I read a lot of business books. Not as many as my friend, Drew McLellan (who seems to be a reading machine), but quite a lot. I read them because they give me thinking time away from the computer – and because they force me to think in a sustained way, about a topic for an extended period. In this way, books remain – for me at least – an important way of continuously learning.
I once heard that the average American reads a book a year. Amazingly, Australia seems to care so little about books we don’t do studies of this kind (so I have no comparable figures)! I try to read a book a month (sometimes more). In five years time, that other person will have read five books. I’ll have read 60. That makes a huge difference.
Despite the books that I read, and despite the fact that they are written by brilliant people, most business books fail to capture me. I’m always looking for that little something extra in the writing. I’m looking for a little enchantment. The enterpreneur’s entrepreneur, Guy Kawasaki, understands this – and in his new book, The Art of Enchantment: How to Woo, Influence and Persuade, he had me from the first line - a quote from economist John Maynard Keynes:
The difficulty lies, not in the new ideas, but in escaping from the old ones, which ramify, for those brought up as most of us have been, into every corner of our minds.
This is a business book that not only instructs – it does what it says on the label – it enchants. The book constantly challenges us by taking a turn when the road ahead seems straight. I often think of this as a way to “surprise and delight” people – but enchantment goes deeper. Where '”surprise and delight” hovers on the surface – as the effect – enchantment is that fundamental transformation that takes place in a person. It changes our hearts first and then our minds.
But how does this happen?
Guy takes observations of the business landscape, overlays them with analysis and then provides a step-by-step explanation of how enchantment can be used in each of these business scenarios. He explains how to enchant your employees, your boss – or anyone you come in contact with. The book shows the steps you can take to look deeply and act deeply – to create change and make it last. After all, you can’t make someone do something – they have to want to do it. The key to this, of course, is Enchantment. Use it wisely.