Gopher-preneur book of the month, Dec '07
The Education of an Accidental CEO: Lessons Learned from the Trailer Park to the Corner Office
by David Novak
I am just getting into this book. Normally I prefer books more on entrepreneurs, but this will just be something a little different and still quite educational. In this book David tells us his story of how he became ceo of YUM brands at the youthful age of 47! Quite fascinating. If you get a chance, visit your local library and pick this book up or stop by amazon.com
While David never went to business school, he did learn from the greatest of teachers—experience—and plenty of other very smart people as well: Magic Johnson on the secret to teamwork, Warren Buffett on what he looks for in the companies he buys, John Wooden on ego, and Jack Welch on one thing he’d do over. Now he wants to share with you what he discovered about getting ahead and getting noticed; motivating people and turning businesses around; building winning teams and running a global company of nearly one million people; and always staying true to yourself.
The Education of an Accidental CEO is filled with David Novak’s street-smart wisdom:
From his formative years...
• Walking through your anxieties
• Avoiding the poison of stereotypes
• Staying “right-sized”
• Breaking through the clutter
From his years as an ad executive and chief marketing officer ...
• How not to roll over like Fluffy the dog
• Seeing yourself as a brand
• When to pull the plug on the Super Bowl
As the COO of Pepsi Cola and then as president of KFC and Pizza Hut ...
• Why a gold watch can have less value than a floppy rubber chicken
• Knowing when “the answers are in the building”
• Knowing when to do nothing
• What it takes to revitalze a company
And as CEO of Yum! Brands, Inc. ...
• How to “shock the system”
• How to avoid the slow-no’s
• Managing two up and two down
David Novak’s ideas for building an entire culture around reward and recognition—getting everyone from division presidents to dishwashers to buy into recognizing the achievements of others—is studied by other companies and discussed here in great detail. Whether you are the CEO of a global conglomerate or a budding entrepreneur, there is something here that will help you get where you want to go.
As I was reading through the book, I read this great story.
I think it was the 1990 Super Bowl. David was in charge of marketing for Pepsi. He had gotten Ray Charles to sing a new song about the product and then they were going to have a toll free number you could call up to get a free coupon for Diet Pepsi.
Well the F.C.C. stopped them from doing this because they were afraid the contest would overtax the phone lines and cause problems for emergency calls to 911.
Can you imagine your marketing campaign having such a response that the F.C.C. tells you, you can't do it?
Great info in these books. I always like to read books of this type. I usually listen to books while mowing. Great way to keep yourself learning. Some other books are
"Magic of Thinking Big", "Power Publicity" (great info on promoting yourself) and "The Secret" I download books