What Reviewers Are Saying about The Go-Giver
For anyone who has ever believed that attaining success requires a greedy, self-centered approach, The Go-Giver: A Little Story About a Powerful Business Idea could be just what the metaphysical doctor ordered. The beautiful message contained inside this book can help us develop a more pragmatic, big-hearted and ultimately successful approach—both to business and to life.
The title is a play on the phrase “go-getter,” often used to describe people who take aggressive measures just to get the results they desire in life. But far from being just a play on words, the term “go-giver” can be seen as a compliment of the highest order.
In some ways, the story unfolds as it would in a mystery novel. The main character, Joe, is working frantically on a Friday afternoon with his deadline a week away. As the story opens, Joe’s attitude is firmly rooted in a go-getter type approach, but his best efforts are getting him nowhere. At wit’s end, he decides to ask an older man in the office, someone he thinks the company is keeping around out of loyalty only, for advice. Little does Joe know that the old adage, “ask and you shall receive” is about to prove true for him in a very big way.
On Saturday and throughout the following week, Joe transitions from a person who thinks success means beating others to the punch into a person who comes to see the wisdom of always giving something of value in his interactions with others, even his rivals. In the process, he learns and applies the Five Laws of Stratospheric Success, which might have come across as just another to-do list without the magic of this rich tale to show how we can benefit from them.
The Go-Giver is one of those rare books that entertains with a great storyline while simultaneously delivering an uplifting, life-affirming message that we can apply immediately. — Darren Richardson, Science of Mind Journal
A cross between Jonathan Livingston Seagull and Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, The Go-Giver is a tale of transformation. . . For those who’ve stalled out on The Secret’s emphasis on what we want, want, want, the Chairman offers another secret—his trade secret: giving. Bob Burg, who travels the world sharing the principles of The Go-Giver, and John David Mann, author of The Zen of MLM, collaborate on this uplifting, quick read of a book that will appeal to customers who want to bring more heart and a holistic sense of mission to their livelihoods. — Connie Mears, New Age Retailer
10 Business Books to Get You Back on Track Again (Dec 9, 2008)
The Go-Giver, by Bob Burg and John David Mann (#4)
You can read this entire book in one flight from Philadelphia to Miami. Most people think about how they can manipulate a person or situation to benefit them. The real key to success, according to the authors, which I entirely agree with, is helping others. A similar book to Tuesday’s with Morrie, by Mitch Albom, which provides wisdom and insight on how to be more successful. —Marc Kramer
Mastering the Art of Guilt-Free Giving (Sept 6, 2008)
Give ’til it hurts. Groan.
Are you tired of being guilted into giving? Better load up on overpriced wrapping paper and spend Saturday working the cotton candy booth at the Spring Fling or the PTA moms will make you feel like a bad parent.
If you don’t send that monthly check to your church you might be risking eternal damnation. Not to mention the fact that the ministry will fail, building will come tumbling down, and the preacher and his six kids will probably be out on the street. At Christmas. And who hasn’t been shamed into giving a buck to a bell ringer who made eye contact as you exited Target, laden with packages that probably cost more than their entire collection for the night.
We’re all familiar with the old adage, ‘tis better to give than to receive. If it wasn’t drummed into us by our parents, then we certainly heard it from assorted teachers, preachers and all the charities who tug on our heartstrings with photos of starving donkeys in the Amazon.
But what if giving provides more than just a feel-good fix or a way to assuage consumer guilt? What if it actually helps you improve your own circumstances? And what if you don’t have to choose between giving and receiving, but you can experience both at the same time?
John David Mann, co-author of the best-selling book, The Go-Giver: A Little Story about a Powerful Business Idea, calls our either/or thinking about giving vs. getting a “treacherous dichotomy,” suggesting that while it may counterintuitive for us to believe that we can give and receive at the same time, we don’t have to make a choice between the two.
Business people are usually well schooled in the give-to-get approach, swapping leads or favors with colleagues. But it’s usually a tit-for-tat exchange, done with the well-understood assumption that when you give one, you’re supposed to get one in return. So they’re not truly giving, they’re trading, and people who don’t stick to the rules are quickly cut off.
However, Mann suggests that one of the secrets of “stratospheric success” is giving—not with the immediate expectation of getting something back, but with a heart that’s open to receiving, whenever, wherever or in whatever form the gift appears. It’s a subtle emotional shift, but it can make all the difference in the world.
In The Go-Giver, Mann and co-author Bob Burg provide a parable about an ambitious young man named Joe, a true go-getter who feels as if the harder and faster he works, the further away his goals seem to be.
Joe learns that changing his focus from getting to giving—putting others’ interests first and continually adding value to their lives—ultimately leads to unexpected returns. Conversely, he also discovers one of the Laws of Stratospheric Success—“The Law of Receptivity: The key to effective giving is staying open to receive.”
One of Joe’s teachers tells him, “The majority of people operate with a mindset that says to the fireplace, first give me some heat, then I’ll throw on some logs.” We’re probably all guilty of occasionally calculating up the potential return of giving, be the reward a business lead, eternal salvation or simply getting our spouse to quit whining. But on the flip side, those who selflessly give to someone in need often have trouble accepting the same generosity they extend to others.
In The Go-Giver, Mann and Burg effectively illustrate why the give-to-get model doesn’t work in the long run, and also why the one-way give-to-give-to-give-to-give approach limits our own and others’ success.
The book—which has created such a buzz CEOs are buying it in bulk for their entire organizations—taps into a universal truth: Giving and receiving aren’t mutually exclusive ideals; you can do both at the same time, and you don’t have to keep score.
You can’t script out exactly how it will work, but when you’re open and you give the best of what you’ve got in every situation, it always circles back to you.
It doesn’t hurt, and you almost never feel guilty. — Lisa Earle McLeod
Bob Burg and John David Mann have written an interesting parable around the life of “Joe,” a highly ambitious guy who comes to a dead end when he can’t create the two things he needs to succeed: clout and leverage. In his pursuit of obtaining these things, he meets “Pindar,” a smart, kind, and extremely wealthy man who seems to have everything Joe wants. After meeting with Pindar, Joe realizes that he’s on a much bigger quest than he anticipated, and learns through Pindar and his associates that the most optimal way to receive is to give. By learning and practicing Pindar’s “Five Laws,” Joe obtains not only clout and leverage, but a life fulfilled far beyond the old goals he used to have.
The process is much more complicated than he expected though. In fact, a constant shift in perspective, a breaking of usual habits, and an adoption of seemingly illogical business practices had to take place. In his meetings with Pindar and associates, Joe examines such things as why people crowd into restaurants with good food while tables sit empty at places with excellent food; he sees meeting rooms with executives using finger paints as part of their creative process; and he learns about creating a huge network of influence by placing other people’s interests first.
Each lesson is themed with the idea that the more you put other people first, and the more you provide for them, the more you’ll be able to receive. The book states, “Your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment.” In business, it is typical to focus on what we are going to get and how we are going to get it. The Go-Giver reminds us to focus on the important point of what we are going to give to people. As shown throughout the book, this focus turns business from a 50/50 proposition to a 100% success. —Jack Covert, president and CEO, 8CR
Many readers will know Bob Burg from his platform work at the Million Dollar Roundtable. His co-pilot is also a highly respected business writer. This book is ostensibly about five laws of business success; of course, it’s really about a lot more. We probably will all be able to see ourselves in its pages. It is important to be giving—nothing provides more pleasure (and, no, I’m not talking here about “giving” the strategy away to earn $641 thousand yearly, which by the way has far more to do with selling than giving). But did not know about receiving? I thought not. You will after you sail through the 132 easy-to-read pages of The Go-Giver. This book takes you out of yourself, lets you observe, and then return to self-awareness. At first, I thought, “Hey, pretty simple stuff,” but, parts of it keep coming back for rethinking and reevaluating. I think you’ll like the storytelling aspect, too. This book makes a good first impression, and an even better second; the latter impression comes when you realize that the parable is deeper than you first thought. — Richard Hoe, Life Insurance Selling
Burg and Mann have crafted a business parable that is drawing comparisons with Dr. Spencer Johnson’s wildly popular 1998 book Who Moved My Cheese? How one receives this message may vary, but learning and understanding it is essential … the world always needs a fresh approach to its most important messages. For this purpose The Go-Giver is a great way to continue to spread a positive and enriching message. — Soundview Executive Book Alert
This modern-day business parable, a quick read in the spirit of The Greatest Salesman in the World and The One Minute Manager, should do well with eager corporate-ladder climbers, who may at first be confused by its focus: on putting the other guy first—be it a colleague, competitor, customer, friend or family member. Told through the fictitious story of an ambitious young salesman named Joe, Burg and Mann communicate their points through the advice of an enigmatic (and highly likeable) mentor character known as Pindar. Rather than help Joe snag a fast sale, the consultant introduces him to series of “go-givers” who personify the “Five Laws of Stratospheric Success.” Over the course of five days, a restaurateur, a CEO, a financial advisor, a real-estate broker and the mysterious “Connector” teach Joe about the laws of value, compensation, influence, authenticity and receptivity-concepts that make more immediate sense in this fictional context than they would in a formal business book. Burg (Endless Referrals: Network Your Everyday Contacts Into Sales) and Mann (You Call the Shots) write with a simple, informal style that offers a working-person’s interpretation of the old adage “give, and you shall receive.” — Publishers Weekly (Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.)
The collaborative effort of Bob Burg (a top sales professional and successful public speaker) and John David Mann (author and business leadership authority), The Go-Giver: A Little Story About A Powerful Business Idea is the story of Joe, an ambitious young man who seeks advice from the enigmatic Pindar — a legendary consultant referred to by his many devotees as “The Chairman.” Pindar introduces Joe to a series of “go-givers” that include a successful restaurateur, a corporate CEO, a knowledgeable financial advisor, a real estate broker, and a man known simply as “The Connector” who brought them all together. Between these men, Joe learns about the Five Laws of Stratospheric Success and discovers how to open himself up to the power of giving as a means of success in business. Deftly written and thoroughly reader-friendly, The Go-Giver is enthusiastically recommended for anyone seeking success in the competitive marketplace of products, services, and ideas, as being informed and informative, as well as inspired and inspiring. —Midwest Book Review