Sunday, January 08, 2012

My First Ever Blog Book Review...

I finished my first book for January (see my book list here)!!! I am excited to say that the book What Got You Here Won't Get You There (How Successful People Become Even More Successful!) by Marshall Goldsmith was well written, kept my attention and tapped into my love of psychology and human nature!!!!! I loved my Psychology major, back in my college days, and this book reminded me of that reading I did in college.

Overall I would probably give it a 5 star out of 5 stars. I think anyone would benefit from reading this book. The author's job is to go to CEOs and "fix" their annoying behavioral problems that bother those under them! He solicits 360 degree feedback from their employees and then gives it back to them! He lets them know what their biggest fault is and what they need to work on.

One of my many favorite parts of this book was when he suggested to the male readers that they should ask their wives "How can I be a better partner?" :-) He states that often whatever your annoying behavioral traits are at work are likely the same at home. And yes we all have THEM (annoying behavioral traits) and we all can improve. After he gives the feed back to his client he then has the client APOLOGIZE to all of their coworkers under them for their bad behavior and then solicit feedforward which is feedback you ask of others, for example "What can I do in the future to get better at X,Y,Z, (ex. be a better listener)?" I love this concept and think that it is so easy for anyone to implement. I loved this book because I feel that ANYONE can read it, ANYONE can implement the suggestions and ANYONE can benefit from this book if they are willing to.

The author mentions:
The three good things that GOOD Listeners Do:
  1. Think before they speak.
  2. Listen with respect.
  3. Gauge their own responses by asking themselves, "Is what I am about to say worth it?"
He adds that keeping your mouth shut IS AN ACTIVE choice.

My Favorite Quotes from this book:

"Without a measurable goal you are much more likely to blow it off."
"If we had a complete grip on reality, seeing every situation for exactly what it is, we wouldn't get out of bed in the morning. After all, the most realistic people in our society are the chronically depressed."

"To gain a friend, let him do you a favor."  - - Ben Franklin

"Goal obsession can cloud your judgement."

"As a result, in our dogged pursuit of our goals we forget our manners. We're nice to people if they can help us hit our goal. We push them out of the way if they are not useful to us. Without meaning to, we can become self-absorbed schemers."

"Today the key to wealth is knowledge."

I think the "take home" for me personally is I have gleaned suggestions for the workplace and at home, I have learned how to be a better listener, I've learned how to ask for feedforward suggestions. It also gave me insight into what the 'bosses' of today are dealing with. A reminder that there is no perfect person and even the MOST successful among us have traits that they can work on. Glad I read it, wasn't disappointed.

One odd thing about the book though, I felt it ended a bit abruptly, I felt that the author was trying to build you back up and make you feel good about yourself and then it felt like it just ended, that part was a little strange to me. Didn't fit with the rest of the book.

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