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Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Kiss and Make-Up

I just finished two books. Well actually one and a half. Kiss and Make-Up, the one I finished, is one of my new favorite biographical accounts. Gene Simmons of rock legends KISS , is best known for breathing fire and spitting blood on stage. But what I found fascinating were the typical stereo types of a hard rocker being a drugged, drunk ignorant fool, were quickly dispelled when I began to realize that Gene has not only never drank, smoked or done drugs, well except for the time he ate a brownie that he didn't know was a "special" brownie, but he is also a very intelligent business person. According to his account, he was one of the driving forces behind the branding (though it wasn't called branding back then) that KISS became known for. The book was a little rough in content at times, so be prepared for that. Nothing vulgar, but I wouldn't read it to my kids a bed time story either.

Though I haven't been a big fan of it for some time, I'm actually planning on tuning in to Season 7 of the Apprentice, the celebrity edition because Gene Simmons will be one of the cast members. I'm excited to watch, because I'm curious to find out if he's a good businessman in his own mind, or if he's good enough to stand up to Donald.

The half a book I read was Kingdomality. Looked interesting on the cover. The overview said something to the effect of "new way to manage your business" so I thought why not?

The reality was it was the same management dribble that consultants have been peddling since the late 90's when First Break all the Rules came out. It took the same tired concept of figuring out the personalities of your staff, determining what their strengths are and then what yours are and labeling them all so you know who should be doing what job withing your organization. Only, it would have been too close to plagiarism of about a hundred other books, so they gave everyone cute little names like White Knight, Black Knight, Minstrel, etc. Essentially what the whole Otter, Golden Retriever, Choleric, Sanguine, fad did to Meyers Briggs. Cute names, but cute names only go so far.

I admit I only made it about half way through before yawning and returning the book to the library, but I'm sure I can guess at the ending. The book told in story form, also a rip off from the "Who Moved My Cheese" format probably sounded something like, "The now much wiser king returned to his kingdom to improve things with his much better understanding of how to be a good manager of people. Blah, Blah, Blah."

My ratings:
Kiss and Make-Up - 4 stars
Kingdomality - the 1 and 1/2 stars