Every Mistake in the Book: A Business How-NOT-To

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9780060393939: Every Mistake in the Book: A Business How-NOT-To

Why suffer from your own business mistakes? Here's a lifesaving guide from a man who's made them all.

The world of business is like the world's worst minefield: one wrong step in any direction and you're history. It's a lesson F. J. Lennon has learned over and over again, as his entrepreneurial career careened from snafu to snafu. But Lennon was different: from the beginning he kept a journal of the screwups, big and small, he watched himself and others make. And by monitoring his own learning curve he helped turn himself -- finally -- into a successful businessman.

Every Mistake in the Book collects all the best lessons Lennon learned from his mistakes, pulling them together in a pithy, witty, and universally useful format. Whether you're a business owner, a manager, or a freshly minted graduate, Lennon's no-nonsense advice will enlighten you:

Biz Basics: If you're contemplating a startup, here are essential lessons you won't learn in a classroom or read in a textbook.

Money Matters: From venture capital to corporate debt, know the financial fundamentals or pay the price.

How to Manage Managing: All managers are card-carrying members of the baby-sitters club. Learn what you should -- and definitely shouldn't -- do to the poor saps who call you boss.

In the Trenches: Not everyone plays nice and you can't, either. Down-and-dirty advice for when the going gets tough.

Let's Get Personal: Yes, it does matter how you act, speak, write, and dress. Here's how to get that little bit of polish -- or at least not alienate everyone around you.

Often hysterical, always practical, this straight-from-the-hip handbook will educate and encourage everyone from the dot-com greenhorn to the established business professional.

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About the Author:

F.J. Lennon has been in the interactive entertainment industry since 1985. He is now an interactive producer, designer, and writer based in Los Angeles.

From Publishers Weekly:

Lennon started a computer-game business while still in college. Was he a success? Not really, he admits, because he made some of the dumbest mistakes possible. Over his nearly 20 years as an entrepreneur, he kept a journal of his experiences that evolved into this breezy, conversational book designed to keep readers from falling into the same traps Lennon has. His blunt rules regarding business basics, money issues, management, corporate politics and interpersonal skills are occasionally obvious ("Learn to listen to your employees" or "It's impossible to say something stupid with your mouth shut"). But he is often insightful: "Employees feed off the emotions of their superiors. Even in times of crisis, try to be positive. Maintaining an even keel keeps morale and productivity on a steady track." And his self-effacement is funny and persuasive: "In times of crisis, I was the King Kong of negativity, the Monet of despair, painting bleak scenarios that hung like dark clouds in the office." He advocates some quite sound and frequently overlooked practices, such as frugality tempered by fairness as a manager (authority doesn't include the right to act like a dictator, he explains). The book would have even more credibility if Lennon had provided specific details about his ventures such as their financial ins and outs rather than using nicknames or glossing over details. Still, the book is a helpful companion to straightforward entrepreneurial titles for readers in the early stages of their careers.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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