- Hardcover: 368 pages
- Publisher: Ballantine Books (September 28, 2004)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0345471865
- ISBN-13: 978-0345471864
- Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.3 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 21 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #261,381 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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We Got Fired!: . . . And It's the Best Thing That Ever Happened to Us Hardcover – September 28, 2004
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From Publishers Weekly
Perhaps a more accurate title for this upbeat volume would be: "We Got Hired and You Can Too!" Every one of Mackays interviews with the now famously successful (Michael Bloomberg, Muhammad Ali, Billie Jean King, Jessie Ventura, Bernie Marcus, etc.) ends with the subject richer for the experience of having been firedboth literally and figuratively. Mackaya syndicated business advice columnist and author of the 1988 bestseller Swim with the Sharks without Being Eaten Aliveseems to anticipate an audience of downsized managers for this book, but his advice is useful to anyone in the throes of work-related rejection, regardless of their corporate ranking. The combination of interviews and short essays could also serve to introduce workforce newbies to the realities of business life: one essay points out that "If You are Under Thirty, the Likelihood that You Will Be Fired in the Next Twenty Years is 90 Percent." Mackay concludes each chapter with collections of quotable life slogans, such as "Your company may give you the boot, but dont boot the networks that company has opened for you." He also dishes out helpful suggestions for making the most of an exit, along with tips from Donald Trump on how not to get fired in the first place. And though Mackays glowing descriptions of his interviewees can border on pandering and his repeated references to his friendship with Larry King can grow trying, these tales of rejection and redemption form a neat package of inspiration for those in need of an encouraging word and the gentle reminder that terminations simply lead to new beginnings.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Everyone loves a comeback, and sometimes failure is the best education. That is the theme of this collection of interviews with 28 successful and famous people from all walks of life who, at one time or another, have been fired. Career and business writer Mackay shows a remarkable ability to get highly visible people to open up and reveal their dark past. He begins with a conversation with Donald "You're Fired!" Trump, who never actually lost a job per se but came back from being billions in debt for perhaps the greatest personal rebound in financial history. Bernie Marcus was fired from a job as manager of the Handy Dan Home Improvement Center, a chain of 66 stores, but he ultimately extracted sweet revenge by founding Home Depot. Mackay gets an amazing interview with Muhammad Ali, who lost his title when he chose to become a conscientious objector during the Vietnam War. It is surprising to learn the difficult beginnings of such notables as Robert Redford, Larry King, Billie Jean King, and Michael Bloomberg. David Siegfried
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Top customer reviews
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This book is unique in the very fact that it is subjective. I don't know of any other books on being fired that give such indepth examples. For that reason the book seems to be more a collection of biographies than an advice book. From that perspective I found the book to be worthwhile to read. I enjoyed learning about these people; some of whom I had heard of, and some I hadn't.
If you are seeking advice, then the author's central message can be summed up as follows: there are other opportunities out there, you just have to pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and pursue them.
In addition, they're all prominently featured in interviews in WE GOT FIRED!-the latest book from Harvey Mackay . . . he is the author of one of my favorite business books of all time, SWIM WITH THE SHARKS . . . this one is every bit as good!
Mackay shows you that you are not alone if you've been fired . . . and even if you haven't been, you will be . . . as he notes:
Your present company is likely to go out of business. And it doesn't much matter which company. In fact, it will be the exception if your company doesn't go out of business. Of the 500 companies on the prestigious Standard & Poor's list in 1957, only seventy-four were still on the list in 1998. Fast-forward to the year 2020, and do you know what will happen? According to Richard Foster and Sarah Kaplan in their book Creative Destruction, more than 375 of the S&P 500 companies will be firms we don't know today. Today's young people will ride a merry-go-round for their meal ticket. "But I work with the esteemed so-and-so," you might protest. Just remember that the so-and-so's of the last twenty years include Enron, Sinclair Oil, Montgomery Ward, Dean Witter,
and Swissair. By the year 2030, the only folks with ten years' seniority will be at CBS on the staff of 60 Minutes. When you're on that merry-go-round pony, watch out! Instead of grabbing the brass ring, you're most likely to be nailed by a brass knuckle.
But rather than leave readers with feeling depressed, Mackay has many positive thoughts--each one called a Mackay's Moral--to both leave you with a smile and make you think . . . among my favorites:
If you want to get to the top, getting it right can be a lot more important than just getting it done.
He who burns bridges better be a darn good swimmer.
If life has a knack for raining on your parade, it's not a bad idea to be in the umbrella business.
He who has the gold not only makes the rules, he can break the rules.
Unless you work in demolition, don't burn bridges.
Methinks if you're looking for an ideal holiday gift to get somebody (especially if he or she is unemployed), you won't go wrong with WE GOT FIRED! . . . also, it would be perfect for anybody you know about to enter the work force.
But this book is an excellent read for anybody who's just gotten an ugly surprise, the kind of surprise that changes your world, fills it with uncertainty, and makes you question yourself (even if the reason for your job change has nothing to do with your performance).
This book is about attitude. As other reviewers have noted, most readers probably aren't getting $10M goodbye packages. But that's not the point! The point is that successful people take on unexpected, undesired, and surprise changes with a positive attitude, a realization that there's a purpose to it all, that in the bigger scheme of things the change can and will lead to something better.
This is a fantastic book to help somebody who's job has been eliminated adopt and keep the right positive attitude moving forward. And, perhaps, it's that positive attitude which IS the "magic solution" to making lemonade out of lemons.