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Rolf Dobelli "getAbstract" (Switzerland)
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Measuring Market Risk with Value at Risk
Measuring Market Risk with Value at Risk
by Pietro Penza
Edition: Hardcover
14 used & new from CDN$ 18.69

4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read!, March 8 2004
This book is a detailed and meticulous presentation of the calculations involved in Value at Risk (VaR) measurement. According to authors Pietro Penza and Vipul K. Bansal, Value at Risk is one of the most popular approaches to measuring the risk of harm to financial portfolios. It is a valuable institutional tool. Be aware, though, the book's message and how-to assistance will seem generally irrelevant to individual investors, except for a handful of extremely high net worth individuals at the top of the Forbes 400. Its calculations are beyond the ken of most non-mathematicians, but they will intrigue the right audience. We find this book to be a useful addition to the libraries of professional investors, bankers or risk managers, particularly those with highly developed analytical skills and a certain degree of comfort with financial engineering. Some other financial managers and lay readers will find useful information here, though they may need to walk on tiptoes through those sections of the content that are over their heads.

The Leadership Pill: The Missing Ingredient in Motivating People Today
The Leadership Pill: The Missing Ingredient in Motivating People Today
by Kenneth Blanchard Ph.D.
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 16.30
77 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read!, March 8 2004
Author Ken Blanchard's literary franchise began with the stunningly successful The One Minute Manager. He has mastered the art of a certain type of book for supervisors and higher executives who need to learn more about management, values and leadership. These readers probably don't have a lot of time and they like to get right to the bottom line - Blanchard obliges. His book enjoys the blessing of brevity, and he takes an accessible, creative approach to demonstrating that effective management really matters, that it takes time to develop and that it is not the result of trendy theories or relentless bossy practices. Blanchard encapsulates his lessons in an bouncy parable about a contest between a company that uses a manufactured leadership pill to instill a pumped up results-only approach and a company that uses value-driven leadership based on integrity, partnership and affirmation. Although the medicine may be a bit basic, we recommend this dosage for students of the art of effective leadership. It's a spoonful of sugar.

Henry and Edsel: The Creation of the Ford Empire
Henry and Edsel: The Creation of the Ford Empire
by Richard Bak
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 41.79
31 used & new from CDN$ 3.24

4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read!, March 8 2004
Richard Bak is a long-time resident of Detroit and Dearborn, Michigan, and doubtless absorbed much of the Ford legacy simply by growing up in a place that Ford formed. This book is not exactly a corporate history, not exactly a biography and not exactly a tell-all celebrity book, but it has elements of each. The most interesting pieces include the extended reminiscences by people who lived and worked closely with the Fords, and especially with Edsel's family. He has long lingered in the shadow of his famous father and it is somewhat surprising to discover that he had some fine qualities. These reminiscences have poignant moments that establish the veracity of any number of proverbs on money, happiness and the foibles of the great. The book is reasonably well written and fairly concise. It recapitulates the essentials of the Ford story, though it glances over the evolution of management and organization at the company. We assure you that you'll get the full Ford saga here, though you may have to extrapolate the business lessons it teaches for yourself.

The Future of Money
The Future of Money
by Benjamin J. Cohen
Edition: Hardcover
16 used & new from CDN$ 14.94

4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read!, March 8 2004
This review is from: The Future of Money (Hardcover)
This book is a thoughtful, amply documented reflection on the future of currency. The dollar, euro and yen dominate the global monetary order, with the dollar now unrivaled at the top and unlikely to be threatened in the future. The countries that issue lesser currencies face a trade-off between monetary sovereignty and international acceptability (with all its economic advantages). Some economists say these lesser currencies should simply dollarize, that is, sacrifice their monetary sovereignty on the altar of international economic efficiency by adopting a stronger currency as their own. Author Benjamin J. Cohen argues that these countries are likely to reject dollarization because the emotional and political advantages of issuing one's own currency are simply too strong. He suggests various alternate mechanisms that allow countries to maintain some monetary independence and authority while gaining the advantages of a fully liquid, widely used currency. Non-specialists may find his extensive discussions a bit dry or sometimes tedious, but we applaud the author's ability to explore monetary economics in admirably lucid detail.

Software Development Failures
Software Development Failures
by Kweku Ewusi-Mensah
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 33.78
16 used & new from CDN$ 19.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Insightful!, March 8 2004
Here's a two-ingredient recipe for disaster: take a big organization and mix in ambitious plans for a state-of-the-art software system. The disaster already happened at the IRS and Denver International Airport, both victims of software development missteps. Such failures are common, costly and all-too-avoidable, writes academic Kweku Ewusi-Mensah. While his prose can be dry, the examples he uses prove quite juicy. A little common sense could have saved the IRS billions and the Denver airport millions. Both fell victim to surprisingly basic pitfalls, such as unclear or unrealistic goals and over optimistic expectations that inexperienced people could get the job done. Ewusi-Mensah convincingly argues that organizations need to share such learning experiences, although he acknowledges that would mark a reversal from common practice. We recommend this book to managers and engineers involved in developing software. This cautionary tale could save your neck.

Marketing and the Bottom Line (2nd Edition)
Marketing and the Bottom Line (2nd Edition)
by Tim. Ambler
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 22.65
27 used & new from CDN$ 0.60

4.0 out of 5 stars Insightful!, March 8 2004
This is a marketing book unlike any other marketing book. It is really written for financial officers. In fact, at one point, author Tim Ambler actually recommends turning responsibility for marketing metrics over to the finance department. That emphasis on a hard-nosed, bottom line orientation is novel and refreshing. Ambler recognizes that one of the biggest problems marketers inflict on themselves is their failure to establish and demonstrate that money spent on marketing really does matter to the financial performance of a business. With comprehensive attention to detail, he is careful to present most of the current thinking on how to measure the value of investments in marketing. Unfortunately, his style is dense, so much of what he says may take non-experts several readings to clarify. We are grateful that his helpful executive summary goes some way toward mitigating this problem and highly recommends his comprehensive and informative material - however, an editor as ruthless as a CFO might benefit the book's own bottom line.

IMF Essays from a Time of Crisis: The International Financial System, Stabilization, and Development
IMF Essays from a Time of Crisis: The International Financial System, Stabilization, and Development
by Stanley Fischer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 59.33
19 used & new from CDN$ 30.15

4.0 out of 5 stars Insightful!, March 8 2004
This lucid, plain, straightforward book is not necessarily the sort of thing one expects from an economist, yet author Stanley Fischer is one of our era's greatest economists. His work at the International Monetary Fund put him on the front lines during some of the twentieth century's most serious economic crises and panics. He has a unique and valuable perspective. His timely discussion of the IMF and the World Bank provides a sobering antidote to the rhetoric of both globalization and anti-globalization. Fischer reminds us that the IMF's many glaring failures and imperfections are the stumbles and flaws of an organization that has done good work to further a noble purpose. It also has proven willing and able to change when the facts do. For good reason, Fischer's essays sometimes read like the arguments of a defense attorney countering prosecutorial accusations. The IMF has come in for so much criticism in recent years that it is refreshing to discover so many points in its favor, and we find it both fair and prudent to consider them carefully.

The Brand Called You: The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide to Branding and Business Development
The Brand Called You: The Ultimate Step-by-Step Guide to Branding and Business Development
by Peter Montoya
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 34.95
25 used & new from CDN$ 0.86

4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read!, March 8 2004
This guide book on achieving personal branding, or what used to be called name recognition, may be focused toward financial advisors and other types of consultants, but it contains useful guidance for any professional who needs to be remembered by potential clients and customers. Author Peter Montoya, who wrote this with Tim Vandehey, believes that everyone has a personal brand, that some people manage their brands and that to manage your brand effectively you have to be serious, deliberate and methodical. The book provides a step-by-step program supported with sound analysis and clear common sense to help anyone succeed in building a strong personal brand for career growth. We find that there is something in this metaphorical image-building manual for everyone. Even those who may find it a bit off-putting to objectify themselves like soap or some other commodity could benefit from these solid tips on individual image building. After all, people who affect your career are going to form opinions of you anyway - you might as well control those opinions as much as you can.

Megaprojects and Risk: An Anatomy of Ambition
Megaprojects and Risk: An Anatomy of Ambition
by Bent Flyvbjerg
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 30.13
29 used & new from CDN$ 16.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Packed with Knowledge!, March 1 2004
Every once in a while a little book comes along that, while small in size, carries sufficient intellectual weight to strike the body politic between the eyes, thereby getting its collective attention. This may be one such book. It offers a realistic look at megaprojects - those major infrastructure endeavors that span vast bodies of water, dam natural resources to generate energy and extend rail lines to previously unreachable regions - and compares the promises of these projects to what they actually deliver. The report card isn't very good. Cost overruns are typically 25% to 100%, and sometimes 200% or more. Worse yet, studies show that the public tends to use megaprojects - be they airports or subway systems - only a fraction of the amount predicted. We strongly recommends this book to politicians, legislators and anyone who wants to know the truth behind these huge infrastructure projects, as well as to CEOs, CFOs, project managers and risk officers in the private sector - this applies to your projects, even if there is a difference of scale.

Supernetworking
Supernetworking
by Michael Salmon
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 17.48

5.0 out of 5 stars Packed with Knowledge!, March 1 2004
This review is from: Supernetworking (Paperback)
This is an excellent book. Author Michael Salmon wastes no words, but provides a series of tips, questionnaires, checklists and exercises that will help everyone, even the most introverted, build a network productively and use it effectively. There is no fluff here, and minimal self-promotion. The book is mostly meat. The author is extraordinarily well organized and to the point. His advice on how to categorize relatives, friends and acquaintances may seem cold, but it is indispensable. Similarly, he recommends becoming a resource to others so that they may someday become a resource to you - a utilitarian and self-serving approach to human relations, but if you have no other reason to help people, this is not a bad one. One quibble: the book is repetitious and illustrates the hard truth with soft little imaginary anecdotes. That's more a fault of the genre than of the author. If you are in job search mode, We highly recommends this book to you. As the folks back home might say, write when you get work.

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