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A Beautiful Constraint. How To Transform Your Limitations Into Advantages, and Why It's Everyone's Business

  • ID: 2898936
  • Book
  • 288 Pages
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
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Dan Wieden


Drawing inspiration from cases in fields as diverse as education, automobile engineering, supply–chain management, agriculture and breakthrough marketing campaigns, A Beautiful Constraint provides simple and practical tools to help almost anyone use constraints as a source of inspiration rather than asphyxiation. With clearly signalled chapter summaries allowing the time–constrained reader to grasp the whole book in 21 minutes, this is an easily digestible guidebook for all of us who need to make more from less.

"A Beautiful Constraint is a worldview changer."

Seth Godin, Author, What To Do When It′s Your Turn

"A Beautiful Constraint is a book you can arm–wrestle with. Come at it with a traditional mindset and it will come right back at you with forceful arguments that will stimulate your thinking. The book offers us all a beguilingly simple way of looking at new approaches to grow and prosper in a new world order where the overriding preoccupation of business is scarcity of resource in all its forms. Read it and be inspired."

Keith Weed, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, Unilever

"I′m a huge believer in the power of constraint. Less is often better. This book beautifully explores the question of how to approach constraints, both as individuals and as organizations and provides pragmatic frameworks for how to implement in every day life. In the end, this is not a business book, it is essential reading for personal happiness and entrepreneurship."

Fabian Pfortmüller, Co–Founder, Holstee

"Through its compelling real world examples and observations, A Beautiful Constraint has encouraged me to challenge time–worn assumptions, and enlightened me to the concept of asking tough propelling questions to both our creative teams and our sales and marketing organization. As an added bonus, ABC has been assembled in an easy–to–digest format perfect for short attention span readers like me."

Scott Rohde, SVP Product Development, Sony PlayStation Worldwide Studios America

"An amazing book. A well–written, lucid survey of how businesses succeed by figuring out how to use their limitations. A business book that doesn′t read like one. I think these guys nailed it."

Dan Wieden, Co–Founder & Chairman, Wieden + Kennedy

"Adam and Mark have not only thought deeply about how to turn lemons into lemonade, they′ve also thought about how to make the wealth of ideas in their book easy to digest and use."

Nancy Duarte, CEO, Duarte, Inc.

"I started Samuel Adams in 1984 on a shoestring, but I never felt constrained. I felt focused and clear about every decision. We bootstrapped and innovated to compensate for lack of financial resources, and that creative culture serves us well even now, 30 years later. A Beautiful Constraint is a great addition to the entrepreneur′s bookshelf. The antithesis of the ill–fated ′burn rate′ calculations used by VCs during the dot com boom, the lessons in A Beautiful Constraint give the reader the tools to stay true to the company′s core values and the confidence to let constraints be a powerful ally."

Jim Koch, Chairman & Founder, The Boston Beer Company

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Introduction 1

The beauty in constraint, and why it matters

1. Victim, Neutralizer, & Transformer 16

Our starting relationship with constraints

2. Break Path Dependence 34

The behaviors and practices that stop us seeing opportunity in constraint

3. Ask Propelling Questions 56

How to frame the constraint to force breakthrough

4. Can–If 78

How to find solutions to constraint–driven problems

5. Creating Abundance 102

How to see and access resources we don t have

6. Activating Emotions 124

How to fuel tenacity on the journey

7. The Fertile Zero 146

Learning from people who succeeded with next to nothing

8. Constraint–Driven Cultures 172

How big companies have learned to love constraints

9. Scarcity and Abundance 194

Why this capability is so important to all of us today

10. Making Constraints Beautiful 208

How to use the ABC approach

11. Leadership & The Future of Constraints 224

The opportunity for progress

Notes and Sources 235

Bibliography and Further Reading 249

Image Credits 251

Appendix 253

Thanks and Acknowledgments 263

Index 267

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Adam Morgan
Mark Barden
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