This book reminds me of airplane fuel. Back in my undergraduate days, I had a friend who drove a 1967 Mustang. It was kinda beat up on the outside, but he had a fast engine under the hood. That car was pretty fast anyway, but whenever he could afford it, my friend would go buy airplane fuel for the car. That made it go a bit faster. 🙂
David Lorenzo is a business blogger and one of those smart cats who work at Gallup. He’s paid his dues in the hospitality industry and he’s also paid attention to what’s worked for his, and others’, career success. The book isn’t released yet, though you can preorder on Amazon.
This is the second career focused book that I’ve read recently (the other had something to do with being radical) and though it isn’t as flashy as the other one, it is by far the most grounded and practical of the two. In addition to laying out the tenets of his philosophy, Dave often uses stories to illustrate his points. I found this to be a helpful technique for me–especially when I wasn’t quite sure I agreed with something he wrote, he’d illustrate the point with a story from his experience or someone he knew.
The book is broken into ten chapters: Take Charge of Your Career, Compete in the Individual Economy, Channel Your Passion, Embrace Strategic Thinking, Attack Your Goals, Create Your Own Luck, Prepare for Every Interaction, Master Perception, Generate Buzz, Become a Master Persuader and Maximize Your Career Value. Each of the chapters is pretty well packed with good information about adding fuel to the fire. Predictably, some of it is stuff you’ve probably heard before, albeit with a new spin.
One example is his idea of “accelerants.” He defines accelerants this way,
An accelerant is a tool that will help you progress more quickly toward the achievment of your goals. There are four major accelerants that can help expedite your progress toward goal achievment: people, technology, experience and time.
Nothing super new there, but I really like the pragmatic approach to these four, often overlooked, domains in the context of managing a career. Lorenzo goes on to expand on these four concepts to make it clear how he envisions their use in adding some octane to your career trajectory. Good stuff.
A lot of this book rings true to me, but in particular the descriptions of the four basic archetypes of people in the workforce. Lorenzo lists Intrepreneurs, Entrepreneurs, Workplace Warriors and Management Mavericks. The way he describes these four, you’ll likely end up seeing yourself reflected in at least one. I get the feeling that I’m more of an Intrepreneur than anything else, though I’ve certainly engaged in the behavior that defines Workplace Warriors and Management Mavericks.
On the whole, I liked the book. Lots of tried and true advice, lots of new spins on old favorites and a few great war stories. Taken as a whole, and integrated into your overall career plan, I don’t think you can go wrong with this book. Though the tone often feels like it’s aimed at recent college grads, or new managers, there’s enough fresh material in the book that even seasoned pros will find some value.
Free stuff alert! free stuff is all gone now, but feel free to keep dropping in your hints! If you’re interested in reading an advance copy of your own, drop a note in the comments of this post, telling me your favorite slacker-style career advancement tip, or tell me your best general purpose “do less, get more done” tip. The first 10 (ten) non-duplicate tips (don’t just say “ditto” to the person before you) will get an advance copy of Career Intensity. Don’t leave your contact info in the comment, just your tip. But be sure to leave a functional email address–I’ll catch up with you to get your shipping address.