Make Your Own Luck:

Make Your Own Luck:

By Eileen C. Shapiro & Howard H. Stevenson Portfolio 2005, $23.95 (hardcover), 262 pp.

How lucky do you feel? It's a question posed most famously by Clint Eastwood's Dirty Harry character, but it can apply to most managers in any situation where a decision based on instinct, experience and...well, luck, is involved.And it is just to help in such situations that Shapiro and Stevenson point the advice contained in their book.

Both authors come with impressive credentials. Shapiro is a McKinsey & Co. veteran who is now president of The Hillcrest Group strategic consulting firm while Stevenson is a Harvard Business School professor. Shapiro is also the author of a previous work, Fad Surfing in the Boardroom.

How does the promise of such credentials translate to the work at hand? Pretty well. Shapiro and Stevenson have put together a lively work that is easy and fun to read because it is full of anecdotes, jokes and puzzles that keep the reader engaged even as he/she is learning about how to take better advantage of available resources.

The 12-step program they outline is designed to get the best results with the least risk without a lot of "analysis paralysis" that usually bogs down decision making. And meanwhile, you'll have fun along the way.