VICTORY SECRETS OF ATTILA THE HUN by Wess Roberts

VICTORY SECRETS OF ATTILA THE HUN

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KIRKUS REVIEW

 A welcome return for one of publishing's more implausible--and popular--paradigms (Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun, 1989), giving Roberts (Straight A`s Never Made Anybody Rich, 1991) a chance to offer crafty counsel on what it takes to create and run a prospering enterprise. Employing a ramshackle, often repetitive, account of Attila's success in uniting Mongol hordes and their allies in battle against--or accord with--a crumbling Roman Empire, Roberts provides a series of shrewd insights on organizational realities. He does so by making the fifth-century terrorist a font of institutional and interpersonal wisdom. The author's unlikely mouthpiece enjoins his followers, for example, to eschew force in pursuit of objectives that can be gained by diplomacy. Along similar lines, the Scourge of God reminds chieftains, warriors, and Huns (the tribal rank-and- file): ``Believing that you can win without preparation and sacrifice is a costly mistake.'' Covered as well in pragmatic, to- the-point fashion are accountability, competition, politics, rewards, risk, trust, etc. Yesteryear's captains apparently were also vulnerable to debilitating mental disorders with symptoms (and labels) nearly identical to those that afflict their latter-day counterparts. At any rate, Attila the Spokesman warns his adherents against ``baseless anxiety,'' ``compliance compulsion,'' ``denial dependency,'' ``empathy amnesia,'' ``inflamed ego,'' and related afflictions that can leave leaders ineffective. A decidedly different sort of management guide--and one whose purposefully perverse protagonist still commands serious attention.

Pub Date: Jan. 6th, 1993
ISBN: 0-385-42448-5
Page count: 160pp
Publisher: Doubleday
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 1992