The Book Corner

Faculty Members Review the Latest Business Books

2009 Volume 12 Issue 2

The Book Corner offers reviews by Graziadio School faculty on a variety of books on business topics.

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In this issue:

Authentic Conversations: Moving from Manipulation to Truth and Commitment

By Jamie Showkeir and Maren Showkeir
Berrett-Koehler, 2008

Reviewed by Esther Bleuel, MA, MFT, MDR, Adjunct Professor of Business Negotiation

3 stars: Valuable information and a good read

Authentic Conversations lays the groundwork for the transformation of a stagnant organization into a dynamic enterprise, through a conversational revolution.

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Courageous Training: Bold Actions for Business Results

By Tim Mooney and Robert O Brinkerhoff
Berrett-Koehler, 2008

Reviewed by Robert M. Fulmer, PhD, GBR Editorial Review Board Member

3 stars: Valuable information and a good read

The authors believe they have discovered why some groups achieve breakthrough results by having the courage to break away from the usual approaches and identify what is really needed and what really works.

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Enjoy!: 101 Ways to Add Fun to Your Work Every Day

By Gini Graham Scott
AMACOM, 2008

Reviewed by Leo A. Mallette, EdD, Adjunct, Decision Sciences and Marketing

5 stars: Stop what you're doing and read this book!

This delightful book is based on the premise that having fun relieves stress.


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How to Become an Expert on Anything in 2 Hours

By Gregory Hartley and Maryann Karinch
AMACOM, 2008

Reviewed by Walter Langley, Supporting Professor of Business Strategy

2 stars: Read this book if and when you have the timeThe authors take the liberal view that being an expert is tied less to in-depth knowledge or experience on a subject than to how well you read your audience and communicate a proficiency of the subject.

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Iconoclast: A Neuroscientist Reveals How to Think Differently

By Gregory Berns
Harvard Business School Press, 2008

Reviewed by John Oppenheim, Adjunct Professor of Management Information Systems

2 stars: Read this book if and when you have the time

This book shows how iconoclasts’ brains work differently, which is interesting; however, it would have been nice if it offered advice on how to handle such people in the workplace.

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In the Land of Difficult People: 24 Timeless Tales Reveal How to Tame Beasts at Work

By Terrence L. Gargiulo and Gini Graham Scott
AMACOM, 2008

Reviewed by Leo A. Mallette, EdD, Adjunct Professor of Decision Sciences and Marketing

4 stars: Thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating material

The tales are grouped into eight chapters, each centering around a common theme: tyrannical bosses, independent individuals, crafty villains, power-hungry people, lazy people, tricksters, defensive people, and poor communicators.


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Instant Appeal: The 8 Primal Factors that Create Blockbuster Success

By Vicki Kunkel
AMACOM, 2008

Reviewed by Jody Brightman, PhD, Adjunct Professor of Marketing

3 stars: Valuable information and a good read

The meat of the author’s message is: Fine-tune your communications to the subconscious needs of your target’s reptilian brain.


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Just Good Business: The Strategic Guide to Aligning Corporate Responsibility and Brand

By Kellie McElhaney
Berrett-Koehler, 2008

Reviewed by Leo A. Mallette, EdD, Adjunct, Decision Sciences and Marketing

4 stars: Thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating material

McElhaney defines corporate social responsibility (CSR) as “a business strategy that is integrated with core business objectives and core competencies of the firm and…is designed to create business value and positive social change…”

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Lead by Example: 50 Ways Great Leaders Inspire Results

By John Baldoni
AMACOM, 2008

Reviewed by John Oppenheim, Adjunct Professor of Management Information Systems

5 stars: Stop what you're doing and read this book!

If you are a leader, this book will reinforce your strengths. If you are new to management, you will find these lessons in a hundred different books and seminars, but here they are condensed into one neat package.

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The Leadership Code: Five Rules to Lead By

By Dave Ulrich, Norm Smallwood, and Kate Sweetman
Harvard Business School Press, 2009

Reviewed by Robert M. Fulmer, PhD, GBR Editorial Review Board Member

5 stars: Stop what you're doing and read this book!

This well-written, engaging, and pragmatic book may just help you take your leadership skills to a higher level.

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Moral Markets: The Critical Role of Values in the Economy

By Paul J. Zak (Ed.)
Princeton University Press, 2008

Reviewed by Sean D. Jasso, PhD, Practitioner Faculty of Economics

5 stars: Stop what you're doing and read this book!

The goal of this book is to raise the awareness of market stakeholders, a category that includes almost everyone, that markets are “good” today, and have been throughout time.

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Open Space Technology: A User’s Guide, 3rd Edition

By Harrison Owen
Berrett-Koehler, 2008

Reviewed by John Oppenheim, Adjunct Professor of Management Information Systems

3 stars: Valuable information and a good read

An open space meetings is not planned ahead of time the agenda is set at the beginning by the participants, and the meeting space is an open circle to show that no one is really in charge and all participants are equal.

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You’ve Gotta Have Heart: Achieving Purpose Beyond Profit in the Social Sector

By Cass Wheeler
AMACOM, 2009

Reviewed by John Oppenheim, Adjunct Professor of Management Information Systems

4 stars: Thought-provoking and intellectually stimulating material

Cass Wheeler, former CEO of the American Heart Association (AHA), has written what might be considered a primer in running a nonprofit organization.

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About the Author(s)

Graziadio Business Review, is an online journal that delivers relevant business information and analysis for business, government, and non-profit managers. From accounting and finance to ethics and work/life balance, the Graziadio Business Review extends current business debates in new directions that you can use to advance your business and professional career.

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