Books by Chip R. Bell

Released: Feb. 9, 2000

Sensible and decent, albeit hyperventilated and not exactly original, behavioral advice for business managers in the new millennium, served up by consultants Bell and Harari. Wile E. Coyote is the foil and Road Runner the paragon in this management handbook. One is conniving, secretive, grim, myopic, mired in convention (Wile E. wears gray flannel); the other is fluid, improvisational, artful, and visionary, a trickster in Technicolor threads. Gathered under their aegis is a host of guidelines the authors consider life forces for conducting business. Get beyond the paradigm, they counsel, for there is no paradigm any longer. The age of computers and the Internet requires freethinking and risk-taking. The workplace will rarely have four walls and a nice view at the top; hierarchy gives way to egalitarianism and flexibility; power is about influence, not fear; a no-time mindset—the kind that drives freelancers—rules. The player in the newly dominant digital marketplace will be as nimble as that medium's circulation of information and capital, and the key words are speed, speed, speed, constrained only by honor and principle. Cross-fertilization will erode the false boundaries that obscure the big picture, and only the most unpredictable will be able to grab the attention of the crowd glued to their monitors. A jittery format of boxes, halftones, and a clipped text structures the book, yet there are also numerous examples that help ground Bell and Harari's potentially vacuous enjoinders to be ingenious, imaginative, and intuitive. Beneath their caffeine high, they're strong advocates of the currently trendy business humanism, which argues that anti-authoritarian, collegial work equals life, because that's where you want to be. Standard business leadership exhortations, already well-trafficked by the likes of Tom Peters and, for that matter, good old Road Runner himself. (B&w cartoons throughout) ($100,000 ad/promo) Read full book review >