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The Curriculum

The Curriculum [Kindle Edition]

Stanley Bing
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Product Description

Product Description

From the mind of the ultimate corporate gunslinger comes this no-nonsense, real-world Curriculum, designed to augment—if not replace—the more traditional path to achieving mastery of the business universe. Conquer this sharp, practical and often amusing course of study and save $250,000 of wasted business school tuition. 

Unlike those august, Ivy-encrusted factories that churn out masterful business administrators, The Curriculum will teach you the art of business, employing a smart, tactical battle plan that will prove infinitely more awesome as you make your way in the world.  

We begin, in the Core Curriculum, with the acquisition and maintenance of Power. Included are such essentials as Not Appearing Stupid (an early career requirement), Fabricating A Sustainable Business Personality, and the arts of Management and Selling.

The Advanced Curriculum hones the skills that are required to seize Success by the throat and shake it until valuable prizes fall out of its pockets, including fundamentals on Strategic Thinking, Self-Branding, mastering Electronic Communications, and dealing with Crazy People.

Tutorials and Electives, which students may pursue as their interest or discretion advises, include lessons on Giving an Effective Presentation, Business Drinking, and the Care and Feeding of Ultra-Senior Officers.

Lavishly enhanced with numerous charts, graphs, and other illuminating business illustrations, and backed up by years of study from Mr. Bing’s proprietary research organization (The National Association of Serious Studies), The Curriculum will occupy a place of pride on any bookshelf dedicated to the study of business, how it works, and how it can be used against those who don’t know how it works.

From the Back Cover

The Only Business School You'll Ever Need

From the mind of bestselling author Stanley Bing, the ultimate corporate mentor, comes The Curriculum: Everything You Need to Know to Be a Master of Business Arts, a no-nonsense, real-world strategy for success. Sharp, practical, and amusing when it needs to be, and lavishly enhanced with charts, graphs, and other illuminating illustrations, The Curriculum is certain to occupy a place of pride on any shelf dedicated to books that explain how business works, and how that knowledge can be used to achieve power, happiness, and indefensible amounts of money. Included are key chapters on

  • not appearing stupid (mandatory for entry-level students);
  • fabricating a sustainable business personality;
  • management, group dynamics, and the art of selling;
  • self-branding and self-marketing;
  • mastering electronic communications; and
  • dealing with bosses and other crazy people.

After contributing thousands of columns to Fortune, Esquire, and the Wall Street Journal, and writing nearly a dozen books on corporate strategy, Stanley Bing is at the top of his game, dispensing a lifetime's worth of hard-won wisdom to the next generation of masters. Enroll in The Curriculum, and his secrets will be yours—along with an attractive diploma, suitable for framing.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 5435 KB
  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: HarperBusiness (15 April 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #254,375 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio Download
'The Curriculum' written by Stanley Bing will bring reader pretty close to MBA without having to actually spend $250,000.

Bing made an understandable collection of knowledge that sounds similar to what is taught in MBA courses. He divided his 400 pages into smaller parts/courses – The Core, The Advanced Curriculum and Tutorials and Electives – packed with usual suspects found and learned on such courses such as strategic thinking, crisis management, managing, selling and marketing, but also some incredibly interesting and unusual topics such as not appearing stupid, insensitivity training and defense of insincerity.

Therefore it can be said that Bing’s collection of lessons except that comes pretty close to the MBA program, offers some „dirty“ tricks which unfortunately are not taught at the MBA courses. Although the MBA course is appreciated because unlike university education much more attention is paid to practical work, not mere theorizing, this book shows exactly in which direction MBA courses (or something similar) could evolve in order to better prepare students for a cruel world of business in which you have small number of second chances.

For this reason I think 'The Curriculum' is very good extra content for someone who has already passed MBA program because it certainly offers added value, but also as a pretty good (almost free) substitute for an MBA in case you cannot financially afford such a program.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 3.6 out of 5 stars  67 reviews
23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cynicism and Humor...and Truth 6 April 2014
By Edward J. Barton - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
After 20 years in the business world - in positions ranging from bank teller to CEO, I can assure the reader that Stanley Bing captured the cynical realism of the business world in this book. A biting and humorous look at the skills necessary to make it in business, Bing brings a sardonic wit to power struggles, office politics, strategic planning and office romance.

Not quite sure what to expect at the beginning, the book takes the reader through a "course" that includes 100, 200 and 300 level "courses" on :How not to Look Stupid" and "Crisis Management", while presenting faux statistics and graphs that are, unfortunately, directionally correct even in their absurdity. Elements of the book have been lived by anyone who worked in an office environment, and the book may very well be the best literary complement to the movie "Office Space" yet devised.

I would classify the book as being a fun and engaging read - but a bit long and it bogs down in spots. You really need to have worked in an office to get the humor and sarcasm - and they are there in spades. As noted, this is absolutely NOT a MBA in a book. Rather, it is the anti-MBA, and valuable for a laugh or some perspective.
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Funny until it is not 20 April 2014
By Pippa Lee - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Rating: 3.5 stars

I have to confess that I didn't quite get a full grasp of "The Curriculum." Here's a book that applauds picking up a form of madness and making it into your business style trademark and then warns you not to be an a-hole. It offers desensitizing exercises in its Insensitivity Training chapter so that you, the future business manager, see your employees as the expenses they are. However, in the same chapter, you will find sensitizing exercises to teach you to connect with the pain you may cause when you terminate them. I had to re-read the book's blurb a couple of times; meditate on the contents, and it finally dawned on me what "The Curriculum" may be all about: the unspoken and the unspeakable elements of the equation to a successful corporate life.

In "The Curriculum," author Stanley Bing offers a quick course on what might have been left unsaid in traditional business school classes, but it is alive and well in business offices around the world such as: crazy, angry people leading companies, conflicts between employee's personal ethics and the company's lack of it; and workers' rivalries and alliances. Other areas hardly covered in university classrooms are sets of skills that all future managers should master. Just as important as simplifying Powerpoint presentations and writing short e-mails are acknowledging the existence of boredom at work, understanding the role of alcoholic drinks in business and managing narcissistic, angry outbursts from the senior officers. They are all skills needed to survive and succeed in the real world.

"The Curriculum" is amusing and I laughed until I realized some of the topics, such as bullying and unethical behavior, were too real to laugh at. Underneath the banter, I found truths and practical advice in this book that readers can use to understand and navigate the culture of their workplaces. So, the book can be read at different levels. You can read it for plain laughs, for the practical advice, or for a critique on all that is wrong and fake in the corporate world. Funny, ironic, confusing and yet enlightening, "The Curriculum" may eventually lead you to wonder about the ultimate price we all pay for the relentless pursuit of profit.
24 of 30 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For people with zero common sense 19 April 2014
By Regular guy - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I bought this book after listening to the author's interview on NPR.

I agree an MBA isn't necessary having owned my own biz for 15 years.

I ordered this book thinking there could be a few pearls of wisdom. They are few and far between. One being to order "Vodka" rather than sugary drinks at business lunches (to avoid a hangover).

Basically all this book says in a nutshell is "fake it till you make it" and that nobody really knows anything.

I felt this book was written for people with zero practical, real world experience. The author takes a Shecky Greene/Jackie Mason approach in tone which I found a bit tedious.

This book may be useful to younger people who have very limited work experience and who don't understand what "business" is and think it's all about numbers and finance. I could see it having a place either in a high school business class or the comedy section of a bookstore in a retirement community. If you are over 20 and under 60 you may find it a bit corny, redundant and "shticky".

If you want a business book that is actually both funny AND useful, I suggest The Four Hour Workweek or Danny Meyer's book "Setting the Table." Those books don't beg for (undeserved) laughs and have real insights. I also suggest listening to the free "From Scratch" podcasts on NPR which are interviews with different successful people in business.

I get what this author is trying to do - demistify the aura of earning an MBA and suggest that it's not necessary to have one. Having owned my own business since I was 28 with just a BA in English I would agree an MBA isn't necessary - especially if you want to be an entrepreneur or anything other than an investment banker or financial analyst etc.

I do wish the author made the book smaller and removed his forced, self-congralutary "aren't I funny" tone. The first 100 pages could be ripped out. All the endless pointless diagrams are filler which could be consolidated into 3 pages. The author could have interviewed other actual business people instead of just "telling it like it is".

I agree with the author's premiss that an MBA is not necessary, and I can see this book's value for someone who is super green and/or young.

I was optimistic about this book when I ordered it but now have to pay to ship it back to Amazon. Which I guess is proof that you can succeed in business (by selling books) without really having a lot of fabulous insights, in-depth understanding of a subject or innovative strategies. You can just by "you" and hope the world embraces it. And buys your book.
7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun with Business 2 April 2014
By Rebecca Haden - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
There are lots of books that claim to replace that MBA you've thought about getting, but this one is different. it's funny. It begins with a 101 course on not appearing stupid, with instructions on how to finesse the fact that you don't understand a spreadsheet and how to use sagacious nodding to avoid looking dumb. The exercises for the chapter include choosing three examples of stupidity from a newspaper, determining whether each was a stupid action by a clever person or an action by a stupid person, and spending 5 minutes thinking how you would have done it differently.

The glossary doesn't include GMROII, but it does explain what a credenza is.

So the book is not just witty or entertaining, but intentionally humorous. As such, it might be most amusing to people who are already knowledgeable about business, who will relate to the elective course on R&D (Rationalization and Denial) and the tutorial on Dealing with Feelings of Overwhelming Entitlement.

On the other hand, there is some very good advice in this book. I think the discussion of effective presentations would be very helpful for a neophyte and, speaking as a person who is not very good at negotiation, I found the section on negotiation quite informative.

The quote on the frontispiece may say it all: "A man may say full sooth in game and play."

So enjoy this book, and plan also to learn something from it. Don't expect it to replace that MBA.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can I Get A Copy For All New Employees? 25 Jun 2014
By OutlawPoet - In a Corrupt Stew - Published on
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I work in a traditional business environment and what I've noticed is that many new employees, who may have their shiny MBAs, have no idea about business culture. And all snark aside, that's what this book is about. I'd almost change the name to How To Survive In Business.

No, this isn't really about MBA subjects, though it does touch on marketing, finance, etc. Written with humor and wit, this gives people who are new to the business world survival tools that will help them to thrive in this environment.

The book gives advice on everything from what to wear to what to put (or not put) into an email before you hit send. How to handle office politics. How to handle office romance. How to deal with bad bosses and how not to become one yourself. Planning effective meetings. How to fire someone. How to encourage your employees. The difference between coworkers, friends, and frenemies. And how to market yourself for success.

Business is about building relationships - in the right way.

For instance, many new employees don't realize that business dinners - and drinks - are an integral part of the job. They're mandatory and you need to do it right. It seems like common sense to tell people how to drink without embarrassing themselves, but I've seen it happen on more than one occasion at business functions. It never ends well. And people never forget. The book even tells you what drink you should nurse to stay sober, professional, and functional.

Simply put, this survival guide to business will help people new to cubicle land to fit in and thrive - and it does it with humor and style!
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