Short review of 'From the Ground Up' by John Case and 'The Great Game of Business' by Jack Stack.
There are two new books out that every Inc. reader should purchase immediately. One of them is From the Ground Up, by John Case (Simon and Schuster, 1992). The other is The Great Game of Business, by Jack Stack, edited by Bo Burlingham (Doubleday/Currency, 1992). I am hardly an unbiased reviewer of either: Case and Burlingham usually can be found wandering the halls of this magazine. That said, you should still go out and buy these books.
Case's is a cogent look at the new entrepreneurial economy that has emerged during the past decade. He proves a surefooted and authoritative guide to a marketplace that seems more chaotic, irrational, and unpredictable at every turn. Equally surefooted is The Great Game of Business, in which Jack Stack provides an intimate and vivid account of the approach to management pioneered at the Springfield Remanufacturing Corp. That approach, dubbed "open-book management" (by Case no less), is designed to enlist the commitment and creativity of everyone in an organization. I was left with the conclusion that most companies will be forced to adopt some form of Stack's approach just to survive in the environment Case explores.