Hit the Ground Running: A Manual for New Leaders

Jason Jennings, Author Portfolio $25.95 (246p) ISBN 978-1-59184-247-7
At a tumultuous time in business, this book makes a smart appeal to the new generation of leaders. Though his research comes from a pre-crash environment, business writer Jennings (Less is More) derives rules from interviews with 10 highly successful CEOs based in solid, honest values like simplification, communication and cooperation: ""don't deceive yourself,"" ""ask for help,"" ""cultivate a sense of urgency,"" etc. Unfortunately, Jennings's chatty delivery focuses more on anecdotes than points and strategies. Chapter four, ""Find, Keep and Grow the Right People,"" offers useful background on Staples but buries the nut: ""People don't quit teams; they only quit organizations... Staples CEO Ron Sargent has mastered the art of turning an organization into a team."" Team-developing strategies (promoting from within, making ""everyone an owner,"" prioritizing diversity) are examined only briefly. Rule eight, ""Be accountable,"" is represented well in Goodrich's ""top-to-bottom accountability,"" but gets weighed down in clumsy metaphors like, ""I'm convinced that if you stop and take a deep breath, all companies have a smell."" Though it isn't an MBA-level tome, this volume's affable approach might work for those new to business books or for befuddled managers with time to spare.
Reviewed on: 03/30/2009
Release date: 04/01/2009
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