The Effective Executive Book Cover

The Effective Executive

The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done
Publishing Year: 1966
Reading time: Key takeways: Quotes:

What’s inside

This book acts as a reminder for the belief that we, as individuals, possess the ability to get things done most productively. Peter Drucker lists various techniques and methods which can be used by an executive to take effective decisions. These decisions benefit himself, his colleagues, his subordinates as well as the organization. This book holds the answer to the long-lingering question of what makes an executive effective.

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Lesson 1. Importance of Effectiveness.

Effectiveness. All top executives are in a race to increase the productivity of their company, with the help of increasing the efficiency of the employees. No person is born with effectiveness. It is not an exceptional gift or aptitude. People acquire skills and become competent over time. This means anyone who aspires to be efficient can be so. It’s just a matter of hard work, practice and perseverance. It needs to be practised regularly until it becomes a habit. Executives who do not exercise effectiveness at their workplace set a wrong example amongst their subordinates and colleagues. Without efficacy, the overall performance starts declining. 


An executive is an individual who monitors his or her usage of time, makes appropriate decisions that have a significant impact on the organization, and takes responsibility for his or her contribution. He or she is the most prepared person in the organization and possesses the authority to take important decisions. The effectiveness of these executives is reflected through the cultivation of five habits.

Firstly, these executives carefully follow the amount of time they spend on individual activities. They do not hesitate to reorganise their timetables in order to guarantee that their time is being spent effectively.

Secondly, they focus more on outcomes rather than focusing on the work. Given that they are in the managerial segment in the hierarchy of the organization, laying emphasis on work would be against their professional code of conduct.

Thirdly, effective executives try to build on the strengths of their employees and colleagues. They try to utilize the maximum potential of all the individuals working in the company. Also, they do not aim at average performance across all the tasks. 

Their primary focus is on performing exceedingly well in certain key areas and producing exceptional results. 


Lastly, these executives make effective decisions. 

Lesson 2. Time-Management.

Executives who aim to achieve effectiveness do not start with planning what is to be done and how. The first thing which they do is that they start listing things which can consume time. Since time is the most important factor, the goal is to manage time efficiently. In order to practice time management, they decrease the time spent on activities which do not enhance productivity


It is a three-step process. 


The first step is to understand that time is limited

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About the author

Peter F. Drucker Image

Peter F. Drucker, a pioneering management consultant, was a visionary in the world of business and leadership. Renowned for his profound insights, he shaped modern management theory. Drucker authored influential books emphasizing innovation, entrepreneurshi...

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Chapter List
  • Lesson 1. Importance of Effectiveness.
  • Lesson 2. Time-Management.
  • Lesson 3. The Role of Contribution.
  • Lesson 4. Strengthening the Staff.
  • Lesson 5. Concentration and Courage.
  • Lesson 6. Decision-making.
  • Lesson 7. Importance of Opinions.
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In the summary of The Effective Executive book, there are 7 key lessons. These lessons include:

  1. Lesson 1. Importance of Effectiveness.
  2. Lesson 2. Time-Management.
  3. Lesson 3. The Role of Contribution.
  4. Lesson 4. Strengthening the Staff.
  5. Lesson 5. Concentration and Courage.
  6. Lesson 6. Decision-making.
  7. Lesson 7. Importance of Opinions.

The Effective Executive by Peter F. Drucker was published in 1966.

Once you've completed The Effective Executive book, We suggest reading out Setting High Bar for your Customer Service as a great follow-up read.

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In the printed version of The Effective Executive book have over 300 pages and usually takes 8-10 days to finish. However, with the Wizdom app, including its summary and audiobook, it can be completed in just 15 minutes.

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