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Work On Purpose Paperback – April 19, 2011

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Echoing Green; First edition (April 19, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615419461
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615419466
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 6.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #507,576 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


By stressing both the element of head and heart that is required of social entrepreneurs, Galinsky invites us to imagine a bolder form of traditional social work, in which the commitment of a Mother Teresa is married to the organizational spirit of a Sam Walton. In this era when neither government nor private business—and least of all Wall Street—seem fully capable of addressing the need for economic development and social change, the stories of Andrew, Cheryl, Mardie, Mark and Socheata offer resounding evidence that a single person can indeed make a difference.” Roger Lowenstein, financial writer and author of The End of Wall Street

Work on Purpose fills the gap between the great ambitions of social entrepreneurs and the day to day execution that powers the changes they hope to bring about. The book profiles exciting young people as they go through the process of bringing new world-changing projects to life. Its mandatory reading for those who want to translate idealism into action. Alexander Haislip, Editor of Journal of Impact Investing On my flight back to Chicago I read the book and found it well constructed, easy to read, very interesting and inspiring. Although it was written for college students, I found myself wondering about my next career. I have ordered 10 copies for nieces and nephews. -Jane Gately

“To be a social entrepreneur is a journey of the heart. This book reveals the inner story.” -Michael Margolis

Media Mentions Givology features Lara Galinsky as a guest speaker in a video on the subject of working on purpose. June 8, 2011

BNET, the CBS Interactive Business Network, features Lara Galinsky as a guest contributor highlighting Work on Purpose. June 7, 2011

wSocial Velocity writes about Work on Purpose: Indeed, there is increasing interest and energy among the millennial generation to create a career around solving social problems. This book encourages that trend and helps people make it a reality. May 25, 2011

Bowdoin Daily Sun writes that Work on Purpose is “merging passion and profession.” May 24, 2011

GOOD tells readers that Work on Purpose can help them determine “what kind of work you would do if you could pick any job on earth.” May 23, 2011

Common Good Careers writes that Work on Purpose “suggests a rather spiritual approach to career planning.” May 23, 2011

See Change Magazine writes: “Work on Purpose will help you discover who you are and where you are meant to be. For anyone who is looking to bring purpose into, and get fulfillment from their work, this is a must-read.” May 19, 2011 Have Fun Do Good writes: “When I graduated from college, I was a mess. Id gained all kinds of knowledge and ideals, but had no idea how to use them in the real world. I knew I wanted to make a difference, but didnt how. I wish Id had a book like Work on Purpose by Echoing Greens Senior Vice President, Lara Galinsky, with Kelly Nuxoll.” May 17, 2011

Care2 writes: “Over the years, Galinsky has seen many a young person with a bold idea for changing the world walk through her door. After all, her organization has awarded more than 500 social entrepreneurs working in over 40 countries with $30 million in start up funding. Along the way shes developed some pretty strong and savvy ideas about how to get from A-Z.” May 17, 2011 Galleycat names Work on Purpose one of their “hand-picked titles.” May 6, 2011

WesLive reports that Work on Purpose asks “thought-provoking questions to inspire readers to apply the lessons in the book to their own lives.” May 3, 2011 writes: “If you’re looking to find something more than “just a job,” Work on Purpose might just provide the answers you’re looking for…. Through the stories of these role models and their formula for finding your own best fit, the authors hope to help you navigate the difficult journey of choosing a career that truly fulfills you.” April 29, 2011 BNET, the CBS Interactive Business Network, writes: “Galinsky’s new book, Work on Purpose, argues that passion is a necessary component for a career that allows your talents to shine.” April 26, 2011

The Podcast calls Work on Purpose an “inspiring new career guide for social impact work.” April 25, 2011 writes: “…you can really feel the impact of that individual’s journey and see the transformation…” April 20, 2011 writes: “The secret to success recommended by authors Lara Galinsky and Kelly Nuxoll is a simple formula: Look into your heart to clarify your passion and interests, chart a plan with your head and then hustle to make it happen. Or to keep it simple: heart, head, hustle.” April 20, 2011 writes: “How can I converge my values with how I spend my time? That is the bottom line of the book it’s not about how to start something new. It is about how to contribute.” April 20, 2011

GOOD writes: “Our friends at the nonprofit Echoing Green have been a behind-the-scenes force for social change for more than twenty years now…So, the Senior Vice President of Echoing Green, Lara Galinsky is offering to help one GOOD reader find their path with a one-hour intensive career coaching session.” April 21, 2011 writes about Work on Purpose: “Good stories, good jobs.”April 11, 2011

About the Author

Lara Galinsky is Senior Vice President of Echoing Green, the perfect laboratory in which to study meaningful work. With the mission to unleash the next generation of talent to solve the world s biggest problems, Echoing Green offers seed funding fellowships to the world s most promising social entrepreneurs. Over the last two decades, Echoing Green has invested $30 million in funding to 500 visionaries from around the world. Galinsky serves as board chair of StartingBloc and is a board member for the Fast Forward Fund.

Before joining Echoing Green, Galinsky served as Do Something s national program director, working with 20,000 educators and 4 million young people to get involved in service learning and community service projects. There, she created the BRICK Award, now called the Do Something Award, to identify and financially support these young leaders. She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Wesleyan University and Coro Leadership New York. Galinsky is also the co-author of Be Bold: Create a Career with Impact (2007).

Kelly Nuxoll is a writer living in Washington, DC. Nuxoll writes about politics, American culture, and books for the Huffington Post, the Christian Science Monitor, and the Voice of America, among other media outlets. She consults for education and international development nonprofits. Nuxoll has a BA in African Studies from Yale and a MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Columbia University.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Plus, it is a short, easy, yet captivating read!
Work on Purpose is a short but very inspiring read that showed glowing examples of the endless possibility for positive change in today's world.
In considering the broader life questions of purpose, it makes all the sense in the world to consider career path and work impact the same way.
CB Cooke

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Brian Isaacs on September 9, 2011
Format: Paperback
This books serves as an answer to the most difficult question of most people's lives: What do I want to do? What kind of an impact do I want to have? What could I be passionate about doing for the rest of my life?

Work on Purpose teaches by example, illustrating how different leaders from different walks of life have taken the plunge, leaving their comfort zones to pursue their passions, whether that be pioneering the search for curing cancer, or reviving education in the heart of Harlem. The idea is to make your work your calling, to work because you are passionate, not because you are being paid.

The one drawback of the book is that it emphasizes non-profit and charity work as the way forward in working with passion. While this certainly makes sense for many people, many others are able to find a tremendous amount of fulfillment and purpose in the private sector. Of course, in that space, there is a natural compensation, cash. So while the book overlooks the ability of the private sector to provide purposeful employment, it instead focuses on an area where the rewards are more abstract, where the path is less certain. In doing so, it gives a voice to those that want to look outside the for-profit sector for their passion.

If you are looking for meaning in work and life, then this book is for you. If you are looking to get out of a job that you can't get excited about, then this book is for you. And if you love the work that you do everyday, then this book is an opportunity to read about others like yourself who have found fulfillment, by listening to their hearts, using their heads, and unleashing the hustle that motivates to create change every day.
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Format: Paperback
Length: 4:38 Mins
To be a social entrepreneur is a journey of the heart. This book reveals the inner story.

- Michael Margolis, Dean of Story University, and founder of Get Storied
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Format: Paperback
Have you ever been on a road trip, clicking along according to plan and suddenly your perfectly laid out agenda gets jolted out of line by one of those unexpected annoying detours? First, you gripe and moan and check your watch thinking the worst has happened, until you pause for just a moment to look around finding yourself in the midst of some of the most beautiful scenery you've ever witnessed. Wow. It can immediately change your perspective and open the door to an entirely new dimension of possibilities. If not for the detour, your focus in simply getting from A to B would have precluded the breathless wonders of the journey.
Work on Purpose is a masterfully written rousing call to consider the notion that it is along those detour routes of life our true passions are often discovered. Lara Galinsky knocks it out of the park with a line up of extraordinary visionaries who followed their hearts, fully engaged their heads, and found their hustle. Through the stirring stories of the five change makers profiled in the book, we follow the twists and turns of their own personal detours enroute to their destinies. These amazingly generous every day heroes allow us to follow the paths that led them to now walking the talk in ardently aligning their core values with their life's work. They lead by example and are beacons to the rest of us that we all have the potential to realize our dreams, live our passions, and to work on purpose. This book is a guide for anyone who seeks a meaningful life. It is also a testament to Echoing Green's mission. How do I know? Because I'm an Echoing Green fellow alumna who unleashed my own passion for social justice through their leadership, support, and ongoing community network. I highly recommend Work on Purpose, the book. I also strongly urge you to embrace the detour, unearth your heart's desire and use Lara's exceptional gift to us all as a resource manual to work on purpose every day for the rest of your life.
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Format: Paperback
I recently graduated from college, and am in the process of trying to determine what visions I want to guide my life and my work. This book was very helpful, because it allowed me to read the stories of people who are deeply motivated by visions of service and care deeply about the work they do. Their stories also make it clear that the process of finding real meaning and satisfaction in one's work is not always an easy or simple process. The book makes it clear that such a journey calls for introspection, vision, persistence, and patience. It is good to be reminded of this.

"Work on Purpose" introduces the formula of "head+heart=hustle," which I understood to mean that when sincere passion (heart) finds right relationship with skills and practicality (head), the work that results has the capacity to move mountains.

May we all find ways to bring our heads and our hearts into harmony so that we may be of ultimate service to the world!
May this book find wide readership and inspire many like it inspired me! Its message is sorely needed.
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By EmGalindo on July 19, 2011
Format: Paperback
As a college student who is in the process of "finding myself," I have found this book to be THE MOST helpful read. The book tells the story of 5 of the fellows funded by the organization who published the book and follows them as they find and shape their career path. Often my generation is told that we shouldn't major in things like anthropology because we will never be able to make money doing so, but this book proves them all wrong. Whatever your skills and passions are, you can mix them in such a way that is not only successful but also life-fulfilling.

Totally recommend it!! (Plus, it is a short, easy, yet captivating read!)
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