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How: Why How We Do Anything Means…

How: Why How We Do Anything Means Everything...in Business (and in Life)

by Dov Seidman

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Thought provoking discussion of behavior and how what you do matters most. ( )
  ZachMontana | Feb 27, 2014 |
Seidman spends the first half of the book taking about transparency, trust, reputation, and the new inter-connected world. He does a fine job with these topics, but I’ve seen them handled better elsewhere. The second half of the book, which focuses more on Seidman’s philosophy of business is when the book becomes more valuable.

Seidman highlights an empirical study about reputation using eBay’s seller reputation information. Chrysanthos Dellarocas used eBay as an experiment. In a study selling the same product, in the same way, through eBay sellers with different levels in the site’s reputation scores, the study found a measurable difference in price. A seller with a high reputation on average would get a measurable price premium over a seller who did not.

As you might expect, the book is full of stories as examples. One that really caught my eye was the description of four factories as examples of four types of corporate culture. The factories are to be toured and the measuring stick is the use of hard hats. At the first factory, one of lawlessness and anarchy, the factory tour guide does not offer hard hats to the visitors and many workers are seen without hard hats. At the second factory, an example of blind obedience, all workers wear hard hats and the tour guide says everyone has to wear one or they get fired. The tour guide admits that he doesn’t know why he needs to wear it or why the boss also makes him wear blue pants. The third factory is the next step up the corporate culture ladder as an example of informed acquiescence. Hard hats are there for everyone with big signs saying everyone must wear one. But when one member of the tour group asks to be excused from wearing one, the tour guide scampers off trying to find a higher-up to approve the lack of a hard hat.

At the top of the corporate culture is the fourth factory, an example of Seidman’s self-governance. The tour guide insists that everyone wears a hard hat and when that same member of the tour group asks to be excused the tour guide says no. “I take personal responsibility for what happens to you. I don’t want to offend you, and you can call my boss or the owner if you like, but I believe your safety and the safety of everyone are paramount. “

The how of culture is broken into five parts: how we know, how we behave, how we relate, how we recognize, and how we pursue.

One common theme in the book is an indictment of a rules-based culture. Rules-makers “chase human ingenuity, which races along generally complying with the rules while blithely creating new behaviors that exist outside of them.” The example that caught my eye was the clerk who insisted on wearing ties with cartoon characters. His bosses fought him and finally insisted that he obey the rules on permissible neckwear. The clerk acquiesced and showed up the next day with Tasmanian Devil suspenders.

Ultimately, a rules-based governance focuses on the things you can’t do, while a values-based governance focuses on what is desirable.

This ends up with Seidman’s Leadership Framework.

http://http://www.compliancebuilding.com/2012/01/24/why-how-we-do-anything-means... ( )
1 vote dougcornelius | Jan 24, 2012 |
Success in business.
Business ethics.
Organizational effectiveness.
Technological innovations.
  Egaro | Jul 25, 2010 |
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Dov Seidmanprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Clinton, BillForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0471751227, Hardcover)

The flood of information and unprecedented transparency reshaping today’s business world has dramatically changed the rules of the game. It’s no longer what you do that sets you apart from others, but how you do what you do. Whats are commodities, easily duplicated or reverse-engineered. Sustainable advantage and enduring success—for both companies and the people who work for them—now lie in the realm of how, the new frontier of conduct. For more than a decade, Dov Seidman’s pioneering organization, LRN, has helped some of the world’s most respected companies build "do it right," winning cultures. Seidman’s distinct vision of the world, business, and human endeavor has enabled more than ten million people doing business in over 100 countries to outbehave the competition. In HOW: Why How We Do Anything Means Everything . . . in Business (and in Life), Dov Seidman shares his unique approach with you. Through entertaining anecdotes, surprising case studies, cutting-edge research in a wide range of fields, and revealing interviews with a diverse group of business leaders, experts, and everyday people on the front lines, this book explores how we think, how we behave, and how we govern ourselves to uncover the values-driven "hows" of 21st-century success.

Divided into four comprehensive parts, this insightful guide:Exposes the forces and factors that have fundamentally changed the world in which business operates, placing a new focus on the hows with which we conduct ourselvesProvides frameworks to help you understand these hows and implement them in powerful and productive waysHelps you channel your actions and decisions to thrive uniquely within today’s new business realitiesSheds light on the systems of how—the dynamics between people that shape organizational culture—and introduces a bold new vision for winning through self-governance

The qualities that many once thought of as "soft"—trust, integrity, values, and reputation—are now the hard currency of business success and the ultimate drivers of efficiency, productivity, and profitability. With in-depth insights and practical advice, HOW will help you bring excellence and significance to your business endeavors—and your life—and refocus your efforts in powerful new ways. If you want to stand out, to thrive in our fast changing, hyperconnected, and hypertransparent world, open this book and discover HOW.

Dov Seidman’s professional career has focused on how companies and their people can operate in both a principled and profitable way. He is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of LRN. Leading companies such as Disney, Dow Chemical, eBay, Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble, Raytheon, and 3M turn to LRN to help management govern more effectively and workers do the right things the right way, even in the most challenging of situations. Dov is a Harvard Law School graduate who also earned a bachelor’s and master’s degree in philosophy from UCLA, and a BA with honors in philosophy, politics, and economics from Oxford University. For more on this book, visit www.HowsMatter.com.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:21 -0400)

Reveals how businesses and leaders can create lasting success by explaining how companies can shape their corporate cultures to build strong, principled organizations that achieve sustainable profits without sacrificing core values.

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