What Great Service Leaders Know & Do (Audio)

James Heskett (Author) | W. Earl Sasser (Author) | Leonard Schlesinger (Author) | Wayne Shepherd (Narrated by)

Publication date: 09/01/2015

What Great Service Leaders Know & Do (Audio)
Entire service businesses have been built around the ideas of Heskett, Sasser, and Schlesinger, pioneers in the world of service. Now they test their ideas against the actual experiences of successful and unsuccessful practitioners, as well as against demands of the future, in a book service leaders around the world will use as a guide for years to come.

The authors cover every aspect of optimal service leadership: the best hiring, training, and workplace organization practices; the creation of operating strategies around areas such as facility design, capacity planning, queue management, and more; the use—and misuse—of technology in delivering top-level service; and practices that can transform loyal customers into “owners.”

Looking ahead, the authors describe the world of great service leaders in which “both/and” thinking replaces trade-offs. It's a world in which new ideas will be tested against the sine qua non of the “service trifecta”—wins for employees, customers, and investors. And it's a world in which the best leaders admit that they don't have the answers and create organizations that learn, innovate, “sense and respond,” operate with fluid boundaries, and seek and achieve repeated strategic success.

Using examples of dozens of companies in a wide variety of industries, such as Apollo Hospitals, Châteauform, Starbucks, Amazon, Disney, Progressive Insurance, the Dallas Mavericks, Whole Foods, IKEA, and many others, the authors present a narrative of remarkable successes, unnecessary failures, and future promise.

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Overview

Entire service businesses have been built around the ideas of Heskett, Sasser, and Schlesinger, pioneers in the world of service. Now they test their ideas against the actual experiences of successful and unsuccessful practitioners, as well as against demands of the future, in a book service leaders around the world will use as a guide for years to come.

The authors cover every aspect of optimal service leadership: the best hiring, training, and workplace organization practices; the creation of operating strategies around areas such as facility design, capacity planning, queue management, and more; the use—and misuse—of technology in delivering top-level service; and practices that can transform loyal customers into “owners.”

Looking ahead, the authors describe the world of great service leaders in which “both/and” thinking replaces trade-offs. It's a world in which new ideas will be tested against the sine qua non of the “service trifecta”—wins for employees, customers, and investors. And it's a world in which the best leaders admit that they don't have the answers and create organizations that learn, innovate, “sense and respond,” operate with fluid boundaries, and seek and achieve repeated strategic success.

Using examples of dozens of companies in a wide variety of industries, such as Apollo Hospitals, Châteauform, Starbucks, Amazon, Disney, Progressive Insurance, the Dallas Mavericks, Whole Foods, IKEA, and many others, the authors present a narrative of remarkable successes, unnecessary failures, and future promise.

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Meet the Authors & Other Product Contributors


Visit Author Page - James Heskett

James L. Heskett is UPS Foundation Professor of Business Logistics, Emeritus at the Graduate School of Business Administration, Harvard University. He completed his Ph.D. at the Graduate School of Business, Stanford University, and has been a member of the faculty of The Ohio State University as well as President of Logistics Systems, Inc. Since 2000, he has authored a blog on the school's Working Knowledge web site.

He has served as a consultant to companies in North America, Latin America, and Europe.

Professor Heskett was the 1974 recipient of the John Drury Sheahan Award of the Council of Logistics Management, the 1992 Marketing Educator of the Year Award of Sales and Marketing Executives International, and the 2010 Distinguished Career Contribution Award in Services Management of American Marketing Association.

Among his publications are books, including authorship of The Culture Cycle (FT Press, 2011), co-authorship of The Ownership Quotient (Harvard Business Press, 2008), The Value Profit Chain (The Free Press, 2003); The Service Profit Chain (The Free Press, 1997); Corporate Culture and Performance (The Free Press, 1992); Service Breakthroughs: Changing the Rules of the Game (The Free Press, 1990); and The Service Management Course (The Free Press, 1991); authorship of Managing in the Service Economy (Harvard Business School Press, 1986); co-authorship of Logistics Strategy: Cases and Concepts (West Publishing Co., 1985); authorship of Marketing (New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1976); co-authorship of Business Logistics, Revised Edition (The Ronald Press Company, 1974); and numerous articles in such publications as the Harvard Business Review, Journal of Marketing, Sloan Management Review, California Management Review, and others.

A member of the faculty of the Harvard Business School since 1965, he has at different times taught courses in marketing, business logistics, the management of service operations, business policy, and service management, general management, and the entrepreneurial manager as well as served as Senior Associate Dean in charge of academic programs.



Visit Author Page - W. Earl Sasser

Earl Sasser is a Baker Foundation Professor at Harvard Business School and has been a member of the faculty there since 1969. He received a B.A. in Mathematics from Duke University in 1965, an MBA from the University of North Carolina in 1967, and a Ph.D. in Economics from Duke University in 1969.

Sasser developed the School's first course on the management of service operations in 1972. Professor Sasser has taught a variety of courses in the MBA program including Production and Operations Management, Decision Making and Ethical Values, The Operating Manager, and Service Management. In 1982, Sasser's excellence in the classroom was recognized in an article in Fortune profiling eight professors from business schools throughout the country. Professor Sasser was Chairman of the MBA Program from 1988 to 1991. He was also faculty chair of the Advanced Management Program executive education program from 1992-1995. From 1995-2000 Professor Sasser served as Senior Associate Dean of Executive Education. He served as Chairman of the Board of Harvard Business School Interactive, a not-for-profit corporation, from 2000 to 2003. Sasser is the past faculty chair of executive education's Program for Leadership Development [PLD] -- a program for which he served as the principal architect in 2004. He presently teaches in the Owner/President Management Program and serves as faculty chair of several week-long leadership programs.

In 1990 he co-authored (with HBS Professor James L. Heskett and former HBS assistant professor Christopher W.L. Hart) Service Breakthroughs: Changing the Rules of the Game. Based upon five years of extensive research in fourteen service industries, it explains how one or two firms in each industry are constantly able to set new standards for quality and value that force competitors to adapt or fail. Sasser has co-authored several other books in the field of service management including Management of Service Operations and The Service Management Course, The Service Profit Chain and The Value Profit Chain (with Professor James L. Heskett and Leonard A. Schlesinger) The Free Press: 2003. Professor Sasser's new book, Ownership Quotient: Putting the Service Profit Chain to Work for Unbeatable Competitive Advantage (with Professor James L. Hesket and Joe Wheeler), was published by the Harvard Business School Press, 2008.

Sasser has written or co-written ten articles for Harvard Business Review, including "Putting the Service Profit Chain to Work," "The Profitable Art of Service Recovery," "Zero Defections: Quality Comes to Services," "Match Supply and Demand in Service Industries," and "Why Satisfied Customer Defect."

Professor Sasser serves as a consultant to a number of companies in North America, Asia and Europe.



Visit Author Page - Leonard Schlesinger

Leonard A. Schlesinger is Baker Foundation Professor of Business Administration at the Harvard Business School. He has served as a member of the Business School faculty from 1978 to 1985, 1988-1998 and 2013 to the present. During his career at the School he has taught courses in Organizational Behavior, Organization Design, Human Resources Management, General Management, Leadership and Service Management in the MBA and Executive Education programs. He has also served as head of the Service Management Interest Group, Senior Associate Dean for External Relations, and Chair of “Leadership and Learning,” the School’s 1993-94 curriculum review and redesign process.

Throughout his career Professor Schlesinger has regularly transitioned between academic and managerial roles in educational and business settings. He served as President of Babson College from 2008-2013, held a number of key executive and operating positions (ending as Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer) at Limited Brands (now L Brands) from 1999-2007, was a Professor of Sociology and Public Policy and Senior Vice President and Counselor to the President at Brown University from 1998-1999, and was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Au Bon Pain from 1985-1988.

Schlesinger has lectured and consulted on strategy, service quality, customer satisfaction, entrepreneurship, human resources and organizational change for over 200 major corporations, non-profit organizations, governments, and international leadership organizations around the world. He was an active leader in the design and development of the “Work-Out!” initiative at General Electric and the “Reinventing Government” process for the U.S. Department of Labor.

His writings on entrepreneurship, service management and organizational management have been widely published. Along with his long term HBS colleagues, Profs. Jim Heskett and Earl Sasser, he has recently completed What Great Service Leaders Know and Do: Creating Breakthroughs in Service Firms (Berrett-Koehler, 2015). Additionally, he is the author or co-author of 12 books, including Own Your Future (AMACOM, 2014), Just Start: Take action, Embrace uncertainty, Create the future (Harvard Business School Press, 2012), Action Trumps Everything (Black Ink Press, 2010), The Value Profit Chain (Free Press, 2003), The Service Profit Chain (Free Press, 1997) and The Real Heroes of Business ... and Not a CEO among Them (Doubleday Currency, 1994), and has written numerous articles for academic audiences as well as for The New York Times, Fast Company, and Harvard Business Review. He has served on the editorial boards of five major academic journals and has published numerous management case studies that have sold well over one million copies. He also has completed three video series on service management.

Schlesinger currently serves as Lead Director of Demandware, Inc., Director of Viewpost LLC and Restoration Hardware, Inc., a Trustee of Wheaton College (MA), member of the Corporation of the Winsor School, and member of the President’s Council of the Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering. He serves on the Advisory Boards of Startup Institute, The Hope Collaborative, Datapoint Capital, Clip-File, and the Emory-Georgia Healthcare Innovation Program. He also serves as an advisory council member of Goldman Sachs' 10,000 Small Businesses Initiative, and as a member of both the Council on Competitiveness and the Council on Foreign Relations.

Schlesinger holds a Doctor of Business Administration from Harvard Business School, an MBA from Columbia University, a Bachelor of Arts in American Civilization from Brown University and an Honorary Doctor of Laws from Babson College.



Narrated by Wayne Shepherd

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Table of Contents

Introduction
1. Leading a Breakthrough Service Is Different
2. Shaping Service Strategies That Deliver Results 
3. Designing Operating Strategies That Support the Service Vision 
4. Creating and Capitalizing on Internal Quality—“a Great Place to Work” 
5. The Nuts and Bolts of Breakthrough Service Operations
6. Develop Winning Support Systems
7. Services Marketing and Fostering Customer Ownership 
8. Leading the Future of Services
Epilogue: One Last Story
Appendix: Service Trends and Takeaways

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Endorsements

“Heskett, Sasser, and Schlesinger have powerfully impacted our business vis-à-vis their body of work over the years. Drawing on their three lifetimes of academic and operating experience, this newest book, which demonstrates the methods leaders use to design and deliver great service, will continue in that tradition and our business will be even greater for it.”
—John Wren, President and CEO, Omnicom Group

“There is literally no one with better insight into how to run a service business than this trio of Harvard Business School professors, Sasser, Heskett, and Schlesinger. Small business owners of service operations should pay special attention as their tips and perspectives can go a long way to increasing business success and growth.”
—Karen G. Mills, former Administrator, US Small Business Administration

“Enthusiastic, empowered employees delivering memorable service to increasingly loyal guests is a self-reinforcing cycle of success for all of an organization's constituents. The concepts put forth in this book are the basis of sustained competitive advantage and superior financial performance that survives episodic weakness in product quality or market growth. Indeed, they formed the basis of what took Caesars Entertainment from $14 a share and 14,000 employees to $90 a share and 90,000 employees in ten years.”
—Gary Loveman, Chairman, Caesars Entertainment and Caesars Entertainment Operating Company

“Breakthrough service has to be both designed and delivered. But how does it actually get done? Heskett, Sasser, and Schlesinger provide the answers that all of us are looking for.”
—Helena B. Foulkes, President, CVS/pharmacy, and Executive Vice President, CVS Health

What Great Service Leaders Know and Do is a terrific how-to manual for every business leader.”
—Leslie H. Wexner, Chairman and CEO, L Brands (formerly Limited Brands)

“This comprehensive book proves that leadership is ultimately all about execution, based on sound thinking and knowledge of what needs to be done. It also reinforces the need for integrity between thought, word, and actions.”
—Suneeta Reddy, Managing Director, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Limited, Chennai, India

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