How to Become a Great Boss: The Rules for Getting and Keeping the Best Employees

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The Great Boss Simple Success Formula:

  • Companies Do What the ...
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The Great Boss Simple Success Formula:

  • Companies Do What the Boss Does
  • Groom 'Em, or Broom 'Em
  • Hire Slow, Fire Fast
  • Don't Be Tired
  • The Rule of the Ds
  • Delegate Down, Down, Down
  • Don't Hire a Dog and Bark Yourself
  • Don't Shoot from the Lip
  • Never Be Little, Never Belittle
  • Listen to Phonies, Fools, and Frauds
  • Don't Check Expense Accounts
  • "Quit" Is for Scrabble®
  • It's Okay to Be Quirky
Did you ever have a great boss? Everyone should have one, but not enough people do. If you're a boss, or hope to become one, or have a less-than-great boss, then this is the book that could change your career—and your life.

In times like these, being a great boss can be harder than ever. If you want surprising and useful advice on how to handle the tough stuff—from having to fire a long-time employee to being a new boss with a demoralized team—the stories, observations, and advice contained in this gem of a book will set your feet in the right direction. And if you just want advice on living up to the legend who preceded you in the job, or even ways to emulate someone who was a great boss to you, Jeffrey Fox has gathered anecdotes from some of the mightiest and most respected bosses in America. The bestselling author who brought you How to Become CEO and How to Become a Rainmaker knows the territory about which he speaks.

Fox is the master of the counterintuitive angle. For every boss who has implied "I know what's best, that's why I'm the boss," Fox counsels, "Listen to Phonies, Fools, and Frauds" and "Don't Check Expense Accounts." His stories from bosses who have cared equally for employees' lives and the bottom line will inspire you to see that profit counts, but so do camaraderie, motivation, and a great place to work.

In a time of considerable corporate downsizing, it's more important than ever for bosses to surround themselves with motivated employees. Jeffrey Fox's How to Become a Great Boss will have a place on the shelves of top brass everywhere who want to remain leaders of their pack.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780786868230
  • Publisher: Hyperion
  • Publication date: 5/15/2002
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 168
  • Sales rank: 82,084
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 7.87 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Meet the Author

Jeffery J. Fox was Sales & marketing Management magazine's "Outstanding Marketer;" the National Industrial Distributors Association's "Outstanding Marketer;" and the Connecticut American Marketing Association's "Marketer of the Year." Prior to founding Fox & Co., a premier marketing consulting firm, he held senior marketing positions at several international companies. Fox's bestselling books, including How to Become CEO and How to Become a Rainmaker, have been published in thirty-five languages. A sought-after speaker to large organizations and groups of senior executives, he is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, and has an MBA from Harvard Business School. His offices are in Chester, Connecticut.

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Read an Excerpt


Mr. Hart

The great boss stirs the people. The great boss elevates, applauds, and lauds the employees. The great boss makes people believe in themselves and feel special, selected, anointed. The great boss makes people feel good.

Great bosses are memorable. In sixty seconds, this boss created a memory to last over sixty years.

The employee was twenty-four. It was his first real job. He was in the fifth week.

That morning there was a knock on the six- foot-tall glass wall that framed his "office." "Excuse me, Mr. Godfrey, my name is Ralph Hart," said a courtly, exquisitely dressed man in his sixties. "Do you have a minute?"

"Of course," answered the young employee, who recognized the name, but not the face, of the company's legendary Chairman-of-the-Board.

"Thank you," said Mr. Hart. "Mr. Godfrey, may I tell you a few things about your company?" To the employee's nod, Mr. Hart continued: "Mr. Godfrey, your company is a first-class company. We have first-class products. We have first-class customers. We have first-class advertising. In fact, sometimes we even fly first-class because the airlines are some of our first-class customers."

Extending his hand to the new employee, Mr. Hart paused, and with eyes riveted on Godfrey, he concluded: "And Mr. Godfrey, we only hire first-class people. Welcome to Heublein."

If you believe that able and motivated people are the key to an enterprise's success, then Mr. Hart just taught you a lot. If you don't believe able and motivated people are the key to an enterprise's success, then stop reading and give this book to someone else.


The Great Boss Simple Success Formula

1. Only hire top-notch, excellent people. 2. Put the right people in the right job. Weed out the wrong people. 3. Tell the people what needs to be done. 4. Tell the people why it is needed. 5. Leave the job up to the people you've chosen to do it. 6. Train the people. 7. Listen to the people. 8. Remove frustration and barriers that fetter the people. 9. Inspect progress. 10. Say "Thank you" publicly and privately.


Companies Do What the Boss Does

People take their cues from the boss. The boss sets the tone and the standards. The boss sets the example. Over time, the department, the office, the store, the workshop, the factory, the company begin to do what the boss does.

If the boss is always late, punctuality becomes a minor obligation. If the boss is always in meetings, everybody is always in meetings. If the boss calls on customers, customers become important. If the boss blows off customer appointments, the salesforce makes fewer sales calls. If the boss is polite, rude people don't last. If the boss accepts mediocrity, mediocrity is what she gets. If the boss is innovative and inventive, the company looks for opportunities. If the boss does everyone's job, the employees will let him. If the boss gives everyone in the organization a World Series ring, then everyone wants to win the World Series. If the boss leads a charge, the good and able employees will be a step behind.

Great bosses understand this phenomenon. Great bosses position the organization to succeed, not with policies, but with posture and presence. If the great boss wants a policy of traveling on Sunday or practice before presentations, he or she travels on Sunday and practices presentations. If the boss doesn't want little snowstorms to make people late to the office, he gets in early the day of the storm and makes the coffee . . . and serves coffee to the stragglers as they arrive.

Some bosses lead purposefully, others innately. Whether intentional or not, the great boss shapes the organization. Because the company does what the boss does, the boss better perform, or the company won't.

Copyright (c) 2002 Jeffrey Fox

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 4, 2004

    Loved It

    Easy to it in one day. Lots of basic concepts that we often forget are critical to becoming and staying a 'great boss'.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2002

    Highly Recommended!

    Jeffrey J. Fox has a talent for pointing out the obvious, but often forgotten, basics of business and management. Like Fox¿s previous books, How to Become a Great Boss contains almost nothing that is entirely original. Instead, it compiles what should be common-sense guidelines for effective leadership and presents them in a manner that is both educational and inspirational. Fox has the ability to get you thinking about what you are doing as a manager and about the things that you have allowed to fall by the wayside. For that simple but valuable lesson, we from getAbstract strongly recommend this book to all bosses, managers and leaders.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted October 9, 2011

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    Posted June 20, 2009

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