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December 9, 2008

News & Opinion: The 2008 800-CEO-READ Business Book Awards - Fables & Parables

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 9:25 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

The books on our 2008 shortlist for the Fables & Parables Category are:
  • The Go-Giver: A Little Story about a Powerful Business Idea
    by Bob Burg and John David Mann (Portfolio, January 2008)

    Putting another person's needs before yours is the main principle in this business parable. Burg and Mann offer five "laws" to follow in order to become a real "go-giver": Value, Compensation, Influence, Authenticity and Receptivity. Understanding how to be a go-giver may just be the best kept secret that everyone should know about in the business world... and maybe even the whole world.

  • The Myth of Multitasking: How "Doing it All" Gets Nothing Done by Dave Crenshaw, Jossey-Bass, August 2008)

    We've all been there. Not wanting to delegate or seek help in projects because we can do it all. We may even convince ourselves and others that we are the ultimate octopus in our business transactions. We handle two or three calls at once and overbook our daily calendars . But that's work, right? No it's not, at least not according to Crenshaw, who takes apart the strengths and weaknesses in one person's attempt to be the guy who does it all and yet does nothing at all.

  • Squawk!: How to Stop Making Noise and Start Getting Results
    by Travis Bradberry, (HarperBusiness, September 2008)

    There's a certain sound that is heard from one time or another: the managerial squawk. That certain someone who goes into a problem, a situation, a room and just gives orders, directions, or just useless facts. Squawking usually gets nowhere fast, and this story gives advice about how to work with someone just going off about one thing or the other. Yes, even if the squawker happens to be you, too.

  • What to Say to a Porcupine: 20 Humorous Tales That Get to the Heart of Great Customer Service
    by Richard S. Gallagher (AMACOM, June 2008)

    The book begins with a story about "some clowns sitting around a conference table." Nope, not in pinstripe suits and blank stares, but REAL clowns with red foam noses, big shoes and painted on grins. Seriously. And it seems to get more and more absurd as the pigs, penguins, bees, dogs, knights, Greek chorus and, yes, the porcupine all tell their stories about a very serious matter: customer service.

  • The Adventures of Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You'll Ever Need
    by Daniel Pink, art by Rob Ten Pas (Riverhead Books, April 2008)

    From the first crack of the magic chopsticks and the arrival of Diana, a "half human creature whose superpowers appear in a time of crisis," the reader is off to an incredible journey of self-discovery. Pink's book is the first business book to use the Japanese comic form called Manga, which not only keeps the pace lively but also allows the reader to feel part of the narrative by focusing on Johnny Bunko, who's thrust into unfamiliar territory on a quest to learn the 6 Career Secrets. Before you know it, it's over. But then somewhere, somehow a chopstick snaps and you find yourself wanting to read it over and over again.


  • About Dylan Schleicher


    Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.