Books: Three of a kind - How to get a move on

Do these self-help business books live up to their titles?

by
Last Updated: 05 Dec 2011

Be Excellent at Anything

Tony Schwartz with Jean Gomes and Catherine McCarthy

Simon & Schuster UK £7.99

This book's title makes an ambitious promise: either the authors have developed a Matrix-esque cerebral plug capable of imparting instant nunchuck skills, or they are confident their readership will give them poetic licence. Begins in rather Gladwellian style, explaining how excellence takes practice (duh), then goes on to describe techniques for the emotionally exhausted on 'optimising' energy. Simpering at times, but useful nonetheless.

*** Best of its kind.

Do It! Or Ditch It

Bev James

Virgin Books £11.99

Can anything rival the literary appeal of the five-word book title with an exclamation mark in the middle? So different! So edgy! With a foreword by the UK's foremost self-promoter, James Caan, this is a combination of start-up business guide and shouty cliches. Not unlike reading one of those 'quote of the day' calendars all at once, but with business advice thrown in.

** Could be useful.

Stop Talking Start Doing

Shaa Wasmund with Richard Newton

Capstone £9.99

Designed to be a sort of pocket motivational speaker complete with snatches of business advice, this has all the usual suspects - from Chinese proverbs to Mark Twain - shouting from every page. On the subject of empty promises, it trills: 'Mr T from the A-Team might say: 'Fool, you're wearing my ears out.' Well, quite.

* Of minor interest.

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

The business case for compassion: Nando's, Cisco and Innocent Drinks

Consciously, systematically humane cultures reap enormous benefits, argues academic Amy Bradley.

“I have great respect for the capital markets, but I don’t want their ...

Exclusive: PA Consulting CEO Alan Middleton on acquisition bids, growth strategy and life after private...

Dame Inga Beale: “I was told I didn’t deserve to be alive”

The former CEO of Lloyd's of London reveals the leadership lessons that shaped her career...

Read like a CEO: James Reed

The recruitment boss discusses the books that give him business ideas and management inspiration.

What British business can learn from the French

Forget the cliches - our old rival is hotbed of management innovation and is leading...

Want to encourage more female leaders? Openly highlight their achievements

A study shows that publicly praising women not only increases their willingness to lead, their...