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MBA in a Book – a jewel found in a book review on Amazon

I found a great review of “MBA in a Book – Mastering Business with Attitude” by Joel Kurtzman, with Glen Rifkin and Victoria Griffith on Amazon. In my opinion a total gem and worth much more attention than just being tucked away somewhere on Amazon (let’s not kid myself, it won’t get much more attention here either). It actually covers three “MBA-overview” books. See for yourself.

Title of the review: Essential Business Information & Diversity of Perspectives
(Jun 1 2004 By Robert Morris)
In recent years, there have been several excellent books which cover much of the same material found in this volume. For example, Steven Silbiger’s The Ten-Day MBA: A Step-By-Step Guide To Mastering The Skills Taught In America’s Top Business Schools and Milo Sobel’s 12 Hour MBA Program. (Both Silbiger and Sobel know it’s impossible to gain the knowledge-equivalent of an MBA degree in 10-12 months, much less in 12 hours or even in ten days.) Each of the their books is worthy of consideration as is this book. In fact, at least to business students and to relatively inexperienced executives, I presume to suggest that all three be purchased and then kept near at hand for frequent consultation.
Throughout history, all of the the most effective people were/are life-long learners. They fully appreciate the importance of knowing what they need to know; also the importance of knowing what they think they know…but don’t. As a result of all manner of new/better technologies, we now have access to more information than ever before…and both the quantity and quality of that information seem certain to increase faster than ever before. What we know as well as knowing what we don’t know are critically important. I am reminded of Derek Bok’s response to irate parents after a tuition increase at Harvard: “If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”

In collaboration with Glenn Rifkin and Victoria Griffith, Kurtzman takes a different approach to various subjects than do Silbiger and Sobel. They provide a specific course of self-directed sequential study whereas Kurtzman provides a series of separate but related chapters, each of which focuses on fewer specific subjects but in greater depth and from several different perspectives. Although I recommend that Kurtzman’s book be read sequentially the first time, its greater value may derive — for many readers — from its discrete coverage of those subjects of most immediate relevance. Obviously, completing an M.B.A. degree program requires a much greater investment of time, concentration, energy, and (yes) money than does reading one or even several books. Even an excellent volume such as Kurtzman’s cannot replace that program, nor does he assert or even imply such a claim.

Those who share my high regard for this book are urged to check out Silbiger’s and Sobel’s books as well as Business: the Ultimate Resource, Stuart Crainer’s The Management Century as well as his The Ultimate Business Library: The Greatest Books That Made Management, Des Dearlove’s The Ultimate Book of Business Thinking: Harnessing the Power of the World’s Greatest Business Ideas, Daniel A. Wren and Ronald G. Greenwood’s Management Innovators: The People and Ideas That Have Shaped Modern Business, Daniel A. Wren’s The Evolution of Management Thought, (4th Edition), and The Leader’s Companion: Insights on Leadership Through the Ages (Thomas Wren, (Editor). In fact, every organization should have an in-house lending and/or reference library and these are among the titles which should be included.

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