By an incredible coincidence of timing, the author was given access to the inner workings of a corporate giant during a time when corporate leadership was unravelling. This is a great text for anyone interested in the evolution and tranformation of Disney, OR, the workings of leadership vs power between a CEO and a company's board, OR a great treatise on why governance rules and regulations have had to change in the last 5 years above and beyond the exploits of Enron. If ALL THREE interest you, this book is a grand slam. This book is almost a novelization of the corporate history of Disney and specifically Eisner, and reads more like a story than a business text. But the lessons are there for all to learn from, if nothing else as a shareholder to consider when making votes in an annual proxy. Good reading.
I love the book, but the editing was horrendous. Repeated phrases, mispoken words, "corrected" words from the speaker without removing the "incorrect" words. In many spots, it was like a rough cut directly from the recording studio, without final editing. Absolutely no attention was paid to the editing of this product. Very disappointing.
The narrative style of this book is engaging and quite addictive, letting us know more on Eisner reign as CEO and chairman of Disney.
It's surprising to learn how such a respected business person as Eisner used Machiavelli-like tactics and intrigues to manipulate the board, and succeeded in maintaining his absolute power for almost 20 years with very few concerns whatsoever for shareholder's interest other than his own interest and few other board members'.
One can only imagine the suffering and devastating psychological treatment received by Katzenberg and Oswitz during their tenure at Disney under Eisner and it is inconceivable how long Eisner managed to keep his place as the top Disney executive while he was clearly lacking of vision and creativity, and prone to so many costly errors, especially during his last 8 years as CEO.
I would have love to learn on the post-Eisner Disney period and how Eiger managed to turn around the company and led it to become the entertainment juggernaut it is today. The book finished instead just before Eisner departure - Hopefully the author is already working on a sequel!
PS: audiobook quality is good and the voice of the narrator rather pleasant. There are a couples of minor glitches on the audible version, where the narrator rephrases or repeats himself. Not a big deal, but those issues should have been nonetheless edited and corrected.
No idea as I didn't read it.
Michael Ovitz and Jeffery Katzenberg. They both came on as a friend seemingly with the best intentions. Both, by this account of the story got burned.
There were several moments in the book I remember laughing out loud.
As someone who was raised in a Disney household, and one that fell into Michael Eisner's timeframe, I was blown away at the business aspect to keep the wheels rolling. Fun and easy on the outside for us consumers, and a bloodbath inside. Holy mother of Mickey if you want to keep that magic alive I recommend not reading this. However if you want to really know what it takes to make the Disney machine work, this is it and I can't recommend it enough.
I 100% advise that you get this book on audible. It is honestly the greatest deal that you will ever find. That being said with the books length being over 25 hours there are some audio hiccups and missed edits where the reader will say a phrase twice when one of the phrases should've been edited out. That being said BUY THIS AUDIOBOOK!!!! It is well worth one credit!!! It's a well told story of the rise and fall of the Golden Age of the Walt Disney Company.
This was a LONG listen. I think once is enough for this title.
Inside the Mouse: Work and Play at Disney World, The Project on Disney
Apr 14, 1995
by The Project on Disney and Jane Kuenz
Not as intense as DisneyWar, but a great sociological exposé about the inner workings and politics of the parks
The firing of Jeffrey Katzenberg and the reception of the shareholders to Roy Disney.
Although the writer quickly mentions the success of Shrek, a Katzenberg smash hit, I wish he would of delved into the suspicion that Lord Forquaad is a cinematic jab at Eisner, (read: Lord F#*kwad).
From Wikipedia: There is some speculation that Lord Farquaad's appearance may be inspired by Michael Eisner, the then–CEO of The Walt Disney Company, owing to producer Jeffrey Katzenberg's animosity toward his former employer.
I think that most Disney fans and even the general public have, at some point, been exposed to the fact that Eisner was known as a tyrannical lunatic, who destroyed lives and fired everyone who disagreed with him. This book brings that to life and although it does credit Eisner for accomplishments in the epilogue, it really highlights how much of a monster he really was.
The book is written in a lateral and chronological way which helps understand the evolution of Disney, ABC and Pixar.
I feel a built guilty for peeking at the men behind the curtain, but equally relieved. They are just men, mostly men, after all. The multitude of facts sometimes reads like an annual report and one wants to yell at Mr. Eisner to stop treating people like crap and face up to his obsession, but who among us could handle that kind of power and influence with dignity?
This book is very long (thick). As a business coach I found it very interesting. It is actually very scary. It is amazing that people act in such a bad way. I think most expect so much more of people that have a monthly salary that exceeds what most make during a lifetime. Listen and get a better understanding of Disney. It is very good read and follows a chronological flow.