“On The Brink” was a revelation to me. I bought it because my niece is struggling with a start-up business but I thought I’d read it to ensure it was appropriate for her. It was that and more. It was appropriate for me as well even though I am no longer in the corporate world, I only wish I’d read this when I was. So much of what Dr. Simon reveals is applicable to your everyday life too. In fact there’s an emphasized statement early on in the book that’s worthy of making a little inspirational sign out of which I’ll put on my desk so I see it every day. Dr. Simon is able to step back and guide companies to see the big picture, an indispensable skill. In fact she nets out that skill into two words and one is only three letters! A must read to find out what that is. In the business world or not, it’s an excellent and insightful read. A great gift book for those in your life that work, have a business or simply might like a fresh look on the world around them.
This book should be a must read for everyone. What it did for me was open my eyes to the box I live in - thinking that this is all there is. After reading the book I realized there is so much more if I just open my mind to it.
Andi gave real-life examples of company experiences she worked with to continually bring out this open to new ideas mindset.
I was actually able to use her research to open up my company to new avenues of business.
When all of your people read this book, you and they will see your company and industry in the new light of the current day.
As Peter Drucker once remarked, "Inside (the company) there are only costs. Results are only on the outside.” Andi SImon's book, "On the Brink" gives CEOs (and those who would like to be !) a fresh approach using the tools of the anthropologist to indentify underserved and unserved customers and markets as well as generating innovative product and service ideas that may be hiding in plain sight.
Dr. Simon give her readers "new eyes" for opportunities that can bring both growth and profits. Her techniques require only investment of time and focus. Highly recommended for the entire management team.
I was reading 'On The Brink' during the time I was volunteering for a Congressional Candidate and making cold calls. Speaking with only 10% of the recipients and being hung up on by 50% of those was not very satisfying. Andi inspired me to use my 'new eyes' and come up with a more satisfying use of my time in the campaign. I asked if anyone in the campaign was registering people in senior facilities and/or campaigning to them. The campaign manager loved my idea and I have a new, challenging and, hopefully, very satisfying assignment. I'm retired. But, I wish the people that I worked with and for had the insights that 'On The Brink' recommended and could appreciate a different approach to 'the way it's always been done.'
What I found fascinating about Andi Simon's approach to looking at the factors that keep a company stuck, is that once they were identified, the path to growth was clear. As a non business professional, I ffound On The Brink easy for me to understand( there is little business jargon), and the format kept me interested and connected to the businesses, their problems and how they came to understand this new way of problem solving. As a psychologist working with parents and families who are looking to get unstuck, I was fascinated to realize that the tools and approach that Andi uses with her companies, I could use with my families to facilitate growth. I believe this book is a valuable read for both business and non business professional who are looking for new insights in how to facilitate change and growth
This book is great tool to use in your business as a "temperature check" for how you're doing and how closely your story resembles the stories talked about within these case studies. In our case, we didn't realize how close to being on the brink of disaster we were - but by reading through these experiences and learns - we were able to take Andi's guidance and apply her stories to our own situation.
I'd highly recommend this to any colleague, business-minded friend, or even peer looking to gain insights into how businesses can course-correct right before it's too late.
Andi Simon is doing wonderfully important work relating the anthropology of artifact, myths, habits and practices into the corporate world of leadership and management. Improving leadership and management skills and strategies requires realistic and truthful examination of the facts as they are -- like an anthropologist's pure observational ethnography -- rather than bending and shaping facts to support one's desired position. The author does a great job of showing the relationship between anthropology and strategy, complete with demonstrations in real world settings. It's an intriguing and through-provoking read for those serious about improving positions in a complex and rapidly changing business landscape.
A former UX colleague strongly recommended this book, but I was honestly a bit disappointed. Perhaps because of my background within cognitive science, user research (including ethnographic methods) etc. Could perhaps be more of an eye-opener to people who have little or no previous knowledge in this field? Also I found it a bit outdated when it comes to examples/case studies.