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Life 2.0

by Rich Karlgaard

"A delightful, and surprisingly moving, tale" -- Michael Lewis, bestselling author ofMoneyball "Karlgaard flies in with a companion concept to David Brooks'sOn Paradise Drive" -- Tom Wolfe "While counterintuitive to those on the conventional fast-track,Life 2. 0offers great promise to those who are open to personal innovation" -- Clayton Christensen, Professor, Harvard Business School "This fascinating treatise will make you think deeply, and may just give you the impetus to uproot" -- Tom Peters "An original and exhilarating look at options many Americans don't realize are now open to them. " -- James Fallows, national correspondent,The Atlantic Monthly "Not only will it widen the horizons of your life, it could also renew your health and wealth. " -- George Gilder Have You Found the Where of Your Happiness? One of the intriguing things about the United States is the idea of the second chance, that when you feel stuck there is always a frontier you can cross to reinvent yourself. InLife 2. 0, Rich Karlgaard used his own personal and professional midlife crises to look at the state of the American dream--the belief in continuous personal upward mobility--and where it stands in the twenty-first century. At the ripe old age of forty-five, Karlgaard fell in love with flying and mastered the art of lifting up and bringing down a "2,500-pound aluminum box kite"--a four-seat single-engine airplane. As the publisher of Forbes he felt that he was doing too much armchair theorizing and didn't really understand how Americans were responding to the changes that had started taking place so swiftly over the past few years. So he put together his new flying skills and reportorial mission and flew around America to places like Green Bay, Wisconsin; Bozeman, Montana; Fargo, North Dakota; Des Moines, Iowa; and Lake Placid, New York, to gain some insight into how ordinary Americans are untangling the knotty problems of constant stress, crushing expense, and bewildering hassle that often characterize life in the nation's urban centers. He discovered their simple solution: they moved. What Karlgaard found on the road are fascinating and inspiring stories about people-- those with a nose for entrepreneurship, a faith in technology, and the willingness to take a chance--who are finding the new American dream in places as far from New York City and Silicon Valley as you can imagine. Some of those people include: * A burned-out insurance exec who fled his overworked East Coast life and settled in tranquil (yet dynamic) Des Moines * A tool broker who traded his brick-and-mortar business in sunny California for a life in the Pennsylvania hills, where he relaunched his business on the Internet * A road-warrior democracy specialist who conducts her worldly affairs from the low-key outpost of Bismarck, North Dakota * A self-made millionaire who paid for his financial success with his first marriage and who did things differently the second time around by moving to smaller cities and focusing on family as well as work Adroitly combining analysis of the economic and social trends challenging middle-class people with perceptive advice on how to escape the rat race of the coasts, Karlgaard explores the eye-opening possibilities of that huge tract of land often carelessly dubbed "flyover country. " Filled with stories of personal reinvention and triumph, Life 2. 0 is the story of those who are living larger lives in smaller places. From the Hardcover edition.

The Soft Edge

by Rich Karlgaard

What Does it Take to Get Ahead Now--And Stay There?High performance has always required shrewd strategy and superb execution. These factors remain critical, especially given today's unprecedented business climate. But Rich Karlgaard--Forbes publisher, entrepreneur, investor, and board director--takes a surprising turn and argues that there is now a third element that's required for competitive advantage. It fosters innovation, it accelerates strategy and execution, and it cannot be copied or bought. It is found in a perhaps surprising place--your company's values.Karlgaard examined a variety of enduring companies and found that they have one thing in common; all have leveraged their deepest values alongside strategy and execution, allowing them to fuel growth as well as weather hard times. Karlgaard shares these stories and identifies the five key variables that make up every organization's "soft edge":Trust: Northwestern Mutual has built a $25 million dollar revenue juggernaut on trust, the foundation of lasting success. Learn how to create an environment that engenders trust and propels high performance.Smarts: In most technical fields your formal education quickly becomes out of date. How do you keep up? Learn how the Mayo Clinic, Stanford University women's basketball team, and others stay on top by relentlessly pursuing an advantage through smarts.Teamwork: Since collaboration and innovation are a must in the global economy, effective teamwork is vital. Learn how global giant FedEx stays focused and how nimble Nest Labs relies on lean teams with cognitive diversity.Taste: Clever product design and integration are proxies for intelligence because they make customers feel smart. But taste goes further into deep emotional engagement. Specialized Bicycles calls it "the elusive spot between data truth and human truth." How can you consistently make products or services that trigger these emotional touch points?Story: Companies that achieve lasting success have an enduring and emotionally appealing story. What's your company's story? How do you tell it your way? Gain the ability to create a powerful narrative in a world where outsiders often exercise the louder voice.

Team Genius

by Michael S. Malone Rich Karlgaard

A groundbreaking book that sheds new light on the vital importance of teams as the fundamental unit of organization and competition in the global economy.Teams--we depend on them for both our professional success and our personal happiness. But isn't it odd how little scrutiny we give them? The teams that make up our lives are created mostly by luck, happenstance, or circumstance--but rarely by design. In trivial matters--say, a bowling team, the leadership of a neighborhood group, or a holiday party committee--success by serendipity is already risky enough. But when it comes to actions by fast-moving start-ups, major corporations, nonprofit institutions, and governments, leaving things to chance can be downright dangerous.Offering vivid reports of the latest scientific research, compelling case studies, and great storytelling, Team Genius shows managers and executives that the planning, design, and management of great teams no longer have to be a black art. It explores solutions to essential questions that could spell the difference between success and obsolescence. Do you know how to reorganize your subpar teams to turn them into top performers? Can you identify which of the top-performing teams in your company are reaching the end of their life span? Do you have the courage to shut them down? Do you know how to create a replacement team that will be just as effective--without losing time or damaging morale? And, most important, are your teams the right size for the job?Throughout, Rich Karlgaard and Michael S. Malone share insights and real-life examples gleaned from their careers as journalists, analysts, investors, and globetrotting entrepreneurs, meeting successful teams and team leaders to reveal some "new truths": The right team size is usually one fewer person than what managers think they need. The greatest question facing good teams is not how to succeed, but how to die. Good "chemistry" often makes for the least effective teams. Cognitive diversity yields the highest performance gains--but only if you understand what it is. How to find the "bliss point" in team intimacy--and become three times more productive. How to identify destructive team members before they do harm. Why small teams are 40 percent more likely to create a successful breakthrough than a solo genius is. Why groups of 7 (± 2), 150, and 1,500 are magic sizes for teams.Eye-opening, grounded, and essential, Team Genius is the next big idea to revolutionize business.

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