"The Ten Commandments for Business Failure", by Donald Keough

Brian Gongol

One-paragraph review: Good business books are usually written by outsiders like journalists who manage to capture the essence of a business, industry, or manager from the outside. This book is unusual in that it is a self-aware, thoughtfully written book by a high-profile manager himself. Don Keough can speak from a position of great authority and does so in a highly readable way -- a throwback, really, to the idea of a business leader as a well-rounded, literate person whose role happens to be at the top of a major enterprise. The text is thoughtful, the ideas are sound (even if not especially revolutionary), the author makes ample use of his own mistakes and errors to make points, and the prose is direct and literate.

Verdict: A book that ought to be used in business schools to offer a capstone perspective on leadership.