November 22, 2005

News & Opinion: The State of Business Books

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 4:47 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

In the last week, there have been two great pieces written on the state of business books.

The first comes from Simon London at the Financial Times. His article runs under the title Who moved my business book?. London asks throughout the article "What is a great business book?" and "How come I get so many bad ones?". He laments about all of "The 71 Ways To Faster Growth" and "The 23 Basic Laws of Leadership" type books. He says there is only one or two books a decade that have any lasting impact (we would agree).

The second was written by our own Jack Covert. The piece is titled No More Business As Usual ran in Publishers Weekly. Though it came out before London's piece, it is a bit of an answer to it. In the essay, Jack makes the case that the business book category is not as bad off as everyone makes it out to be. He says the business book is changing:
  • The World Is Flat and Freakonomics are business books.
  • These books are written well
  • New mediums are being used to sell books; launch the idea and then sell the book
  • And design is starting to matter more.

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.