The Reinventors: How Extraordinary Companies Pursue Radical Continuous Change By Jason Jennings
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(14 customer reviews)
- Amazon Sales Rank: #16695 in Books
- Published on: 2012-05-10
- Released on: 2012-05-10
- Original language: English
- Number of items: 1
- Dimensions: .0" h x .0" w x .0" l, 1.00 pounds
- Binding: Hardcover
- 256 pages
About the Author
Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful.
Now I'm a believer
By Dan Coughlin
When it comes to Jason Jennings new book, The Reinventors, I would like to quote Neil Diamond: Now, I'm a believer!
Ten years ago I was serving as an outside consultant for a senior-level executive team in a Fortune 200 company. The person in charge of the group talked about reinvention ad nauseam. He would say to his employees, "You need to reinvent yourself. You need to reinvent the way you do employee performance reviews, the way we serve our customers, the way we look as a business, and the way you dress to work." He would pound on his desk, and whenever employees heard the word reinvention their eyes would start to roll. He was so obsessed with reinvention that he practically reinvented his organization to death. He wanted his company to reinvent everything about itself even when it didn't make sense to do so. As a result, I developed an adverse feeling toward the word reinvention.
Then I read this magnificent book, The Reinventors, by Jason Jennings. At the foundation of this book are two tremendously important insights:
First, you should always be willing to reinvent every aspect of yourself, your team, and your organization. Nothing should be sacrosanct. You should be willing to consider for reinvention your values, your mission, your vision, your strategy, your tactics, your products and services, your approach to clients and the marketplace and every other aspect of who you are as an individual, a team, and an organization.
Second, you should never reinvent anything about yourself or your organization unless it makes sense to do so. You should never reinvent some aspect of yourself or your organization just for the sake of reinventing it.
The magic of The Reinventors is found in these two critically important concepts. The greatest companies in the world are willing to constantly reinvent themselves, but they only do so when the reinvention makes sense.
Rarely has a business book ever been more timely than this one. Due largely to the world's dramatic increase in internet activity and the management of data, more people are connected in more ways around the world than ever before to an exponential degree. Change has always been constant, but now there is a constant rate of highly accelerated change. This means every month provides new world opportunities for every enterprise from small to large.
Consequently the ideas in The Reinventors have tremendous practical value right now. Here are some of my favorite ideas from the book:
Build a culture of change and growth. To me, a culture is how people consistently behave. Consequently, if you build an environment where people consistently look to change and grow in meaningful ways, you proactively prepare yourself to deal with changes in the marketplace. Rather than being forced to change, this type of culture is always ready to change when the changes make sense.
One of my favorite stories in the book is in the introduction. Jennings talks about going back to his hometown where he grew up. He finds almost of the businesses he once admired have shut down. In asking long-time residents what had happened, he found the common denominator of failure was an unwillingness to change as the market changed. This is a story so many of us can relate to and makes a powerful point: we can never assume that what worked in the past will work in the future.
Another great example of this in the book is the story of Anderson-McQueen Funeral Home on pages 60-67. It's a great story of how a very traditional business reinvented itself in a declining market and dramatically increased its sustainable, profitable growth.
Kiss a lot of frogs. This is the title of Chapter Four and it makes so many good points about the importance of trying a lot of small ideas to see which ones work and which ones don't. In this chapter, Jennings uses the famous example of the reinvention of Starbucks to highlight the importance of testing lots and lots of small ideas in order to find the necessary insights to reignite a big brand name. Jennings wrote on page 90, "A culture of small bets is a learning culture in which people discover the right paths to new destinations." I think that idea applies to every type of organization.
Who stays, who leads, who goes. This is the title of Chapter Five and it explores the importance of having the right people in place in order to effectively reinvent an organization on a consistent basis.
Forever frugal. On page 153, Jennings wrote, "The lesson is clear: Having too much money or too many resources can actually get in the way of successful reinvention." His point is a powerful one. It's not that having money stashed away is a bad thing. The problem occurs when people think they can throw money at a problem in order to make it go away. That kind of undisciplined approach is what creates even bigger problems. Regardless of your resources, the key is to approach reinvention with a very tight handle on your spending. Invest in small ways, but learn from every action you take.
Ask WTGBRFSTM: What's the Good Business Reason for Spending This Money? This is my favorite question in the book. It is one of the reasons why Jennings has convinced me to be a believer in reinvention. It gets to the very heart of never reinventing just for the sake of reinventing. I encourage you to ask yourself this question every time you are considering to reinvent yourself or your organization.
I encourage you to study The Reinventors very closely. This is a book for the ages, but particularly for this age.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
Change the DNA of your organization for survival and victory
By Mike Grant
Jennings makes it crystal clear: the cost of resisting change in a world that demands constant change should fill every businessperson with dread. We're talking once-thriving commercial downtowns practically abandoned. Busy factories grinding to a halt. It's why everyone must become a reinventor.
He walks you through the process of learning to transform your organization. And shows how not just to stop at finding a better way to go from A to B, but explains how to become a serial reinventor, with the knowledge and momentum to go beyond, to C, D, and E.
Bu this means you must be not just providing value to those willing to pay.... but CONTINUALLY providing value. No gaps. No periods of "reconfiguration." To do this, you must keep growing. Because the people in your organization who can create change need the rewards for their efforts to be there.
So Jennings will show you how to have a highly motivated team that is able to keep ahead of customers constantly changing wants and needs. But he warns, conventional wisdom won't provide continual growth. And so he one by one knocks down the excuses which can prevent growth: Excuses like "It's poor economy," "The ability to grow is not under our control," and "We're too old or big."
Building a culture of growth is a necessity for every organization that wishes to thrive. This has never been truer, and will only become increasingly necessary. No company is entitled to success. It's only through reinvention that companies arrive at the top. And it's only through reinvention that they stay there.
This is destined to be the fundamental text for organizational transformation for years to come. This timely book will wear well, but read it now. The moment for reinvention for your business has not yet passed. But it may soon.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful.
I've read all of Jason's books, and he does not disappoint with The Reinventors. Jason has the unique ability to paint a picture of a company that is sophisticated and insightful not only for the business expert, but for an everyday reader. I highly recommend Jason's latest book the Reinventors.
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