17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Lencioni Hits the Nail on The Head,
This review is from: Getting Naked: A Business Fable About Shedding The Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty (Hardcover)
I've read all of Patrick Lencioni's books and have generally enjoyed them. I also heard him speak once at a conference on team dysfunction and found his style and approach to be both engaging and entertaining. As such, I didn't hesitate to pick up this book when I saw it--despite its unconventional title.
Lencioni uses his usual style of writing: putting a concept into the form of a fable. Even though this approach is a bit different that other business titles I'm used to reading, it's unique and Lencioni is able to execute it well. The writing style and voice hit close to home for those that lead or manage others. While sometimes the fable approach can get a bit lengthy, I do find that it allows the author to do his job well. Most specifically, it enables him to draw important contrasts between the conventional (how most people do things) and his approach (a prescribed way of doing things).
The fable contrasts two different consulting firms that are in the process of merging. One firm is the large, international firm located in the city skyline. The other is a small boutique firm located in a re-purposed building where people dress casually and don't work late. It's a cliche disparity that we can all get our minds around. While we expect the big firm to come in and straighten up the little one, Lencioni teaches us some very important things along the way. Perception is not always reality as we learn that the larger firm might learn a thing or two from the smaller one.
Lencioni reminds us that bigger is not always better and that acquiring and retaining clients is not a matter of Power Point slides and glossy marketing materials as much is it is about relationships and authenticity. Getting Naked turns its focus to client relationships and service in a way that they should be teaching today's executives. The word "relationship" is certainly overdone in today's sales lexicon, but Lencioni gives it a new definition--the right definition. We learn, through the experiences of the characters, that client relationships are about a whole lot more than remembering each other's birthdays and talking sports. Client relationships are about truly understanding challenges, working through alternatives as partners, and even sacrificing the short term for the long run at times.
I would highly recommend this book if you work in or manage a professional services firm or are interested in overall career development. I believe that if we had more people in the executive world who looked at relationships in this way, more business engagements would have more success. Well done, Mr. Lencioni.