``PEOPLE OF THE SAME TRADE SELDOM MEET together but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public or in some diversion to raise prices,'' observed classical economist Adam Smith. Well of course, Adam M. Brandenburger and Barry J. Nalebuff might respond--that's just ``co-opetition.''

It's not that these ``conspirators'' have ceased being rivals. Rather, it's that ``there is a duality in every relationship--the simultaneous elements of cooperation and competition,'' explain the authors of Co-opetition (Currency/Doubleday), No.12 on this month's BUSINESS WEEK Best-Seller List.

At times, a competitor may be a ``complementor,'' particularly when working together can expand the size of a market. And at times, a supplier or a complementor (what French's mustard is to Oscar Mayer franks) can become a competitor. Everything depends on the situation--and how you can understand and shape it to your advantage.

To illuminate this way of thinking, the authors delve into game theory and provide exercises that will agitate your gray matter. They also examine each of the five elements of a game: the players, added values (``what each player brings to the game''), rules, tactics, and the boundaries of the game.

Will Co-opetition's games replace Parker Brothers' Monopoly? Afraid not. The book's case studies are for real--and lots more useful.


1 THE DILBERT PRINCIPLE by Scott Adams (HarperBusiness -- $20) The revenge of the cubicle dwellers.

2 WALL STREET MONEY MACHINE by Wade B. Cook (Lighthouse Publishing -- $24.95) Formulas to help you strike it rich.

3 BEYOND REENGINEERING by Michael Hammer (HarperBusiness -- $25) In the ``process-centered'' workplace, everyone is a professional.

4 THE MOTLEY FOOL INVESTMENT GUIDE by David and Tom Gardner (Simon & Schuster -- $24) An online investment duo puts it in writing.

5 CLICKING by Faith Popcorn and Lys Marigold (HarperCollins -- $26) Spotting trends in order to achieve success and personal fulfillment.

6 INSIDE THE TORNADO by Geoffrey A. Moore (HarperBusiness -- $25) Lessons on marketing mined from Silicon Valley.

7 BUILT TO LAST by James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras (HarperBusiness -- $25) How 3M, Wal-Mart, Procter & Gamble, and others became standouts.

8 THE LOYALTY EFFECT by Frederick F. Reichheld (Harvard Business School -- $24.95) How loyalty between management and employees spurs company growth and profits.

9 CUSTOMER-CENTERED GROWTH by Richard Whiteley and Diane Hessan (Addison-Wesley -- $25) Overcoming adversity by putting your customers' desires at the heart of things.

10 THE SECOND CURVE by Ian Morrison (Ballantine -- $25) Successfully confronting new technologies, new consumers, and emerging markets.

11 THE DIGITAL ECONOMY by Don Tapscott (McGraw-Hill -- $24.95) How the Infobahn is changing business.

12 CO-OPETITION by Adam M. Brandenburger and Barry J. Nalebuff (Currency -- $24.95) Game theory and strategy for a world of changing business rules.

13 MANAGEMENT OF THE ABSURD by Richard Farson (Simon & Schuster -- $21) The paradoxes of management, as seen by a psychologist.

14 JAMMING by John Kao (HarperBusiness -- $23) A guide for prompting jam sessions of creativity and improvisation.

15 THE PATH by Laurie Beth Jones (Hyperion -- $16.95) How to plot your own mission statement.


1 THE SEVEN HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE by Stephen R. Covey (Fireside -- $12) Habitually popular.

2 GET A FINANCIAL LIFE by Beth Kobliner (Fireside -- $11) Hey, Gen X'ers--mutual funds and mortgages can be fun!

3 1001 WAYS TO REWARD EMPLOYEES by Bob Nelson (Workman -- $8.95) Give them a champagne brunch, a casual-dress day--or plain old cash.

4 THE BEARDSTOWN LADIES' COMMON-SENSE INVESTMENT GUIDE by the Beardstown Ladies Investment Club with Leslie Whitaker (Hyperion -- $10.95) Recipes for Four-Bean Salad, Five-Hour Stew--and 23% returns.

5 THE 1996 WHAT COLOR IS YOUR PARACHUTE? by Richard Nelson Bolles (Ten Speed Press -- $14.95) The enduring job-search bible.

6 LEARN TO EARN by Peter Lynch and John Rothchild (Fireside -- $13) Capitalism for beginners.

7 THE ONLY INVESTMENT GUIDE YOU'LL EVER NEED by Andrew Tobias (Harcourt, Brace -- $12) Overcoming ``money intimidation,'' now in an updated edition.

8 FIRST THINGS FIRST by Stephen R. Covey, A. Roger Merrill, and Rebecca R. Merrill (Fireside -- $14) Managing your time by balancing your life.

9 THE WALL STREET JOURNAL GUIDE TO UNDERSTANDING MONEY AND INVESTING by Kenneth M. Morris and Alan M. Siegel (Fireside -- $13.95) Concise explanations enriched with graphics.

10 GETTING TO YES by Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton (Penguin -- $11.95) A Harvard team's step-by-step guide to conflict resolution.

11 THE ONE MINUTE MANAGER by Kenneth Blanchard PhD and Spencer Johnson M.D. (Berkley -- $9.95) Three management techniques, conveyed in brief story form.

12 PERSONAL FINANCE FOR DUMMIES by Eric Tyson (IDG Books-- $16.95) Lighthearted primer.

13 YOUR MONEY OR YOUR LIFE by Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin (Penguin -- $11.95) To achieve financial independence, restructure your life.

14 JESUS CEO by Laurie Beth Jones (Hyperion -- $10.95) That team-builder and turnaround artist from Nazareth.

15 HOME BUYING FOR DUMMIES by Eric Tyson and Ray Brown (IDG Books -- $16.99) Ah, home, sweet mortgage.

BUSINESS WEEK's Best-Seller List is based on a survey of chain and independent booksellers that carry a broad selection of books on economics, management, sales and marketing, small business, investing, personal finance, and careers. Well over 1,000 retail outlets nationwide are represented. Current rankings are based on a weighted analysis of unit sales in July.

By Hardy Green


Updated June 18, 1997 by bwwebmaster
Copyright 1996, Bloomberg L.P.
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