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The Business of Wanting More: Why Some Executives Move from Success to Fulfillment and Others Don't Hardcover – October 15, 2012

27 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0984941902 ISBN-10: 0984941908 Edition: first

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Editorial Reviews

From Book News

"Award-Winner in the Self-Help: Motivational' category of The 2012 USA Best Book Awards, sponsored by USA Book News"


"Brian’s insightful and direct style has made him a helpful guide and coach for me and members of my team. His book is classic Brian: he reveals his personal story and, in the process, gets you to think of your own. The approach to leadership and personal growth he describes in The Business of Wanting More is practical and simple, yet transformational."
Andrew M. Miller President and Chief Executive Officer, Polycom Corporation 

"The Business of Wanting More is for anyone who has worked hard and made sacrifices to achieve their career ambitions only to discover that what they were seeking left them empty, unfulfilled, and lost. In writing this deeply personal book, Brian Gast is writing for an audience—the successfully unhappy—that has been largely ignored and not talked about in business and management publishing. Interview the many commuters on the trains, planes, and busses into and out of any big city, and you’ll find that Brian’s story will resonate with them. As a former coaching client, I can attest to the profound personal and professional impact of being led by Brian through the transformative steps described in this book."
BrianWatson, Ph.D. Former Global Head, Operational Excellence and Capability Development, Credit Suisse

"Brian is an exceptional executive coach, and The Business of Wanting More brings to life the foundation and framework for all the work we’ve done together. He has a gift for breaking through the clutter of assumptions, misperceptions, and seemingly logical but incorrect belief systems that so many of us live with. The resulting clarity creates an opportunity for success and fulfillment at a new and higher plane than I ever thought possible."
Bill Hughson President, Healthcare Group, DeVry Inc.

"The message and specific direction delivered in The Business of Wanting More couldn’t be more timely or appropriate for today’s business climate. Business leaders are facing increased stresses as they work tirelessly to achieve ongoing success. I firmly believe that leaders who read and implement the tactics outlined in this book will live more satisfying lives and be more effective leaders, regardless of inevitable fluctuations in their financial achievements."
Tom Filippini Co-Founder, Exclusive Resorts, Inc.

"The Business of Wanting More begins where so many other books end because it charts the path beyond success. For this reason, it is priceless."
Mark Gerzon Author, Leading Through Conflict: How Successful Leaders Transform Differences into Opportunities

"There is a religious way of saying wise things—and there is a way of saying wise things that is more broadly effective. Brian Gast has found that way! This excellent book will speak to any person of sincerity, search, and struggle. It will speak deeply to people who might never read a theologian or a “spiritual” writer, as well as to those who will."
Fr. Richard Rohr, O.F.M. Founder, Center for Action and Contemplation

"Gast has a unique ability to offer a different perspective on critical life issues that allows you to break through deep-seated beliefs and clearly see paths to true happiness. In The Business of Wanting More, he takes very complex subject matter and presents it in a way that’s easy to understand and practical to implement. This book is for people who really want more out of life."
Randall Mays Vice Chairman, Clear Channel Communications, Inc.

"Brian Gast is probably the most grounded, humble, and authentic man I know. Brian has a gift for coaching and teaching business leaders about what’s really important. I know this firsthand, as Brian made a tremendous impact on my life when he served as a board member of a company when I was its CEO. The Business of Wanting More will not only become a bestseller, it will become a game-changer in the lives of many."
Tommy Spaulding Author, New York Times bestseller of It’s Not Just Who You Know: Transform Your Life (and Your Organization) by Turning Colleagues and Contacts into Lasting, Genuine Relationships

"Brian’s Q7 coaching process helps us understand our core and thus helps us be independent of the short-term conditions we face. I recommend The Business of Wanting More to any CEO or other senior leader with broad responsibility who wants to grow his business success, his happiness, and himself in parallel."
Georg Wiebecke Former Head, Global Chemical Manufacturing, F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd.

"The journey of high achievers can be far more complex than we think. In The Business of Wanting More, Brian Gast shines a clear bright light on the mysterious struggles that can plague our soul. His exceptional insight comes not from theory or speculation, but from his own extraordinary life experiences. Having ridden the rollercoaster to many of its highest and lowest points, Brian is uniquely qualified to share the subtle and somewhat surprising insights he has discovered along the way."
Zane Robertson President and Co-Founder, Active Minds; Young Presidents’ Organization International Forum Committee member

Success in the business world is often hard to achieve, and there are those who feel they must sacrifice everything to attain it. "The Business of Wanting More: Why Some Executives Move from Success to Fulfillment and Others Don't" is an inspirational read of being in business and life from Brian Gast, as he shares his own business journey of success and failure, and realizing what he ultimately wanted out of his career, and how he achieved it. "The Business of Wanting More" is a must for inspirational business management collections, highly recommended.
Midwest Book Review October 2012
In his book, The Business of Wanting More, Brian Gast tells of his transformation from CEO of a major telecommunications company who felt as if there was a hole in his soul to a man finally satisfied with the business and life he had created for himself. Now he coaches other CEOs who feel that their lives lack meaning to build their businesses around their unique purpose.

In a telling example, Gast recounts the story of creating a telecommunications company with five colleagues and an investment of $150,000. When the company went public, his shares alone were worth $50 million. At this point, his belief that money equaled happiness was weakening, and he worried that he had sold his employees short by allowing in a new CEO who lacked the nurturing qualities this corporate culture had always imbibed. The move proved to be not only a personal failure for finding soul sustenance, but also resulted in total financial failure.

The heart of the book is a system called Q7, short for seven steps and four quadrants. The steps are meant to summarize his program into an accessible format. The quadrants represent the 4 archetypes within us (King/Queen, Magician, Lover, and Warrior) and the reader’s task is to identify which of these is useful in a given situation. The basic program revolves around working through the steps and learning how to use each character in the reader’s quadrant.

BlueInk August 2012.

Brian Gast claims that fulfillment is our natural state. He talks about responding to our heart’s deeper yearnings and using that as the compass for our lives. If you are like me and you value these things and want solid ways to live these values, buy The Business of Wanting More, read it, and work the process.

Dr. Robert Wright Ed.D. Coauthor
Transformed! The Science of Spectacular Living
Executive Coach, Team Alignment Expert, Speaker and Author

summary written by

Karen Wright


“….realize who you are beyond the stories you tell yourself and others – and thus experience your true nature.”  (Click to Tweet!)

The Business of Wanting More, page 20

We’ve heard the tales.  Decent guy works his way up, hits a couple out of the park and gets cocky.  He takes one too many big risks with his own and other people’s money, treats a few people badly and suddenly finds himself out of a job.  In this case the author, who co-founded and raised funding for three companies, also made and lost $50 million along the way – he did everything big or he didn’t do it at all.  He ran at a frenetic, adrenalin-fueled pace with almost total disregard for others and so when he finally crashed, he was really out of gas. And, as is often the case, it’s in extraordinarily adverse circumstances that people learn the lessons necessary to put their life on the right track.

The Business of Wanting More chronicles Brian Gast’s journey from the fast, high-flying and flashy existence of an outwardly successful but inwardly miserable telecom entrepreneur to a life focused on sharing what he learned about achieving self-awareness and happiness.  His focus is on the high achiever and the reasons behind failure when and with whom it seems most illogical, and he not only speaks from his own experience but shares the stories of a number of his now clients.  Along the way Mr. Gast skims through a number of fairly major therapeutic and human development concepts, tools and principles, putting his own spin on many and consolidating everything into his own model and seven step path to redemption.

Golden Egg

Our Bubble Resists Our Growth

”…our bubble is a lens distorting what’s real.”  (Click to Tweet!)

The Business of Wanting More, page 23

Imagine yourself encased in a bubble constructed of all of your limiting beliefs, gathered from childhood onward.  The bubble ensures we present the image we want to present to the world, and equally ensures we are seeing the world only as we choose to see it.  Unfortunately, while the bubble helps us create an identity that we believe will be accepted and loved by others (particularly in the case of high achievers), it prevents us from progressing in our development of useful coping strategies and hence restricts our personal growth and maturity.  It’s only when we realize that the bubble exists that we are in a position to burst it – a necessary step toward changing patterns that limit us.  Gast offers three cues that the bubble is causing trouble – if you’re experiencing upset, if you’re absolutely certain you’re right, or if you’re feeling that something is vitally important – you’re about to be tripped up by a limiting belief.  Changing beliefs is hard, takes time and is virtually impossible to do alone, but recognition is the critical first step.

GEM #1

Create a Vision for Your Life

“…consciously or not, we’re always creating a vision for our life.”  (Click to Tweet!)

The Business of Wanting More, page 68

Creating a vision statement is not a new idea, particularly for high achievers.  What’s different here is that the author suggests crafting vision statements for each critical area of your life: business, relationship, leisure activities, family, etc.   He accurately distinguishes between a vision (a desired future state of the world, not yet true and lofty but attainable), and a goal (a specific, measurable objective), and offers personal and client examples of how crafting a vision, which might be perceived as New Age fluff by some in the book’s target group, is actually a powerful tool for creating an aligned, fulfilling life.  He also suggests aligning personal vision statements with your needs, which can make them that much more motivating.  As an example, if you have a need for acceptance, then your vision statement might be something like “I have a deep and natural belief in my inherent value as a person.”

The missed opportunity in this section of the book is that there’s no process for gauging alignment and conflict between the visions statements for the respective life areas.  So it’s entirely possible to craft several lovely distinct statements, only to find that they couldn’t possibly co-exist.   That said, the author does suggest ways to test the vision statements for authenticity and to gauge barriers to achieving the desired outcomes, so his process is stronger than most. In particular he suggests listing your “vulnerabilities” – the possible negative outcomes or changes that would have to occur should the vision become real.  As an example, related to the vision statement shown above, a “vulnerability” might be if you don’t feel the need to prove yourself you might not be motivated at all.  Once the potential pitfalls of the vision statements are clearly articulated you can formulate a plan to ensure you address the things that could possibly get in the way.

GEM #2

Build Your Court of Support

“It wasn’t until I faced challenges I couldn’t fix with my intellect, wallet or will that I realized that going it alone was limiting.”

The Business of Wanting More, page 117

By acknowledging that he used to be a “go it alone” achiever, the author creates a connection that many of the readers of this book will relate to instantly.  From that empathetic starting point he builds a strong case for creating a roster of relationships designed to support and serve across all key life areas.  Helpfully, he also provides selection criteria and interview questions for several of the roles he recommends such as professional coach, mentor and accountability partner, as well as process suggestions for working with the individuals once they’ve been appointed to the team.   The process suggestions include things like criteria around meeting frequency and modality (face to face preferred versus telephone) and questions designed to determine that the individual can differentiate between a friendship and a professionally objective role.   Perhaps not coincidentally the chapter dedicates some significant portion of its attention to the process of choosing a coach – the author’s new profession – but he does a good job of it and, in my own biased opinion, there is still room in the marketplace for better understanding of who and how to hire when choosing a coach.  In this case the author suggests inquiring about the coach’s philosophy (transactional or transformational?), the structure and duration of a typical engagement, the coach’s ability to relate to the client’s situation and whether the process includes a goal-setting component.  I don’t necessarily agree with the author’s point of view on each suggestion, but asking more questions is always good.


The Business of Wanting More attempts to cover a huge amount of ground and is a little tough to follow in places.  That said, it provides a model and process that will no doubt prove helpful to those who find themselves at that confusing point of “success without significance” that was the author’s jumping off point.

If you buy a new print edition of this book (or purchased one in the past), you can buy the Kindle edition for only $0.99 (Save 80%). Print edition purchase must be sold by Amazon. Learn more.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 184 pages
  • Publisher: Barnegat Press Company; first edition (October 15, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984941908
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984941902
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 3 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,987,851 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Brian Gast is a former hotshot MBA and CEO who rode the high-stakes roller coaster of three fast-growth telecommunications companies. Sensing that something was missing despite his net worth of over $50 million, Brian wondered, "If I'm so successful, why am I so unfulfilled and wanting more?" When he lost his fortune, business, property, stuff, and community status, he realized painfully that what makes you successful can be your undoing.

Since launching his executive coaching firm, Quadrant Corp., in 2001, Brian has become a highly sought-after executive coach and trusted advisor to business leaders of Fortune 1000 companies and midsized private companies as well as entrepreneurs. His clients have included Polycom Corporation, F. Hoffmann-La Roche, Ltd., Clear Channel Communications, Inc., Cisco Systems, Inc., DeVry Inc., The Walt Disney Company, Covidien, Inc., and Stryker Corporation.

In the process of healing himself, Brian developed his innovative and life-altering Q7 Process. This unique approach combines inner work with outer realities, breaking the bubble of limiting beliefs and distorted views, which are barriers to success and happiness. Brian's clients have experienced an increase in leadership capacity and fulfillment, leading to playing fields bigger than they'd ever imagined.

Brian also works with teams to resolve conflict and create alignment. His Top Team Alignment Process helps team members develop trust, meaningful relationships, and the accountability needed to commit to powerful visions and generate superior results.

Brian lives in Littleton, Colorado, with Tricia, his wife of 20 years, their two teenage children, a Portuguese Water Dog named Mo, and a Tibetan Terrier named Tess.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This book was OK. I'm sure it has its niche audience that just loves it. But for me, the book did not click. It did not spark a light for me. I was kind of unhappy with the title, then the table of contents, and then to see what seemed to be flagrant self-promotion on the part of the author for his consulting practice. On top of all that, the substance of the book was really just telling the reader that the process of strategic planning could be applied to a person instead of a company or a business idea.

The intended audience for this book is people who attain success, but are unhappy. And success can be defined in so many ways. Some people define success as becoming a champion athlete or a member of a championship team. Others define success as getting high grades in school, getting high standardized test scores, and getting into the most prestigous colleges and grad schools. Some define success as becoming and remaining a CEO, while others define success as having a worthy purpose in life and living that life. This last definition is hardly a definition of success, but it might create happiness for the individual in question.

One of the problems I had with this book was I don't think too highly of CEOs of companies bought or controlled by venture capital firms. In fact, I don't really think of them as CEOs at all because they didn't climb the corporate ladder to become a CEO. They just bought their seat. They are sharks basically since they are using other people's money to get what they want. And clearly they are all about making money - not making things right! Have you watched the movie "Pretty Woman" starring Richard Gere and Julia Roberts? The guy Gere plays in the movie could be the target audience for this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By John Gibbs TOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover
High achievers make their way to the top of companies and organisations, but they tend to be appreciated for what they do and not who they are, and they tend to discover that it is lonely at the top, according to Brian Gast in this book. In response to feeling vulnerable, they encase themselves in a bubble which protects them from emotional pain but at the same time distorts reality, resists growth and prevents fulfilment.

The book describes the author's painful personal journey through highly successful start-up companies to high profile crashes, making and losing two substantial fortunes before coming to terms with his own reality distortions and discovering that he had to face a number of internal issues in order to achieve a more realistic and more personally rewarding outlook on life.

According to the author, we have four core needs which have to be satisfied in order for us to experience fulfilment:

* Acceptance
* Connection
* Purpose
* Service

The majority of the book consists of a description of a seven step process for meeting these four core needs.

One of the ironies of this type of book is that those who are most in need of the author's advice are those who are the most unlikely to be aware of their need. Most leaders do not enjoy spending extended periods of time in introspection and examining their own emotions, and a busy person is unlikely to want to set aside the time required to undertake the practices recommended by the author. Nonetheless, if you have been wondering recently whether your life is all that it could be, this may be the book for you.
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Format: Hardcover
This book is based on the differences in definition between the words "success" and "fulfillment." Success is a quantitative measure of having accomplished things and is scored by the amount of money that has been accumulated, rise in the hierarchy of an organization and sometimes by the amount of money that you control. Fulfillment is defined as the more qualitative notion of how the person feels about their accomplishments.
It is well-known that many people that are successful find themselves unfulfilled. Unfortunately, this is often due to the fact that the person has made their way to the top by walking on the heads of others and the successful person then is coping with feelings of insecurity as they look around for people looking to emulate their success.
Gast puts forward what he calls the Q7 process. This process is based on the four core needs that humans have:

*) The need for acceptance.
*) The need for connection
*) The need for purpose
*) The need for service

The next step builds on what Gast calls the four quadrants of the self:

*) Feeling
*) Acting
*) Thinking
*) Being

These quadrants are based a great deal on the supposed left brain/right brain dichotomy with feeling and being placed in the right brain and acting and thinking placed in the left brain. Of course, this dichotomy has been roundly debunked by science and is only valid as an operational metaphor. Gast tends to take this differential with more seriousness than it deserves.
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