The CBS-owned publishing house has acquired world rights and audio rights to Leave Something on the Table: And Other Surprising Lessons for Success in Business and in Life and will put it out in October 2019. In the book, Bennack shares anecdotes and lessons from a life in business. The story will highlight his tenure at Hearst, a 132-year-old, privately held company with stakes in A+E Networks and ESPN and media assets such as Cosmopolitan, Esquire and O, The Oprah Magazine.
Bennack held his first job at 8 years old, according to the book announcement, hosting his own TV show at 17 and bringing “the energy of an entrepreneurial mindset to a venerable publishing firm.” During a 28-year stint leading Hearst as CEO, he diversified the company into healthcare information and financial ratings, among other areas. As cable TV was booming, in 1990, he negotiated a 20% stake in ESPN for $167 million. Today, the Disney-owned network is valued at around $30 billion.
“My journey is one built on institutional culture and character—building it, maintaining it, passing it on,” Bennack said in the announcement. “I firmly believe there is one unchanging North Star. It isn’t what you know, and how hard you work, and how clever you are. It’s not even who you know. It’s how other people know you. It’s who you are. This book is about the importance of values in our work and personal lives—it’s about the value of values.”
Simon & Schuster Senior Editor Sean Manning saluted Bennack’s many innovations but also said the book affords the executive a chance to take “a rare and welcome glance backward, sharing the inspiring wisdom he’s gained over the course of his storied career.”
Bennack is chairman of the company’s Executive Committee, a director of Hearst and a trustee of The Hearst Family Trust established under the will of William Randolph Hearst. He also sits on a number of corporate committees and the Hearst Foundations Boards, where he has served for more than 25 years. Bennack is currently a director of Ralph Lauren Corp. and chairman of Hearst Magazines UK, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hearst.
He is also a governor and chairman of NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital and its Healthcare System, a managing director of the Metropolitan Opera of New York, chairman emeritus of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and chairman of The Paley Center for Media.
Robert B. Barnett of Williams & Connolly represents Bennack.