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Saturday, August 14, 2010

Chasing Goldman Sachs: How the Masters of the Universe Melted Wall Street Down . . . And Why They'll Take Us to the Brink Again




From Booklist
Business journalist McGee paints Wall Street as a utility with capital flowing through the system like an electric power grid, noting why it almost failed. She describes the pressure on the U.S. House of Representatives in 2008 to bail out Wall Street firms, why Wall Street was called an “abstraction,” and how Wall Street morphed from an intermediary (raising capital) into a casino. Goldman Sachs was the master of its universe, generating average return on equity of 25.4 percent in the decade before the financial crisis, compared with 15 percent annually for four other firms during the same period. Other firms' CEOs chased Goldman Sachs, considering it their model for boosting their own personal wealth and keeping shareholders happy. The author reports, “When left to their own devices, financial services firms . . . will focus almost monomaniacally on what is in their own best interest, seeking out ways to take earn sichigher returns and recruit top talent by paying the most lavish bonuses and offering the most enticing perks. . . . They cannot help themselves.” Excellent book. --Mary Whaley

Review
"...masterful...exceptionally lucid, well-written"--Washington Post

“…must-read on the venerable Wall Street firm [Goldman Sachs].”— Dow Jones’ FINS

“A disturbing account of how Goldman Sachs Group Inc. became a seductively successful Pied Piper, luring rival banks down a path to destruction.”— Bloomberg

“McGee’s book is full of entertaining and enlightening material.” — Financial Times

“McGee has taken it upon herself to make the case less through assertion or argument than through anecdote and appeal to authority.” — New York Times Book Review

“…a great look at a current event for the general reader.”— Library Journal

Click here to buy Chasing Goldman Sachs from Amazon.com




Turnaround : How Carlos Ghosn Rescued Nissan



Editorial Reviews
From Publishers Weekly

The facts of Magee's account are quite startling. Nissan, once a darling of the automotive world, with its cheap Datsun pickups and stylish, spunky Z roadsters, had, by the 1990s, fallen on hard times. Saddled with billions in debt, the company merged with Renault in 1999, and a Renault v-p, Carlos Ghosn, was named Nissan's new CEO. Routing not only every naysayer in the auto industry, Ghosn, who was born to Lebanese parents in Brazil, also had to overcome an entrenched Japanese business culture that at that time had seemed to stress perks, seniority and relationships over the bottom line. Given complete control over the company, Ghosn slashed costs and laid off employees, as was expected, but also instituted a sweeping reorganization of the entire company, announced an ambitious slate of new vehicles and promised that if Nissan was not profitable in 2000, he and his entire managerial staff would quit. Journalist Magee lays out Ghosn's management style, his mantra of complete transparency and responsibility, and all the tiny victories that went into returning Nissan to the top ranks of automakers. His approach can be hagiographic, but this profile of an astoundingly effective CEO (one of the few who might have actually earned his large salary) is sure to inspire.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

From Booklist
This the story of the dramatic comeback of Nissan under the leadership of CEO Carlos Ghosn. The ultimate international businessman, Ghosn is of Lebanese descent, born in Brazil and raised as a French citizen. He saved Renault first and then Nissan from bankruptcy by using drastic cost-cutting measures and by fully engaging the workforce from the ground up to stimulate creative innovation. In order to do so, he had to implement Western-style changes, such as plant closings and layoffs, and risk alienating a Japanese culture used to life-long job security. In 1999, Ghosn unveiled his Nissan Revival Plan and made headlines by pledging to quit if the ailing company was not profitable within one year. He proved all the doubters wrong when he announced that fiscal year 2000 was not only profitable but had posted the best financial performance in the company's history. Magee's report is a fine lesson in the adage that "there are no problems at a car company good products can't solve." David Siegfried
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Ghosn Factor: 24 Inspiring Lessons From Carlos Ghosn, the Most Successful Transitional CEO by Miguel Rivas-Micoud



24 Management Philosophies of Sucessful CEO of Nissan - Renault, Carlos Ghosn
whom revived Nissan from verge of collapse return to state of competitive.
One of the most active CEO and Change Catalyst.
Overview

Get inside the mind and the methods of one of the most innovative leaders in the world-and learn to emulate his success

In 1999, Nissan's market share was plunging, and the company was billions in debt. Carlos Ghosn's successful implementation of his ?Nissan Revival? created record profits-and made him a business legend around the world. Now the CEO of both Nissan and Renault, Carlos Ghosn is a management icon everyone wants to understand.

The Ghosn Factor, examines the life, works, and words of Carlos Ghosn, exploring what principles guide him, what goals drive him, and how he has succeeded where other CEOs have failed.


About Author
Miguel Rivas-Micoud is the co-author of Renaissance, Carlos Ghosn's only official and authorized autobiography. He is a professor of English in the law faculty of Meiji University in Tokyo and author of numerous books and articles on language, society, management, politics, and economics. He is a contributing editor to the Diamond Harvard Business Review.

Click here to buy The Ghosn Factor: 24 Inspiring Lessons From Carlos Ghosn from Abebooks.com

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Saturday, June 26, 2010

1,000 Places to See in the U.S.A. & Canada Before You Die by Patricia Schultz



Book Description
It's the phenomenon: 1,000 Places to See Before You Die has 2.2 million copies in print and has spent 144 weeks and counting on The New York Times bestseller list.

Now, shipping in time for the tens of millions of travelers heading out for summer trips, comes 1,000 Places to See in the U.S.A. & Canada Before You Die. Sail the Maine Windjammers out of Camden. Explore the gold-mining trails in Alaska's Denali wilderness. Collect exotic shells on the beaches of Captiva. Take a barbecue tour of Kansas City—from Arthur Bryant's to Gates to B.B.'s Lawnside to Danny Edward's to LC's to Snead's. There's the ice hotel in Quebec, the Great Stalacpipe Organ in Virginia, cowboy poetry readings, what to do in Louisville after the Derby's over, and for every city, dozens of unexpected suggestions and essential destinations.

The book is organized by region, and subject-specific indices in the back sort the book by interest—wilderness, great dining, best beaches, world-class museums, sports and adventures, road trips, and more. There's also an index that breaks out the best destinations for families with children. Following each entry is the nuts and bolts: addresses, websites, phone numbers, costs, best times to visit.

From the Back Cover
It's a traveler's life list, a guide, an inspiration, a memory book. Open it to check out where you've been, and where you should go next. What to see and what to do and what to show the kids. Where to eat and where to stay. And how to change your life.

Covering the U.S.A. and Canada like never before, here are 1,000 spectacular, compelling, essential, offbeat, utterly unforgettable places. Pristine beaches and national parks, world-class museums and the Corn Palace, mountain resorts, salmon-rich rivers, scenic byways, Chez Panisse and the country's best taco, lush gardens and Holden Arboretum, mountain biking on the Maah Daah Hey trail, historic mansions, vineyards, hot springs, the Talladega Superspeedway, classic ballparks, and more. Includes more than 150 places of special interest to families, and, for every entry, the nuts and bolts of how and when to visit. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author
Patricia Schultz is the author of 1,000 Places to See Before You Die and Executive Producer of the Travel Channel’s reality show of the same name. Based in New York City, she’s also written for Condé Nast Traveler, Islands, and Harper’s Bazaar.

Click here to buy 1,000 Places to See in the U.S.A. & Canada Before You Die from Abebooks.com

Click here to buy 1,000 Places to See in the U.S.A. & Canada Before You Die from Amazon.com

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Friday, May 28, 2010

Sean Connery: Neither Shaken nor Stirred by Andrew Yule










Product Description
From humble beginnings as a milkman and coffin-polisher to one of the world’s biggest box-office names, Sean Connery is one of Hollywood’s all-time greatest success stories. The star of nearly 80 films, Connery is perhaps still best known for his seven performances as James Bond. Indeed, for many movie fans Connery’s 007 is unsurpassed to this day. But how did this working-class Scot come to embody the quintessentially English agent? This definitive biography reveals Connery’s early successes and failures—both personal and professional—and looks at the little-known life behind the cameras. Frank and thorough, this is a complete look at the film world’s classic charismatic hard man.


About the Author
Andrew Yule is the author of numerous biographies of film personalities, including Fast Fade, Picture Shows, and Steven Spielberg.



Sunday, May 23, 2010

Crisis Economics: A Crash Course in the Future of Finance by Nouriel Roubini and Stephen Mihm


This myth shattering book reveals the methods Nouriel Roubini used to foretell the current crisis before other economists saw it coming and shows how those methods can help us make sense of the present and prepare for the future.
Renowned economist Nouriel Roubini electrified his profession and the larger financial community by predicting the current crisis well in advance of anyone else. Unlike most in his profession who treat economic disasters as freakish once-in­a-lifetime events without clear cause, Roubini, after decades of careful research around the world, realized that they were both probable and predictable. Armed with an unconventional blend of historical analysis and global economics, Roubini has forced politicians, policy makers, investors, and market watchers to face a long-neglected truth: financial systems are inherently fragile and prone to collapse. Drawing on the parallels from many countries and centuries, Nouriel Roubini and Stephen Mihm, a professor of economic history and a New York Times Magazine writer, show that financial cataclysms are as old and as ubiquitous as capitalism itself. The last two decades alone have witnessed comparable crises in countries as diverse as Mexico, Thailand, Brazil, Pakistan, and Argentina. All of these crises-not to mention the more sweeping cataclysms such as the Great Depression-have much in common with the current downturn. Bringing lessons of earlier episodes to bear on our present predicament, Roubini and Mihm show how we can recognize and grapple with the inherent instability of the global financial system, understand its pressure points, learn from previous episodes of irrational exuberance, pinpoint the course of global contagion, and plan for our immediate future. Perhaps most important, the authors-considering theories, statistics, and mathematical models with the skepticism that recent history warrants- explain how the world's economy can get out of the mess we're in, and stay out. In Roubini's shadow, economists and investors are increasingly realizing that they can no longer afford to consider crises the black swans of financial history. A vital and timeless book, Crisis Economics proves calamities to be not only predictable but also preventable and, with the right medicine, curable.


Editorial Reviews
Amazon.com Review
Ian Bremmer and Nouriel Roubini: Author One-to-One
In this Amazon exclusive, we brought together authors Ian Bremmer and Nouriel Roubini and asked them to interview each other.

Ian Bremmer is the president of Eurasia Group, the world's leading global political risk research and consulting firm. He has written for The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Newsweek, Foreign Affairs, and other publications, and his books include The End of the Free Market, The J Curve, and The Fat Tail. Read on to see Ian Bremmer's questions for Nouriel Roubini, or turn the tables to see what Roubini asked Bremmer.

Bremmer: You argue in your book [Crisis Economics: A Crash Course in the Future of Finance] that financial crises are not unpredictable “black swan” events but, rather, can be forecast – in effect, white swans. What do you mean by that?

Roubini: My friend Nassim Taleb popularized the concept of “Black Swans,” those economic and financial events that are sudden, unexpected and unpredictable. But if you look at financial crises through history – and the earliest is the Tulipmania in the Netherlands in the 17th Century – you see a pattern that is highly regular and predictable: An asset bubble – often in real estate or in stock markets or in a new industry – leads to financial euphoria, excessive risk taking, an accumulation of excessive debt and leverage. So the signposts of this phase — asset boom and bubble, followed by the eventual bust and crash — are highly predictable if one looks at the economic and financial indicators that show the build-up of such excesses. Thus, financial boom and bust are predictable white swan events, not unpredictable and random black swans. Financial crises have repeatedly occurred for hundreds of years and they follow quite regular pattern. That is why my book is about “crisis economics”, a phenomenon that is becoming more of a rule than an exception. Financial crises that should have occurred once in 100 years now occur more frequently and with greater virulence than in the past; and their economic, fiscal, financial and social costs are rising.

The trouble is that in the bubble phase nearly everyone, the exception being a few critical analysts, is swept in a delusional bubble mania of irrational euphoria: households, financial institutions, investors, governments, spinmeisters all of whom profit from the bubble, including Ponzi-schemers who concoct their houses of cards and financial con games. So, in each bubble there are cranks who argue that this time is different and that the bubble is driven by a fundamental brave new world of ever rising growth and profits. Then, when the boom and bubble turns into a bust and crash, a reality check occurs and financial depression sets in.

Bremmer: Who is to blame the most for the recent financial crisis? Who were the culprits of the latest one?

Roubini: The list of culprits is very long. The Fed kept interest rates too low for too long in the earlier part the past decade and fed — pun intended — the housing and credit bubble. Bankers and investors on Wall Street and in financial institutions were greedy, arrogant and reckless in their risk taking and build-up of leverage because they were compensated based on short term profits. As a result, they generated toxic loans – subprime mortgages and other mortgages and loans – that borrowers could not afford and then packaged these mortgages and loans into toxic securities – the entire alphabet soup of structured finance products, so-called “SIVs” like MBSs – Mortgage-Backed Securities, or CDOs – Collateralized Debt Obligations -- and even CDOs of CDOs. These were new, complex, exotic, non-transparent, non-traded, marked-to-model rather than market-to-market and mis-rated by the rating agencies. Indeed, the rating agencies were also culprits as they had massive conflicts of interest: they made most of their profits from mis-rating these new instruments and being paid handsomely by the issuers. Also, the regulators and supervisors were asleep at the wheel as the ideology in Washington for the last decade was one of laissez faire “Wild West” capitalism with little prudential regulation and supervision of banks and other financial institutions.

Bremmer: In the book you express concern that following the massive leveraging of the private sector there is now a massive re-leveraging of the public sector that will put the economic recovery at risk. Why such worries?

Roubini: The Great Recession of 2008-2009 was triggered by excessive debt accumulation and leverage on the part of households, financial institutions and even the corporate sector in many advanced economies. While there is much talk about de-leveraging as the crisis wanes, the reality is that private-sector debt ratios have stabilized at very high levels. By contrast, as a consequence of fiscal stimulus and socialization of part of the private sector’s losses, there is now a massive re-leveraging of the public sector. Deficits in excess of 10% of GDP can be found in many advanced economies, including America’s, and debt-to-GDP ratios are expected to rise sharply – in some cases doubling in the next few years.

Such balance-sheet crises have historically led to economic recoveries that are slow, anemic, and below-trend for many years. Sovereign-debt problems are another strong possibility, given the massive re-leveraging of the public sector. In countries that cannot issue debt in their own currency (traditionally emerging-market economies), or that issue debt in their own currency but cannot independently print money (as in the eurozone), unsustainable fiscal deficits often lead to a credit crisis, a sovereign default, or other coercive form of public-debt restructuring. In countries that borrow in their own currency and can monetize the public debt, a sovereign debt crisis is unlikely, but monetization of fiscal deficits can eventually lead to high inflation. And inflation is – like default – a capital levy on holders of public debt, as it reduces the real value of nominal liabilities at fixed interest rates.

Thus, the recent problems faced by Greece are only the tip of a sovereign-debt iceberg in many advanced economies (and a smaller number of emerging markets). Bond-market vigilantes already have taken aim at Greece, Spain, Portugal, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and Iceland, pushing government bond yields higher. Eventually they may take aim at other countries – even Japan and the United States – where fiscal policy is on an unsustainable path.

Bremmer: Should we then worry about the risk of a collapse of the European Monetary Union--the so-called “eurozone?”

Roubini: This is a serious and rising risk. The dilemma for Greece and the other fiscally challenge countries dubbed the PIIGS — that’s Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, Spain — is that, whereas fiscal consolidation is necessary to prevent an unsustainable increase in the spread on sovereign bonds, the short-run effects of raising taxes and cutting government spending tend to cause economic contraction. This, too, complicates the public-debt dynamics and impedes the restoration of public-debt sustainability. Indeed, this was the trap faced by Argentina in 1998-2001, when needed fiscal contraction exacerbated recession and eventually led to default.

In countries like the eurozone members, a loss of external competitiveness, caused by tight monetary policy and a strong currency, erosion of long-term comparative advantage relative to emerging markets, and wage growth in excess of productivity growth, impose further constraints on the resumption of growth. If growth does not recover, the fiscal problems will worsen while making it more politically difficult to enact the painful reforms needed to restore competitiveness.

A vicious circle of public-finance deficits, current-account gaps, worsening external-debt dynamics, and stagnating growth can then set in. Eventually, this can lead to default on euro-zone members’ public and foreign debt, as well as exit from the monetary union by fragile economies unable to adjust and reform fast enough.

Provision of liquidity by an international lender of last resort – the European Central Bank, the IMF, or even a new European Monetary Fund – could prevent an illiquidity problem from turning into an insolvency problem. But if a country is effectively insolvent rather than just illiquid, such “bailouts” cannot prevent eventual default and devaluation (or exit from a monetary union) because the international lender of last resort eventually will stop financing an unsustainable debt dynamic, as occurred Argentina (and in Russia in 1998). Thus, the weakest links of the EMU – countries such as Greece may be eventually be forced to default and to exit the monetary union to regain their competitiveness and growth through a depreciation of their new national currency.

Bremmer: So how can we properly deal with the fallout of financial crises? How to properly reduce private and public debts?

Roubini: Cleaning up high private-sector debt and lowering public-debt ratios by growth alone is particularly hard if a balance-sheet crisis leads to an anemic recovery. And reducing debt ratios by saving more leads to the paradox of thrift: too fast an increase in savings deepens the recession and makes debt ratios even worse.

At the end of the day, resolving private-sector leverage problems by fully socializing private losses and re-leveraging the public sector is risky. At best, taxes will eventually be raised and spending cut, with a negative effect on growth; at worst, the outcome may be direct capital levies (default) or indirect ones (the inflation tax if large budget deficits are sharply monetized).

Unsustainable private-debt problems must be resolved by defaults, debt reductions, and conversion of debt into equity. If, instead, private debts are excessively socialized, the advanced economies will face a grim future: serious sustainability problems with their public, private, and foreign debt, together with crippled prospects for economic growth.

Bremmer: In the book you propose radical reforms of the system of regulation and supervision of banks and other financial institutions and criticize the more cosmetic reforms now considered by the US Congress and in other countries. Why the need for radical reform?

Roubini: If reforms will be cosmetic we will not prevent future asset and credit bubbles and we will experience new and more virulent crises. The currently proposed reforms of “too-big-to-fail” financial institutions are not sufficient: imposing higher capital levies on these firms and have a resolution regime for an orderly shutdown of large systemically important insolvent firms will not work. If a financial firm is too-big-to-fail it is just too big: it should be broken up to make it less systemically important. And in the heat of the next crisis using a resolution regime to close down too-big-to-fail firms will be very hard; thus, the temptation to bail them out again will be dominant.

Also, the modest Volcker Rule – that may not even be passed by Congress because of the banking lobbies power – does not go far enough. It correctly points out that banking institutions that have access to insured deposits and to the lender of last resort support of the Fed should not be allowed to engage into risky activities such as prop trading, hedge funds and private investments. But more needs to be done: we need to go back to the more radical separation between commercial and investment banking that the Glass Steagall Act had imposed. Repealing this Act was a mistake that led to excessive risk taking and leverage by both banks and non-bank financial institutions.

Finally, the government should regulate much more tightly toxic and dangerous over-the-counter derivative instruments; and compensation of bankers and traders should be subject to radical “clawbacks”: bonuses should not be paid outright but go into a fund and clawed back if the initial investments/trades turned out to be risky and money losing over time.

Bremmer: Have we learned the lessons from the last financial crisis or are we planting the seeds of the next one?

Roubini: I fear that we have not learned those lessons and that part of the policy response is now creating a new global asset bubble that will cause a bigger financial crisis in the next few years. For one thing, there is a lot of talk about better regulation an supervision of the financial system but the financial industry is back to business as usual – rebuilding leverage, engaging in prop trading and other risk behavior, compensating bankers and traders with indecent bonuses - and is lobbying against better regulation and supervision. Governments are talking about reforms but almost no one has implemented them.

In the meanwhile interest rates remain close to zero in most advanced economies and they are also very low in many overheating emerging markets. Also dollar funded carry trades are feeding asset bubbles globally. Thus, part of the sharp rise in risky asset prices since March 2009 is driven by a wall of liquidity chasing assets that are becoming overpriced: US and global equities, credit, oil and commodity prices, emerging markets asset prices. And if this bubble eventually gets out of hand the eventual bust could lead to another and bigger global financial crisis in the next two or three years.

Review
"A succinct, lucid and compelling account of the causes and consequences of the great meltdown of 2008"
-Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times


"A rigorous yet highly readable look at why booms and busts occur and how to keep them from wreaking havoc on the real economy"
-Bloomberg


Thursday, May 13, 2010

Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings by Philip A. Fisher


"I am 15% Fisher and 85% Graham" - Warren Buffet

Phillip Arthur Fisher (September 8, 1907 – March 11, 2004) is considered a pioneer in the field of growth investing. Morningstar has called him "one of the great investors of all time". His career spanned 74 years--but was more diverse than growth stock picking. He did early venture capital and private equity, advised chief executives, wrote and taught. He had an impact. For decades, big names in investing claimed Dad as a mentor, role model, inspirations.

Phil Fisher was one of only three people ever to teach the investment course at Stanford's Graduate School of Business. He taught Jack McDonald, the course's current professor. For 40 years Jack has seen to it that you can't get past that class without reading Phil Fisher. Dad last lectured at Stanford for Jack four years ago. He had a knack for getting great minds to think their own thoughts--but bigger than they would have conceived otherwise on their own. Many disciples described this experience to me.


Review
"...written by American Investment genius.... We are delighted to have the opportunity to reproduce an extract from this classic, recently reissued..." (Financial Director, November 2003)
"...these updated classics are packed with investment wisdom..." (What Investment, November 2003)


Product Description
Critical Praise for Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings
"You will find lots of jewels in these pages that may do as much for you as they have for me."
–– Kenneth L. Fisher

"I sought out Phil Fisher after reading his Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings. When I met him, I was as impressed by the man as by his ideas. A thorough understanding of the business, obtained by using Phil’s techniques . . . enables one to make intelligent investment commitments."
–– Warren Buffett

"Little known to the public, rarely interviewed, and accepting few clients, Philip Fisher is nevertheless read and studied by most thoughtful investment professionals . . . everyone will profit from pondering–as Warren Buffett has done–the investment principles Fisher espouses."
–– James W. Michaels
former editor, Forbes

"My own copy [of Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings] has underlinings and marginal thoughts throughout."
–– John Train
author of Dance of the Money Bees

Updated features include a new Preface and Introduction from Kenneth L. Fisher

Widely respected and admired, Philip Fisher is among the most influential investors of all time. His investment philosophies, introduced almost forty years ago, are not only studied and applied by today’s finance professionals, but are also regarded by many as gospel. Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings reveals these timeless philosophies.

Click here to buy Common Stocks and Uncommon Profits and Other Writings of Philip fisher from Amazon.com

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Execution Premium by Robert S.Kaplan and David P. Norton



In this book you will find about

-Why your firm must link strategy with operations
-How to accomplish that goal in six stages
-Why you need a central oversight unit
-Where quality programs like Six Sigma fit in
-Why executive support is vital in aligning operations and strategy

The reason why this book is so special.

Senior executives love to plan strategies. They believe this puts them in the exalted company of Napoleon, Sun-Tzu and Clausewitz. Indeed, for CEOs and their corporate management team, developing strategy is the heart of leadership. Unfortunately, most companies end up with strategies that are not linked to their actual operations. The result? Strategy that is not strategic, since companies are unable to implement it. Strategy experts Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton created the Balanced Scorecard and Strategy Maps and have now developed a versatile, 6-stage program your corporation can use to mesh its strategy with its operations. Their approach already works for numerous top-flight organizations. get Abstract applauds this outstanding book. It is an exceptionally worthwhile read, especially given its invaluable case studies. Readers who are not grounded in sophisticated, strategic systems, such as Six Sigma and Balanced Scorecard, will be in over their heads starting on page one.

Product Description
In a world of stiffening competition, business strategy is more crucial than ever. Yet most organizations struggle in this area--not with formulating strategy but with executing it, or putting their strategy into action. Owing to execution failures, companies realize just a fraction of the financial performance promised in their strategic plans.

It doesn't have to be that way, maintain Robert Kaplan and David Norton in The Execution Premium. Building on their breakthrough works on strategy-focused organizations, the authors describe a multistage system that enables you to gain measurable benefits from your carefully formulated business strategy. This book shows you how to:

-Develop an effective strategy--with tools such as SWOT analysis, vision formulation, and strategic change agendas
-Plan execution of the strategy--through portfolios of strategic initiatives linked to strategy maps and Balanced Scorecards
-Put your strategy into action--by integrating operational tools such as process dashboards, rolling forecasts, and activity-based costing
-Test and update your strategy--using carefully designed management meetings to review operational and strategic data

Drawing on extensive research and detailed case studies from a broad array of industries, The Execution Premium presents a systematic and proven framework for achieving the financial results promised by your strategy.


About the Author
Robert S. Kaplan is the Baker Foundation Professor at the Harvard Business School. He has been a codeveloper of both activity-based costing and the Balanced Scorecard.



David P. Norton is a founder and director of the Palladium Group, a consultancy focusing on strategy execution, and is codeveloper of the Balanced Scorecard.

Click here to buy Execution Premium from Amazon.com

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Friday, April 9, 2010

Original Intent: The Courts, the Constitution, & Religion by David Barton




Product Description
This book deals with what the author calls "judicial micromanagement" of the American government, charging that the courts have virtually rewritten the liberties enumerated in the Constitution. He proposes ideas for returning to "original intent.


About the Author
David Barton is founder and president of WallBuilders, a national pro-family organization which distributes historical, legal, and statistical information, and helps citizens become active in their local schools and communities. He was appointed by the Texas State Board of Education and the California Academic Standards Commission to review their History/Social Studies standards.
David is the recipient of several national and international awards, including the Daughters of the American Revolution Medal of Honor; the George Washington Honor Medal; two Angel Awards for excellence in media and educational medium, many Who's Who, and numerous other awards.

He is the author of numerous books on historical, legal, and educational issues. David is a national conference speaker and a frequent consultant to state and federal legislators.

Price : 440 THB


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Friday, April 2, 2010

Battle Angel Alita: Last Order / Gunnm: Last Order, Vol. 12 (Battle Angel Alita (Graphic Novels))



Product Description
A sophisticated science fiction tale packed with action, black humor, and philosophical, historical, and cultural references! R to L (Japanese Style). "Angel Redux"This time, Alita returns in an unprecedented form (Check out this volume's cover for details!) it seems no one can touch--not even Super Nova! Then Agi Mbadi, the dictator of Ketheres, goes on the offensive. If he cancels the Z.O.T.T. for "safety reasons," will Alita's dream of independence for Tiphares and the Scrapyard be crushed forever? Master manga creater Yukito Kishiro returns, accompanied by his most celebrated character, cyborg sweetheart Battle Angel Alita. Meet Kishiro's latest bevy of bizarre and tormented characters and catch up with your favorite friends and foes! A sophisticated science fiction tale packed with action, black humor, and philosophical, historical, and cultural references!

About the Author
At 17, he won one of Shueisha's manga contests, but opted to go onto art school instead of ploughing straight into the manga industry. Yukito Kishiro is also the author of Ashen Victor, Aqua Knight, and Battle Angel Alita: Last Order.

Click here to buy Battle Angel Alita: Last Order / Gunnm:Last Order, Vol. 12 from Amazon.com



Battle Angel Alita / Gunnm , Vol. 1 (Battle Angel Alita (Graphic Novels)) , Yukito Kishiro


Amazon.com Review
In the first volume of Yukito Kishiro'sBattle Angel Alita /Gunnm , Daisuke Ido discovers a badly damaged cyborg in the trash heap beneath the floating city of Tiphares, which he rebuilds and names Alita. She has no memory of her previous life, but when she is drawn into a battle with the monster Makaku, Alita realizes that she must uncover the dark secrets of her past.
Kishiro's story is much more than a science-fiction adventure. Woven into the violent, roller-coaster plot is a strand of philosophical speculation. Battle Angel Alita takes us to a world where technology blurs the boundaries between human and machine, begging the question "What makes us who we are?"


Product Description
When Doc Ido, a talented cyberphysician, finds Alita's head in a junk heap, she has lost all memory of her past life. But when he reconstructs her, she discovers her body still instinctively remembers the Panzer Kunst, the most powerful cyborg fighting technique ever known. In the postapocalyptic world of the Scrapyard, as the secrets of Alita's past unfold, each day is a struggle for survival.

Click here to buy Battle Angel Alita, Vol. 1 from Amazon.com



Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Caught by Harlan Coben




Product Description
From the #1 New York Times bestselling master of suspense comes a fast-paced, emotion-packed novel about guilt, grief, and our capacity to forgive


17-year-old Haley McWaid is a good girl, the pride of her suburban New Jersey family, captain of the lacrosse team, headed off to college next year with all the hopes and dreams her doting parents can pin on her. Which is why, when her mother wakes one morning to find that Haley never came home the night before, and three months quickly pass without word from the girl, the community assumes the worst.

Wendy Tynes is a reporter on a mission, to identify and bring down sexual predators via elaborate—and nationally televised—sting operations. Working with local police on her news program Caught in the Act, Wendy and her team have publicly shamed dozens of men by the time she encounters her latest target. Dan Mercer is a social worker known as a friend to troubled teens, but his story soon becomes more complicated than Wendy could have imagined.

In a novel that challenges as much as it thrills, filled with the astonishing tension and unseen suburban machinations that have become Coben’s trademark, Caught tells the story of a missing girl, the community stunned by her loss, the predator who may have taken her, and the reporter who suddenly realizes she can’t trust her own instincts about this story—or the motives of the people around her.

Praise for Long Lost:

"Coben is one of the best authors around at writing page-turning suspense, as Long Lost makes clear."
-Chicago Sun-Times

"Roller-coaster plot and savvy dialogue...All the ingredients of a good old- fashioned thriller: murder, action and wit."
-New York Daily News


About the Author
Harlan Coben is the bestselling author of sixteen previous novels, including the #1 New York Times bestsellers Long Lost and Hold Tight. Winner of the Edgar Award, the Shamus Award, and the Anthony Award, Coben lives in New Jersey with his family.
Price: 595 THB
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Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Essays of Warren Buffett: Lessons for Corporate America, Second Edition by Warren Buffet Himself



Product Description
The definitive work concerning Warren Buffett and intelligent investment philosophy, this is a collection of Buffett's letters to the shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway written over the past few decades that together furnish an enormously valuable informal education. The letters distill in plain words all the basic principles of sound business practices. They are arranged and introduced by a leading apostle of the 'value' school and noted scholar, Lawrence Cunningham.

What's new in the second edition? This new edition has extensive additional content that highlights topics of vital national or international significance, including:


- the proliferation of stock option compensation and excessive CEO pay;
- Berkshire s shareholder-designated contribution program and the controversy over the abortion issue that led to its termination;
- the explosion of derivative financial instruments and related perils and how Berkshire dealt with managing a sizable portfolio of them after buying Gen Re;
- the dramatic increase in foreign currency trading in the past five years along with the astonishing growth in the US trade deficit;
- management succession at Berkshire Hathaway as Mr. Buffett ages;
- commentary on his philanthropic thinking in giving his entire fortune to charities; and
- the fairness and other matters concerning taxation of corporations.

Here in one place are the priceless pearls of business and investment wisdom, woven into a delightful narrative on the major topics concerning both managers and investors. These timeless lessons are useful to members of a wide range of professions, including law, accounting, finance and management, and provide rich teaching materials for courses in those fields.



Friday, March 12, 2010

Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1 (The Twilight Saga) by Stephenie Meyer


First beautifully rendered graphic novel version of bestselling vampire novel serie : Twilight

Book Description
When Isabella Swan moves to the gloomy town of Forks and meets the mysterious, alluring Edward Cullen, her life takes a thrilling and terrifying turn. With his porcelain skin, golden eyes, mesmerizing voice, and supernatural gifts, Edward is both irresistible and impenetrable. Up until now, he has managed to keep his true identity hidden, but Bella is determined to uncover his dark secret...
Beautifully rendered, this first installment of Twilight: The Graphic Novel is a must-have for any collector’s library.



About the Author
Stephenie Meyer graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in English literature, and she lives with her husband and three young sons in Arizona. After the publication of her debut novel, Twilight, booksellers chose her as one of the "most promising new authors of 2005" (Publishers Weekly).

Young Kim graduated from Seoul National University with a degree in painting from the College of Fine Arts. She has worked on numerous animation and cover illustration projects and currently makes her home in Yongin, Korea.

Price : 697 THB

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Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1 (The Twilight Saga)



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Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Volume 1 (The Twilight Saga)

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Twilight Graphic Novel Vol.1



Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Adventure Capitalist: The Ultimate Road Trip by Jim Rogers


Defnitely greatest Journey around the world with complete experiences
about investment and economics

From Publishers Weekly
Legendary Financier Jim Rogers retired from his career at 37 and motorcycled around the world, turning the trip into the book Investment Biker, a hybrid of business advice and travelogue. That journey, however, failed to squelch his wanderlust. Instead of enjoying his sedate life teaching finance, Rogers decided to take his fiancée and a souped-up Mercedes on a frighteningly intense road trip: three years, 116 countries and 152,000 miles. Like the car that plowed through snow, mud, sand and highways on every continent, Rogers's memoir of the journey is its own breed. Although Rogers writes, far too briefly, of life-changing events like getting married and hearing of his father's death, the book has an uncommon level of detachment. Also, even though Rogers shares investment advice and observations about the planet's political economies, his thoughts are too general to serve as business lessons. The result is an adventure tale without heart and a finance book without teeth. Rogers tries to make up for this by describing experiences like eating fried silkworms and watching prostitutes caught in the world's sex trade. Mainly, though, he chronicles prosaic details, like taking car ferries and talking to border guards, and then riffs on politics, money, Boldimmigration and culture.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.



From Booklist
Rogers, a Wall Street success story who has been called "The Indiana Jones of Finance," once circled the planet on a motorcycle, which landed him in The Guinness Book of World Records and resulted in his first book, Investment Biker (1994). In 1999 he set out on another world-record drive around the world in a custom-built yellow Mercedes convertible with his fiancee, Paige Parker. Starting out in Iceland, the trip took three years and encompassed 116 countries, many of which are rarely visited, in a continuous swath across Europe, the former Soviet Republic, China, Africa, the Middle East, and the Americas. No one had ever driven overland following these routes, a total of 152,000 miles, another Guinness world record. Rogers' insightful commentary on the political and historical topography of these diverse countries cuts through stereotypes to give us a glimpse of the world the way it really is, for better or worse. This is a gutsy travelogue adventure from a guy who shoots straight from the hip, and it really hits the mark. David Siegfried
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.



Review
"My success in the market has been predicated on viewing
the world from a different perspective".Jim Rogers," the Indiana Jones of finance"


(Time magazine) -- Review --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.


Product Description
Drive . . . and grow rich!

The bestselling author of Investment Biker is back from the ultimate road trip: a three-year drive around the world that would ultimately set the Guinness record for the longest continuous car journey. In Adventure Capitalist, legendary investor Jim Rogers, dubbed “the Indiana Jones of finance” by Time magazine, proves that the best way to profit from the global situation is to see the world mile by mile. “While I have never patronized a prostitute,” he writes, “I know that one can learn more about a country from speaking to the madam of a brothel or a black marketeer than from meeting a foreign minister.”

Behind the wheel of a sunburst-yellow, custom-built convertible Mercedes, Rogers and his fiancée, Paige Parker, began their “Millennium Adventure” on January 1, 1999, from Iceland. They traveled through 116 countries, including many where most have rarely ventured, such as Saudi Arabia, Myanmar, Angola, Sudan, Congo, Colombia, and East Timor. They drove through war zones, deserts, jungles, epidemics, and blizzards. They had many narrow escapes.

They camped with nomads and camels in the western Sahara. They ate silkworms, iguanas, snakes, termites, guinea pigs, porcupines, crocodiles, and grasshoppers.

Best of all, they saw the real world from the ground up—the only vantage point from which it can be truly understood—economically, politically, and socially.

Here are just a few of the author’s conclusions:

• The new commodity bull market has started.
• The twenty-first century will belong to China.
• There is a dramatic shortage of women developing in Asia.
• Pakistan is on the verge of disintegrating.
• India, like many other large nations, will break into several countries.
• The Euro is doomed to fail.
• There are fortunes to be made in Angola.
• Nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) are a scam.
• Bolivia is a comer after decades of instability, thanks to gigantic amounts of natural gas.

Adventure Capitalist is the most opinionated, sprawling, adventurous journey you’re likely to take within the pages of a book—the perfect read for armchair adventurers, global investors, car enthusiasts, and anyone interested in seeing the world and understanding it as it really is.


About the Author
Born in 1942, Jim Rogers had his first job at age five, picking up bottles at baseball games. Winning a scholarship to Yale, Rogers was coxswain on the crew. Upon graduation, he attended Balliol College at Oxford. After a stint in the army, he began work on Wall Street. He cofounded the Quantum Fund, a global-investment partnership. During the next ten years, the portfolio gained more than 4,000 percent, while the S&P rose less than 50 percent. Rogers then decided to retire—at age thirty-seven—but he did not remain idle.
Continuing to manage his own portfolio, Rogers served as a professor of finance at the Columbia Univer-sity Graduate School of Business and as moderator of The Dreyfus Roundtable on WCBS and The Profit Motive on FNN. At the same time, he laid the groundwork for his lifelong dream, an around-the-world motorcycle trip: more than 100,000 miles across six continents. That journey became the subject of Rogers’s first book, Investment Biker (1994), now available from Random House Trade Paperbacks.
While laying plans for his Millennium Adventure 1999–2001, he continued as a media commentator at Worth, CNBC, et al., and as a sometime professor.
He now contributes to Fox News, Worth, and others as he and Paige eagerly await their first child.
He can be reached at http://www.jimrogers.com/.


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Adventure Capitalist : The Ultimate Road Trip

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Percy Jackson and the Olympians Paperback Boxed Set (Books 1-3)



Product Description
Humans and half-bloods alike agree--Percy Jackson and the Olympians is a series fit for heroes! Re-live the adventure from the beginning with this boxed set of the first three books.

The Lightning Thief Percy Jackson is a good kid, but he can't seem to focus on his schoolwork or control his temper. When his mom tells him the truth about where he came from, she takes him to the one place he'll be safe--Camp Half-Blood, a summer camp for demigods (on Long Island). There, Percy learns that the father he never knew is actually Poseidon, God of the Sea. Soon Percy finds himself caught up in a mystery that could lead to disastrous consequences. Together with his friends--a satyr and other the demigod daughter of Athena--Percy sets out on a quest to reach the gates of the Underworld (located in a recording studio in Hollywood) and prevent a catastrophic war between the gods.

The Sea of Monsters After a summer spent trying to prevent a catastrophic war among the Greek gods, Percy Jackson finds his seventh-grade school year unnervingly calm. But things don't stay quiet for long. Percy soon discovers there is trouble at Camp Half-Blood: the magical borders which protect Half-Blood Hill have been poisoned by a mysterious enemy, and the only safe haven for demigods is on the verge of being overrun by mythological monsters. To save the camp, Percy needs the help of his best friend, Grover, who has been taken prisoner by the Cyclops Polyphemus on an island somewhere in the Sea of Monsters--the dangerous waters Greek heroes have sailed for millennia--only today, the Sea of Monsters goes by a new nameL: the Bermuda Triangle. Now Percy and his friends must retrieve the Golden Fleece from the Island of the Cyclopes by the end of the summer or Camp Half-Blood will be destroyed. But first, Percy will learn a stunning new secret about his family--one that makes him question whether being claimed as Poseidon's son is an honor or simply a cruel joke...

The Titan's Curse When Percy Jackson receives a distress call from his friend Grover, he immediately prepares for battle. He knows he'll need his powerful demigod allies, Annabeth and Thalia, at his side; his trusty broze sword Riptide; and... a ride from his mom. The demigods race to the rescue, to find that Grover has made an important discovery: two new powerful half-bloods whose parentage is unknown. But that's not all that awaits them. The Titan lord, Kronos, has set up his most devious trap yet, and the young heroes have unwittingly fallen prey. Hilarious and action-packed, this third adventure in the series finds Percy faced with his most dangerous challenge so far: the chilling prophecy of the Titan's curse.

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Saturday, February 20, 2010

Inbound Marketing: Get Found Using Google, Social Media, and Blogs (The New Rules of Social Media) by Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah


Product Description
Stop pushing your message out and start pulling your customers in

Traditional "outbound" marketing methods like cold-calling, email blasts, advertising, and direct mail are increasingly less effective. People are getting better at blocking these interruptions out using Caller ID, spam protection, TiVo, etc. People are now increasingly turning to Google, social media, and blogs to find products and services. Inbound Marketing helps you take advantage of this change by showing you how to get found by customers online.

Inbound Marketing is a how-to guide to getting found via Google, the blogosphere, and social media sites.

• Improve your rankings in Google to get more traffic
• Build and promote a blog for your business
• Grow and nurture a community in Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, etc.
• Measure what matters and do more of what works online


The rules of marketing have changed, and your business can benefit from this change. Inbound Marketing shows you how to get found by more prospects already looking for what you have to sell.

From the Back Cover
To connect with today's buyer, you need to stop pushing your message out and start pulling your customers in. The rules of marketing have changed and the key to winning is to use this change to your advantage.
If you've wondered how to get found in Google or why blogs and social media sites like Facebook and Twitter are important, Inbound Marketing is the book for you. HubSpot founders Brian Halligan and Dharmesh Shah give you the tools and strategies you need to improve your Google search rankings; build a blog to promote your business; grow and nurture a community on social media sites; and analyze which of your online marketing efforts are working.

Stop wasting money blasting the world with marketing messages that nobody cares about. Instead, learn to get found with Inbound Marketing.

"If you've been looking for a trustworthy primer on getting found online, here's a great place to start. Buy one for your clueless colleague too." --Seth Godin, author of Meatball Sundae

"If you have more money than brains, you should focus on outbound marketing. If you have more brains than money, you should focus on inbound marketing by reading this book." --Guy Kawasaki, cofounder of Alltop, and author of Reality Check


About the Author
Brian Halligan is cofounder and CEO of HubSpot, a marketing software company that helps businesses "get found." He is a former venture capitalist and seasoned sales and marketing executive. He is a frequent lecturer at MIT and Harvard Business School.

Dharmesh Shar is cofounder and CTO of HubSpot. He is a serial entrepreneur, angel investor, and authors the top-ranking blog OnStartups.com. He speaks frequently on the topics of marketing and entrepreneurship.

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Inbound Marketing Abebooks.com


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Classic Drucker: From the Pages of Harvard Business Review by Peter Ferdinand Drucker



Review
"You will not get a better chance to read the musings of Peter Drucker."
- Jack Covert -- USA Today

Product Description
For nearly half a century, Peter Drucker inspired and educated managers--and powerfully shaped the nature of business--with his landmark articles in Harvard Business Review. Here, framed by a thoughtful introduction from HBR editor Thomas A. Stewart, is a priceless collection of Drucker's most significant work.

Through his unique lens, Drucker traces the evolution of the great shifts in organizations and the role of managers in the ongoing effort to balance change with continuity. He paints a clear, comprehensive picture of management thinking and practice--as it was and as it will be.

Revealing a celebrated thinker at his best, Classic Drucker offers a wealth of insights and practical guidelines for managers seeking to address today's thorniest organizational challenges. For example, you'll find selections on how to enhance your company's innovative prowess, make effective decisions, raise knowledge workers' productivity, remain engaged and productive during a long work life, know when the assumptions on which your business was founded must change, and get the data you need to execute your company's competitive strategy.

Doing what's right for your company will always be challenging. But thanks to the clear focus, broad vision, and practical wisdom of Peter Drucker, the task is now a little less daunting.


About the Author
Peter Ferdinand Drucker was a writer, teacher, and consultant. His thirty-four books have been published in more than seventy languages. He founded the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonprofit Management, and counseled thirteen governments, public services institutions, and major corporations.

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