Sunday, April 1, 2012

The Book Challenge Week #4: How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying

Clearly I picked up this book because this is the dream, is it not? Succeeding without working. However, I knew it was going to be chapter after chapter of hilarious instructions that one would never actually execute in the office, but there were a few notes in there that, even though they were absurd, they had unfortunate truth to them.

Surprisingly enough this book was originally written in 1952. I just kept thinking about the way people dress in Mad Men and that is how I envisioned all of the scenarios. I kept thinking that I wished I lived in the 50s, and then I remembered that that would have meant I would have been a secretary and kiboshed it in my mind.

I am glad that there was a recent introduction by Stanley Bing of Fortune magazine...which details how absurd some of the rules are and how they may have passed in the 50s, but we no longer write memos we write emails...and sending a 6 page email would probably get you fired instead of a promotion. After I read the full book I went back and read Bing's intro again. Brought it full circle.

Obviously the best way to get ahead in the work place today is to work hard, make people like you and act like you know what you are doing when someone in charge is talking to you - this is how I run myself in the work place. If I could figure out how to take out the first part of my formula and not get fired I would totally go for it.

I knew that I was not going to get a lot from this book based on the fact that within the first page it said not to work at a company that offers professional services and then named the service industry that I work in. I took the rest in with a grain of salt and a smile.

My favorite part of the book was when he talked about setting yourself up in an empty office and just acting like you are supposed to be there. Then complain about that office being drafty to move somewhere nicer etc until you are finally in a corner office with all the best furniture. I have a feeling this could a big a time when the world isn't pinching the pennies because of a one day I will try it. Promise.

Recommended (for humour purposes...not as a legitimate guide to being successful).


This book has been made into a Pulitzer Prize winning play which has starred separately both Harry Potter Daniel Radcliffe and Nick Jonas.

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