In his latest book Who’s Got Your Back?, author Keith Ferrazzi advises everyone to give up on the myth of the professional “superman” and the culture of the lone wolf who defies all odds and accomplishes great things. The path to success isn’t paved with the bodies of those we’ve stepped on, but is lined with friends, mentors, and especially an inner circle of trusted advisors who will tell us the truth. Far too many times we see CEO’s, government leaders, and professionals at all stages of their career with a go-it-alone mentality. If they DO decide to bring in some outside counsel, it’s often in the form of “yes-men” who will say only what they think is expected or in some self professed “guru” who actually doesn’t have a clue.
The secret to finding the 3 people who will change your life
No, says Ferrazzi, to really achieve that deep level of success we crave, the secret lies in developing a trusted group of advisers who will shoot straight, tell us where we’re wrong, ask the surprising questions that we don’t want to answer, and then provide the feedback to help us overcome those success-destroying habits we’ve developed. The book packs a LOT of information and Ferrazzi follows his own advice by confessing a lot of his shortcomings to readers. The style and pace of the book felt like a blog to be honest. It didn’t feel like the typical self help book that pumps you up and tells you to “go get ‘em tiger!”
The “none of us can go it alone” mantra was reminiscent of Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell. But where Gladwell pointed out how successful people had a lot of distinct advantages along their way (young Bill Gates having access to computers at a prep school, for example), Ferrazzi would point out that Gates probably had a small inner circle of people he trusted that helped spur him on to develop his company. Who’s Got Your Back? has some great twists on old subjects:
- The Four Mindsets – Generosity, Vulnerability, Candor, and Accountability – and how to use them to your advantage
- Nine steps to building a dream team that will spur you on to reach your goals
- Tactics, strategies, and structures to help you stay the course
- How to use “sparring” as a productivity tool
- How lowering your guard will help you in the long run
Buy or Don’t Buy
I always struggle with recommending a book when there are so many people struggling with their finances, but this is indeed a very good book. If you feel isolated, if you feel that there’s no one you can trust to help you make decisions, if you wonder why you don’t have deeper relationships, this would be a great book to read. It is very fresh and very new and I’m giving away my “Press Release Copy” to one reader who emails the Free Book Code at the bottom of my RSS feed by May 16th. I’ll use Random.org to select the winner and I’ll even pay the shipping charges to get this book to you.
Keith Ferrazzi is also the best selling author of Never Eat Alone.