What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time

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9781439243213: What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time
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As informative as it is instructive, What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time by Walt Geer takes an original slant on the corporate world. In this entertaining fable, the author describes how a simple eight-step strategy can dramatically improve business processes. For a challenge, the parable’s protagonist, Joe, leaves a bright future to join AMD, a fledgling company. The new VP of operations, he inherits a dysfunctional staff and is subject to a barrage of consumer complaints. His strategy is simple: reestablish customer confidence. By studying the competition and gaining a competitive advantage, he is determined to distinguish AMD from its rivals and reestablish its dominance in the market. Finding it easier said than done, Joe enlists an old friend who leads him to consider the relevance of an “I Love Lucy” episode that transforms Joe’s understanding of how work gets done.

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About the Author:

Walter T. Geer is president and CEO of The CA Group. His career spans three decades in with private sector Fortune 100 organizations such as Philip Morris USA, Duracell, and GE, as well as in higher education where he served in senior administrative roles at the State University of New York, Community College System of Massachusetts and Harvard University. His expertise is in information technology, strategic planning, business process reengineering, and technical leadership training. He lives in Boston. What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time is his first book.

Review:

One of the more interesting subgenres in the business book category is the fable. Popularized in the 1980s by The One Minute Manager and in the 1990s by Who Moved My Cheese, the fable is a short story about a business challenge told in narrative style. Typically, such books offer a quick read while teaching a valuable management lesson.

Walter Geer's What Lucy Taught Us does a fine job of representing the fable style. Instead of concentrating on general management, however, Geer pinpoints business process. More often than not, business process is a painfully boring subject to read about, but Geer's fable presents readers with a refreshingly different alternative.

To dramatize the problems associated with business process, the author draws on a classic episode of the old television show, I Love Lucy, in which Lucy and her friend Ethel work in a candy factory and find themselves overwhelmed by the production line. Geer writes, "Its famous scene of Lucy and Ethel frantically wrapping candy (and missing quite a few!) resonates even more today as businesses struggle with productivity, efficiency, and the need to do more with less."

Geer proceeds to weave a tale about a new vice president of operations at a medical products company who is faced with the challenge of bringing together disparate parts of the organization. The manager is embroiled in personalities and politics while being pressured by his boss to make improvements rapidly. He turns to a colleague, who agrees to help by facilitating a meeting with the manager's direct reports. Geer ingeniously integrates the I Love Lucy episode as part of the facilitator's solution to the problem.

The president and CEO of the CA Group, a consulting organization, Geer does an excellent job of painting a picture of the company's problems. His descriptions of each character are finely drawn so as to make them believable. He provides touches of humor and drama to give the fable realism. The introduction of the facilitator into the fable makes the point that business process problems are not always easy to solve from the inside; sometimes an objective outside perspective is required. Ultimately, the point of the story is that people in an organization usually understand their own part of the process, but not necessarily how it fits into the overall process. Often, the process itself is inefficient and needs to be corrected.

Managers in companies large and small will be able to relate to the story and take something away. The story's universal message makes it relevant to any type of business. The simple eight-step process improvement model included at the end of the fable gives managers a valuable tool to apply to their own situations.

What Lucy Taught Us is a business book that, despite its short length, is likely to have a large and lasting impact on readers. --Barry Silverstein, ForeWord Clarion Reviews Barry Silverstein,

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Book Description Booksurge Publishing, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. As informative as it is instructive, What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time by Walt Geer takes an original slant on the corporate world. In this entertaining fable, the author describes how a simple eight-step strategy can dramatically improve business processes. For a challenge, the parable's protagonist, Joe, leaves a bright future to join AMD, a fledgling company. The new VP of operations, he inherits a dysfunctional staff and is subject to a barrage of consumer complaints. His strategy is simple: reestablish customer confidence. By studying the competition and gaining a competitive advantage, he is determined to distinguish AMD from its rivals and reestablish its dominance in the market. Finding it easier said than done, Joe enlists an old friend who leads him to consider the relevance of an "I Love Lucy" episode that transforms Joe's understanding of how work gets done. Seller Inventory # APC9781439243213

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Book Description Booksurge Publishing, United States, 2009. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. As informative as it is instructive, What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time by Walt Geer takes an original slant on the corporate world. In this entertaining fable, the author describes how a simple eight-step strategy can dramatically improve business processes. For a challenge, the parable's protagonist, Joe, leaves a bright future to join AMD, a fledgling company. The new VP of operations, he inherits a dysfunctional staff and is subject to a barrage of consumer complaints. His strategy is simple: reestablish customer confidence. By studying the competition and gaining a competitive advantage, he is determined to distinguish AMD from its rivals and reestablish its dominance in the market. Finding it easier said than done, Joe enlists an old friend who leads him to consider the relevance of an "I Love Lucy" episode that transforms Joe's understanding of how work gets done. Seller Inventory # APC9781439243213

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Book Description BookSurge Publishing. Paperback. Condition: New. 102 pages. Dimensions: 8.0in. x 5.1in. x 0.4in.As informative as it is instructive, What Lucy Taught Us: A Management Fable about Improving Your Business One Process at a Time by Walt Geer takes an original slant on the corporate world. In this entertaining fable, the author describes how a simple eight-step strategy can dramatically improve business processes. For a challenge, the parables protagonist, Joe, leaves a bright future to join AMD, a fledgling company. The new VP of operations, he inherits a dysfunctional staff and is subject to a barrage of consumer complaints. His strategy is simple: reestablish customer confidence. By studying the competition and gaining a competitive advantage, he is determined to distinguish AMD from its rivals and reestablish its dominance in the market. Finding it easier said than done, Joe enlists an old friend who leads him to consider the relevance of an I Love Lucy episode that transforms Joes understanding of how work gets done. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Paperback. Seller Inventory # 9781439243213

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