READERS NEEDN'T GO FAR IN ALBERT J. Dunlap's Mean Business, No.4 on this month's best-seller list, to find what rankles most about the man who led 115-year-old Scott Paper Co. into oblivion. Early on, he admits there is ''some truth'' to the charge that he is no long-term manager. ''Once a company becomes business-as-usual,'' he says, ''it loses its appeal for me.''

From there on, anyone not managing an outfit in need of a corporate Kevorkian has to be wary. Dunlap's tales of bludgeoning suppliers, bluffing through negotiations, and sucking up to Wall Street analysts are entertaining but hardly useful. Even less enlightening is his low regard for affirmative action, charitable giving, and graduate business education.

At times, Dunlap waxes pathetic. ''My success has everything to do with being a poor kid who was always being put down,'' he says. Class envy, anyone? Dunlap is no ''MBA from some fancy high-priced school...anointed into the corporate elite.'' This conveniently disregards his first-class West Point training.

Many managers hail from modest backgrounds and work hard. But they don't skim off the $100 million Dunlap did by destroying 11,000 livelihoods and selling Scott to rival Kimberly-Clark Corp. Instead, they run companies to last. Such outfits may bore Dunlap but are more intriguing than this embarrassing attempt at self-promotion.


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

2 ONLY THE PARANOID SURVIVE by Andrew S. Grove (Currency -- $27.50) Intel's CEO describes how to turn crises into moments of opportunity.

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

4 MEAN BUSINESS by Albert J. Dunlap (Times Business -- $25) A chest-thumping tale from the man they call ''Chainsaw.''

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

6 BEYOND REENGINEERING by Michael Hammer (Harper-Business -- $25) In the ''process-centered'' workplace, everyone is a professional.

7 LEADING CHANGE by John P. Kotter (Harvard Business School -- $24.95) Shaking up the organization, by a Harvard B-school prof.

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

9 A SIMPLER WAY by Margaret J. Wheatley and Myron Kellner-Rogers (Berrett-Koehler -- $27.95) Lessons from nature about structuring complex organizations.

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

11 WHAT WORKS ON WALL STREET by James P. O'Shaughnessy (McGraw-Hill -- $29.95) A statistical look at how investment strategies stack up.

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

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

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

15 HOW TO THINK LIKE A CEO by D.A. Benton (Warner -- $23.95) What it takes to land a corner office, according to a career counselor.


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

4 BUFFETT by Roger Lowenstein (Main Street -- $14.95) The life and wisdom of the Oracle from Omaha.

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

6 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.

7 1001 WAYS TO REWARD EMPLOYEES by Bob Nelson (Workman -- $8.95) Give them a champagne brunch, a casual-dress day--or plain old cash.

8 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.

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

10 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.

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

12 THE FIFTH DISCIPLINE by Peter M. Senge (Currency -- $18.50) Creating the ''learning organization.''

13 WAVE 3 by Richard Poe (Prima -- $14.95) Quit your job and become a sales entrepreneur through ''multi-level marketing.''

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

15 PRINCIPLE-CENTERED LEADERSHIP by Stephen R. Covey (Fireside -- $14) Fostering meaningful workplace relationships--and boosting productivity.

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 September.

By Joseph Weber


Updated June 14, 1997 by bwwebmaster
Copyright 1996, Bloomberg L.P.
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