During this holiday-shortened 4th of July week -- all financial markets and many businesses will close Thursday -- why not add to your business knowledge by buying new books about the workplace, and maybe packing some for vacation reading?
Inc. magazine, July, runs a cover story, "Books That Transform Companies: The Smart CEO's Reading List." Examples: "Corporate Lifestyles: How and Why Corporations Grow and Die and What to Do About It" by Ichak Adizes ("Company founders rave about the relieved recognition they feel when reading this book."); "The Executive Odyssey" by Frederick Harmon ("A look at the tension springing from the inevitable gap between a leader's capabilities and what's required of him or her."); "The Greatest Thing in the World" by Henry Drummond ("It's about leadership care, compassion and skill; I carry it everywhere," says Donald Burr, founder, People Express Airlines.)
MORE TOP BOOKS: "On Becoming a Leader" by Warren Bennis ("Last chapter especially good, telling how to shift from manager to leader"); "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu ("Ancient Chinese wisdom on waging war. Example: 'The battle is won long before the enemy is even engaged.' This book consistently rated higher than most leadership books."); "The Goal" by Eliyahu Goldratt ("A book that whole companies read and end up transformed by it.")
NOTE ON ABOVE: The article adds, "At Web Converting Inc., Dallas, every Thursday at 4 p.m. the shouts start echoing through the 40,000-square-foot plant, 'C'mon boys, it's time to read.' Machine operators and production workers step away from their jobs to convene in the plant's narrow windowless meeting room and read a book aloud on company time."
ENVELOPE, PLEASE: As we pass the year's halfway pole, with the Dow Jones average closing at 2,906.75 on June 30, the closest crystal ball gazer in our Dow Jones contest is Carl Quoss, Arbutus, with his 2,907 forecast for Dec. 31, 1991. Carl, if nothing changes between now and year's end, Mrs. Ticker and I will wine and dine you and your guest for dinner at your favorite area restaurant. Next 10 closest will appear here Friday.
TAX TIPS: "There are a number of ways to get income tax deductions for summer travels," says Tax Hotline, June excerpts: "Arrange a trip that has business as its primary purpose . . . As long as the trip has that purpose, the cost of getting to and from the business location will be fully deductible even though you tack on a few days of recreation . . . A trip to look after your investments can also be considered a 'business trip."
JULY JOURNAL: "Small firms are moving to offer employees flexible benefits, a strategy that cuts taxes, widens benefit choices, lessens health costs for employers and employees." (Nation's Business, July) . . . "Like airlines, some hotels are discounting for advance reservations, some 20 to 60 percent; Marriott and Sheraton are examples." (Business Week, dated today) . . . "You are entitled to your own opinions, but not your own facts." (Alan Greenspan to a colleague, in U. S. News & World Report, dated today) . . . Did you remember that CD rates stood at 16 percent in 1981? . . . Did you know that Pepsico has 18,000 fast food outlets (Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Kentucky Fried Chicken) vs. McDonald's 11,000? . . . And did you know that Bayer Aspirin is owned by Eastman Kodak? . . . "Sometimes you pay most for the things you get for nothing." (Albert Einstein) . . . "Some people have so much insomnia that they can't even sleep on the job." (Bits & Pieces).