George’s Pursuit Across the Perilous Ocean is a fantastic metaphor for entrepreneurs to grow their business. Why was this an important book for you to write?
I wanted to create a very easy to read book to help entrepreneurs.
The title of the book came from an idea I had of creating something that made people think ‘oh that looks interesting, I wonder what it’s about’. It’s short enough to be an enjoyable read with a lighthearted approach to a serious subject. It’s a thought-provoking sun-bed read!’
What is your experience with entrepreneurship and how did that help you write this book?
As a business owner myself I have extensive experience in buying, building and selling my own businesses, which means I understands the real challenges business owners face day-in, day-out.
I feel I understand the pressures felt by business owners from my own personal experiences of complex periods of change within my own organisations. As a coach I’ve seen lots of businesses struggle and not reach their full potential – I wanted to write a book that made it easy to see how changes could be made.
My main passion lies with family business owners, having been working with them for many years to resolve conflict, manage family employees and succession planning.
What do you think is one common misconception people have about starting a business and how can they overcome it?
The decision to start a business is often taken quite lightly and quickly – perhaps from a point of ‘I can do this just as well’ and often finds the business owner doing the same sort of thing as they did when they were an employee for someone else. However, that’s only the start of it. There is much more to being a successful business owner and at times we all need a prod to do ‘more’. That is what the book is designed to be – a gentle prod.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
The next book in the pipeline will look at family businesses, specifically what it’s like to be a family member joining the family business. Is it a ‘poison chalice’ or an outstanding opportunity?
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The book starts with a little history of the Congo under Belgium rule during the colonial days. This gives the reader an insight into how things were in Belgian Congo, and how ‘La Territoriale’ was made to get rid of King Leopold’s cruelty and brutality in the CFS regime. The first chapter gives a lot of information about Belgian Congo and all that happened. I had the impression that I was attending a history class, as the author wrote about events I had never heard of. It was agonizing to read about King Leopold, as his inhuman acts against the Congo people led to a lot of loss.
Politics in Congo, the formation of political parties, King Leopold’s atrocities and the influence of Rumba are all covered in the book. Reading about natives who were killed as directed by King Leopold in the harvest of red rubber in the era of CFS regime was one of the moments I almost broke down. Natives’ hands were chopped and others left with permanent wounds and under the CFS regime. Just how cruel could one man be? The worst thing was that even as he committed all these crimes, King Leopold received backing from his country, and even had support from his followers.
The author covered a number of themes in the book. Politics, music, law, human rights violation, business, and trade were all covered. This book highlights the use and impact of Congo music in Africa and other continents like America and Europe. Thierry Antha extensively writes about the brand associated with Congo Rumba and Rumba Lingala, Congo music that is known by just a few, how the Flemish administrators took Rumba, the industrialization of Congo music during the colonial days and much more.
Thierry Antha extensively writes about the brand associated with Congo Rumba and Rumba Lingala, Congo music that is known by just a few, how the Flemish administrators protected Congo music’s exceptionalism, while Walloons industrialized it with the addition of the legal diversity of South American music for export in the late 1950s and much more. And mostly how Fonior, the Belgian company, misused its monopoly to commit fraud and defraud Congolese musicians’ copyrights and consumers’ human rights in America, first, after the colony’s independence.
Rumba music, as allegedly sold in the West, is beautiful to the Soul. When played in clubs, the radio, and other public media, one can feel how passionately the artists feel the music they create. As you enjoy “Rumba” music, do you know a little history about Fonior’s fake-outs and how the genres were born? Do you know the challenges they faced and how the music they made affected them and the people around? If not, then you need to read this book. It has all the good, bad, fantastic and ugly stories about Belgian Congo, the natives, Congolese musicians and the exploitation of Congo music.
Pages: 598 | ASIN: B07CH9M9BR
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Be Unstoppable uses your experience and wisdom to help others achieve success through adversity. Why was this an important book for you to write?
Have been encouraged by so many people and my story was featured in business and leadership magazine as well circumstances that I was placed you read in my book cornered me on writing of this book.
You have been the founder and CEO of numerous companies. How has your experience helped you write this book?
Growing up on street from age 8 and looking over my shoulder to navigate about life in general has helped me a lot on the writing of the book. Indeed, the many ventures that I explored has helped me greatly to provide wisdom’s that business people needs as the book written from real life experience than business books that we find in shelves written by famous succession business people that used lift instead of stairs that doesn’t relate to most readers.
In this book you touch on many themes including sacrifice, hope and courage. What were some themes that were important for you to focus on in this book?
The many themes are very important ingredients that one needs to overcome challenge and be unstoppable but delegation is a key as it gives you the time to explore other options unless you will be stuck in one issues/business that might consume your entire time/life.
Be Unstoppable examines failure as well as success and how to keep going through both. What was one failure in your life that you learned a lot from?
I failed many times but learnt hard way that I’m the one and only myself will pull off from failure.
We don’t usually know what we are born to do. We certainly also don’t know what kinds of obstacles we will face, or what forms they will take. When we understand how the world has been connected through history—through the movement of people, goods, languages, music, movies, and many other things—we see our world more clearly as a shared planet and a home for everyone.
There is very little in life more important than acting quickly and with great decisiveness. Many people all over the world have dreams—big dreams or small dreams. To get there, we have to take risks. People who have studied business or been in the business world, like me, know that in business, one often discusses risk versus reward.
Be Unstoppable is a golden nugget of wisdom, through the stories into which my life’s energy has flowed and emerged greater each time, that will bring you gold, in real money and in what is important in your life.
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Follow George after he makes the decision to become his own boss running a small boat. Follow him through the tumultuous journey that leads him to eventually hand over reigns of a successful fleet of liners. We get to see the change in his mindset from worker to supervisor and finally, owner. It took strength, wisdom, knowledge and lots of other things. This is the story of a small business growing into a conglomerate, from a toddler to a fully legal human being.
According to research, only about half of the business started will still stand strong in five years time. This is quite sad for a world where entrepreneurship is highly encouraged. This book is meant to decrease this percentage. One will learn to grow their business from a period of feast and famine to a period where the business comfortably stands on its own, where the welfare and life of the business are not threatened by regular/normal business occurrences. Like a windfall of clients for example.
According to Ray Moore, one should not wait until the growth occurs. They should anticipate it. To successfully go through these growth moments, one requires a vision. They must also keep the business in balance. That is time, team, delivery and money. They must all be applied in appropriate proportions. One must set out the stall for growth. Managing the mindset is the final condition.
This is a short book, that means that the information is presented in a compact package. The whole book is presented as a metaphor. This makes the book highly appealing. It is useful even for those who do not like or have the time to read. It is sober advice from an experienced person. It is advice that actually makes a lot of sense. The steps and tips are easy to follow and understand. One thing that readers will definitely appreciate is that the author does not use complicated business words. He shows the reader how to manage a business without confusing them with difficult economic jargon.
The author outlines the common mistakes entrepreneurs make. He shows what happens to the business after the mistakes are made. He then turns around and outlines the proper way to handle such turning points so that fatal mistakes are not made.
This is a fantastic business guide that provides an easy to understand road-map for getting from a small flailing venture to a successful business. Regardless of the goal, it can be achieved by following these simple directions. Five stars out of five for this crash course in entrepreneurship.
Pages: 52 | ISBN: 1721213287
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Life is not meant to be a straight and smooth road. It is always inspiring to meet someone who has survived the obstacles from travelling a long and bumpy road. Tariku Bogale is one such person. He is not shy about letting the reader into his world, about letting the reader see the great, the bad, and the downright dirt. He is honest and transparent. His narration of his life is colored with moments that should be embarrassing but in retrospect are quite significant to the man he is today.
Unstoppable: Challenge Accepted chronicles the life of Tariku Bogale. He talks about his life as an abandoned child all the way to the glamorous city of New York. He talks about his journey from a self-reliant 8 year old with barely enough to get by to a global business mogul renting high end New York residences. He talks about his roots. They are quite weak to begin with but they become stronger as he grows up. His resolve is seen from an early age when he brings his mother to live with him regardless of his father’s wishes. He faces and survives heartbreak before the age of fifteen. It does set him back a little bit. A fact he is not afraid to disclose but he gets up and dusts himself off anyway. As he says, there were angels at every point of his life. The kindness of strangers has helped him a great deal. It is admirable that he has chosen to credit them where necessary.
This story is wonderfully told. The author is looking to show the struggles he has been through on his journey to the man he is today. It is well written. It is thrilling and interesting. Often, we look at successful people as super humans but this story confirms that they are mere mortals just like us. They make mistakes and bow to urges just like us. It renews the reader’s courage and motivation.
The author has a proper grasp of the English language. He understands the nuance of storytelling and applies it quite effectively in this book. This story is captivating and vivid. However, there seems to be large chunks of the story missing, chunks that would have contributed to the value of the story. The book could use a brush over from an editor. However, that does not quite take away from the inspiring quality of the story. It is still a great story.
Tariku Bogale is an inspiring man. He tells this book in a semi-casual way. One will probably be able to take more out of it than if it was told in a formal demeanor. The author’s life story would make a good movie. Very dramatic. But then, what is to be expected considering the meaning of his name.
Pages: 234 | ASIN: B074HGR6LD
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This book is for anyone who aspires to establish a distinct presence with long-term product consumers. The Agile Brand: Brand Creating Authentic Relationships Between Companies and Consumers gives you a deeper understanding of the consumer, sales, and marketing sector. Divided into three parts, the author starts the book by highlighting the basics of brands. Simple questions like what branding is, why we do branding and what makes a brand successful are lucidly answered to the satisfaction of any new comer to the field.
One of the many things I learned from this book includes the need to have your audience understand how your brand is pronounced. People tend to obliviously mispronounce some names. The author made a table with some brands like IKEA, Adidas Hermes, and Porsche. He noted how a majority mispronounce the names and listed the correct pronunciation. He emphasized that having consumers mispronounce your brand may have them misunderstand the attributes of your company.
Your brand is more than your logo, Greg Kihlstrom says. He goes on to advise those who are new to branding. The author mentions the use of social media and digital advertisement tools and how important it is for the brand to build a solid bond with the target audience. On making a brand successful, the writer lists three easy methods to determine the success of a brand. Substance, focus, and relevance are the basic methods of evaluating how good or bad a brand is.
The book is filled with nuggets of wisdom. If you want to build a brand that will leave an impact and paint a permanent picture in the consumer’s mind, then you need this book. The Agile Brand provides great learning material for marketing students, with notes written by the author coming in handy at some point in their career.
While reading through this book I felt as if I was in a classroom with a competent teacher you are begging to glean wisdom from. The book is truly educational. Brand-pushers will definitely find the text in this publication useful and will apply the lessons learned in their daily businesses. What I really enjoyed about this book was that it was concise. Many books of in this field will happily fill you with fluff details, but Greg Kihlstrom keeps his focus and gets to the point.
One thing that stood out from this book is the author’s need to mention real companies when expounding. Companies like Dominos, Starbucks, and Lowes Foods are given as examples when talking about changing the messaging while still maintaining success rates. Greg Kihlstrom clearly explains why the said brands changed their slogans at some point, and how it worked for them. Here the author enables the reader to understand that there is no loss in changing slogans, as long as your packaging as a brand is up to standard.
Be sure to grab a copy of this book, as there is so much you will learn. The book is especially recommended to newbies in the branding and marketing industry, as it will help you grasp the basic concepts of advertisement in the modern world.
Pages: 186 | ASIN: B07CV4M8WH
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Lessons from a Difficult Person: How to Deal with People Like Us is a guide for people who find themselves dealing with people they find difficult. Why was this an important book for you to write?
As a recovering difficult person, I find myself aching for the people who didn’t say anything to me as I gaffed, who avoided me rather than take the time to help me see how annoying I was. I wrote the book for all of us who avoid difficult people, to help them actually have conversations with them. And I wrote it for the difficult people who sometimes never know how they are perceived by others and feel lonelier and angrier and distanced from others.
I understand that you are a successful workshop leader and trainer. What is one common misconception you find that people have about ‘difficult people’?
One common misconception people have about difficult people is that their behavior is purposefully hurtful; deliberately unkind.
I enjoyed the personal stories you shared. Was this always going to be a guide book, do you think this could have easily been a memoir?
I wanted to help people understand how difficult people are unaware of their impact on others and to do that I had to use my own life stories. It could have been a memoir but my passion is helping difficult people discover that they can change and the only people who tell them would be the readers. Thus, I included the exercises and practice processes for having a conversation.
What do you hope readers take away from your book?
I hope readers will look at difficult people differently and look for ways to help. I hope readers will see that difficult behavior is a habit, and it can be changed.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
I am currently working on a book with more stories about my life in terms of how I changed, with the focus on how difficult people can change; either a reader or a friend of a reader.
The funny thing is that Sarah Elliston never realized she was “a difficult person,” –someone who harangued people until she got her way, threw snip fits and temper tantrums, talked over her bosses and pointed out what she thought were their misconceptions. In her family, where she felt bullied, the only way she knew how to get someone’s attention and approval was to voice her opinion–and loudly! Without standing her ground, how could she do what she thought was best for herself and everyone else around her. She wasn’t intentionally mean-spirited. She was just trying to do what she thought was RIGHT!
Until a kind, but firm, boss woke her up! With great compassion, and strength, her boss pointed out that her actions had consequences. That in being “difficult,” she was not only disrupting the office camaraderie and production, but impeding her own professional advancement.
That’s the beginning of Sarah’s transformation– when she started on the journey to leave behind the difficult person, and become the woman who teaches others how to deal with difficult people. Sarah “Sam” Elliston is now bringing forth her vital manual on how to awaken the challenging personality, and change both the relationship and the environment with her new book Dealing with Difficult People; Lessons Learned from a Difficult Person.
Today, Elliston is a highly successful workshop leader and trainer, who offers wisdom learned the hard way–and through rigorous study and certification in many areas of professional training that aid her in her work — Values Realization, Parent Effectiveness Training and Reality Therapy. She is a faculty member of the William Glasser Institute. Glasser is an internationally recognized psychiatrist and developer of Reality Therapy, a method of psychotherapy that teaches people they have a choice in how they choose to behave.
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Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions tackles project management in an approachable way that I found to be highly enlightening. How has your experience in project management helped you write this book?
I am thankful for all of the disruptors, innovators, and visionaries who contributed to the colorful heritage of agile and Scrum. In particular, I thank Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka. Scrum was modeled after their groundbreaking paper, “The New New Product Development Game,” published in the Harvard Business Review in 1986. My book was informed by their article and 115 additional sources—listed in the bibliography—along with my first-hand experience launching Scrum in organizations.
I’m the Founder and CEO of Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions, an Inc. Verified Business, which helps our clients achieve their business needs through world-class project leadership. I had the privilege to work with a client in a division of a global entertainment business on their successful journey for improved responsiveness to changing business needs, faster delivery speed, higher satisfaction, and continuous improvement—which made them even more competitive and fueled their growth. That fantastic agile transformation experience and result was the inspiration for my book. I thank that client.
I also helped diverse organizations achieve their business needs through project management related services prior to Exceptional PPM and PMO Solutions. I’m a former vice president of a provider of diverse consumer products and services over the Internet including social networking and internet access. Before that, I worked in organizations with businesses ranging from advanced technology products and services to business services, retail, e-commerce, manufacturing, and entertainment. I have experience with consumer, business, reseller, government, and international customer markets, as well as international experience spanning 20 countries.
In addition to hands-on experience, a deep understanding of project management (project, program, portfolio, and PMO management—inclusive of agile, traditional, and hybrid frameworks), engagements with professional associations, involvement with global standards, knowledge of leading practices, and professional credentials also shaped what and how information was presented in the book. Some examples follow. I have a bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a focus in Human Factors. I hold six certifications: Certified Scrum Professional (CSP), Certified ScrumMaster (CSM), Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO), Project Management Professional (PMP), IT Service Management Foundation (ITIL), and Lean Six Sigma Green Belt (LSSGB). And I’m proud to be a member of the Scrum Alliance, Project Management Institute (PMI), Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), IEEE Computer Society, IEEE Consumer Electronics Society, IEEE Broadcast Technology Society, IEEE Internet of Things Community, and the IEEE Consultants Network.
I owe a tremendous debt to the technical editors: Chris Hare and Colin Giffen. Each offered insights that greatly improved Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step-by-Step Instructions. I thank them for helping to make this book more clear, consistent, and valuable.
Agile Scrum is often used in technology projects, but do you think Agile Scrum can have a wider application?
Shifting customer needs are common in today’s marketplace. Businesses must be adaptive and responsive to change while delivering an exceptional customer experience to be competitive. Traditional development and delivery frameworks are often ineffective. In contrast, Scrum is a value-driven agile approach which incorporates adjustments based on regular and repeated customer and stakeholder feedback. And Scrum’s built-in rapid response to change leads to substantial benefits such as fast time-to-market, higher satisfaction, and continuous improvement—which supports innovation and drives competitive advantage.
Agile and Scrum were once the sole domain of software development. However, the benefits and results have not gone unnoticed by others. Practices are being adopted by additional departments and industries. The State of Scrum Report: 2017 Edition revealed that 21% of Scrum projects are run by departments outside of Technology such as Marketing, Finance, and Sales. And a New York Timesarticle in 2016—”The New Workplace is Agile, and Nonstop. Can You Keep Up?”—noted agile’s use in diverse industries. Examples ranged from a museum in Sydney, Australia, to an automobile dealership in Maine. Agile/Scrum is being used broadly.
What is one common misconception you find people have about the Agile Scrum methodology?
There are different frameworks supporting the development and delivery of products and services, and most methodologies fall into one of two broad categories: traditional or agile. Traditional practices (sometimes called waterfall) engage sequential development, while agile involves iterative and incremental deliverables. Organizations are increasingly embracing Scrum—the most popular agile framework—to manage projects, and best meet their business needs of rapid response to change, fast delivery speed, and more.
There’s a widely-held view that agile is new. But agile was used decades before it became well-known. A few examples follow. Software was developed in half-day iterations in 1958 for Project Mercury, the United States’ first human spaceflight program. Harlan Mills of IBM promoted in 1968 that “software development should be done incrementally, in stages with continuous user participation and replanning.” In 1980, Tom Gilb introduced the Evolutionary Delivery Model, an incremental alternative to traditional development.
While agile (which includes Scrum) is not new, many innovators and visionaries have advanced principles and practices over time. For those who would like to learn more, there’s a one-minute video—”Agile Has a Long and Colorful Heritage”—at https://vimeo.com/259429846.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
I have two works in the pipeline. Currently, however, there is no detail on content or publication dates for future books.
Shifting customer needs are common in today’s marketplace. Businesses must be adaptive and responsive to change while delivering an exceptional customer experience to be competitive.
There are a variety of frameworks supporting the development of products and services, and most methodologies fall into one of two broad categories: traditional or agile. Traditional practices such as waterfall engage sequential development, while agile involves iterative and incremental deliverables. Organizations are increasingly embracing agile to manage projects, and best meet their business needs of rapid response to change, fast delivery speed, and more.
Agile Scrum is for those interested or involved in innovation, project management, product development, software development or technology management. It’s for those who have not yet used Scrum. It’s also for people already using Scrum, in roles such as Product Owners, Scrum Masters, Development Team members (business analysts, solution and system architects, designers, developers, testers, etc.), customers, end users, agile coaches, executives, managers, and other stakeholders. For those already using Scrum, this guide can serve as a reference on practices for consideration and potential adaptation.
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Proper project management is essential in a business. The many moving parts need to be well oiled for a smooth ride. One therefore needs to be able to adapt to unpredictable changes in business. The traditional methodology of project management is sequential and focuses on predicting issues and having set ways to deal with them. The other project methodology is agile, which is a flexible, collaborative, and incremental process.
This book is about an agile framework called scrum. The idea is to focus on making the team adaptive to change. The framework appreciates requirement volatility. This is the prevalence of customer wants and preferences to change. Scrum instills an understanding that changes cannot be fully understood or foreseen. Rather than try to predict and understand the changes, this framework prepares the team to appropriately deal with such changes.
Agile scrum is more widely used in Software development but the author does a good job of generalizing it. Making it the go to framework for every project manager regardless of industry. The book highlights the versatility of scrum beautifully.
The subject matter is a bit complex. However, Scott M. Graffius breaks it down into little chewable bits before delving deep into each, taking it apart grain by grain. This method is greatly useful as it makes a daunting ideology easy to take in and implement. With this book, one can expertly introduce scrum into their business environment and confidently tackle any hurdle. It outlines all the basics in simple language and prose. The book is also greatly useful for people who are already using scrum. It makes for an excellent reference material for those that are already scrum certified or are preparing to be.
Using visual aids in addition to text greatly enhances the material. It makes for a more interactive and engaging experience. It makes the process of understanding the subject matter smoother for everyone whether beginner or veteran. Agile Scrum: Your Quick Start Guide with Step by Step Instructions offers a myriad of supplemental resources. Materials that one can use in addition to the book to better understand and use the scrum framework. It walks one through every step from vision to team formation to creating the product narrative up to release.
Unlike other books on the market, this one offers an informal look at scrum without losing its practicality. The tone is conversational thus does not feel like a textbook, and provides numerous examples and insight into real world implementation of scrum. I would recommended this to anyone looking to change their project management framework or work out knots in their current system. Scott M. Graffius delivers an in depth understanding of the subject matter and instills the same in the reader.
Pages: 156 | ASIN: B01FZ0JIIY
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