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According to a new book by a 1981 St. Lawrence graduate, if you want to succeed in business, try this: don't pick a fight with your boss. You Can't Win A Fight With Your Boss, And 55 Other Rules For Success, by Tom Markert '81, was released in May 1005 by HarperBusiness.

"College cannot completely prepare anyone for what it takes to succeed in the corporate environment," the publishers state. "Office demands and corporate politics are often difficult to decipher because they are learned only from experience. Now, top ACNielsen executive Markert has finally assembled these unwritten rules in a book meant to guide readers through every challenge of the corporate game." Other "rules" outlined in the volume include "Put in the Hours," "Become an Expert" and "Find a Mentor."

Of the book's title, Markert says, "A very quick way to destroy your career is to pick a fight with your boss. It is a fight you canít win under any circumstance, so why bother?" Not all of the advice offered in the book is for those new to the corporate climate, however. Some of the "rules" Markert provides apply to managers, such as "Take Care of Your Best People," "Surround Yourself with Talent" and "Hire Right, Fire Fast."

Markert notes that business ethics and corporate responsibility issues have been prominent issues in the news media, from the collapse of Enron to the investigations at Worldcom. That's why, he says, Rule Number 29, "Do It by the Book," states simply that "honesty, integrity and ethics are a vital part of business and life. Never be tempted by an 'opportunity' that might cause a breach in these areas in your own chase for personal gain or record profits."

An English major at St. Lawrence, as well as a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity and the basketball team, Markert is global chief marketing and client service officer with ACNielsen in New York. He has held leadership positions at Citicorp and Procter & Gamble and has held positions on the board of directors of the Australian professional basketball team the Sydney Kings and the American Chamber of Commerce in New South Wales.

Posted: May 19, 2005