Beans: Four Principles for Running a Business in Good Times or Bad

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9780787967642: Beans: Four Principles for Running a Business in Good Times or Bad
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Beans is the story of The El Espresso, a legend in its own time in Seattle and a coffee company that has prospered by intentionally staying small, inspiring fanatical customer loyalty in the process. Told over the span of a single day, it follows The El's founder, Jack Hartman, through a business crisis that will challenge him and make him clear on why he does what he does. Unsure of whether he has lost the passion needed to sustain his business, Jack hires a consultant who flies to Seattle to "help" him but in reality bears witness to the secrets of good business, whether it's a company of 20 employees or 20,000. In the process, Jack learns about "the Four Ps" and how applying these universal principles can reenergize his employees, his customers, and even himself.

Though fictionalized, this is a true story in the best sense of the word. It arrives at a time when people are yearning to return to honest ways of doing business—before corporate dominance, inflated executive salaries, accounting trickery, and outright greed became so much a part of our everyday business headlines. It is the story of how a pushcart David up against the corporate Goliaths succeeded by focusing on what is core to good business and a good life: honoring customers, trusting employees, building passion around a product, and turning an honest profit.

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Review:

Seattle, the corporate coffeehouse capitol of the world, is the setting for Beans, a smart fable about a real ten foot coffee counter with long lines in rain or shine. Using the plot device of a business crisis at the "El Espresso," Authors Yerkes and Decker spend time with owner Jack Hartman. They help him define success in terms of "the eye of intention."

Being successful in bad times means remembering how you got the business the first time. As the very insightful Jack reflects, the authors organize his approach with four P’s: Passion (experience and sustain passion about work), People (create enduring staff relationships), Personal (building a community of regulars), and Product (sustaining product excellence). These "Ps" are prosaic in name only. They are used to illustrate nuanced connections. For example, the link between employee loyalty and customer loyalty and the synergy between an employee’s pride in their product and their devotion to it.

While some readers may find the storyline contrived, the success and the charm of the El and its owner--both renamed to protect the regulars--provide engaging and stimulating ideas about how to nourish a business. --Barbara Mackoff

From the Back Cover:

"As we showed in our book Fish, the best businesses go back to the basics when they are experiencing difficulties. In this delightful and deceptively simple tale of another Seattle-based business, managers and employees in companies of any size can find truth, values, and an inspiring blueprint for better business." — Harry Paul, coauthor, Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results

"This book is like a cup of good coffee: it doesn't take long, it has been carefully pulled using the best ingredients, shared with love and laughter, and meant to promote a conversation, create a jolt, and a burst of energy." — Beverly Kaye, founder and CEO, Career Systems International, and coauthor, Love 'Em or Lose 'Em: Getting Good People to Stay

"Every once in a while a short book comes along that conveys an important message in a simple yet elegant way. Beans is such a book. It brings us back to business basics which seem so obvious, yet often get neglected in the frenetic whirl of day-to-day competition, business hassles, a nd endless change. I love Beans. It reminds me to keep it simple, and to stay focused on what really matters: quality product, personal service, and attention to detail. Thanks for the refreshing reminder; we all need it!" — B. J. Gallagher Hateley, coauthor, A Peacock in the Land of Penguins and What Would Buddha Do At Work?

"Quite simply, this a terrific business story with lessons for people in any kind of company, in any industry. Jack Hartman is the kind of hero readers are going to be cheering for through the last page." — Bob Rosner, syndicated columnist, Working Wounded, and coauthor, The Boss's Survival Guide

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Book Description John Wiley Sons Inc, United States, 2003. Hardback. Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Beans is the story of The El Espresso, a legend in its own time in Seattle and a coffee company that has prospered by intentionally staying small, inspiring fanatical customer loyalty in the process. Told over the span of a single day, it follows The El s founder, Jack Hartman, through a business crisis that will challenge him and make him clear on why he does what he does. Unsure of whether he has lost the passion needed to sustain his business, Jack hires a consultant who flies to Seattle to help him but in reality bears witness to the secrets of good business, whether it s a company of 20 employees or 20,000. In the process, Jack learns about the Four Ps and how applying these universal principles can reenergize his employees, his customers, and even himself. Though fictionalized, this is a true story in the best sense of the word. It arrives at a time when people are yearning to return to honest ways of doing business before corporate dominance, inflated executive salaries, accounting trickery, and outright greed became so much a part of our everyday business headlines. It is the story of how a pushcart David up against the corporate Goliaths succeeded by focusing on what is core to good business and a good life: honoring customers, trusting employees, building passion around a product, and turning an honest profit. Seller Inventory # AAV9780787967642

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