Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Fred factor : how passion in your work and life can turn the ordinary into the extraordinary

by Mark Sanborn,
Doubleday, 2004

Sanborn's encounter with the original Fred - an unusual postman who went out of his way to deliver exceptional service to the customers on his route - provides the basis for this book, which describes (as the subtitle indicates) "how passion in your work and life can turn the ordinary into the extraordinary." And let's face it - who doesn't want to be considered a phenomenal human being?

After outlining the four "Fred principles" and providing other examples of real-life "Freds," Sanborn gives a blueprint, including three simple difference-making strategies, for becoming a Fred yourself. Success is built on relationships, so he offers seven Bs of relationship building that are easy for anyone to implement. A 10-point crash course in creating value for others, and boom, you're well on your way to transforming your life and your world.

If you're an employer or boss, you'll want to read the section on developing Freds in your company; otherwise, you can skip to the end of that part - "Go Spread Fred" - and conclude with the last section of the book, in which the original Fred summarizes what motivates him to do what he does. Those same points become our motivation for emulating his example.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who is dissatisfied with his quality of life and/or employment. As usual, though, your results will depend on more than reading - they will depend on the actions you take thereafter.

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