'One of my proudest possessions is a first edition of In Search of Excellence inscribed by one of the authors, Bob Waterman.
The fly sheet explains what the book is about: 'What is the secret to successful business management? Why does one corporation do extraordinarily well while another similar company wallows in mediocrity?'
The McKinsey '7S framework' set out in the book remains, for me, the most powerful tool in the (overstocked) library of management thinking.
I have applied it to every situation in which I have found myself since - both in the public and private sectors. As a direct result, literally billions of pounds of UK taxpayers' money have been saved and investors in the companies with which I have been involved have seen their companies' shares significantly outperform the FTSE 100 index.
Indeed, In Search of Excellence is truly a book that shook the business world - on both sides of the Atlantic - out of an inferiority complex and into a recognition that with the right management an era of limits could become one of near limitless opportunity.'