Sunday, July 30, 2006

Success is not a Spectator Sport

I have been home this weekend so feeling caught up and rested. Ran 12K yesterday so I am even feeling virtuous. I have also had lots of reading time. I am sometimes asked if I post reviews on all the books I read on my CEO blog. No. Just if they are interesting. I figure why write a bad review. Maybe the book does not resonate with me but it might to someone else.

I read a book Thursday called, "Success is not a spectator sport How to Take Action and Achieve More" by Charles M. Marcus. I love the title. I am a big believer in taking action. Success only happens with action and involvement.

This book is a tremendously fast read and touches on most topics from the most successful books and speakers that I have read and heard. I would call it a motivational refresher course. The problem with that is it can be somewhat shallow in places; however, because the basic concepts are inherently challenging, it does act as a good review.

One thing that I like about the book is it is chocked full of good quotes like:

"Only those who dare to fail greatly can achieve greatly." Robert Kennedy

"Remember the smallest actions are better than the noblest of intentions."

"Failure is another opportunity to begin again more intelligently." Henry Ford

The book talks about four principles of success: courage; responsibilities; commitment; attitude is everything.

The book has a chapter on setting goals, something we all know we should do. It does have some practical suggestions with goal setting which probably in itself makes the book worth reading.

It also talks about the five key values of successful people: respect; courtesy; humility; and excellence.

Because the book is such a quick read (even if you spend the time to do the exercises), I would highly recommend it for anyone who wants to be on a success track.

In response to my "16 Rules to Live by" post Friday, a good friend send me another list:

Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.

Don't believe all you hear, spend all you have or sleep all you want.

Never laugh at anyone's dream.

People who don't have dreams don't have much.

Talk slowly but think quickly.

When someone asks you a question you don't want to answer, smile and ask, "Why do you want to know?"

Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.

When you lose, don't lose the lesson.

Remember the three R's: Respect for self; Respect for others; and responsibility for all your actions.

When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.

Smile when picking up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice. Spend some time alone.

Now - what is your list?

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