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Thinkers50 Blog

Sharing the wisdom and expertise of the world’s most influential management thinkers.

Leaders thrive on ambiguity

‘To be omnipotent but friendless is to reign,’ wrote Percy Bysshe Shelley. He was right. Even if a leader’s power doesn’t quite...

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Managing Up Without Sucking Up

If “managing up” also makes you think of “sucking up,” here are my straightforward steps to help the squeamish build a successful relationship with their superiors – without feeling manipulative.

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Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer Choice

by Clayton M. Christensen, Taddy Hall, Karen Dillon, and David S. Duncan

Year after year, we as managers collectively spend hundreds of billions on developing new products and services in the hope that they will succeed in our markets. And, year after year, we find that most of these products fail. Success for most managers is essentially a matter of luck. But it need not to be so. The causal mechanism in customers’ calculus is that every day jobs arise in their lives that they need to resolve. Needing to get one of these jobs done is the mechanism that causes customers to buy your product or not. In this book we describe how managers can learn what the salient jobs are arising in customers’ lives, for which they might develop a product that nail these jobs well. It makes the development of exciting new innovations quite predictable.

Stuart Crainer & Des Dearlove

Founders of Thinkers50, Champions of the Best Business Ideas

Photo of Stuart Crainer and Des Dearlove

Stuart and Des have been championing the latest management ideas for more than 25 years.

As authors, their books are available in more than 20 languages and include Gravy Training, Generation Entrepreneur, What We Mean When We Talk About Leadership and the six-book Thinkers50 McGraw Hill book series. They also edited The Financial Times Handbook of Management.

They founded the communications company Suntop Media in 1999. They work as advisers, speakers and coaches to individuals and organizations intent on maximising the impact of their ideas. Stuart and Des’s work in business thought leadership led Management Today to describe them as “market makers par excellence”.

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