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I am the Problem: 9 obstacles that suck away business success - and how every leader can overcome them Paperback – December 19, 2014
About the Author
Soozey Johnstone is one of Australia’s most experienced and respected executive advisors who shapes the medium-sized businesses of today into the compassionate corporations of tomorrow. Soozey also works with large businesses, helping them re-connect with what made them successful in the first place. She guides a small hand-picked team of colleagues to create little corporate miracles, every day. Soozey offers fixes that stay fixed. And that’s what this book offers, too. So don’t procrastinate. Buy it.
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What would have helped my coaching friend was for each of his clients to have read Soozey Johnstone's new book "I am the Problem" at the start of their coaching program. Had they confronted the possibility of being the biggest problem of all, owning their own particular "chasms' and working on their practical actions to change matters, things might have been entirely different.
Soozey's book is brave and straight to the point. The reader gets a bit of essential shock treatment, in the title on the front cover in bold capital letters "I AM THE PROBLEM". Having taken this message on board, the reader is then provided with lots of tips, techniques, case studies and examples to stop being the problem and become the solution(s). "I am the Problem" is written in an easily-absorbed, direct writing style without unnecessary jargon or complexity. The book is immensely practical with tried-and-tested actions for business owners, entrepreneurs and corporate managers to do immediately on the job.
Other books and articles on business practice that I’ve sketchily read over the years usually have a get-rich-quick theme, or otherwise they’re thick with technical methodology, philosophy and heroic leadership. This book is more casual. It wants to talk with you. Once you’re into the rhythm of Soozey Johnstone’s personal writing style and structure, a pleasant pathway appears with insights on how to appraise and improve your organization and ways of working.
Soozey encourages a mindful approach to strategy, decision making, management hierarchy and also lifestyle. Surely this is something we all want, but often don’t seem to know how to achieve with clarity. I particularly like sections that discuss the importance of developing a ‘shared vision’, and why strategy needs to be meaningful for the ‘individual’. These areas may seem obvious, but it’s useful to be reminded of them. Because of its structure, the book can be read in small bites. I like that too.
The last chapter quotes the term ‘Do something. Or do nothing.’ It’s the how to ‘Do something’ effectively and with a humanistic approach that may best summarise what this book offers.
Note to self: Must work on my charisma (Soozey explains why this is a good thing!)
Profits come from strategy and strategy comes from clear thinking and culture. Yes, it's THAT simple. This is the How To book you've been searching for, and you can read it in a couple of days.
Fix the dysfunctional manager or management team in your life. Buy this book. You will be so glad you did.
The book focuses on 9 obstacles that suck away organisational success -- and how every leader can overcome them. The approach is pragmatic and actionable, the references to data and other business & psychology books numerous, and her chapter-ending 'chasm closer' questions are challenging, enlightening -- if often somewhat uncomfortable - and leave you very much with the mindset of how to move forward constructively and positively.