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Love Is the Killer App: How to Win Business and Influence Friends Hardcover – February 5, 2002

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Editorial Reviews Review

Is love really all you need? Tim Sanders, director of Yahoo's in-house think tank, believes love is the crucial element in the search for personal and professional success. In Love Is the Killer App he explains why. Sander's advice is to be a "lovecat," which despite the cutesy moniker is his sincere and surprisingly practical prescription for advancement both inside and outside the office. It starts with amassing as much usable knowledge as possible, which he explains can be done by religiously carving out time to read and then poring through as many cutting-edge books in your field as possible. It follows with an emphasis on networking to the extreme. Sanders offers concrete suggestions, from compiling a super list of contacts to ensuring all are regularly stored in an always-accessible format. And he concludes by advocating a true mindset of compassion, which he says involves sharing this knowledge with those contacts and ultimately helping anyone who in one way or another may ultimately help you. Through identifiable anecdotes and specific recommendations, the book promotes an undeniably feasible yet decidedly offbeat program that has worked for the author and could prove equally favorable for others who apply it. --Howard Rothman

From Publishers Weekly

Remember when the online biz was the playground of the business world? Yahoo! exec Sanders does, and with a vengeful nostalgia. In his almost dementedly excited book on how to get ahead in business by being loveable and smart, Sanders beats the drum of the New Economy louder and more happily than just about anyone out there. The "Big Statement" here Sanders is a proponent of reading as much as possible and boiling it down to an essential Big Statement is that a kill-or-be-killed mentality won't get you far in today's business environment. Better to spread love, by connecting with people, giving out advice, using every available moment to increase your knowledge and being a "lovecat." It's hard not to get swept up by the rose-colored glow of this gleaming "bizlove" philosophy, where people are excited to come to work and where they give out hugs and encouragement to everyone they come across. But being a lovecat, Sanders emphasizes, does not mean being a sucker. Naturally, as with most hype, the relentlessly upbeat narrative leads to some ridiculous overgeneralizations, like "during the Depression people worried about survival. Today the affluent worry about whether or not they are going to have a good experience." Sanders also vastly overestimates the availability of choice in today's job market, saying that if your boss isn't reciprocating your love, just get a new job ("A fresh start is a mouse click away"). These lapses aside, he is convincing. Cynics will argue that a sheep in a pack of wolves will simply be eaten, but a sheep armed with Sanders's brand of intelligent enthusiasm will more likely charm the wolves into submission.

Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Business; 1st edition (February 5, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 060960922X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0609609224
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #390,995 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

105 of 111 people found the following review helpful By David E. Rogers on March 18, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Somewhere along the line, I decided I didn't want to be a big shot. I didn't want to bulldoze coworkers and employees. I didn't want to climb the corporate ladder at the expense of others. I didn't want to abuse people the way I'd been ill-treated by certain employers. Human values seemed more important. I wanted to treat my customers, employees, coworkers and bosses with respect and--dare I say it?--love.
I'll forever be grateful to whoever steered me in this direction--for I soon found that work was much more fulfilling and fruitful when I cared for those with whom I worked.
According to Tim Sanders, author of Love is the Kller App: How to Win Business and Influence Friends, that makes me a "lovecat." And you can be one too.
That's the thrust of this delightful little book by Sanders, Chief Solutions officer at Yahoo!. Pointing to the great social changes of our time, Sanders sees love as the killer way to add value to our business and personal lives.
Happily for his readers, Sanders sees "business love" in clear, behaviorial terms. No fuzzy-wuzzy, feel-good exhortations here. Sanders gets right down to business: Bizlove, he says, is "the act of intelligently and sensibly sharing your intangibles with your bizpartners."
And what are those intangibles? I'm glad you asked, my friend:
Our KNOWLEDGE, everything we've learned and everything we continue to learn. Sanders says we learn most from books--and he advocates reading as many as possible. (Amazon must love him!) But it's not just reading. We're encouraged to mark up our books in ways that help us grab their "Big Thoughts" so we can add value to our work and that of others. To Sanders, information is meant to be shared with as many people as possible.
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By John Porcaro on November 10, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like the author, I feel that having meaningful relationships built on trust and respect are critical to business today. But I've found that widening my circle at work was difficult.
I picked this book up on a business trip, and finished it in one sitting. Immediately, I had a strategy for a new approach to building my own skills, and using those new skills to build my influence at work.
This book changed how I look at gathering knowledge, and more importantly, sharing it. Since purchasing the book several months ago, I've bought 15 copies of the book and given it to family, friends, and co-workers. And for a few of them, it's had the same impact.
Shortly stated, Sanders explains a strategy of becoming a "lovecat" thorough studying books like you're still in college, finding ways to share what you know with co-workers and partners, and expanding your networks by being open and sharing your contacts with those that could benefit.
While the title attracted me to the book, it doesn't do it justice. It's not a touchy-feely book, extoling the virtues of open communication or emotional attachment. Instead, it gives a solid strategy for "how" to get started, and goes from there.
Highly recommended. If you read one business book on how to build your personal networks, this is the one!
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Michael Erisman on April 26, 2005
Format: Paperback
A great book full of practical wisdom, and a strange title. So, what is a "killer app" anyway? According to Tim, it is defined as "an excellent new idea that either supersedes an existing idea or establishes a new category in its field". (Page 11). This is an important definition, because taken in the context above, Tim is saying that "love" applied in a business setting can essentially transform your work, your success, and most importantly you, and in that way supersedes the current ego-centric world of business.

Tim uses countless examples to show that tomorrow's value in the business world will be about "fuzzy intangibles" that add value to your customers and company. In fact, when reading this book there are so many examples about "how to" do things that will increase your success, it would be easy to think it's just another self help book. For example, he discusses the importance of Knowledge, Network, and Compassion in our relationships, as his main themes. As good these ideas are, they miss the point if taken as self help guidelines.

The main point here is that love is not selfish. The thread he weaves throughout the book is a message about caring for others, not with the expectation of getting something in return, but because it is the right thing to do and will make a difference to them. It is the "pay it forward" philosophy in action. Now, there is no doubt that often the impact comes back in a positive way through a network contact or returned favor, and he cites many examples of how his own success was based on these. But even when there is nothing in it for you, care for others anyway. When others are in no position to do anything for you, care for them and give to them anyway.

That is how radical this book is.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Gordon Gregory on December 28, 2002
Format: Hardcover
In "Love is the Killer App" Tim Sanders, high tech new economist, marketer, and author, evangelizes his big thought (term from the book for a one sentence summary; see also "elevator speech") that nice guys and gals can finish first if they effectively and enthusiastically use their intangibles: Knowledge, Network, and Compassion. His key points include: studying books vs. just reading them, and making notes so that a book's insights are readily available later (Notes on the front inside cover; Quotes on the back). Sanders' also explains that every person we meet is a potential node in our network, and successful folks seek beneficial connections for the people within their network just for the sake of helping as opposed to personal gain. Sanders also explains that compassion can and should be extended to business relationships. Encouraging others, listening and demonstrating you care for those you come in contact with is an end in itself, and you will soon find the encouragement and caring coming back to you.
I rated this book 4 instead of 5 stars because being super-nice in a business context taken to an extreme can get you creamed. What could possibly be nicer than giving your goods and services away? Sound ridiculous? It does, but just check out the feedback from your customer contact folks when you announce a necessary price increase. Sander's addresses the doormat syndrome by saying that Lovecats (the title Sander's confers on those who maximize their intangibles) are not Dumbcats. He encourages us to be nice and smart, but I found his explanation in this area vague. Where does nice stop and smart start? I suppose somewhere near the dividing line between cost and profit. I wish the author had given us a little more here.
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