Browsing round my local Borders waiting for a title to jump out at me wasn't the most constructive way to find a friend's birthday present, but it was all I could come up with at the time. I'd strolled around the fiction, sped through the kids' section, looked quickly at the computer corner (for myself, looking for the new ActionScript book by Colin Moock) and was around the strange juncture of religion, self-help and business books. And there is was, sitting on a table with a few other books that for some reason Borders had deigned to lay out on a table, rather than on the shelves.
Now normally I don't go for business books, but something about the look of it encouraged me to pick it up. Perhaps it was the subtitle: "How to be businesslike with your emotional life and emotional with your business life" Flicking through it tempted me enough to buy it.
It's about pitching, unsurprisingly, but more unexpectedly it's broadly about self presentation, persuasion, and being passionate about whatever you do. Divided into two parts, one by each author, the first part is presented as lots of short chapters each addressing a different aspect of "the pitch". It's written pithily in short paragraphs with a round-up of the points made at the end of each chapter. The language is simple and direct: exactly what I'm after.
The second part is much more literate and philosophical. It talks about historical figures and how they used their own brand of persuation and the art of the pitch to convince their contemporaries. It's packed full of references, and where the first part is concise and direct, this part is erudite and impressive in the breadth of its references.
I was really surprised with this book that I liked it as much as I did. On the face of it it's just about getting your own way, but I found that I could really get something much more from it: about finding what makes me passionate about what I do, and about pushing myself forward with that passion.
Jason posted this on Tuesday, June 19, 2007 at 7:53 pm. Leave comment.