A heartfelt and highly readable guide to developing leadership abilities and making a positive impact in the workplace.


A veteran corporate executive offers motivational advice to fellow leaders.

In this debut business book, Coombs shares stories from a decadeslong career in technology and call center management—as well as anecdotes from his childhood and the lives of his kids—that illustrate the principles of effective leadership. The author encourages readers to be superb leaders by setting a good example, taking responsibility, and empowering subordinates, among other techniques. He delivers detailed examples from his own career and those of other noted leaders, including Ray Kroc, Walt Disney, and Abraham Lincoln. Coombs describes many scenarios in which he has improved business performance through strengthening relationships, owning his mistakes, and demonstrating a strong work ethic. While the topics presented in the volume are common ones in business literature, something Coombs acknowledges in the introduction, the narrative voice has an enthusiasm and energy that keep the pages turning despite the familiar territory covered. The author has an engaging approach to criticizing the limitations of the bureaucratic mindset (“What if we decided to exercise just once or twice a year and call it good? How healthy would we be? It seems silly to even imagine such a thing—so why do some firms take this approach to core principles, vision, and values?”). His anecdotes, even when rambling, do an excellent job of illuminating leadership concepts and providing readers with a deeper understanding. Moments of implausibility (his 6-year-old daughter says, “Daddy, I do not want to hear it. Excuses do not change results”) can be forgiven in the service of fine storytelling, which Coombs does throughout the book, to good effect. Although the volume examines issues explored at length in other works, the author’s raconteur skills and palpable enthusiasm for helping others to reach their leadership potentials make this both a quick and satisfying read as well as a worthwhile addition to the world of business books.

A heartfelt and highly readable guide to developing leadership abilities and making a positive impact in the workplace.

Pub Date: Nov. 19, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-9895523-7-0

Page Count: 248

Publisher: Scrivener Books

Review Posted Online: Nov. 12, 2019

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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