Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Weekly Book Challenge #2 - Love is the Killer App, by Tim Sanders

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This is a part of a weekly series of reviews I will post for some of the books I'll read this year. I am accepting suggestions for future books to be read - please send your suggestions to ricardo@iamprins.com.

This review was previously posted on Linkedin, on Jan 25th, 2020.

“Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own.”
― Robert A. Heinlein, Stranger in a Strange Land


First, a disclaimer. This book is about love. However, it is not what you might be thinking. Have you ever heard someone saying "it is better to be trusted than to be loved" or any variation of similar meaning? I am quite sure you've met someone who seems to believe that being a leader/manager means to be fierce, strong, aggressive, ruthless, et cetera...

The subtitle of this book is quite similar to the title of a classic book by Dale Carnegie: How to Win Business and Influence Friends - but it follows an entirely different approach. In my opinion, this book is more about how to be a good leader than anything else. The challenge of building leadership skills is very old, and it has been pursued by many in many different ways...

Tim Sanders' life experience rests on what he calls following "the lovecat way: offer your wisdom freely, give away your address book to everyone who wants it and always be human". In other words, the lovecat way rests on top of three pillars: knowledge, networking and compassion/love.

According to Sanders, acquiring knowledge is crucial: read a lot, study what you read and apply it to not only your own life's situations, but be ready to share knowledge in accordance to what people around you need. The amount of knowledge you have will make people acknowledge you as a rich source of information - and you give it for free, always. This is the key.

This brings us to the second point: networking. The well known Metcalfe's Law states that the value of a network is proportional to the square of the number of nodes; so, as a network grows, the value of being connected to it grows exponentially. However, what this book says about personal networking is a little different from Metcalfe's Law: the cost of networking per user, in this case, is zero. Actually, networking only adds to you.

Sanders states that you should be ready to make new connections and to connect people you know, according to the needs and "matches" you identify - and, just like you do with knowledge, you do that for free. Yes, no strings attached. Do not expect return or profit from connecting people, This is also a key.

The third pillar of being a lovecat, compassion (or, as I read it, love) allows you to better connect and interact with those around you. No more Mr. Mean Guy: you should feel, express and care for people. And don't "fake it till you make it" - you have to sincerely do it. This may look obvious to some, but it goes against many beliefs and books and examples around...

Anyway, this is it. This has been one of my best readings in the last few years, so I strongly suggest you to read it as well - ├ža va sans dire :)
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About Ricardo Prins
Ricardo Prins is a Software Engineer who thinks that technology is not the answer to all our problems.

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