Reality Check - The Irreverent Guide to Outsmarting, Outmanaging, and Outmarketing Your Competition

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"Don't even think about trying to launch a startup without reading Guy Kawasaki's Reality Check ." - BizEd For a quarter of a century, in his various guises as an entrepreneur, evangelist, venture capitalist, and guru, Guy Kawasaki has ...
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"Don't even think about trying to launch a startup without reading Guy Kawasaki's Reality Check." -BizEd 

For a quarter of a century, in his various guises as an entrepreneur, evangelist, venture capitalist, and guru, Guy Kawasaki has cast an irreverent eye on the dubious trends, sketchy theories, and outright foolishness of what so often passes for business today. Too many people frantically chase the Next Big Thing only to discover that all they've made is the Last Big Mistake.

Reality Check is Kawasaki's all-in-one guide for starting and operating great organizations-ones that stand the test of time and ignore any passing fads in business theory. This indispensable volume collects, updates, and expands the best entries from his popular blog and features his inimitable take on everything from effective e-mailing to sucking up to preventing "bozo explosions."
 

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Paul Boehmer's energetic reading contributes to the author's streetwise vibe. Boehmer's quick pacing and smart-aleck tone are good vehicles for pouring out Kawasaki's potent no-nonsense advice." ---AudioFile --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
 

About the Author

Guy Kawasaki, who helped make Macintosh a household name, now runs Garage Technology Ventures, a venture-capital firm. He has held his workshop, “Boot Camp for Start-ups,” around the world. Kawasaki is the author of seven previous books, including Rules for Revolutionaries.


Most Helpful Customer Reviews

183 of 215 people found the following review helpfulBy Jerry Saperstein HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on December 27, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Guy Kawasaki is a genuinely warm, engaging, intelligent and articulate man. I've had the pleasure of meeting him several times at MacWorld trade shows.

However, Guy Kawasaki is a career self-promoter. He has made a living for many years repackaging standard business advice in an entertaining format and peddling it as new to the legions of people seeking a business success formula.

More power to Guy for making a living at it, but it doesn't alter the nature of what is between the covers here: old advice, with a lot of it being nothing more than commensense.

Two irritating things about Guy's otherwise excellent writing style. He has a real problem with gender pronouns. Even in academic writing that tends to be excruciatingly politically correct, I've never seen anyone go to such extremes in using "she", "her" and other feminine pronouns. It's creepy, weird and utterly unnecessary. Certainly She would understand if Guy backed off a bit. Then there is Guy's cuteness with a couple of euphemisms: for example, he takes the common expletive for bull manure and adds "-takke" to it. Once may cute, especially among your 4th grade classmates. A couple of dozen times and it is truly annoying and leads you to believe the author may be a fourth grader.

As for Guy's advice . . . well, there's a reason why so many self-help and business success books are perennial bestsellers: people want guidance and advice And guy provides it in a witty, entertaining manner.

But virtually all of it has been served up hundreds, if not thousands, of times before by other authors. Some of what Guy offers up is pure nonsense without a shred of evidence to support it: it is just politically correct, like his overuse of the feminine. For example, he directs that companies "diversify" in their hiring, implying that if your workforce isn't statistically proportionate, you are doomed to an early end in a "Bozo Explosion". While it may be politically correct, the proposition is not supported by evidence.

Straining for material, Kawasaki resorts to interviews with other authors and academics, not a few of whom are cranks. One parses a conspiracy theory that would give a tinfoil hat wearer a run for their money.

Finally, Kawasaki tries to cover the waterfront with his advice. And the plains. And the mountains too. And the oceans. Everything. If you're looking for millions to start your company, Kawasaki has advice. If you're looking for a job, Kawasaki has advice. If you're the boss of a successful company, Kawasaki has advice.

The quality of the advice in every area, however, is suspect. First, much of it is common sense. If you have to buy as book to learn common sense, you have a problem. A lot of what Guy writes has been written about a zillion times before.

Take, for example, some of his advice about getting a job in Silicon Valley. Show up early, Guy says. "Get to your interview at least thirty minutes early because (a) you might hit traffic . . ." Actually, I think Guy means to say leave for your interview early because you might hit traffic, if She is not watching over you. Point is, who needs to buy a book to learn this? I love this line: "Answer the first question "How are you?" with a great response. For example, a great response is, "I feel great. I'm really anxious to learn more about this job and tell you about myself, so that we can determine if we're a good match". Very impressive: I'm sure the interviewer will be bowled over by your sincerity.

As one of his later chapters, Guy has one entitled "Are You an Egomaniac?" I think Guy is - and he appears to make a good living from it.

On the whole, 'Reality Check" is no worse than then some advice books and perhaps is valuable to simply reassure people that common sense is still a valuable commodity. But for business success tips, Guy doesn't offer anything you haven't seen before. I'd suggest holding off on this one until it is remaindered or just get it from the library.
 

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