Investment Committee; that they do not violate the instructions of IRDA and the Insurance Act, 1938; and that they are within the delegated authority and in compliance with the terms and conditions for exercise of delegated authority. Thus directs the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India in Technical Guide on Internal/Concurrent Audit of Investment Functions of Insurance Companies.


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Think cloud!

Books of Account
Cloud Computing for Dummies
Judith Hurwitz et al.
( http://www.wileyindia.com/)

Economics of cloud

You might want to add a new business application, but lack the funds. Rather than wallow in despair, think cloud! The cloud, for starters, is ‘a set of hardware, networks, storage, services, and interfaces that enable the delivery of computing as a service,' as Judith Hurwitz et al. define in Cloud Computing for Dummies.

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Be honest and transparent

Books 2 Byte
Honey, I Shrunk the World
(http://www.igniteee.com/)

Five tips on ORM

It is perhaps time to move beyond Gen-X and Gen-Y. Enter the Gen-I (Generation Internet), the independent-thinking, globally-connected folks. Gen-I's openness to adapt to change and willingness to experiment with brands has made them a hot target for every smart marketer, notes Honey, I Shrunk the World: The essential global digital media handbook.

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Study the routine failures

Books 2 Byte
The Checklist Manifesto
Atul Gawande
(http://www.henryholt.com/)

4 elements of professionalism

Computers take numerous tasks off our hands — such as tasks of calculation, processing, storage, and transmission; and technology undoubtedly increases our capabilities, acknowledges Atul Gawande in The Checklist Manifesto: How to get things right.


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The work that defines you

BookValue
The Answers
Lucy Kellaway
(http://www.vivagroupindia.com/)

Money vs job satisfaction

You do interesting work, you like the hours and the people, but the pay is measly. An option that seems attractive is to take a standard position in a larger organisation at a salary 50 per cent more than what you are getting now. So, what should you do? Go for money or job satisfaction? Stay put, says Lucy Kellaway in The Answers: All the office questions you never dared to ask.

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‘Emotional assets' of organisations

BookValue
Deep Strengths
Price Pritchett
( http://www.tatamcgrawhill.com/)

Build the psychological balance sheet

How do you assess the strength of a business? By studying the financials, such as cash flow, income statements, balance sheet, stock price, and so on? Certainly, these are crucial metrics, but we need to recognise the difference between cause and effect, says Price Pritchett in Deep Strengths: Getting to the heart of high performance.

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Customer service is an attitude

Book Mark
Sell Like a Great Man, Give Service Like a Madman
Jagdish Joshi
(http://www.wonderlandbooks.co.in/)

Follow the SHEEP

Jagdish Joshi laments that some major brands seem to behave as if customers couldn't live without their products. There is nothing called `monopoly' in this 21st century market, he writes in Sell Like a Great Man, Give Service Like a Madman.

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Dealing with the customers

Book Mark
Building the Value Machine
Peter Cheverton
(http://www.vivagroupindia.com/)

Map the customer's activity cycle

A good supplier should take more interest in a customer's problems than the customer, says Peter Cheverton in Building the Value Machine. For the customer, a problem is merely something to be solved; for the supplier, a problem is lifeblood, he adds.


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Thursday, February 11, 2010

The cost-saving schemes

Books of Account
Simply Fly: A Deccan odyssey
Captain Gopinath
( www.harpercollins.co.in)

Captain's cost-saving tips

You know Captain Gopinath as the one who flew planes for the common man. Not as one who herded donkeys. But that is just one of the many stories you'd read in Simply Fly: A Deccan odyssey. A chance conversation with a washerman makes the author weigh the economic advantages of donkeys, at a time when electricity was a distant dream in his village.

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Development on mobile devices

Books 2 Byte
Professional Ubuntu Mobile Development
Ian Robert Lawrence and Rodrigo Cesar Lopes Belem
(http://www.wileyindia.com/)

Four models of software evolution

Beginning with mobile Linux, Professional Ubuntu Mobile Development covers topics such as power management, application development, packaging, theming, kernel fine-tuning, testing and so on, all aimed at developers interested in `a practical, hands-on way of learning development on mobile devices.'

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Challenge for the project manager

Books 2 Byte
International Project Management
Kathrin Koster
(http://www.sagepublications.com/)

Well-mixed teams can develop new products faster

How do you establish trust in international projects? Sample this, from International Project Management by Kathrin K”ster (www.sagepublications.com): "A US-American project manager invited his Asian team members to where he was located in the USA on the East Coast. Instead of dining out with them in a high-class restaurant, he took them along to hockey and baseball games where they all had hot dogs and beer."

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The power of women

BookValue
Sarpanch Sahib
Manjima Bhattacharjya
( http://www.harpercollins.co.in/)

Big dreams in small places

One of the villages in Kalahandi district of Orissa is Rupra Road. “The village is bustling and cosmopolitan, judging by the four different styles and weaves of women's saris on display at the market: Adivasi, Dalit, Marwari, and Oriya. Children yell out, ‘Sarpanch, sarpanch…' as our jeep goes by,” writes Indira Maya Ganesh in one of the essays included in Sarpanch Sahib.


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The 'working' ideas

Book Mark
Writing for the Media
Usha Raman
(http://www.oup.com/)

Chasing ideas

The idea of writing for the media can be an enticing one, but media writing has to begin with an idea, says Usha Raman in Writing for the Media. At times, the media process facilitates things. For example, `an entry in the daily logbook of a newspaper or magazine office' may tell you what your assignments for the day are; a collective debate among the editorial staff may assign ideas to reporters and feature writers; staff meeting discussions may outline plans for forthcoming issues of the publication; and beat reporters may find their ideas `lodged in long conversations with sources, or in records they have been following over time.'

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Consumer-generated media

Book Mark
Consumer Behaviour
Robert East, Malcolm Wright and Marc Vanhuele(http://www.sagepublications.com/)

Understanding WOM

Consumer-generated media (CGM) on the Internet - such as blogs, discussion groups and e-mailing - has produced a form of influence very similar to WOM (word-of-mouth), write Robert East, Malcolm Wright and Marc Vanhuele in Consumer Behaviour: Applications in marketing.

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Wednesday, February 03, 2010

A 'thought' with personal investment

Manage Mentor
Supercoach
Michael Neill
(http://www.hayhouse.com/)

Succeeding from the inside out

If you find life burdensome and boring, here is Supercoach with 10 secrets from Michael Neill to make a difference to yourself. This is a book about succeeding from the inside out, he writes in the intro. “Traditional coaching takes place primarily on a horizontal dimension — coaches assist their clients in getting from point A to point B. Yet lasting, sustainable change nearly always happens in the vertical dimension — a deepening of the ground of being of the client and greater access to inspiration and spiritual wisdom.”

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To get the bombs to malfunction

Books 2 Byte
Blowback
Mukul Deva
(http://www.harpercollins.co.in/)

Chip rejig

Using a tiny Sony mobile handset, Iqbal calls Captain Sami. “Just two miles away as the crow files, Sami answered his phone. He, along with Tiwathia, Dhankar, Khare and Ankita, were parked at the Officers' Mess behind the military hospital at Khadki,” narrates Mukul Deva in Blowback.

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'Restless' entrepreneurs

Books 2 Byte
India Inc
Vikas Pota
(http://www.nicholasbrealey.com/)

Be extremely restless

Tracing the story of Shiv Nadar, a recent book on top entrepreneurs studies how HCL's investments in R&D have resulted in the company gaining expertise in the hugely profitable aerospace and defence sectors. “Its latest success story is in the field of proprietary technology, allowing it to offer image processing solutions for a whole range of applications, including high-resolution images from satellites,” writes Vikas Pota in India Inc.

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Software 'codes'

Books 2 Byte
Software Engineering: A precise approach
Pankaj Jalote
(http://www.wileyindia.com/)

Industrial-strength software

In the industrial-strength software domain, there are three basic forces at play — viz. cost, schedule, and quality — says Pankaj Jalote in Software Engineering: A precise approach. The software should be produced at a reasonable cost, in a reasonable time, and should be of good quality, he explains.

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Software development

Books 2 Byte
India-China
Ashok Kundra
(http://www.academicfoundation.com/)

Synergies that favour software

The impressive performance of the software sector in attracting investment and augmenting exports is due to the fact that government evolved, implemented, and pursued on a sustained basis a proactive policy, says Ashok Kundra in India-China: A comparative analysis of FDI policy and performance.

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Tips to become a design thinker

Books 2 Byte
The Design of Business
Roger Martin
(http://www.harvardbusiness.org/)

Creating value across the knowledge funnel

Among CEOs, Steve Jobs is widely viewed as a design thinker, thanks to the many captivating products from Apple's stable. But he is not the solitary design genius of popular imagination, writes Roger Martin in The Design of Business: Why design thinking is the next competitive advantage.

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Lesson for CIOs

Books 2 Byte
The Real Business of IT
Richard Hunter and George Westerman
(http://www.harvardbusiness.org/)

IT value that talks business


There has never been a better time for a capable executive to take on the role of CIO (chief information officer), avers a new book from Harvard Business Press. “We would not be surprised to see executives on the CEO track make a point of adding the CIO role to their resumes, just as previous generations of executives sought stints in product management and marketing,” write Richard Hunter and George Westerman in The Real Business of IT: How CIOs create and communicate value.

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Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Venture capitalists are like skilled chefs

BookValue
The Way of the VC
Yinglan Tan
( http://www.wiley.com/)

Winning techniques of star venture capitalists

Do it, run it, teach it, or own it – that's what venture capitalists believe in,
says Yinglan Tan in The Way of the VC: Having top venture capitalists on your board. The relationship between the venture capitalist and the entrepreneur is a lot like tango dancing, he analogises. “Just like a pair of tango dancers, VCs and entrepreneurs must understand each other's roles, coordinate their moves, and work with the same expectations.”

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Problems within financial institutions

BookValue
Conquer the Crash
Robert R. Prechter, Jr.
( http://www.wiley.com/)

Staying alive through the financial crisis

If you are among those who think that money is safe because it is in bank certificates of deposit, corporate bonds, municipal bonds, money-market funds, and so on, Conquer the Crash: You can survive and prosper in a deflationary depression, second edition, has a word of caution: That most of these investments depend upon the solvency of some creditor institution that will probably not survive the developing depression.

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Expanding market share in China

Book Mark
China 2.0
Marina Yue Zhang
(http://www.wiley.com/)

Untapped blue-collar class is long tail of the China market

Being successful in today's China is about more than just generating net revenues; it is about maintaining or even expanding market share, which requires engaging a critical mass of customers, says Marina Yue Zhang in China 2.0. Brand loyalty may not yet be strong for many products and services because of the different developmental stage of Chinese consumers, she adds.

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Media buying and selling

Book Mark
May Lee Live and in Person
May Lee
(http://www.wiley.com/)

It's all about intention

The whole exercise of media buying and selling can be both complicated and rudimentary, finds May Lee in May Lee Live and in Person. "Complicated because of the variables involved when negotiating a licensing deal, such as time period, territories, exclusive or non-exclusive, and platforms - cable, Internet, mobile."

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