The Ape in the Corner Office

Published By: Crown Business

Book Category: Non-Fiction, Business & Economics

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Reviewed by Cheryl Hiltibran

The Ape in the Corner Office is an interesting, entertaining and often too truthful a read. It appears we cannot divest ourselves fully from our instinctual ancestors, the Ape and even the Rat. We share too much biological similarities.

Richard Conniff has researched and written a credible account of how our ancestral behaviors play an important role in establishing and maintaining a sense of safety, social hierarchy, community and competitive advantage. This could be a terrifying thought, yet,
Conniff's storytelling ability, vast business experience (reads like a who's who in business), well-cited research and humor serves to pacify the reader, at least momentarily.

As a trainer and speaker I want to beware The Ape in the Corner Office, lest I become buffaloed by a passive, yet, hostile audience. This is a book I will return to for insights anytime I see the furry face rising in either myself or others.

Conniff candidly shares how his behaviors have at times prevented him from endearing the client and gaining the contract. His advice: if you are going to let your beast roar, compete or fight consciously, be aware of the risks, rewards and lasting implications your instinctual behavior may have. The book is entertaining, thought provoking and a useful tool for people who want to know the human and beastly side of their business.

And we are not out of the woods. Just because humans have verbal communication, a relatively newly acquired form of communication, it only serves to cover up our more instinctual responses. Despite polite words and social appropriate manner it is still our nonverbal communications that reveals the truth.

Armchair Interviews says, after you read The Ape in the Corner office, you'll have a pen handy to jot down any of the great contacts and resources the author gives you to navigate the river of commerce that runs through your office jungle.

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