BUSINESSWEEK ONLINE : DECEMBER 25, 2000 ISSUE
BOOKS

The Business Week Best-Seller List


With its unrealistic characters, canned dialogue, predictable plot, and tidy, mawkishly romantic ending, Fish!, No. 5 on this month's hardcover list, is pretty hard to swallow. Mary Jane, the heroine of this fable, is a recent widow with two children and a mountain of debt from her husband's unexpected demise. At work, she gets promoted to manage a department whose attitude problems are so severe that it has become known as the ''toxic energy dump.'' How will she ever turn it around? Then she pays a visit to the fish market down the street, where she meets Lonnie: He'll save the day. Lonnie shows her that the fish market is really a model, productive workplace because everyone there elects to have a sunny attitude. ''There is always a choice about the way you do your work, even if there is not a choice about the work itself,'' he says. A few epiphanies later, our heroine has applied his four-step program and turned her staff's dead-end attitude around, creating a vibrant, fun-filled, and rewarding workplace. And, oh yes, the effervescent fishmonger proposes.

In addition to its Pollyannaish attitude, Fish! is elitist throughout, assuming that blue-collar workers are inferior. ''If these fish guys could do what they have done, the sky is the limit for us,'' says one office worker. Should this fish story get a sequel, let's hope its characters get their comeuppance as they learn their next lesson--the dangerous effects of such arrogance.

By KARIN PEKARCHIK


HARDCOVER BUSINESS BOOKS


1 WHO MOVED MY CHEESE? by Spencer Johnson, M.D. (Putnam $19.95) Learning to accept change.

2 FIRST, BREAK ALL THE RULES by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman (Simon & Schuster $26) A Gallup investigation into managerial success.

3 WHEN GENIUS FAILED by Roger Lowenstein (Random House $26.95) Inside hedge fund Long-Term Capital Management.

4 THE ART OF POSSIBILITY by Rosamund Stone Zander and Benjamin Zander (Harvard Business School $22.50) Realizing opportunity, by a family therapist and the conductor of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra.

5 FISH! by Stephen C. Lundin, PhD, Harry Paul, and John Christensen (Hyperion $19.95) Motivating employees the Pike Place Fish Market way.

6 LEADING THE REVOLUTION by Gary Hamel (Harvard Business School $29.95) A manifesto for radical innovators.

7 THE TIPPING POINT by Malcolm Gladwell (Little, Brown $24.95) Discovering what turns an idea into a hot trend.

8 GUNG HO! by Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles (Morrow $20) How Walton Works No. 2 fired up its employees.

9 THE POWER OF GOLD by Peter L. Bernstein (Wiley $27.95) The shiny stuff and its place in civilization.

10 THE 21 IRREFUTABLE LAWS OF LEADERSHIP by John C. Maxwell (Thomas Nelson $17.99) A minister's codification.

11 MAESTRO by Bob Woodward (Simon & Schuster $25) An inside look at Fed chief Greenspan's reign since 1987.

12 SPIN SELLING by Neil Rackham (McGraw-Hill $24.95) Getting the most out of corporate sales calls.

13 HOW TO BECOME A RAINMAKER by Jeffrey J. Fox (Hyperion $16.95) Instruction for the would-be super-salesperson.

14 RAVING FANS by Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles (Morrow $20) Turning customers into your biggest boosters.

15 ELIZABETH I, CEO by Alan Axelrod (Prentice Hall Press $23) Lessons in leadership that are 400 years old, gleaned from the queen's successful reign.


PAPERBACK BUSINESS BOOKS


1 RICH DAD, POOR DAD by Robert T. Kiyosaki, with Sharon L. Lechter, CPA (Warner $15.95) Teach your kids the rules of money that the rich play by.

2 THE 7 HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE PEOPLE by Stephen R. Covey (Fireside $14) Habitually popular.

3 THE ONE MINUTE MANAGER by Kenneth Blanchard, PhD, and Spencer Johnson, M.D. (Berkley $12.95) Three management techniques, conveyed in brief story form.

4 WHAT COLOR IS YOUR PARACHUTE? by Richard Nelson Bolles (Ten Speed Press $16.95) The enduring job-search bible.

5 THE CASHFLOW QUADRANT by Robert T. Kiyosaki, with Sharon L. Lechter, CPA (Warner $17.95) Moving beyond job security to financial independence.

6 RICH DAD'S GUIDE TO INVESTING by Robert T. Kiyosaki, with Sharon L. Lechter, CPA (Warner $19.95) Choosing to be rich, not merely comfortable.

7 THE INNOVATOR'S DILEMMA by Clayton M. Christensen (HarperBusiness $16) New technologies' disruptive effects.

8 GETTING TO YES by Roger Fisher, William Ury, and Bruce Patton (Penguin $12.95) A Harvard team's step-by-step guide to conflict resolution.

9 BUILT TO LAST by James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras (HarperBusiness $16) How 3M, Wal-Mart, Procter & Gamble, and others became standouts.

10 THE MILLIONAIRE NEXT DOOR by Thomas J. Stanley, PhD, and William D. Danko, PhD (Pocket Books $14) The simple ways of the wealthy among us.

11 THE 48 LAWS OF POWER by Robert Greene (Penguin $15) Thoughts of Machiavelli and other power brokers distilled.

12 J.K. LASSER'S YOUR INCOME TAX 2001 by the J.K. Lasser Institute (Wiley $15.95) On your mark, get ready...

13 THE LEXUS AND THE OLIVE TREE by Thomas L. Friedman (Anchor Books $15) Globalization and its discontents.

14 1001 WAYS TO REWARD EMPLOYEES by Bob Nelson (Workman $10.95) Give them a champagne brunch, a casual dress day--or plain old cash.

15 THE RICHEST MAN IN BABYLON by George S. Clason (New American Library $6.99) Parables for prosperity.


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 November.



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