Bach on Books: Liveblogging a review


(also known as ‘watch Ben read a book today’)

This morning my good friend Phil Gerbyshak chucked a book at me. Ouch !
Turns out, it was exactly what I needed (funny how life works eh?)

The book he threw at me is Joe Calloway’s new book ‘Work Like You’re Showing Off: The Joy, Jazz and Kick of being better tomorrow than you were today’

I was at Chapters at 8am when it opened, and I’ve dived right into the book.

Here are my initial reading notes:

[9:00am] Chapter 1:
Showing off means being the best you can be in any situation. When life gives you lemons, you ‘make a lemon meringue pie, a lemon cake with festive lemon icing rosettes and a lemon “watch this” souffle’

Chapter 2:
What have you wanted to do for a long time? For me, it’s finishing my first book.
What have you been putting off in your life? Go do it !

Chapter 3: All hat and no cattle
This is a great line, one I first heard from my dear friend Anne McIntyre. Do you talk a good game, but never step up to the plate? Don’t be that guy. Be the guy who hits a double to bat in a run, every single time. And don’t gloat )

More to come…


[10:45] Chapter 4: Make room for good stuff by getting the junk out of your life. You already know what you need to stop. So stop it.

Chapter 5: Be the ‘gold standard.’ Do it, every single time. Be the person who always gets it done. No matter what. Do this, and ‘the world will beat a path to your door.’

‘Consistency is the foundation of success and the great business builder.’

Chapter 6: You don’t know until you try. Take some action. Pick the cat up by the tail (see what happens!). ‘Be daring, not stupid.’

‘Adopt the strategy of taking action, rather than hesitating, questioning and doubting.’

[11:30am] Chapter 7: ‘I want to get better every day because that’s where the fun is.’ WOW – big statement, and so true !

Do you say stuff like this? “We were busy today. We didn’t have time to improve ourselves.” If so, you have excucitis. Cure? Go read a book. Take a course. Calloway says about thesetype, ‘You’re toast my friend, and the end is near.’

If you’re not getting better… you’re getting…. worse !

Chapter 8: A la John Maxwell, Calloway says that ‘we see things as we are.’ True ! The trusting man sees people as trusting. The jealous man sees people as jealous. And on it goes…

Become a reverse paranoid – everyone is out to help you!

‘If I can learn to change the way I look at my world, then I can change my world.’ True dat Joe, true dat.

Chapter 9: Don’t claim to be something you’re not. Don’t over promise and under deliver. Bad equation!

Ari Gold famously says “manage your client’s [@#%&^@] expectations.”

[11:59 am] Chapter 10:  Give up, or go for it ? I’d take Go for it – every single time

Napoleon Hill says (and today I’m also reading his Your Magic Power to be Rich!) that winners never quit, and quitters never win.  There is a good lesson there !

Chapter 11: Ask ‘what if,’  ‘If not now, when,’ and (my favourite) ‘Why not?’  Why not indeed!  That’s actually the motto of U of Waterloo, in celebration of their 50th anniversary (congrats!) this year.

‘Constantly challenge assumptions and complacency.’

Chapter 12:  Don’t get too weird. Get back in the box sometimes. If you do something well, don’t start doing things outside of that ‘box.’  I think  you need to balance growth and mastery.

Chapter 13: ‘Expect to Connect. If you don’t like people they won’t like you back.’  Connecting is way to ‘make the love get bigger.’

Make real connections with your friends, clients and colleagues.  There is no ‘business relationship’ or ‘social friends.’

Chapter 14: Go all in. To quote my big brother Jesse Skurecki, ‘go %$@# deep .’

Joe asks ‘should you wait to find work you love before you go all in, or should you go all in so that you will begin to love the work you’ve got?’


9 responses to “Bach on Books: Liveblogging a review

  1. Live blogging a book review? Wow! You are the MAN! Glad you’re loving this book. I did too!

  2. Thanks Phil, I appreciate the love

    I passed your post on to the designer who made my business cards to see if she can draw a logo or two for you.

    Jump in with some of your thoughts from the book!

  3. Dave Dunseith

    I really like the title, and based on your “Live Review”, you seem to be living it before you are even done. You are “showing” off by doing this type of review. I love working like I’m showing off, it gives a real confidence boost, and if done effectively, can rub off on other people. The only people it rubs the wrong way are those that will never be at that level..and they know it, and hate themselves for it!! Show a little “flash, dash and panace”..FLARE it UP!

  4. Thanks for stopping by Dave
    You are a show off – you do great work on the Network Breakfast Committee at the KW Chamber of Commerce. You’re a pillar of our business community !

  5. “GRAND MASTA DOUBLE B” Is the MAN following the master plan!

  6. I think blogging while reading is awesome! How did you do it?

    Building a network is easy as long as you follow these simple steps:

    Build friendships and friends. I think it is crazy that people employ different techniques to build business relationships than their friendships. Be yourself!

  7. RR, thanks for stopping by !

    Eitan, great point. One thing I laugh at is when people talk about facebook vs linkedIn- and explain that one is for ‘work ‘friends, and one is for ‘personal’ friends – and they go on to say the language is a little dirtier at the personal one, and the pictures are a little ‘loosened up.’ You and I know that those two worlds can’t be separate forever.

    I think you gotta let it all hang out. I don’t censor my facebook page (although I remove obscene [and funny] wall posts once in a while) – there is a lot of info on there, from vacation pictures, to watches I dream about – and I think it gives people a great way to get to know me.

    When they know and like me as a person, a barrier to doing business is removed – and a BIG one at that.

    What do you think about this? How can we be ourselves and overcome the reluctance?

  8. I had a meeting with a partner of a real estate development firm today (I would like to get into the industry and they were checking me out and I them). Some of the best advice he gave me was, know the industry and understand who the key players are.

    Up till now I’ve been scouring for job positions and sending my resume (accomplished and impressive) to various real estate developers in the Vancouver area but to no luck. The key is not to flood the area with your resume but to talk to the players who are influential decision makers.

    Ben kept telling me that I have to get through the gatekeepers and straight to the hirers/decision makers. I agreed with him and tried but one company just wouldn’t let me do the unconventional (smart) and told me to go away. Most people are not like this however and slowly but surely, I will talk to industry experts and decision makers and find my fit. Finding a job needs patience and persistence. Know and understand before you make decisions!

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