So why are there 46,000 books in Amazon's self-help category, all promising the same thing - to make us rich, happy and successful? The industry is happy enough - it's estimated to be worth $10bn - while we're all apparently more miserable than ever. There's nothing wrong with self-improvement in principle. As Benjamin Franklin said: 'God helps those that help themselves.' Without such drive, we'd still be living in caves. Capitalism certainly wouldn't have stood a chance. Of course, self-help is a big tent, containing everything from the Power of Positive Thinking to NLP and the Bible. And even this corner of MT. But things get dodgy when a 'guru' dresses common sense in an aura of mystery, suggesting they're giving us privileged access to some deeper truth. Rhonda Byrne'sThe Secret became a worldwide smash by claiming to provide the 'great insight' that drove Plato and Einstein: if you picture something hard enough, it'll come to you. The book sits at 15 on Amazon's overall bestsellers chart. 'I am truly embarrassed that I even read this book,' writes one reviewer on the website. Deal or No Deal presenter Noel Edmonds is less ashamed about such 'cosmic ordering'. In his best-selling Positively Happy, he attributes his TV comeback to his asking the universe for help. Many viewers will wish it had replied: 'No deal.'
After a management buyout, car valet business MotorClean found private equity backing a double edged sword.
Whether that's a good thing is up to you, says author Steven van Bellegham.
Leadership from a distance requires a careful study of human nature, says L&D specialist Sudhakar Sampath.
Set up shop and they shall come? Not so fast, says private equity investor Chris Hurley.
Moving office? Restructuring? New IT system? Change needn't be painful if it's managed well.
Finding time, living fearlessly and leading at speed are on this month's boardroom reading list.