Picks and Pans Review: The Intuitive Manager

updated 05/26/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 05/26/1986 AT 01:00 AM EDT

by Roy Rowan

A veteran Time Inc. foreign correspondent and editor, the author observes that "intuition is knowledge gained without rational thought" and has written this book to convince the business world that it cannot flourish by analysis and profit margins alone. Rowan, who now writes for FORTUNE, interviewed H. Ross Perot, the Dallas electronics mogul, who told him that intuition means "knowing your business." Eleanor Friede, the editor who discovered Jonathan Livingston Seagull, says, "You're supposed to know if what's in your head is going to transfer to other people." Mary Kay Ash of Mary Kay Cosmetics tells of a narrow escape: She was about to hire an executive with impressive credentials, but at the last minute instinctively backed off; the executive was later indicted on a felony. Perhaps Seagram's Edgar Bronfman explains the process best: He makes his decisions "based on all the data fed into my personal computer—my brain—where they mix with my instincts, my vibes, my experience." Why isn't everyone in high places creative? Abraham Zaleznik of the Harvard Business School believes that it is the "risk of ridicule which...often stifles innovation." Another clue to success in business, says Rowan in his brisk, jaunty prose, may come from the Japanese, who say, "Man, not the bottom line, is the measure of all things." (Little, Brown, $15.95)

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