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The very first management book that I ever read was "In Search of Excellence." I owned no shares of any of the companies that were featured. I'd never been in a Walmart. I took all of the anecdotes about best practices, like "management by walking around," as gospel. Many years later, having worked for a large corporation, suffered through consultants, owning mutual funds with most of the companies in "Search," and having read more about American businesses than most people my age (I had to tell my broker who Fastenal is), I come to Stretch, and I think it's one of the better written, more inspiring books on successful companies that I have read. Its axioms about identifying and repurposing the resources that you have can be applied to daily living. That said, I cannot separate a company's political or environmental record (e.g. Yuengling) from its financial performance, and in one business case, I know enough of the backstory to disagree with a conclusion or two about that company's demise- they certainly "chased" the wrong things, but the examples given were only a blip in their race to ruin.
— From Carla's Picks
A Wall Street Journal Bestseller
A groundbreaking approach to succeeding in business and life, using the science of resourcefulness.
We often think the key to success and satisfaction is to get more: more money, time, and possessions; bigger budgets, job titles, and teams; and additional resources for our professional and personal goals. It turns out we’re wrong.
Using captivating stories to illustrate research in psychology and management, Rice University professor Scott Sonenshein examines why some people and organizations succeed with so little, while others fail with so much.
People and organizations approach resources in two different ways: “chasing” and “stretching.” When chasing, we exhaust ourselves in the pursuit of more. When stretching, we embrace the resources we already have. This frees us to find creative and productive ways to solve problems, innovate, and engage our work and lives more fully.
Stretchshows why everyone—from executives to entrepreneurs, professionals to parents, athletes to artists—performs better with constraints; why seeking too many resources undermines our work and well-being; and why even those with a lot benefit from making the most out of a little.
Drawing from examples in business, education, sports, medicine, and history, Scott Sonenshein advocates a powerful framework of resourcefulness that allows anybody to work and live better.
Scott Sonenshein is the Henry Gardiner Symonds Professor of Management at Rice University. His award winning research, teaching, and consulting has helped Fortune 500 executives, entrepreneurs, and professionals in industries such as technology, healthcare, retail, education, banking, manufacturing, and non-profits. He holds a PhD in management and organizations from the University of Michigan, an MPhil from the University of Cambridge, and a BA from the University of Virginia. He has also worked as a strategy consultant for companies such as AT&T and Microsoft and lived the rise and fall of the dotcom boom while working at a Silicon Valley startup.