5 Sep 2017 03:52pm

Between the lines: Campbell Macpherson

Campbell Macpherson, change strategist and author of The Change Catalyst, picks the books he’s learnt from and been inspired by
Caption: Last Train to Lisbon by Pascal Mercier

I WISH more corporations were run for the benefit of employees and the community as well as shareholders and execs. Responsible Capitalism would create new customers, new markets and unlock trillions of dollars lying dormant in corporate accounts.

THE BOOK I LEARNED THE MOST FROM IS The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton Christensen as it explains why innovation is so difficult for market leaders. Good Strategy Bad Strategy by Richard Rumelt helped me distill and clarify what a good strategy looks like.

THE LAST BOOK I READ WAS Last Train to Lisbon by Pascal Mercier. On one level it is a simple tale of a Swiss classics professor who suddenly and uncharacteristically changes his life, but it is also a thought-provoking discourse on aspects of what it means to be human.

MY DESERT ISLAND BOOK WOULD BE A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking because it summarises the wonders of the universe in a way that is almost understandable.

MY FAVOURITE BOOK IS Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand – a dystopian vision of the future where the corporate elite run away to a hidden valley to start afresh, leaving unions and bureaucrats to drive the rest of the world into the ground. While a patronisingly misdirected solution, such a dramatic change is compelling.


economia reviews...

Entering StartUp Land; Jeffrey Bussgang

It’s not just graduates who think start-ups rather than corporates will be more immersive.

As Jeffrey Bussgang, former VC and entrepreneur and current professor at Harvard Business School realised, many professionals also aspire to work for a start-up. Which is why he wrote this book.

The work environment at a fledgling company can be “bedlam”. But if you’ve got the sort of qualities where you’d thrive in a start-up, then all you need to do is follow a framework, suggests Bussgang. And this works for product management, business development, marketing, growth, sales and finance.

This latter function is often outsourced or, worse, overlooked, says Bussgang. Yet it’s a critical role, especially as the start-up grows and investors take an interest. While the author doesn’t give any advice on the best way for a professional to assimilate this role, he does go into great detail about what you might expect to encounter. For this reason, it’s worth a read. Forewarned is forearmed.