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Friday, February 25, 2011

Fundamentals for Business Success in a Book!

Title: Taking the Mystery Out of Business: 9 Fundamentals for Professional Success
Author: Linda Faulkner;
Author website line:
Genre or category: Nonfiction, business
ISBN: 978-1-935254-27-0;

Review by June Maffin originally published on:;

“Running a business – a good business – is work. No doubt about it. The author recognizes this and focuses on the “how-to’s” of professional success in a delightful, conversational way making this book a “must-read” for those about to begin a new business venture and seasoned small business owners alike.

Linda Faulkner began her business career over thirty years ago and her experience in every function within an insurance agency coupled with the ability to write – and write well - result in a compact, hard-hitting, easy-to-read book filled with honesty, forthrightness, encouragement, wisdom and a straight-forward dose of reality. She grabs the reader at the first sentence: “Clueless is a dangerous place to be.” And from that point on, the reader is on a journey with an experienced and wise mentor who skillfully guides the reader away from a state of cluelessness to self-confidence.

While this is an easy read, it’s a book to be reckoned with on several levels for it offers both practical advice for those involved in small businesses – and life in general. Much commonsense is sprinkled throughout the book – nuggets of tips and hints such as “Attitude is the single most important element of success;” and “How you interact with people, your levels of perception and compassion, your sense of humor, your generosity and sincerity … dictate whether people like and trust you. In business, you won’t go far if you’re not likeable or trustworthy.”

See what I mean? That last sentence could easily be rephrased for a self-help book about life’s lessons: “In life, you won’t go far if you’re not likeable or trustworthy.”

But, back to the business world. If you want to know how to identify villains and avoid mayhem, murder, and perhaps even professional suicide in the business world, “Taking the Mystery Out of Business” is for you. It’s quite a different approach from Shepherd Mead’s satirical “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” because to be a success in the business world, one must not only try, one must learn - and work. And Faulkner tells the reader just how to do that through her identification of nine fundamentals for professional success: Mental Attitude; Research; Resources; Essential Business Knowledge; Relationship; Organization; Time Management; Money; and Customer Attention.

What sets this book apart from other similar books? After each chapter, Faulkner gives a brief review and then provides an assignment of a series of questions based on the particular chapter – and, at the end of the book, gives an overview summary of the book - excellent pedagogy.

I suspect that Faulkner facilitates her workshops the way she writes: casual, informative, approachable, articulate and positive, sharing personal highlights (even those learning opportunities when things didn’t go exactly as planned) and the wisdom she has garnered over decades in the business world. So, whether you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur about to begin a new venture, already a small business owner and want to increase your income or reduce your expenses, an MBA student wanting to grasp the basics of business entrepreneurialship, or someone who would welcome learning how to be successful in life, this 190 page book is for you.”

~ Linda M. Faulkner is also the author of and Second Time Around, a mystery. Learn more about her at

The New Book Review is blogged by Carolyn Howard-Johnson, author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. It is a free service offered to those who want to encourage the reading of books they love. That includes authors who want to share their favorite reviews, reviewers who'd like to see their reviews get more exposure, and readers who want to shout out praise of books they've read. Please see submission guidelines on the left of this page. Reviews and essays are indexed by genre, reviewer names, and review sites. Writers will find the search engine handy for gleaning the names of small publishers. Find other writer-related blogs at Sharing with Writers and The Frugal, Smart and Tuned-In Editor. As a courtesy to the author, please tweet and retweet this post using this little green retweet widget :

1 comment:


Thank you for this opportunity, Carolyn. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to thank you earlier ... I was on a cross-country road trip last week and just arrived here last night.