Rethink – A business statement to cut costs and boost innovation by Ric Merrifield

Rethinking: The Business Manifesto to Cut Costs and Boost Innovation by Ric Merrifield was a good quick read with some interesting examples of how different companies are learning to cut costs, boost innovation, and profit from change. The author’s goal is for people to “rethink” their business to improve efficiency and productivity, and I believe this book will prompt readers to “rethink” what and how their business is. While this book cannot give you all the answers, reading it should stimulate your thought process to create ideas for your own business.

One of the main ideas in this book is to get companies to think about the larger issue of “what” a business does and why, by immersing themselves in the “how” to do the job. Merrifield invites readers to go back to the big picture, test what they’re doing and why, and then worry about how to get it done.

Another important theme that you will notice throughout the case studies is that of “change”. Successful businesses must change with the times. Technology and other developments have made it imperative for successful companies to be innovative to not only keep up with the changing tides but to lead them. Rethink is about driving change.

The simple, explainable formula from this book consists of identifying the “things” or things of value, identifying what you’re good at, making connections, predicting what you can, and then making your own rules.

I enjoyed reading the case studies and found them motivating and sparking thought about what can be done with innovation and design. Some companies used as examples include ING Direct, Eclipse, Cranium (I especially liked this chapter being a fan of this company’s games, but never knew the story behind it), Amazon, and Procter & Gamble.

At the end of the book is a short chapter on key concepts accompanied by questions and maps to help the reader use the key concepts in their rethinking endeavours. I felt this was a good book for getting people to think about their business in a different way. It should help your readers focus on what’s important. The examples were fun to read. If you like a quick business read that helps you think of new ideas and innovations for your own business, “Re-Think” by Ric Merrifield is a book you’ll love.

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