Newest Business and Finance Reviews

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Review of

The Radical Innovation Playbook: A Practical Guide for Harnessing New, Novel or Game-Changing Breakthroughs by Olga Kokshagina and Allen Alexander

5star.jpg Business and Finance

So, why bother? Every time you set out to do something new you end up with the same thing in a slightly different form and quite a bit of money spent. Why not just leave it as it is? After all, it's roughly working, isn't it?

You might not have said it, but you've probably thought it. You've also thought the small, incremental improvements which you have been able to make - the optimisation of your core business with cost efficiencies wherever possible, the extension of your existing products into new areas - haven't really delivered in terms of growth. It's been manageable and largely risk-free but you could easily be challenged by a competitor who takes a more radical approach. You've merely kept the business ticking over and there's a nagging suspicion in the back of your mind that an organisation designed for the twentieth century might not survive in the twenty-first. What you need is innovation - radical innovation. Full Review

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Review of

Creating Value Through Technology: Discover the Tech that Can Transform Your Business by Andrew Hampshire

4.5star.jpg Business and Finance

I was once told that 'technology' is anything that happens after you're eighteen, so there's been a lot of technology in my life. I once worked for a manager who judged if an accountant was reputable by establishing whether or not they had a typewriter. Times - thankfully - have moved on. Nowadays the problem is that someone running a business doesn't have the time to keep up with constant innovation and they might also be scared because previous IT investments haven't delivered as expected. It's also a fact that no one develops a business because they have the knowledge of the required technology, so they start off in conversations about technology feeling that they're at a disadvantage. They need help, but they frequently don't know what help they need. Full Review

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Review of

Dosh: How to Earn It, Save It, Spend It, Grow It, Give It by Rashmi Sirdeshpande

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What a relief! A book about money, for children, with clear explanations of what it is, why it matters, how to acquire more of it (nope - robbing banks is out) and what you can do with it when you've managed to get hold of it. Your reasons for wanting money don't matter: we all need it to some extent. You might want to go into business, be a clever shopper, a saver (you might even become an investor) and there might be something you really, really want to buy. There's also the possibility of using to do good in the world. Full Review

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Review of

The Double X Economy by Linda Scott

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Women are economically disadvantaged in every country in the world. It's a bold statement for an opening chapter, but it's far from hyperbole as the following pages explain. This book shines a light on what is happening in different places, and the impact on the local and world economy. What can be learnt from the great strides in gender-equalising legislation in the west? What can be done about the selling of young women into marriage, and what can chimpanzees and bonobos teach us about mothering? Full Review

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Review of

Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed

5star.jpg Business and Finance

Do you have a guaranteed and more-than-adequate income which will last the rest of your life? Do you have no need to work, either for income or fulfilment? If you even hesitate over either of those questions then you really ought to read Life's Work': 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career. If you're not yet in work or considering that you might need to make some changes then this is the book you need. James Reed is the chairman and chief executive of REED, Britain's biggest and best-known name in the recruitment industry. Who better to give you the advice you need? Full Review

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Review of

The Money Revolution by Anne Boden

4star.jpg Business and Finance

Money is changing. It might not be in the ways you think. We’re not suddenly getting a 3p or £3 coin (and have you ever even found a country that offers anything different to the 1, 2, 5 model?) We’re getting a lot more digital with payments, which seems to suit most people apart from charity collectors and the homeless on the street, but although this book has the subtitle that includes the word digital, it’s not really about this either. Instead, it's about the management of your finances, and how to take control. Full Review

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Review of

Financial Accounting Essentials You Always Wanted To Know: 4th Edition by Kalpesh Ashar

4star.jpg Business and Finance

Financial Accounting Essentials You Always Wanted to Know gives people without an accounting background who have risen in a company the knowledge to understand the accounts which show how the company is doing. The book begins by looking at why financial accounting systems are necessary, then moves on to give an excellent overview of the types of accounting systems which will be encountered and the terms used. We then look in detail at the balance sheet, the income statement and the statement of cash flows... Full Review

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Review of

Cost Accounting & Management Essentials You Always Wanted To Know by Vibrant Publishers

4.5star.jpg Business and Finance

I'm capable of drawing up a profit and loss account (income statement in the USA) and a balance sheet and I do so for my own business and for another organisation. The accounts give me broadly what I need: I know whether we're making a profit or a loss and I can look at the expenses and see what looks as though it could be trimmed back in future years. My problem was that the accounts didn't really give me any help in making decisions, which was why I turned to Cost Accounting and Management, part of Vibrant Publishers' Self-Learning and Management series... Full Review

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Review of

The Simple Act of Self-Publishing With Amazon: A Simple Step by Step Guide by Georgianne Landy-Kordis

4.5star.jpg Business and Finance

I frequently meet authors who are struggling to be published by the traditional houses, but when I suggest self-publishing they explain that they don't have the big bucks required to go down that road with Author Solutions or Matador or their like. I then ask if they've considered Kindle and the answer is, inevitably, that they wouldn't know where to start. I can empathise with that. Despite having used a computer for about thirty years, running most of my life and a website online, I'm still nervous when it comes to starting something new. I like someone to hold my hand as I go through it for the first time. That was why I was very interested when The Simple Act of Self Publishing With Amazon came across my desk... Full Review

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Review of

Fast-track the I.T Journey - How to move from Supplier to Partner by Alok Ranjan Tripathy

3.5star.jpg Business and Finance

So, what brought me to this book? As the owner of a small business and a buyer of IT services I should be the senior partner in the relationship with my suppliers, but I've frequently found myself the junior partner and I've regularly been let down by them. I needed to know where I could improve that relationship and, by looking at the situation from the supplier's point of view, what steps I needed to take. Alok Tripathy's book looked as though it might provide help and possibly some of the answers as to how my suppliers could better help me. Full Review

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Review of

Storytelling: The Presenter's Secret Weapon by John Clare

4star.jpg Business and Finance

I was a little bit nervous when I picked up Storytelling: The Presenter's Secret Weapon. After all, the majority of presentations which I've seen or given were in a business context and what was required was absolute professionalism, not an act put on for light entertainment. I needn't have worried though: the book is an essential guide to preparing and giving your presentation, with or without what has now come to be known as The Dreaded PowerPoint. I've been making presentations successfully (but I'll say more about this later) in various professional situations for some forty or more years and I did wonder if the book would be able to teach me anything. It did. Full Review

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Review of

Boards That Dare: How to Future-proof Today's Corporate Boards by Marc Stigter and Sir Cary Cooper

5star.jpg Business and Finance

I wasn't optimistic when I started reading Boards That Dare. I feared that I would encounter new ways of minimising tax liabilities, of getting as much as possible out of employees whilst paying them the legal minimum and constant reminders that the shareholders own the company and of the necessity of maximising their return. In the event, I was only a few pages in before I discovered that I couldn't have been more wrong, that we were looking at ways of future-proofing the company. I began to feel hopeful... Full Review

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Review of

Trials and Tribulations of a Travelling Prostitute by Andrew Mackay

3.5star.jpg Business and Finance

Just chance you think that you're picking up a book about what can go wrong in life for an itinerant sex worker I'd better explain exactly what it was that author Andrew Mackay did for thirty-three years. A travelling prostitute is a worker who is employed by one company but his services are sold out to other countries, usually at a substantial profit to the employing company and a lot of inconvenience to the employee. Mackay was an engineer who knew all that there was to be know about turbines and generators, or if he didn't could soon be up to speed to the extent of being able to teach other people. Occasionally his skills were used in the UK, but frequently he was abroad. Just every now and again he would be in those parts of the world which has the rest of us green with envy, but then there were those areas which feature heavily in the news and not in a good way. Full Review

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Review of

The DIY Investor: How to take control of your investments and plan for a financially secure future by Andy Bell

5star.jpg Business and Finance

Investments are confusing. They're also rather frightening unless you have a background in finance: you could invest in equities which seem likely to make your fortune, only to find that you've lost all your money. On the other hand, you could put all your savings into a nice, safe building society or bank account only to find that the interest is so derisory that your capital doesn't actually have the same buying power that it did when you opened the account. You could, of course, spend the money, but what about when you want to buy a house, replace the roof or retire? The roof might be relatively cheap but the other two are going to need a substantial investment pot. Full Review

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Review of

Time is Money by T K Williams-Nelson

4star.jpg Business and Finance

Whatever your age it's frustrating to have to work for someone else. If you're under twenty-five there's a strong chance that you'll be under-valued and probably not paid very well. There is though, a certain security in employment, usually because there's a reasonable certainty of income and a possibility of paid holidays: when you're self-employed neither of those are guaranteed. It is, though, a big step to leap into the world of self-employment. Time is Money is a self-development tool aimed at young people, creatives and people in business. Full Review

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Review of

Smarter Faster Better by Charles Duhigg

5star.jpg Business and Finance

Smarter Faster Better is the ideal book for someone who loves both stories and career-related self-improvement. Readers looking for quick answers, bullet points or sound bites may be disappointed as Duhigg's approach is to focus on case studies, told with the flair of a short story, and then extrapolate from these rather than listing tips and exercises. However, if you have the time and patience to get to the point of each chapter slowly (and surely this is a subject matter worth devoting time to), you will doubtless find that Duhigg is an excellent storyteller and cleverly articulates the key message from each story so that they stick. Full Review

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Review of

The Great Brexit Swindle: Why the Mega-Rich and Free Market Fanatics Conspired to Force Britain from the European Union by T J Coles

3.5star.jpg Business and Finance

Have you been mis-sold Brexit by posh men in sharp suits promising you free healthcare? If so, you might be entitled to compensation...

There wasn't much could make me laugh on the morning after the EU referendum but this spoof advert on Twitter managed it. Only, it seems that it wasn't completely a joke - well apart from the bit about compensation. In The Great Brexit Scandal T J Coles looks at the substantial core of free marketeers in the Conservative party who were determined to rid the UK of the Brussels red tape which was putting a brake on their activities. You might also know these views as neoliberalism, an ideology which looks to deregulate markets and maximise profits. On the surface that doesn't sound bad, until you realise that the benefit will go to the people who are already in the group which Coles refers to as the mega-rich and the losers will be working people. Full Review

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Review of

The Great Convergence by Richard Baldwin

4star.jpg Business and Finance

The globalisation of the world economy is a central factor in life and politics today. 'The Great Convergence' attempts to explain the current driving forces behind the phenomena and the likely consequences. It is well-argued and supported by a wealth of data and research, but it is not one for a general reader. A background in economic principles and an understanding of some key concepts would be a key requisite in getting the most out of this book. Without this background, the reader will be constantly switching from the text and cross-referencing the meaning of some of the vocabulary used. With that note of caution and the required understanding, Richard Baldwin's analysis is compelling. Full Review

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Review of

Thinking Allowed by Julian Wiles

4star.jpg Business and Finance

Thinking Allowed? Hmm, I thought, what has that got to do with building a thriving optical lens business? But within a few pages of starting to read, I was convinced that it was perfect. You see, this isn't a book which you read, rather like a Delia Smith book, to give you a precise recipe for how you must proceed to achieve a perfect result. No two businesses are alike, any more than any two owners are alike and Julian Wiles allows you to approach your business from all angles: there are even ways you can get his personal advice. This is no ordinary 'how-to' book. There are no chapter numbers (you pick from the menu) and it's not even necessary to read the book in any particular order. Full Review

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Review of

Forestry Flavours of the Month: The Changing Face of World Forestry by Alastair Fraser

4.5star.jpg Business and Finance

Alastair Fraser's experience of forestry spans more than five decades and having the benefit of the long view he's ideally placed to consider the changes which have occurred over the course of his career. He also has the ability, not as common as it ought to be amongst professionals, of being able to look at what he does both from the point of view of the business and the people who work in it and are affected by it. There's a lack of tunnel vision too: he sees what's happening in forestry both in the narrow focus and where it sits globally so far as economics and politics are concerned. Full Review

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