As our leaders remind us, it is increasingly important for every American to embrace greater literacy and higher standards if we are to meet the competitive challenges of the coming century. A key component of higher standards in business is, of course, exposure to age-appropriate reading material. As a public service, the Consultant Debunking Unit (CDU) has applied standard reading-level assessment formulas* used by educators to some of the most popular management texts. How does your favorite guru rate?
|Grade level||Best-selling Business Book|
|10th|| Now, Discover Your Strengths |
(Marcus Buckingham, Donald O. Clifton)
|10th|| The Five Dysfunctions of a Team |
(Patrick M. Lencioni)
|9th|| Rich Dad, Poor Dad |
(Robert T. Kiyosaki)
|8th||Fish!(Stephen C. Lundin, et al.)|
|8th|| Good to Great |
(James Collins, Jerry I. Porras)
|7th|| Think and Grow Rich |
|7th|| Who Moved My Cheese? |
(Spencer Johnson, Kenneth H. Blanchard)
|7th|| Who Moved My Cheese? For Kids |
(Spencer Johnson, Steve Pileggi)
|6th|| Who Moved My Cheese? For Teens |
|5th|| The Automatic Millionaire |
|5th|| Trump: Think Like a Billionaire |
(Donald J. Trump, Meredith McIver)
* Average of Dale-Chall and Flesch Reading Ease scores of representative text selections
sporty (adj.) optimistic, e.g., "25% growth in the dried-milk sector seems really sporty to me."
Martin Kihn is author of House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch and Then Tell You the Time (Warner Books, 2005).
A version of this article appeared in the January 2005 issue of Fast Company magazine.