THE WALL STREET JOURNAL BOOK OF EXECUTIVE STYLE by Wall Street Journal--Eds. of

THE WALL STREET JOURNAL BOOK OF EXECUTIVE STYLE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Ancients once dissected cadavers in hopes of unearthing concrete evidence of immortal souls. Now, eight Wall Street Journal correspondents have roamed the nation's boardrooms, high-rent neighborhoods, carriage-trade retreats, and allied venues in pursuit of an equally chimerical objective--executive style. While not without appeal for the nosy Parker who lurks in every reader, the name-dropping results of this anedcotal audit will frustrate genuinely inquiring minds. While contributors have amassed a wealth of minutiae about many of the men who run or have run major US enterprises, they fail to provide coherent perspectives on their subjects, let alone the iffy art of management. The discontinuous text features breezy briefings on CEOs' preferences in apparel, clubs, deportment, investment, leisure activities, office layouts, role models, visibility, wives, and related matters of incidental moment. Asides abound as well. A rundown on dress codes, for example, includes detail on the origins of foulard ties, jacket vents, shoe heels, trousers, and analogous trivia, plus a short history of Brooks Brothers. Beyond short-shrift coverage of fitting some family life into typically crowded schedules and relations with colleagues left behind, there's scarcely a hint of what it costs to get to--and stay at the top of--the corporate heap. Mindful that no woman has yet worked her way up the ladder at a Fortune 500 company, the WSJ crew includes a loopy chapter speculating on the career of the apocryphal pioneer (dubbed Emily post-Feminist) who first broke through the glass ceiling. The bottom line: an exercise in tabloid journalism--slick, digressive, and largely without socioeconomic significance or substance.

Pub Date: Oct. 24th, 1989
Publisher: Morrow