There seems to be no lack of the number of books written about personality traits, talents and how to more effectively manage personnel to the advantage of the organization. However, Marcus Buckingham, coauthor of the book First, Break All the Rules, and Donald O. Clifton, Chair of the Gallup International Research & Education Center, now provide managers with a positive approach to help identify and utilize strengths of individuals to the benefit of the organization in their bestselling Now, Discover Your Strengths. The book maintains that this unique, positive approach of focusing on strengths is far more effective in achieving success than eliminating weaknesses, given that we all have inherent strengths and natural weaknesses no matter what positions we might have. For example, the book points out, it does not matter if you are Bill Gates or Tiger Woods. True, these are individuals with tremendous talents that have made them well known in their respective fields, but they also have weaknesses that play into the mix. It would seem our brains are programmed by nature from early childhood, no matter how good our nurture, to start being selective in a few key areas. It is as nature intended it to be. Without being selective, and allowing many of the billions of connections we are born with to lapse into disrepair, we would become dysfunctional with information overload. Therefore, it is understandable that with sufficient practice, while we might be able to learn different tasks well, we will never be great in these areas unless we have a natural innate talent for them. Unfortunately, most of us do not have a good sense of our talents, let alone the ability to effectively use our strengths to our advantage. Rather, most of us spend our lives becoming all too aware of our weaknesses and spend our time trying to deal with our flaws, while neglecting our innate talents. However, most original and potentially most revealing, to address this problem, Now, Discover Your Strengths provides access to a web-based interactive questionnaire, developed by the Gallup Organization, that quickly identifies your top 5 (out of a total of 34) positive "personality themes", such as: Achiever, Deliberative, Harmony, Empathy and so forth that you might naturally posses. The book goes on to elaborate how each of the 34 unique themes can be identified, complete with individual profiles describing how each might act and what each might "sound like." As each sees the world through their own strengths filter, it is easy to have friction between different individuals within the same department or organization, because we all see the world, and how it should look, so differently. While one may hear what someone else is saying, they may not be able to assimilate it into their own world effectively. This is why partners or advisors are often so effective, as they ad balance to the limits of others. One word of caution however: do not buy this book used if you intend to take the preference test. There is a unique, one-time code that comes with each copy of Now, Discover Your Strengths, which is absolutely necessary in order to access the website's resources. The book has limited value without the ability to take the online test. However, the test alone is well worth the price of the entire book just by itself. With this resource, you will better understand how to build a "strengths-based organization" by capitalizing on the fact that such traits are already present among those within it.With an estimated 8 out of 10 people in this country not really in a position to capitalize on their strengths and talents, chances are most of us could benefit from reading this book. As most of us fail to capitalize on our strengths, it is not surprising that most departments in any company, no matter the size of the organization, are not operating at even par performance. The risk doing nothing is costly- not only in lost productivity, but in job satisfaction, employee retention and absenteeism and so on. This groundbreaking, resourceful book is easy to read in short concise chapters. Along with the associated preference test, Now, Discover Your Strengths, is a positive cost effective solution in resolving problems, and helping each employee achieve his or her full potential. This is must read for managers and office teams who want a win-win solution in improving their own departments, as well as the lives of those who work for them.
The Frugal Book Promoter How to do What Your Publisher Wont is the third book written by author Carolyn Howard Johnson, but by far it is not the last. Already she is planning on releasing a book of poetry. The Frugal Book Promoter has won the USA Book News award for Best Book 2004, and has also been an Irwin Award winner. For Dave and I, the promotion of our two books and promoting the upcoming e-book has been an uphill battle. Intensive research on our part for more than three years has prepared us for most of the work, and because of this research and hands-on experience I found very little in this book that was actually new to me. I also found it somewhat lacking in areas that could have used more attention, such as its organization. Carolyns sentence structure and grammar use was confusing and frustrating at times for me to read. There was also repetitive use of information and examples, which I found a bit redundant. Personally, I would have preferred another method of organization for the book. For instance, there are many aspects of reviews, but I felt all of these should be discussed in one chapter rather than scattered throughout the book. While few links on the site were new to me, of the dozen or so that I tried one or two were no longer active. This is no fault of the author, however, and is due solely to the ever-changing Internet. However, I was reminded of some weak areas in our marketing plan and was given some incentive for those areas I am about to broach in our schedule. I appreciated many of the links that I discovered and have had excellent responses from them. Overall, I think The Frugal Promoter is a book that reads like you are sitting across from the author having a discussion. This is an aspect of the writing style that I certainly enjoyed. It could be considered a useful beginners tool that would save time by providing links, basic promotion options to choose from and several marketing ideas that are outside the norm.ISBN#: 1-932993-10-XAuthor: Carolyn Howard-JohnsonPublisher: Star PublishPublished: 2004Pages: 288
The Seventh Jewel is a fantasy-adventure fiction geared for youth (ages 11 and up). J.J. Pritchard crammed several tantalizing elements in only 278 pages. The reader is taken on a journey that involves a treasure hunt, a noble quest and the discovery of an ancient civilization. The author touches upon family relationships, dealing with death and coming to terms with loosing a limb. The Seventh Jewel is also an educational book that brings up serious issues from poverty to discrimination. Mr. Pritchards approach to encourage readers to use his glossary of the ancient Inca language was very well done. J.J. Pritchard, author of 6 books including The Seventh Jewel, has participated in a climbing expedition in Peru. His first hand knowledge of Peru, global warming and ancient Inca history is shown by tasteful and accurate use of facts. He couples this with highly plausible events throughout the story, making this book very well rounded, unique and realistic. There are four main characters: Emma, a gutsy and witty teenage amputee, teaches the reader understanding and respect for what amputees experience. I think she could be a role model for many readers. Joel, her brave 11-year-old brother, displays a loyal adventurous heart. Uncle Jake, a well-connected treasure hunter by trade, plays the part of a hero and protector during a few points in the story. Estrella, a beautiful professor, has a chip on her shoulder that begins to melt when she meets Uncle Jake. Her life long dream is to honor her people by discovering the mysterious jewel of the Ancient Inca.They are all thrown together when scientists discover that knowledge of an extremely rare element may exist in the ancient records of the Inca. This element has the potential to combat global warming and it is worth an inconceivable amount of money. Because of this value, people of questionable character are attracted to treasure hunt but they play by their own rules and answer to their own ethics.The Seventh Jewel was an exceptional read. I highly encourage readers to pick up a copy of J.J. Pritchards latest book. You wont be disappointed!ISBN#: 0595336744Author: J. J. Pritchard Publisher: iUniverse
Moon Child by Simone Maroney is a larger sized adventure, fantasy novel with 55 chapters. The story line involves complex relationships between six main characters, which are delicately balanced leaving room for intrigue. Hanna, the chief character, was selected from birth by the Goddess, given special training and endowed with gifts the elders call the Memories. As Hanna goes through many travelling adventures, she becomes respected and known as the One a Reader and a Healer. Her father, a priest and a shaman in the village tries to protect her while making Hanna learn to stand on her own. Manon, a dear friend and fellow Healer, helps Hanna find a position in the same village that tried to kill her. Raer, her childhood friend, whose brain was inadvertently injured during play, becomes a valuable aid to Hanna and her adopted village. Janna, Hannas archenemy, keeps people at attention with her evil and treacherous behavior. A little romance is thrown in with Jio, also known as Maih, who is actually Jannas brother.So much is going on in the book that readers may find themselves stopping to retrace a few pages. I enjoyed reading this novel and found that it reminded me a little of Clan of the Cave Bear because of the tribal differences, traveling and gifts the chief character endures. Sometimes being selected by the Gods brings a tumultuous life!ISBN#: 1933157046Author: Simone MaroneyPublisher: Draumr Publishing
I have to say that I found this work simply breath-taking from the first poem on. Tessa Crigger focuses on issues of conscious living, anti-racism, natural resource consumption, the necessity of finding alternatives and the importance of the individual. At the end of the book, she gives readers a glimpse into her personal life, which I think was helpful in understanding the author.Her unique style made me feel teleported to a warm night, a warming campfire and sitting quietly while listening to ancient stories and lessons orated by elders. It was a wonderful feeling.Tessa insists upon the power of the individual: "act upon these things and turn no more blind eyes, become what we were meant to be and at least give it a try". Her passion for the health of the planet is quite admirable. I was honestly so taken with what Tessa had to say, I even wrote the following quotes out for my bulletin board: "Nations are built upon it and wars are fought to keep it, when all along we should be looking for a way to heal it" and "The children must be given more than a picture or a museum, the nature of our planet cannot be found in a coliseum".Though a little long, her poems had many valuable thoughts to share and did not seem to ramble or get redundant. I truly believe her work will help influence others to make an effort for a positive change. Just like ripples in the pond, each one of us can have a very real and important impact, even with the smallest of actions.