A general consulting book. This book has sections about industries such as management, technology, health care, and education. Because numerous industries are covered, the methods are more generalized than may be wanted for specific scenarios. For example, technology consulting requires some fairly fine tuned methodologies that stem from computer science disciplines and technological implementations. With that being said, learning how consulting in different disciplines and industries compare is a decent way to develop some business knowledge. For example, problem solving in medicine is labelled as diagnosis, while in technology it is called troubleshooting and repair, or testing and debugging. All are focused on solving specific problems, yet the information and methodologies differ greatly.
A large amount of the book was also focused on client interactions. Namely, strategies and procedures for gathering information, drafting contracts, and working with varying levels of client participation were described. Means of preventing project failure were given, and client relations were described in numerous social and organizational contexts. I did notice the author used a large amount of negative terms, such as describing managers as experiencing agony and pain whenever minor business problems occur. I had the impression the author often tried to gain negotiation leverage through references to the nervous system and negative emotional spectrum. As if his services would also fix the negative emotion or feeling. Although slightly humorous, I didn't think this a good technique for getting the job done, and such language would most likely damage client relations and reduce repeat business.
In spite of his defensive and offensive interpersonal strategies, the author had great knowledge of some great techniques. He provided very organized checklists for various project phases. These checklists appear malleable to numerous industries, and appear as good frameworks and additional points to be considered while consulting, project planning, or design a system.
Rise Again: A Zombie Thriller is a modern novel about a zombie plague spreadig across the land.
Set mainly in California and Nevada, I appreciated the numerous descriptions of terrain, flora and fauna, urban and rural buildings, roadways, and masses of braindead uncommunicative zombies travelling about. The author seemed to have a knack for describing mundane details in way as to make the details less mundane and more part of the action of each scene. Certainly, any way to render entertaining and interesting the everyday things that are seen thousands to millions of times could make the world a more scenic place, and story settings more developed.
The characters were fairly stereotypical propaganda types from modern society, and the plotline was violent and grotesque. Although the action and scenarios the characters found themselves in were far from average. Battles for survival during economic scarcity, struggles against hungry herds of monsters, and group dynamics of betrayal and thievery made for very thoughtful character interactions. Unlike many of the happy main character stories, these characters were often wounded, shot, blown up, eaten, and otherwise mutilated.
From a literary perspective this book was a work of art, from a personal perspective I both hated and loved The Canterbury Tales.
Literarily, most of the book was in poem. Rhythm and rhymes of various sorts added all the enoyable but relatively meaningless cues to listen for. In a sense, the poetry almost added an element of song to the storyline. Although at times, regular prose was used without rhyme, which seemed to resemble some of the elements of rational composition as in essay format.
The setting was of old England, and the main setting was actually a platform for storytelling. And so from the main setting numerous stories were told. Stories of knights, kings, law, religion, sailing, commerce, battle, treachery, and many more human situations were all told in varying styles. A lot of old English words made interpretation a challenge at times, but the descriptions and plots were so highly developed as to make the effort worthwhile.
My favorites were of adventure and trustworthy reason, and least favorites were of grossness and manipulative reason. Possibly the most hated was the judgemental fanatic who would first describe a great or majestic thing, and then try to position himself as the benevolate giver of that thing, and then add a bunch of ridiculous conditions merged with tortorous language. When in reality all he did was say words, and I found myself having to repeatedly reclaim the words, and blockade the storyteller from any object of thought, so not to have a good concept ruined by such ruthless tactics.
All in all, I enjoyed the book, and feel the entire range of human experience was somehow included. For one author to be able to change into and out of such modes, and write them in poetry with such an array of words, tells me why Chaucer is such a highly regarded author throughout the world's times.
A storytelling of a massive zombie uprising, Zombie Fallout contains great characterization and familiar settings. The main character is fully developed with a sarcastic wit, rude humor, upfront personality, and deep and private introspection.
The plot occurs at the type of locations that are found almost anywhere in the United States, with some setting elements specific to the regions where the story takes place. Unlike the real regions, though, the plots actions makes for some awesome events.
A very good start to what I am sure is going to be a very good series
Very awesome continuation of the previous plot. All the literary elements of character, setting, and plot created an expansive world with a great atmosphere of political catastrophy. I enjoyed the unexpected plot twists, and following the characters along in their struggles and discoveries.
You may wonder why I'd give a book with such a horrific name five stars. Such a nightmarish idea in the second person is sure to rile anyone up. But I don't judge books by their cover, and this was was an incredible horror book.
The main character and his family continue to develop in the midst of a horrific setting, with a plot line based on family group survival. The plague creates mindless herds of violent masses seeking to eat the flesh of the family. Society appears to have lost the battle, and these large groups of subhumans are able to roam the country in groups attacking who they please.
A decent business book which chronicles the rise of Nintendo. While the business information is a slightly interesting history of a large Japanese corporation, the detailed descriptions of the Nintendo game characters are outstanding reminders of the great and original artwork that video games used.
This book provides a decent overview of sales, with a lot of examples from a successful salesperson. As a forewarning, a large part of my brain is probably devoted to ignoring advertisements and spam, so I have a lot of negative opinions about many sales techniques.
Review of Sales Techniques
Numerous methods and types of sales are discussed, with strategies explained. I have no doubt most businesses would find one or more strategies they haven't thought of. Personally, I reject about half of the strategies for my own business as they involve what I categorize as spam and stalking. Basically, I find methods of advertising to huge numbers people obnoxious if the information wasn't solicited, searched for, or professionally relevant. Am I losing business because of this? Yes. Am I wasting thousands of people's time with their own inboxes, telephones, and computers to obtain one client? No. My guess is this author has probably wasted the equivalent of ten human lifetimes in the amount of time he's made people think about his products and services.
With that being said, a lot of the ideas are useful suggestions for finding ways to sell products or services, or to enhance an existing businesses sales model. I will personally use a lot of the general ideas to improve both mine and my clients advertising and sales gateways, and use them in a way to respect people's time.
Another problem I had with the information presented is the same type of problem I have when viewing misleading advertisements. The author was a highly successful salesperson whose sales were for large businesses with huge product investments. Because of this, the example pricing and numbers given were understandably large. However, the way the information was presented mixed these numbers as if to imply regular and small businesses were able to easily achieve such numbers.
At one point, he even suggested using the best case scenarios for advertising income. Work for this joker and earn $100,000, like one person out of a thousand did one year after a very rare corporate sale. Basically, using the earning from the best out of a thousand or even hundred thousand to lead people astray, without explaining the specific case is very unlikely.
I am not sure if this was suggested to use in product or service advertisements, as the example was a salesperson to salesperson employment advertisement. From experience, I've learned that following up with advertisements like this lead me to pushy salespeople who have devised other half-truths and lies they aren't willing to put in writing. What I am paying for won't be product or service research, but to be robbed and bamboozled.
Great Educational Marketing Advice
In all fairness, the category on educational marketing had some great advice. Businesses that market with great information and studies are the types of businesses I usually find and eventually use.
Television, Radio, Billboard, and Newspaper Advertising
Great advice on some ways to format advertisements for these mediums. Although I personally ignore most advertisements, when being entertained, I do find some ads humorous or interesting as a consumer at times.
His descriptions of a website and his model were decent. He described a main site, with free articles, and compared it with a web site with one feature, a sign-up box. He mentioned more people filled out the sign-up box on the website without other information, but the article website had more traffic.
Interesting to note, although I'd never design a website with only an email sign-up box and product offering. I think it would be very ineffective for anyone but a person who already has a large following. One benefit of a website is to bring in unknown people and provide unique information and services, and perhaps sell stuff also. Website technology isn't designed only to force people sent there to sign up for a constant barrage of a salespersons spam.
An entire section was the author bragging about how he would repeatedly call and harass tons of people on the phone, and get a few responses and sales. He had a full methodology on mind controlling secretaries over the phone to have them go back and forth to talk to their bosses.
What I liked about this book is how down to earth, or real, the characters and their interactions seemed at times. Although I really enjoy pure fiction with completely made up worlds, beings, and plots, Water for Elephant's involvement of a circus was a reminder of how many unique places, creatures, and actions exist in reality.
I was also surprised at the vast range of personal experience, emotion, and social interactions. In one book, the main character experiences adventure, arch rivalry, disaster, love, hate, health, illness, and much more.
The varying settings of a mobile circus provided many entertaining, amusing, and thoughtful descriptions of animals and their artistic capabilities. In a way, this book has elevated these animals from being just a stampeding herd, to obedient, skilled, and talented performers, while still realizing their unpredictable nature.
A great book for any entrepreneur or product designer looking to define and apply innovation towards a goal. I like how the innovation process is broken up into phases like a project.
On Intelligence is written in a very explanatory and interesting way. The examples and problems are the sort that make you think in a deep way, and are great thought exercises.
The topics covered range from psychology to neuroscience to artificial intelligence. I found a lot of the information new, a lot built on previous knowledge, and a lot was the authors unique perspective. The unique perspective was based on scientific reasoning and superb analysis.
I did find myself lost at times in some of the details. My suspicion is that because I didn't view the figures before or while listening to the audio version, I was missing a lot of data. I'll probably listen to this book again in the future after studying further and checking out the figures that are used as examples.
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