An innovative and polished look at an unusual management model.




A book about leadership methods that focus on personal transformation.

In this debut, entrepreneur and management consultant Meroff lays out a socially oriented management style called “alignment leadership,” which involves making sure that every employee is enthusiastically committed to the company’s goals. Aligned employees, Meroff asserts, feel personal fulfillment in their work—a higher and more sustainable bar than mere involvement. Indeed, he takes his “social process” to an almost transcendental level by applying a word that’s rarely used in the workplace: love. By this, he means a leader’s love for humanity: “if you truly love people and want the best for them, you will find the motivation you need to keep cultivating the culture that allows your people to feel fulfilled.” It’s certainly not a concept that the stereotypically cutthroat Mad Men business culture would have embraced, and even today, Meroff says, it may face resistance. The key, he says, is that every single employee needs to understand and wholeheartedly agree on what, when, and why he or she needs to perform a particular assignment, as well as what the communal goal is. The author has a knack for conveying complex nuances in clean, uncomplicated prose. His four-step recipe, which involves “Culture, Tasks, Resources, and Employee Success,” is, as he says, “simple, but not easy”—it’s a cinch to grasp, but applying it will take communication and persistence. His methodology promises a workplace dynamic in which no one will consider his or her job to be work—which is definitely a tall order in a company with hundreds of employees. Still, Meroff ably covers important what-ifs along the way: “What if you assign a particular task to an employee and their question to you—either spoken or unspoken—is Why do I have to do this?” The book sets itself apart from more typical management guides, which often see pizza parties, happy hours, and corporate retreats as ideal ways to make employees feel valued.

An innovative and polished look at an unusual management model.

Pub Date: July 9, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5445-0272-4

Page Count: 200

Publisher: Alignment Leadership Publishing

Review Posted Online: Aug. 7, 2019

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.


New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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With this detailed, versatile cookbook, readers can finally make Momofuku Milk Bar’s inventive, decadent desserts at home, or see what they’ve been missing.

In this successor to the Momofuku cookbook, Momofuku Milk Bar’s pastry chef hands over the keys to the restaurant group’s snack-food–based treats, which have had people lining up outside the door of the Manhattan bakery since it opened. The James Beard Award–nominated Tosi spares no detail, providing origin stories for her popular cookies, pies and ice-cream flavors. The recipes are meticulously outlined, with added tips on how to experiment with their format. After “understanding how we laid out this cookbook…you will be one of us,” writes the author. Still, it’s a bit more sophisticated than the typical Betty Crocker fare. In addition to a healthy stock of pretzels, cornflakes and, of course, milk powder, some recipes require readers to have feuilletine and citric acid handy, to perfect the art of quenelling. Acolytes should invest in a scale, thanks to Tosi’s preference of grams (“freedom measurements,” as the friendlier cups and spoons are called, are provided, but heavily frowned upon)—though it’s hard to be too pretentious when one of your main ingredients is Fruity Pebbles. A refreshing, youthful cookbook that will have readers happily indulging in a rising pastry-chef star’s widely appealing treats.    


Pub Date: Oct. 25, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-307-72049-8

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2011

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