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You Can't Fire Everyone: And Other Lessons from an Accidental Manager Hardcover – March 17, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Portfolio Hardcover (March 17, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1591843782
  • ISBN-13: 978-1591843788
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,867,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"It is the only useful 'self-help' book on management I've ever read. Ever." -Heather Huhman, "Business Insider"

About the Author

Hank Gilman is the deputy managing editor of Fortune. Over his career, he has worked at The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal, Newsweek, and The Beaufort Gazette (South Carolina). (His favorite job.) He has also been a regular commentator on The Nightly Business Report on PBS. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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This was the final chapter that Gilman said he could not find place anywhere else in the book.
Scott Huizenga
The hope is that they will be able to teach their skill to others and replicate their success through their team on a larger scale.
Craig Matteson
I read this book in a day in a half and then gave it to someone in management at my operation.
Chris S. Roush

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
One of the perverse realities faced by most first time managers is that they got the job because they were excellent individual performers. They demonstrated a talent the company valued so instead of helping them do it better, they promote them to management. Why? The hope is that they will be able to teach their skill to others and replicate their success through their team on a larger scale. It rarely works that way. If this has happened to you, this book will give you a crash course on how to succeed at being a manager and avoid many of the natural mistakes nearly every first time manager makes. And, if you think you know more than Hank Gilman and can get away with ignoring his advice, you will learn firsthand what Gilman was trying to share with you.

I think this book will be especially helpful to young first time managers just beginning their management career. But managers with some experience under their belt will find many helpful tips on how to resolve some of the problems they can't just quite get their hands around. And if you are an individual contributor aspiring to management, learning this stuff now can give you a leg up when your management opportunity finally knocks on your cubicle's door. Well, not a door, but that metal rail at the opening. You know what I mean.

Because Hank Gilman is a successful journalist and editor he knows how to write clearly, with focus, and charm. He also knows the power of making his point by telling compelling stories and fills the book with stories from his own work experience of from the lives of his friends. And because he has worked at major papers and magazines, many of the stories also involve major events and some famous people. Yes, the book is interesting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ilya Vedrashko on September 18, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Neurotic parenthetical asides pepper every single page of this book. A sentence on page 7 has three. The asides interrupt the flow; I would call them distracting if only there were much to be distracted from. Unfortunately, the book is mostly a collection of newsroom anecdotes involving anonymous people who are caught doing nothing of interest. On a three-hour flight, I got all the way to page 121. Maybe the book gets better in its second half, but I'm not likely to find out. In the introduction, the author writes, "I've always avoided writing a book because there are so many bad ones out there." Now there is one more.
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By Scott Huizenga on March 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
You Can't Fire Everyone is a good page-turner, which seems a bit strange for a management book. Hank Gilman, Deputy Managing Editor at Fortune Magazine, put together a succinct, humorous look at his career as an "accidental manager." One should quite easily pick up a few tips on the do's and don't's of managing people, and hiring and firing them. Gilman has a terrific sense of humor - witty and sarcastic at times; and sports-oriented at (many) other times.

The reader should be able to pluck a few gems from the book without trying too hard. I especially enjoyed his "Director's Cut." This was the final chapter that Gilman said he could not find place anywhere else in the book. The outtakes may have been the best part.

Overall, some of Gilman's advice seemed to be more applicable to the cut-throat world of journalism than to the broader world of "business." There is not much in the way of new or memorable material in this book. But, the length, fluidity, and humor of the book make it a worthwhile read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Hank Gilman's book is a fairly light read - mostly a collection of stories from journalism's great writer/manager divide by someone who 'accidentally' crossed over to the dark (okay, maybe grey or charcoal) side. It's a loosely organized series of 'lessons learned' by someone who - though he takes his work very seriously indeed - ultimately doesn't take himself too seriously. That's demonstrated by a sentence in his conclusion (which Gilman calls his "Director's Cut"): "[N]o matter what your management style, it will work if you do it well, are honest, treat your employees with respect, and are consistent." So, there you go: no repetitive, heavy-handed recapping of main points in bulletized form or the like (I'm grateful for that, actually); just more like "hey, let's get real, what I'm saying can be distilled into this one simple sentence."

As noted by another reviewer on this pages, the author's style is not so much by-the-numbers management tome (not unexpected by someone who sinks his teeth into Jack Welch and Tom Peters) as it is "[n]eurotic parenthetical asides." If you can roll with that idiosyncratic style and are interested in some insights as to how the sausage gets made at institutions like Fortune and Newsweek (well, what used to be Newsweek), then this book - which you can consume in the course of a mid-distance plane ride - is worth a read.
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