Download the free Kindle app and start reading Kindle books instantly on your smartphone, tablet or computer – no Kindle device required. Learn more
Read instantly on your browser with Kindle Cloud Reader.
Using your mobile phone camera, scan the code below and download the Kindle app.
Enter your mobile phone or email address
By pressing ‘Send link’, you agree to Amazon's Conditions of Use.
You consent to receive an automated text message from or on behalf of Amazon about the Kindle App at your mobile number above. Consent is not a condition of any purchase. Message and data rates may apply.
Follow the Author
The Halo Effect: ... and the Eight Other Business Delusions That Deceive Managers Kindle Edition
"I was taken by this book. It destroys myths concerning the attribution of success in the management literature using potent empirical arguments. It should stand as one of the most important management books of all time, and an antidote to those bestselling books by gurus presenting false patter and naive arguments." -- Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of "Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets"
"In "The Halo Effect", Phil Rosenzweig has done us all a great service by speaking the unspeakable. His iconoclastic analysis is a very welcome antidote to the kind of superficial, formulaic, and dumbed-down matter that seems to be the current stock in trade of many popular business books. It's the right book at the right time." -- John R. Kimberly, Henry Bower Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
"Rosenzweig doesn't only poke fun at the mass of bad writing and bad science in the management world. He explains why it is so bad -- and how you can learn from it, despite the efforts of the authors." -- John Kay, "Financial Times" columnist and author of "Everlasting Light Bulbs: How Economics Illuminates the World"
"In "The Halo Effect," Phil Rosenzweig has done us all a great service by speaking the unspeakable. His iconoclastic analysis is a very welcome antidote to the kind of superficial, formulaic, and dumbed-down matter that seems to be the current stock in trade of many popular business books. It's the right book at the right time."-- John R. Kimberly, Henry Bower Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies, The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
- ASIN : B000NY128M
- Publisher : Free Press; Reissue edition (6 February 2007)
- Language : English
- File size : 2232 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 289 pages
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Review this product
Top reviews from other countries
This book provides a major warning that recipes for success in these books are often misleading. It's particularly critical of best sellers like "In Search Of Excellence", "Built To Last" and "Good To Great" for their research methods and extravagant claims.
The problem is the title of the book - the halo effect. It seems that generally people assess successful, growing, profitable companies as having a wide range of virtues while struggling companies must be weak at many things. It sounds sensible but problems occur when a good company becomes bad, despite carrying on with all the virtues.
The book correctly identifies as a big issue that companies don't operate in a vacuum. A company can improve in many different ways but still fall behind an existing competitor or new entrant to the market. It then goes on to talk about the importance of both strategy and execution. Getting one right isn't enough and strategic choices are inevitably uncertain. I welcome this focus on strategy although the development of that body of knowledge isn't without its difficulties.
The book also briefly looks at something that is the focus of Goldrat's Theory Of Constraints. At any time, there is one big leverage point - the constraint - and improvements away from that area will have a disappointing impact.
The author then goes on to look at three successful executive who do things the right way because of their process of recognising opportunities and the associated risks.
I can understand why people give the book a five star rating. I haven't because I'd have liked to have seen more discussion on doing the right things in the right way. Much more time is spent knocking down than building up. I feel this might give people the wrong impression. There is plenty to learn from reading business books and they can inspire people to question what they are doing and what they need to be doing in the future. Many books are bought and not even started, probably more are started and not finished.
I believe you can learn from what people have done to create business success and what others have done or not done that leads to failure. You don't have to keep reinventing the wheel. However the right things to do are dependent on your own situation. Just like in medicine, applying the right cure to the right situation is likely to work, the wrong prescription to a problem won't solve it and may make things worse.
Paul Simister, a business coach who helps business owners who are stuck, get unstuck.
So Rosenzweig's scepticism of the established approach, of describing the attributes of successful companies as a primary means of answering the question why some companies prosper while others fail, is convincing. He argues the case well for scepticism of a number of common delusions, the most basic of them all being the Halo Effect - a natural human tendency to make attributions based on cues we think are reliable. But beauty is in the eye of the beholder. When times were good ABB was a New Age wonder with a great corporate culture, a futuristic organisation and a hero at the helm. When it collapsed ABB was remembered as having a complacent culture, a chaotic organisation and an arrogant leader. ABB had not changed much but the conventional wisdom changed rapidly.
With a wide assortment of specific references to individual companies and people, which maintains the interest in the book, he takes us through the delusions of correlations and causality, single explanations, connecting winning dots, rigorous research and lasting success.
He credits many of the classic business books and deluge of autobiographies of iconic business leaders as being good stories but claims as science they are deeply flawed. They focus attention on the wrong priorities and lead managers in dangerous directions.
Rosenzweig is strong on sceptiscm. But that is the easy bit. What does lead to high performance?
His answers are firstly the risky business of strategic choice - fundamental decisions that set a company apart from its rivals. Strategic decisions are inherently risky - the risk of customer appeal and acceptance, of competitor reaction, of technological change. And it is the assessment and acceptance of this risk with the consequent possibility of failure which sets companies apart. Many fail and the fear of failure is one of the strongest motivators.
And secondly the uncertainties of execution. Flawless execution is, of course, applauded in many books. But Rosenzweig argues it is not the importance of flawless execution across the board, it is the identification of the few elements of execution that are most important to deliver a chosen strategy.
The thrust of the book certainly resonates with my business experience, if underestimating the importance of time, effort and imagination in formulating and constantly revisiting strategic choices. But it is an engrossing read. If it helps you think for yourself then it must be a worthwhile read.
Whether it is "In search of excellence", "Built to Last" or "Good to great", by the end of this book you will I reckon have a more questioning attitude to such works (if not 100% cycnical) because this book challenges many preconceptions and makes you think and look afresh at how one will ever achieve success in business management.
The theme is not just "cutting tall poppies" down to size, but more basically that nothing is as simple or easy as many have claimed in writing such books. His chapter on why "strategy" and "execution" are actually so hard to do well, is alone worth the price of the book for me.
The core argument of the "delusions" being based on too much retropsective story telling is bought full circle by the three examples at the end of companies and business leaders who have in the authors opinion sought to face reality and do not underestimate the uncertainty that faces everyone.
A highly recommended book since it makes its points thoroughly and cogently and as such comes over as thoughtful and provoking of fresh views - as such it is a welcome change from too many of the best selling tirade type books that have come to represent both business but also political and history bestsellers recently. Definitely a book that is long overdue and one hopes will be succesful plus lead to more realism in such future writing.
This would not be too bad, except that many academics rely heavily on the business press as the raw data for their research. After all, it is very difficult, if not impossible, to run true scientific experiments in real life business settings. So academics rely on the business press and their own investigations (much of which are also subject to the Halo Effect) and the situation becomes self perpetuating and the Halo Effect becomes even greater.
The main tenet of this book is to investigate the rationale that underlie many of our most well known business textbooks (e.g. In search of excellence, Built to last, Good to great) and points out the flaws in the logic that underpin many of these books.
Personally, when any business text claims to have the "checklist to success", I always take it with a pinch of salt. The science might be somewhat lacking, however, they do tell a great story (well, the better ones do!). So my faith in business books may not have been that seriously undermined, however, I did find this book a thoroughly interesting read.
Rozenzeig, methodically takes apart both the media commentators and business book authors who talk-up certain 'great' features of successful leaders and then quote the very same features as bad if those leaders encounter a downturn in fortune.
The litmus test Rozenzweig applies is simple, Do these same writers PREDICT either the success or failure of important business leaders? The evidence shows they do not, they simply create a story to explain the rise or demise of leaders in an effort to have SOMETHING to say about it in order to maintain their 'expert' status.
Rozwenzweig clearly demonstrates that all experts can be fooled by randomness especially when its driven by the need to produce a plausible story for a publication deadline or justify a new consulting method to create sales.
This book has serious implications for all business media writers and business book authors, but more importantly for the rest of us who read the statements telling us what happened, we must now take what they say with a bucket of salt and look beyond the story for the evidence.
The book is well written,informative and logical. Every MBA student needs to study this. This book is now compulsory reading for all my staff