Not unlike the author's Office Politics, Career Knockouts, and Salary Strategies: a hard-line, narrow-track success pitch--""If you are to become more powerful, you must spend as much time on powerbuilding as you spend on actually doing your job""; ""if someone disdains participation in the grapevine and off-site socializing, both universal in offices, he or she is agreeing to play the victim's role."" Those dubious dictates appear on the first page of the preface, and what follows ia a predictable rundown of maneuvers. Some few have everyday applicability: how not to get stuck in one small group, for instance. (The second time they ask you to lunch, indicate that you want to meet all your new co-workers.) Kennedy is certainly attuned to playing styles and corporate cultures: ""The evolving theme for the 1980s seems to be, 'Submerge your individuality. Do what works.' "" And some of these gambits--using recognition and praise to influence subordinates, rotating them to limit their power--could be effective. But Kennedy's harsh, driving manner makes all these behaviors sound unattractive--whereas a Michael Korda or a Lois Wyse puts them across with infectious style and zest.