Top positive review
3 people found this helpful
Should Be Retitled: "How To Win Raises and Promotions"
on 28 May 2004
Should Be Retitled: How To Win Raises and Promotions May 7, 2000
I had a hard time rating this book. I gave it a 5 for its dedication to Leigh Knowles, deceased chairman of Beaulieu Vineyards, a truly terrific guy and CEO. I gave it a 1 for having a misleading title. The book has little to do with becoming CEO. I gave it a 4 for generally useful advice about workplace do's and don'ts. I gave it an 7 for marketing. I rounded that to a 4. Decide for yourself what rating to give this book.
I write an article for Chief Executive Magazine each year about the best practices of the most successful CEOs. As part of this work, I have met and interviewed hundreds of the most envied corporate leaders. The subject of how each became CEO and what the lessons are usually comes up. Based on their experiences, you would write a substantially different list than Mr. Fox has provided. Key elements would include learning to do important tasks that the company needs done that no one else is doing; having a great relationship with shareholders and the board of directors; having massive integrity that is frequently demonstrated to others; making and keeping your promises; and establishing an environment in which other people perform very effectively. There's a lot more. If you are interested in more, read my article in the May 1999 issue on The Helpful Habits of the CEO... -- click on the leadership file folder to find the article).
The second problem with this book is that Mr. Fox acknowledges that most CEOs in companies get their jobs by either starting or buying the company. He then goes on to provide no direct advice on how to do either one.
The third problem with the book is that it provides general advice rather than specific advice about you and your own organization. Many of the rules he describes will vary from company to company. In front of many of his pieces of advice should be a first step: Ask the successful people in your company what the right thing to do is. In front of many of his comments about working with others should be a first step of asking the people involved what they would like you to do. The book assumes a communications stalled approach that can lead to backfires in many cases. For example, many people would prefer that you give them immediate verbal feedback along with a pat on the back when they do a good job. They would not be as pleased with a hand-written note, as this book recommends.
The final problem with this book is that it really covers the same subject as How To Be A Star At Work. That is a terrific book, and well worth reading.
If you do decide to read this book, pay the most attention to the advice to set written goals, score yourself on them, and pay attention to the goals. Research has shown that only one percent of people do this, and they usually outperform the 99 percent who do not.
Good luck in your learning of how to become a CEO!