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Classic Business Books

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PREDATORY MARKETING: What everyone in business needs to know to win today's consumer

By C. Britt Beemer with Robert L. Shook

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BRITT BEEMER understands, probably better than anyone else in America today, how customers think, why they think that way and what obstacles must be overcome to generate a sale.

Clients who follow Beemer's recommendations enjoy an average growth rate several times greater than their competitors, earning him a reputation as one of America's leading business strategists. In this book the founder and chairman of America's Research Group shares the secrets he has learned from more than three million consumer interviews plus hands-on eperienfe with hundreds of retailers and corporations.

Among his tips:

  • Success is 95 percent understanding people and 5 percent product knowledge
  • A survey found that the top traits consumers prefer in retail salespeople are: "Greets me with a smile" and "Makes me feel at ease." (The other six are in the book.)

First published in 1997

LEAN THINKING: Banish waste and create wealth in your corporation

By James P. Womack and Daniel T. Jones

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TWO INTERNATIONALLY RENOWNED management theorists show how to apply lean concepts to entire value streams — the complex sequences of human actions required to bring product from initial concept to actual availability in the market, from customer order to delivery and from raw materials into the hands of the customers. These streams flow across many companies and through many departments, functional groups and facilities within each firm, so an entirely new way of thinking and managing is needed to maximize value creation while banishing waste.

This book outlines fives simple principles to guide managers every day in the fight against waste:

  • Specify value from the perspective of the end customer
  • Identify the value stream for each product
  • Make those actions that actually create value occur in a continuous flow
  • Make products flow only at the pull of the customer
  • Strife for perfection

The authors provide examples of firms in the U.S., Germany and Japan that have made a "lean leap" by energetically applying lean thinking. The principles can be applied with striking results by any business of any size anywhere in the world.

First published in 1996


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