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When I decided to adopt a dog by the name of Angel, I thought this would be an interesting, but not very challenging, experience.  Bad judgment.  I knew almost nothing about her, and it appeared that I was not going to get much help from her.  I sought  Paula, my associate and solver of all problems , who had dogs of her own, and she helped — a little.  I collected books from every source.  This also helped — a little.

It soon became clear that my best resource to manage Angel was, unexpectedly, the six decades of experience I had had in a variety of management positions and the principles I had learned in the process. 

I began to recall some personal adventures that added to my insight.  And this, in turn, led to recollections about many of the wonderful people who had enriched my professional life, some of whom you already know, such as Stephen King, the author, and others who you may be reading about for the first time.  This was supplemented by my working assignments, among them trips to India in 1956 and 1957 for the Ford Foundation to create a marketing plan for paperback books in the five local languages of South India.

In the case of Angel, it took almost two years of work to achieve the ultimate goal of all management – to  help an individual (or dog) achieve her fullest potential.  Looking back it seemed that all the complicated advice I was reading was interesting, but much more than I actually needed, as my management style has always been to minimize —that is, to reduce complexity to its basics, to try to put what needs to be done into a single memorable sentence, or better yet, a short and simple phrase.

As it turned out, my journey with Angel led me to four, yes only four -- GOLDEN RULES of management.

What had become clear, as the writing of the book progressed, was that  many concepts that originally seemed to be distinct were, in fact, joined.   This resulted in the following:

Rule 1: Trust and  Leadership.   These, it became evident, were really different sides of the same coin.  In addition, there was a strong relationship between Trust/Leadership and Excellence.

Rule 2: Communication.  It became obvious that it was impossible to separate  --  there was a community of spirit---Dog Talk led directly to Memorable Speeches. 

Rule 3 : Problem Solving and Decision Making.  these, too, are integrated tasks. 

Rule 4:  Perseverance  --this leads inevitably to Success.

In the end, the Four Golden Rules of Management are so simple that even Angel gets it.  If a manager can develop trust, it will lead to corporate excellence, provided he is able to communicate effectively, make the right strategic decisions, and, above all, persevere.

To help you walk the walk that I walked, I have put markers (street signs) in the table of contents so you can follow the path that I traveled.

Welcome to the neighborhood.