Posts Tagged ‘Book Review’

The Alchemist – Book Review

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2014

When I had enquired with my friends for recommendations on books to read as the next steps, I got quite a few recommendations to read “The Alchemist” by Paulo Coelho.


The Alchemist is unlikely the other self help books that I have read in the past.

Some of my favorite sections from the book are given below:

1. When you set out to accomplish something, the whole universe conspires to support you to accomplish your goal.
This is so true – you should try to observe the next time when you set a new goal. It is an amazing feeling when you realize that you have no clue how it is going to be done, but when you put your heart out, you realize the universe adjusts itself to help you reach your goal.

2. Difference between a horse and a camel
While a camel is known for travelling quite fast in the desert, the only issue with a camel is that you never know when it is going to drop down dead in the middle of the desert. On the contrary, a horse does not reach the speed of a camel in the desert, but will clearly provide good signs much before it slows down. This helps you plan ahead of time and minimize the risks involved.
It made me immediately think about the resource management issues we some times have where some super smart team members join us but quit within a few months to join a top software services organization and compare them with some average performance producing team members who are guaranteed to stick around for a long time, thus providing with huge support in planning for long term projects.

3. Listen to your heart all the time and go after your dreams
The way I interpret it is simple. You live once, why compromise? Do everything that your heart says and just have fun all the way – this way, you can look back in the future and enjoy the journey you have enjoyed all the way.

A big thanks to everyone who recommended The Alchemist and I also recommend it to any one who is ready to read self help books.

Gung Ho – Book Review

Monday, September 16th, 2013

Got a chance to read ‘Gung Ho – Turn On The People In Any Organization’ by Kenneth Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles. I guess I am becoming a fan of Ken Blanchard as I have already read The One Minute Manager  and had loved it.

Gung Ho by Ken Blanchard and  Sheldon Bowles

Gung Ho by Ken Blanchard and Sheldon Bowles


Gung Ho is yet another book by Ken, that follows his unique style of story telling (I was amazed when I read the one minute manager) and hence I knew what to expect when Gung Ho started with this lady Peggy Sinclair goes to manage a new location and meets this manager, Andy Longclaw, and falls in love with his management style.

Andy Longclaw, the hero of our story, is a manager who follows three distinct philosophies in life to get his team to be motivated in the right direction. The names he gives these concepts are very interesting:

  • The Spirit Of The Squirrel
  • The Way of the Beaver
  • The Gift of The Goose

Each one of these philosophies revolve around a unique way in which nature works and Andy narrates how he has learnt from them and used them in his team successfully.

The book shows Peggy’s interpretation of these philosophies and how she realizes that she is able to use them effectively.

I highly recommend this book to any manager who is interested in motivating their teams.


Super Learning – Book Review

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

I got a chance to read a few chapters of this amazing book called ‘Super Learning’ by Sheila Ostrander and Lynn Shroeder.

This book talks about how each one of us is capable of performing at five to ten times our current potential (Eg. Students can get 30% to 60% more marks than what they are getting now, atheletes can perform much better, etc).

It appears to have been implemented for over thirty years in European countries and is starting to get popular elsewhere.

One chapter I read right away was about how this helps children improve their learning skills. Some of the techniques are what I have heard before (such as listening to the exact content, then meditating on it, etc).

I was surprised to know that this book has been in existence for over thirty years now and yet has not become as popular as I would have expected it to be.

I intend to read it from front to back as soon as I complete The Magic book – which by the way, is another amazing book I highly recommend.

Startups That Work – Book Review

Monday, November 7th, 2011

I have started reading a book called Startups That Work (10 Critical Factors That Will Make or Break a New Company) by Joen Kurtzman and Glenn Rifkin.

It appears to be a good book but I will know as I proceed.

Will write about it soon after I finish reading it (hopefully before the end of this week.)


Extraordinary Customer Service – Book Review

Friday, November 4th, 2011

Just finished reading this book called ‘The Agile Manager’s Guide To Extraordinary Customer Service’ written by Susan M. Gage.

I am impressed – fully impressed about the fact that this book contains hundreds of different useful tips about customer service, all given in less than a hundred pages. In short, every page has  one or more very useful tips – which I used to think I knew, but I just realized what a big mistake it is, when we do not implement it.

Before reading this book, the only lesson I had learnt about customer service was that it is seven times more difficult to get a new customer than to retain an existing one. I learnt many new things after reading this book. I have highlighted some of them here below.