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Swim with the Sharks Without Being Eaten Alive: Outsell, Outmanage, Outmotivate, and Outnegotiate Your Competition (Collins Business Essentials) Paperback – January 18, 2005

4.5 out of 5 stars 131 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

“. . .extraordinary intelligence and profound wisdom.” (Governor Mario Cuomo)

“. . .I wouldn’t hesitate a minute in taking his advice.” (Charles R. Schwab)

“. . . easy reader ride to success in the business world” (Ted Koppel)

“His own story shows that his tips on salesmanship can work.” (Newsweek)

“It’s beautifully written, witty, riveting, and the best book about achieving your goals since Dale Carnegie wrote his masterpiece.” (Warren Bennis)

“It’s one of the best self-help books I’ve ever read.” (Larry King)

“A must for everyone and anyone entering the business world.” (Donald Trump)

“Super-Salesman’s Secrets.” (Wall Street Journal)

“Swim With The Sharks is an extraordinary treasure chest of information.” (Ken Blanchard)

“Harvey Mackay is a master of brief, biting, and brilliant business wit and wisdom.” (Tom Peters)

“It’s one of the best self-help books I have ever read.” (Larry King)

“His book gives to-the-point parables about making your business and personal life a success.” (USA Today)

“Harvey Mackay may be the most talented man I have met.” (Lou Holtz)

From the Inside Flap

This comprehensive course on salesmanship, negotiation and management teaches you how to outsell, outmanage, outmotivate and outnegotiate your competition. Swim With The Sharks has won praise from a remarkable and diverse following, including Governor Mario Cuomo of New York, Gloria Steinem and Ted Koppel.

Harvey Mackay, the man who built a multi-million dollar international envelope manufacturing company, new shares his winning techniques for professional and personal success. He offers an agenda for achievement through a series of "lessons" featuring the Mackay 66 -- an in-depth customer profile designed to give you the edge -- and invaluable "quickies" on business and life -- " Make Your Decisions with Your Heart, and What You'll End Up with Is Heart Disease;" "How to Handle the Tough Prospect;" among many others.

In the bestselling tradition of Tom Peters, Donald Trump and Mark McCormack, here is sound advice for anyone who wants to be a winner in any field. Swim With The Sharks is the new "success" bible by the man Fortune magazine called "Mr. Make-Things-Happen." --This text refers to the Audible Audio Edition edition.
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Product Details

  • Series: Collins Business Essentials
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: HarperBusiness; Reprint edition (November 8, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006074281X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060742812
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (131 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #41,340 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Anyone interested in making sales (Any type of sales) their career, would benefit from reading this book. Much of the text borders on the obvious, however it's strange how often we neglect the obvious. I first read this book (9) years ago. I continue to pick it up to this date as a refresher. Harvey Mackey does an excellent job of making this a "I can't put it down book" Non-avid readers will breese through the pages. Must read!
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Format: Paperback
Some worthy information about particular business issues are raised and noted, and for the most part this is an off-the-cuff soliloquy talk about how Harvey views business, and the world. There is nothing more amusing than some wealthy person in business who thinks they have the answers and the remedies for the rest of us. Written in the late 1980s, some of the attitudes presented towards hiring potential employees will become evident. All in all, this is an easy and quick-read.
I read "Swim With The Sharks" front-to-back, however each chapter concerns a different topic, so one does not have to read this book straight through from page 1 to the end.
One thing I found a bit quirky were the consistent references to allegedly "successful" collegiate and professional sports coaches. I don't feel it's an appropriate analogy to commonly equate coaches with the situations outside of the sports world. The sports culture is often not applicable to making a business deal, dealing with corporate culture, and/or avoiding mistakes with people socially. The sports in itself is a microcosm of society, but a separate world within its own. Time and time again I would chuckle to myself as I would read a quote made by Vince Lambardi, some NBA coach, or read a personal anecdote from the now disgraced coach Lou Holtz. Having to read Yogi Berra's lobotomy-like quotes and philosophy was quite dull, and not very informative.
Some helpful and practical information is the "66 question customer profile," as well as the "12P Competitor profile." I liked his noting (book written 1988) of how people who usually don't have money go out and buy a brand new "prestigious" car that depreciates.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a great book, whether you're an MBA or just someone trying to get an advantage in everyday life. Harvey Mackay's lessons are to be treasured--he was way ahead of the curve in the mid-1980s. It may be hard to appreciate this today because some of the advice isn't fresh anymore: we all have phones in our cars and we all use answering machines to screen calls and we all take notes on the run on little portable recorders. --Well, many of us do, at any rate. Hardly revolutionary advice anymore, but that's only because we listened to Harvey in the first place.
Some of the chapters contain gold that will always be valuable, however. One of my favorites involves the phrase "Dusseldorf passes." I won't spoil it for the unread, but I will say the lesson from that chapter is one everyone should take with them through life. It will save you a lot of money and regret.
And the Mackay hiring process. So thorough it seems to border on the obsurd, but the more I work at various companies the more I wish all businesses were as picky about acquiring workers. Harvey shows you that even "lowly" positions such as the receptionist or secretary are among your company's most critical, for 99% of your customers will get their first impression of your company--and in some cases the *only* impression of your company--through this crucial individual. Yet many companies get some 18-year-old part-timer to answer the phones and file valuable company documents--*and they're proud of this cost-cutting maneuver!* They consider this smart management. Harvey explains why this is actually a very dumb move.
He also shows you how to get "impossible" tickets to the big game and how to get a reservation at virtually any hotel, even ones that are "completely booked.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This wasn't a great book and it wasn't a bad book. It was readable to the sense that it didn't put me to sleep but it also wasn't exciting to the point that I didn't want to put it down. It was interesting but not a book where you will take away a lot of new ideas if you have been around for a long time in the business world.

The book is broken up into a bunch of mini-chapters what the author calls Lessons and Quickies. Each lesson gives a little bit of advice or wisdom. The lesson can be one page, one line on a page or a few pages. I think that maybe someone starting out in sales might find some of the earlier chapters useful. In these early chapters there is focus on the customer and how to know your customer. After the sales chapters the book kind of goes off into a bunch of different topics.

Again, its an ok read. Recommended for a beginner in business not recommended for an experienced executive.
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Format: Paperback
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This book, for me, was a guide in how to conduct myself in this difficult environment in an ethical manner, yet still succeed. I'll never forget reading the maxim, "Don't get mad, DON'T get even". After observing the behavior of those around me, many from the nation's top B schools, I was stunned to read this. They don't teach these types of ethics in MBA school. Anyway, I was dumbfounded when I read this simple rule, but Mackay deftly explains how this will not only help you rationalize your situation, but actually excel in this environment.
This is just one example. The book lays out Mackay's extremely wise philosophy. It is important to read this book and learn how to work with the sharks, reduce your anxiety, create win-win situations, and not be eaten.
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