Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Website Up-To-Date

We're glad to announce that this website is now up-to-date. We have reviews of over 70 books, with the latest reviews (January and February 2007) also included. We hope you enjoy the reviews, and the books as well. We'll post a list of all 70+ reviewed books soon.

The latest book reviews are in the "Recent Posts" section on the right. Earlier book reviews can be found in the "Archives" section, also on the right.

Note that some reviews have a "Bookshelf" section at the end. These are other, related books we recommend for future or further reading, and at the time posting, have no reviews yet from this website.

Also, we will soon set-up an announcement mailing list so that you know when the site is updated. Meanwhile, please keep checking back for new book reviews!

Ran out of books and book reviews to read? Head on over to the P&PC Library & Bookstore to browse for new books, or to go to for more books and more other stuff! Or, read articles on Learning & Innovation.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

3 Books on the Heart and Soul of Management

By William A. Guillory, Ph.D
(Innovations International, Inc)

By Beverly Langford

By Jack Canfield and Jacqueline Miller

To get started on developing your heart and soul as you manage, test your Courtesy Quotient (CQ) by Beverly Langford in her book, The Etiquette Edge.

The answer key is somewhere in this newsletter. Some situations may depend more on good judgment than on a widely accepted rule. Choose the one answer with which you would feel most comfortable. You may wish to retake the quiz after reading the book to see if you have changed your mind about any of your answers.

1. You are in the office on the telephone, and another call comes in. You should: (a) ask the person if you can put him on her on hold while you answer the call; (b) let voice mail take it.

2. You call a colleague and put your phone on speakerphone. Another coworker is in the room. You should: (a) mention neither the speaker phone nor the other person in the room; (b) tell the person on the phone that you wish to use the speakerphone, mention the other person in the room, and ask the person on the phone if this is okay. (c) Tell the person on the phone that you are using the speakerphone but don’t mention the other person in the room.

3. You have exchanged a couple of angry emails with a coworker who, in your opinion, is being unreasonable. It’s getting out of hand. You should: (a) stop the communication and let things cool off; (b) send one more blistering email, summarizing the situation and how upset you are with that person’s behavior, and cc the recipient’s boss; (c) change the medium. Call the person on the telephone or go sit down face-to-face.

4. You’re presenting to a potential client. Suddenly his/her body language turns very negative. You should: (a) try to engage the person in some interaction; (b) stop in the middle of the presentation and ask that person what is wrong; (c) ask questions to determine what you said that was upsetting and attempt to rectify the situation; (d) ignore the reaction and finish your presentation as planned.

5. You’re delivering an important presentation that you don’t want interrupted with questions. You should: (a) refuse to answer the first question that someone asks, the rest of the audience will get the message. (b) tell the audience beforehand that you prefer to answer all questions at the end of the presentation; (c) answer questions as they are asked, even though you prefer not to.

6. When communicating across language barriers, putting things in writing (a) should be avoided, it can insult the international visitor’s intelligence; (b) can be helpful, it is usually easier to read English than to hear it; (c) can be confusing, it is usually easier to head English than to read it.

7. Learning to speak a few words of the language of clients, customers, or coworkers whose first language is different from yours is (a) generally a good idea, as the effort communicates respect for the other culture; (b) generally not a good idea because they may feel patronized; (c) generally not a good idea because they might be offended if you make a mistake in vocabulary or pronunciation.

8. If you meet someone whose body language is much more outgoing and expressive than yours, you should: (a) attempt to match it; (b) not attempt to match it.

9. If you meet someone whose body language is much more restrained than yours, you should: (a) attempt to match it; (b) not attempt to match it.

10. True or false: A smile is an almost universal way of communicating goodwill and cheerfulness.

11. When answering a business phone, always answer: (a) with a simple hello, it sounds more approachable and less pretentious; (b) with your name; (c) with your name, department, title, and a greeting.

12. When others are close by, for example in an elevator, it is okay to use your cell phone: (a) for extremely private conversation, after all it’s your business; (b) for lengthy conversations, so you don’t get tied up at the office; (c) for short conversations of a non-sensitive or non-confidential nature.

13. When you reach a doorway at the same time as a person of the opposite sex, the following rules apply: (a) whoever arrives first should open it and hold it for those who are following; (b) men should open doors for women; (c) women should open doors for men to prove they are no longer oppressed; (d) always open and hold the door for someone of either sex if that person has his or her hands full.

14. When exiting an elevator and a more senior person is toward the back, always (a) step aside to let that person exit first; (b) exit first if you are closes to the door.

15. When writing a business letter, the inside address should (a) always contain a courtesy title (Mr., Mrs., Dr.); (b) never use a courtesy title. That’s passé.

16. When having a business lunch, who pays? (a) a business lunch is always “dutch treat;” (b) you always pay for a client’s lunch; (c) you never pay for a client’s lunch, it’s insulting; (c) whoever invited the other person to lunch pays.

17. On a dress-down day, which item(s) of clothing is/are generally considered inappropriate? (a) khaki slacks; (b) solid t-shirts; (c) sweatpants; (d) baseball caps; (e) polo-type shirts; (f) loafers without socks; (h) thong sandals; ((h) jeans.

18. You are in a meeting with a client and several of your colleagues, and you realize your boss’s fly is unzipped. You should: (a) make a joke about it, and put everyone at ease; (b) tell him immediately, even if you don’t know him well; (c) ask someone who knows him better to mention it.

19. You have just head a coworker in the cubicle next to yours speak rudely to a client on the telephone. You should: (a) wait until the call is finished, then tell the person that the behavior is unacceptable; (b) tell your boss; (c) respect your coworker’s privacy and refrain from commenting.

20. If you are managing a meeting when an adversarial relationship is present, try to make sure that: (a) people sit with those with whom they agree; (b) the seating is mixed to encourage open dialogue and discourage an adversarial environment.

In his essay, Rub Somebody the Right Way, in the book Heart at Work, Bob Nelson writes about people that “rub us the wrong way.” “People whose personalities, mannerism or attitudes about life don’t agree with our own and who as a result we choose not to associate with. I think, it’s time we stated calling attention to others who ‘rub us the right way.’ A good place to start is by appreciating others. Practice praisings ASAP.”

As soon: Timing is very important when praising. To be the most effective, the thank you should come as soon as possible after the achievement or desired activity has occurred.

As sincere: Words alone can fall flat; you need to praise because you are truly appreciative and excited about the other person’s success.

As specific: Avoid generalities in favor of details of the achievement because specifics give credibility to your praising.

As personal: Praise the person face-to-face to show that the gesture is important enough for you to put aside everything else you have to do and just focus on the other person.

As positive: Concentrate on the praise and save the corrective feedback for the next similar assignment. The “but” becomes a verbal erasure of all that came before it.

As proactive: Praise toward desired goals.

Canfield and Miller collected about 85 essays managing for self-esteem, caring and acknowledging by known writers such as Ken Blanchard and Art Buchwald that will surely warm your heart not only this February, but always. This might as well be your comfort book.

On the other hand, Dr. Guillory answered a lot of frequently asked questions about spirituality and the workplace.

What is spirituality? Spirituality is our inner consciousness. It is the source of inspiration, creativity, and wisdom. Each of us has a spiritual center or inner core self, which is our connection to this source of inner knowing.

What does the word spiritual mean? That which is spiritual comes from within—beyond our programmed beliefs and values; beyond the survival instincts of the mind. It benefits self and others and creates alignment of others. It comes from surety, creates inner meaning and motivation about work, creates inner peach in one’s self, is a natural desire to help others grow, learn and succeed and respects and values individual and group dignity.

Is there a difference between spirituality and religion? Yes. Spirituality is “essence” and religion is “form.”

What is the relationship between spirituality and work life? Work life has become so demanding, fast-paced, stressful, ambiguous, and chaotic that we are forced to seek values-based answers and ways of achieving personal stability from within. The only source that will sustain our adaptation and stability in the long is our inner wisdom.

In order to compensate for the loss of job security and the continuing need for high-performing employees, today’s productive and profitable workplaces require organizational cultures that integrate humanistic core values with core business policies, decisions, functions, and behaviors; cultures that support the physical, mental and spiritual well-being of its employees.

What is the role of leadership in promoting spirituality? Define how spirituality plays out in your organization, including an appropriate definition of spirituality in your workplace. Define how spirituality is integrated into your strategic plan. Do a spirituality survey. Make certain your performance surveys include an evaluation of how effectively your organizational core values are practiced. Create an environment of trust—where employees feel safe to question, learn and contribute. Require personal development seminars, including values clarification and expected humanistic behaviors.

Aside from direct answers to questions, Dr. Guillory also included in his book a Spiritual Survey and how to be a spiritual leader in your own organization by integrating humanistic values with sound business practices.

Answers to CQ Survey:
1. b
2. b
3. c
4. a,c
5. b
6. b
7. a
8. b
9. a
10. True
11. b
12. c
13. a, d
14. b
15. a
16. d
17. c, d, g, h
18. c
19. c
20. b

18-20 You could write this book.
15-17 You usually know how to handle yourself.
12-14 It would not hurt to brush up
Below 12 You may need to do some damage control.

Bobbie: 02.15.07

Monday, February 12, 2007

Welcome back!

More than 20 book reviews have been posted now (all dated prior to Feb 2007, as they first appeared in their respective publications).

Each post/article contains a review of at least 2 books, with the 2 or more books having a common theme. For example, read reviews of books about marketing, innovation, leadership, corporate social responsibility, and so on.

Check out the Recent Posts, or check out the early book reviews in Archives.

P.S. Read articles by Moje Ramos-Aquino from her Learning & Innovation column at The Manila Times, Business Times Section here.

For the meantime also, check out The P&PC BookStore! Don't forget to have your credit card ready... ;-) Click here to visit The BookStore!

Wednesday, February 7, 2007


Welcome to the P&PC Book Reviews page!

More than 40 book reviews and recommendations shall be posted soon! Please visit us again!

For the meantime, check out The P&PC BookStore! Don't forget to have your credit card ready... ;-)

Click here to visit The BookStore!