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The Way to Successful Leadership

Mikitani, Hiroshi


1. Auflage April 2018
192 Seiten, Hardcover
Wiley & Sons Ltd

ISBN: 978-1-119-41222-9
John Wiley & Sons

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Practical advice for your personal journey, from a self-made billionaire

Business-Do is your personal handbook for achieving happiness by systematically turning your dreams into reality. Success looks different to everyone, but author Hiroshi Mikitani exemplifies its essential, universal qualities: as the founder and CEO of Rakuten, Mikitani is a self-made entrepreneur who became Japan's leader in the new global economy--a journey that made him a billionaire. In this book, he shows you how to achieve your own version of success in work and in life. Paying homage to Japan's ethos of quality and discipline, this book shares 89 principles Mikitani has gathered over the course of his remarkable career. These thought-provoking, action-oriented rules show you everything from how useful your dreams are, to the best way to harness the internet, to what management techniques work to the importance of self-improvement. The result: your own powerful, personal playbook straight from the mind of an inspirational trailblazer.

Mikitani guided Rakuten from its 1997 foundation to become one of the world's largest e-commerce platforms, with a still rapidly-expanding global footprint reaching industries including fintech, messaging, digital content, and even drones. This book describes the ideas, thoughts, actions, and philosophies that drove Mikitani to the top.
* Discover the myriad ways in which the internet is fundamentally transforming the world
* Learn from a blend of Japanese discipline and commitment to quality and the Silicon Valley approach to business, where collaboration and agility are essential and lucrative
* Adopt data-driven management techniques that constantly question, constantly improve, and empower people to exceptional performance
* Share in Mikitani's optimistic vision, and his industry-specific predictions

Happiness is something you live every day. It is both the result and the critical ingredient of success, and there is plenty to go around. Business-Do gives you the principles you need on your own journey to success.


Chapter 1: The 10 Core Principles

All concepts are relative.

Believe in the power of the moonshot

Learn the difference between a group and a team.

Think about your mindset, skills and knowledge.

Question Yourself

A brand is a flag.

The internet transformation continues.

The internet will curate the world's knowledge and data, but the human touch will still be key

Taking action leads to deeper thinking

Continuously improve by a fraction. It's the key to what others call "good luck."

Chapter 2: Personal Development

Push yourself like a professional (athlete) does

Play catch between your left and right brain.

Plan forward from birth or backward from death.

Create an objective personality when you're in the hot seat.

Never stop learning. Ever.

Build self-confidence through small successes.

Always be curious and ambitious.

Find a partner to play intellectual "catch" with.

Set clear goals for your actions.

Great information can come from surprising places

Don't rationalize your behavior as others do.

Interrogate your intuition with hard numbers.

Aim to understand the framework.

Create solutions that break down barriers and reveal new challenges.

Identify your weaknesses. Fix them or find workarounds.

Never let your mental energy levels drop.

Chapter 3: The value of relationships.

Offer value-added services. Anything less is meaningless.

Put yourself in their shoes.

See the essence of things.

Size up risk by quantifying it.

Seek out best practices all around you.

Listen especially closely to people you disagree with.

Value the balance between cooperation and competition.

Teaching others will help you grow.

Develop win-win relationships.

Start with good footwork.

Report, contact, and consult.

Know who and what works, even in tight spots.

Be courageous.

Chapter 4: Get Your Organization Moving

Numbers give clarity, so set KPIs

Pay close attention to resource allocation.

Lead by teaching.

Leverage the organization to move faster.

Harness the power of competition.

Share the sense of accomplishment.

Find the bottlenecks.

Create your own turning point.

Meet and revive in the morning.

Think like a manager.

Create and share a template for success.

Earn trust within your company.

Establish symbolic rituals.

Successful organizations combine pressure and excitement.

Know that there are two types of speed: velocity and agility

Divide into small groups to improve transparency.

Chapter 5: A Hundred Battles, a Hundred Victories

Analyze and execute with an eye on the future

Hypothesize, then create shikumi.

Get things done.

Examine the facts from every angle.

Keep your eyes on what's at your feet and what lies ahead.


Lean operations generate innovation and growth.

Think about both vertical and horizontal competition.

The Mikitani Curve: Quality depends on a 0.5% difference in effort.

Identify what is core and what is mission-critical.

Deciding not to do something can be the most important thing to do.

Companies are sumo rings. They need wrestlers.

Master the timeline.

The devil is in the details.

Success is born of failure. Never hesitate to improve.

Find trends in the numbers.

Think about value chains.

To win, close the gaps and add originality.

No business is special.

Boost profits by using assets in multiple ways.

Strategy, execution and operation.

No single path leads to success.

Generate the largest cost advantage to win.

Create shikumi that will keep generating value.

Chapter 6: Nurture a Global Mindset

Online shops should entertain and engage.

Seek information beyond your borders.

Your network is your best news source; newspapers come second.

The internet will eliminate national borders. Think global.

Learn from the world's best practices.

Thinking globally will make you stronger locally.

Thoroughly and humbly analyze past successes.

Have faith in yourself a Japanese perspective.

It's never too late.

"Great learners make great teachers, and Mickey is one of the most committed learners I know. Here, he shares the rules, values, and strategies for business success that helped him become one of the world's leading Internet entrepreneurs. Highly recommended!"

--Reid Hoffman, co-founder of LinkedIn and co-author of the New York Times bestsellers The Alliance and The Startup of You

"In Business-Do, Mikitani-san illuminates a pathway for anyone to achieve business success. He mines his rich experience over the last 20 years building one of the world's most amazing companies to reveal his guiding principles for turning dreams into reality. Mickey is creating the next generation of Japanese management excellence: a disciplined, collaborative work ethic and a mindset and passion to challenge the unknown and create new value that contributes to the world's overall happiness. Don't miss out on learning from a true master of the art and science of business."

--Marc Benioff, Chairman and CEO, Salesforce

"My co-founder and I benefit every day from Mickey's leadership rules. He has the rare ability to combine humble servant leadership with aggressive action and appropriate risk taking. This book provides a fantastic guide for entrepreneurs and managers by outlining principles that have made Mickey one of the world's most respected global business leaders. Leadership of the future must be more like Mickey's: human, respectful, flexible, and persistent."

--John Zimmer, Lyft Co-founder and President

"Business-Do is packed with practical tips for running a business as well as Mickey's personal philosophy for work and life. His wisdom is relevant for startups and established companies alike."

--Ben Silbermann, CEO, Pinterest
Hiroshi Mikitani (Japan) is the co-founder and CEO of Rakuten. Rakuten is an electronic commerce and Internet company based in Tokyo. Its B2B2C e-commerce platform Rakuten Ichiba is the largest e-commerce site in Japan and among the world's largest by sales. He is known worldwide as a self-made billionaire and Japan's leader in the networked economy.