- Hardcover: 176 pages
- Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (November 16, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0470769505
- ISBN-13: 978-0470769508
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.7 x 7.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 21 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #471,177 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Shibumi Strategy: A Powerful Way to Create Meaningful Change Hardcover – November 16, 2010
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With this short, simple fable, Matthew May manages to illuminate anall-too-common career crisis with Zen insights and concepts thatnot only provoke thought but also give readers powerful strategiesto tackle change, challenge, and opportunity.”
—Gretchen Rubin, author, The Happiness Project
"Matt May has written a little book full of big ideas. Drawing from ancient Zen practice and applying those principles tomodern life, he shows how you can turn the obstacles in your pathinto opportunities to transform your career, perhaps even yourlife."
—Daniel H. Pink, author, Drive and A Whole NewMind
“Matt's done it again: shown us how to break out ofconstraints and get the job done. He's also proven how Japanesepractices and Zen principles that are difficult to translate canexplain everything.”
—Guy Kawasaki, co-founder, Alltop.com and author,Reality Check
"The holy grail for any leader is to reach a state of clarityand peak performance. Through the power of story, The ShibumiStrategy shows us how, and sheds an invaluable light on therole (and potential) of the everyday struggles we face."
—Scott Belsky, founder & CEO, Behance and author,Making Ideas Happen
"What an exquisite story! Matt May deftly weaves ancient wisdomwith modern realities, revealing how each of us can embrace thestruggle inherent in any meaningful breakthrough—and use itto transform our own potential in work and life."
—Sally Hogshead, author, Fascinate: Your 7 Triggers toPersuasion and Captivation
“This is a treasure of a book, and just the kind ofuplifting medicine that’s needed right now. It’s aboutsomething that in the west we don’t even have a name for, andyet it holds the key to finding our way in challenging times. Whenyou know how to look at the events of your life, everything isthere to show you what you can’t see on your own, and offeryou opportunities that you normally walk right by. No matter yourlife circumstances, this is the kind of book that can (and almostcertainly will) change your life.”
— Sarah Susanka, author, The Not So Big Life andThe Not So Big House series
“The Shibumi Strategy is a simple but affectingtale—a must-read for anyone looking to make sense ofbreakthrough change at work and in life.”
— Ori Brafman, coauthor, Click: The Magic of InstantConnections
“The Shibumi Strategy tells a touching story with auniversally resonant message you’ll want to keep close toyour heart and share with others.”
— Maddy Dychtwald, author, Influence: HowWomen’sSoaring Economic Power Will Transform Our World for theBetter
“This exceptional book is a game-changer. Read it. Applyit (fast). And step into your next level.”
— Robin Sharma, author, The Leader Who Had No Titleand The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari
From the Inside Flap
"What if we are constantly being sent signals and offered opportunities, but because we are so involved in our mad rush to survive the day that we simply don't receive them? What if we're stuck, asleep at the wheel, and we just don't know it, because our conventional ways of thinking, rigidly structured routines, and solidly set minds block us from discovering what the universe is calling us to do?"
From the introduction
The Shibumi Strategy is a little book about a big breakthrough. It tells the story of Andy Harmon, a hardworking family man who finds himself in crisis when his company closes. Through his struggle, and guidance from unlikely sources, he learns subtle lessons in Zen principles, coming to understand that it is often the unexpected setbacks that harbor the power to transform. When approached as an opportunity, these unforeseen trials can often result in a life-changing breakthrough. For Andy, it comes in the form of shibumi?a Zen concept without direct translation in English but connoting effortless effectiveness, elegant simplicity, and the height of personal excellence.
Engaging and enlightening, The Shibumi Strategy provides a pathway for a five-phase cycle, encompassing lessons on commitment, preparation, struggle, breakthrough, and transformation. Also included are short insights, practical takeaways, and exercises for incorporating this philosophy in everyday life.
Designed to strike a universal chord, Andy's journey toward shibumi enables individuals to adopt their own interpretations of the concept and create meaningful changes in their lives. For those navigating difficult transitions, struggling to overcome internal setbacks, seeking to regain balance, or simply taking new directions, The Shibumi Strategy offers a fresh perspective on the challenges we all face at some point in work and life.
Top customer reviews
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The story is about Andy who is a sales manager in a company in a small city in the US. His company decides to move the work to another location and hence everyone who worked there is laid off. The city is a small city however and there aren't much jobs available. Andy needs to decide whether to stay and find a new job or move back to the city. He decides to stay and applies to a job for a car dealer (as a car salesman). He has never worked as a car salesman before and will need to prove himself in this new job. He is out of balance, will Andy find his balance again? (I won't share the end of the story).
The Shibumi strategy is a well written and engaging small novel. It is only about 140 pages, so it is a quick read (and a worthy read). I enjoyed reading it a lot and would recommend it, especially when you like the business novel genre. I didn't find it perfect and didn't like it as much as e.g. The Lean Manger (from Balle and Balle). There was also at times a bit too much Japanese terms being used with little description or explanation of its in-depth meaning. Still, worth reading! 4 stars.
Stanford Professor and author of Good Boss, Bad Boss
He has a few hours to find a solution in a small town with virtually no job openings except, perhaps, at the town's only car dealership. After enjoying a corporate position in a customer service call center, Andy decides to try his luck as a salesman at Mainstreet Motors, something for which he doesn't initially have the right profile. The result is that he must basically reinvent himself - and he does. Through a Zen self-discovery process, and a fair amount of trial and error, he finds out how to be something else than the stereotypical car salesman, and meets with success by building a long-term referral business.
All's well that ends well. Albeit a little bit schmaltzy at times, this book is an interesting perspective on leadership. If you are tired of exhortative talks "(yes, think-hard-you-can do-it") and of in-your-face leaders who gab about business and their grand exploits just as passionately as car salesmen go on and on about their Toyotathon sales events, read this book. It is focused on internalizing leadership, rebuilding your own balance to look at your environment with fresh eyes, and transforming what's around you for the better. Leadership is about pulling, not about pushing, and "shibumi" is about effortless effectiveness. Incidentally, the author also refers to the Italian "sprezzatura," with the new meaning that Baldassare Castiglione (1478-1529) gave to the word in the The Book of the Courtier: a sort of nonchalance, "so as to conceal all art and make whatever one does or says seem effortless, and almost unpremeditated."
It is a short fable (I read it in 1hr... I couldn't separate from it) but very elegantly presented and with strong messages and call to action for anyone.
It describes some common oriental practices in an understandable way for the western reader, so they can be used right away to change some non-value adding activities in our own lives.
What is genchi genbutsu? What is hansei? What is kaizen? What is Daruma Doll? What is Shibumi?
You'll find the answers to these and lot of other concepts inside.
I already knew most of these terms because of my lean thinking background in business, but still learned a lot from the book.
Go there and take it immediately!
Most recent customer reviews
Nice bite size length book.
Excellent if you are on the way too this way of thinking.