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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Add Good Style to Your Good Substance
What Got You Here Won't Get You There is an intriguing look into the nuances between those who climb to the top of the corporate ladder and those who fall just short, while everyone applauds their fall. We all have trouble seeing ourselves as others see us. Marshall Goldsmith takes dead aim at that problem by describing his unique methods for coaching candidates for top...
Published on 27 Feb. 2007 by Donald Mitchell

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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 20 habits makes for good odds
The first half of the book presents 21 bad habits, so unless your superhuman there's a good probability you're going to be doing at least one of the habits that you know you shouldn't be doing but are.

The second half content includes how to change these bad habits and includes better ways of receiving feedback, apologising, reminders on listening and thanking...
Published on 9 April 2007 by Jane Bloggs


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62 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Add Good Style to Your Good Substance, 27 Feb. 2007
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 127,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful (Hardcover)
What Got You Here Won't Get You There is an intriguing look into the nuances between those who climb to the top of the corporate ladder and those who fall just short, while everyone applauds their fall. We all have trouble seeing ourselves as others see us. Marshall Goldsmith takes dead aim at that problem by describing his unique methods for coaching candidates for top jobs into the corner offices.

While that's intriguing in and of itself, Dr. Goldsmith also reveals what he usually finds in such detail that you'll see the shadow of yourself spread out across the pavement in front of you. He does this so well that I felt truly mortified to think of the times when I fell for the many bad habits (that stall career and company progress) that he so eloquently describes here.

What are these bad habits? I've paraphrased them below:

Letting winning get in the way of relationships you need

Dropping too many ideas on those who work for you

Being judgmental rather than helpful

Slamming people in public or behind their backs

Making comments that indicate you disagree with everyone that's just been said

Showing off how smart you think you are

Saying anything in anger

Being negative

Keeping secret what others need to know

Not recognizing the contributions others make

Claiming undeserved credit

Refusing to take responsibility for bad results

Being focused on the past

Favoring those who agree with you

Not apologizing

Ignoring what others are saying or shutting them up

Being ungrateful

Shooting the messenger who brings bad news

Blaming others for everything

Insisting on sticking with you bad habits after you're aware of them

Dr. Goldsmith also tells a lot of stories about how he struggles in some of these areas; I thought the best lessons came from those examples. It's clearly a lot easier to describe what needs to be done than to do it.

For those who are or want to be top executive coaches, here's a chance to learn a lot about how a master does it. He relies on lot of 360 degree interviews which are repeated to test for progress (or regression). Dr. Goldsmith also tries to open up bosses, peers, and subordinates so that they try to support the executive who is trying to change.

I was particularly impressed by Dr. Goldsmith's compensation plan: He only gets paid if an executive improves in the eyes of those who work with the executive.

Realize that his perspective is on those who have great technical and leadership skills . . . but who have interpersonal bad habits that are killing performance. Turn some of these negatives into neutrals or less negatives, and great results may follow.

In a sense, this book is a good companion to Know-How by Ram Charan who looks at those who have great interpersonal skills as leaders but don't have the technical ability to know what to do. If you pay attention to the lessons in both books, you'll probably do better.

Ultimately, I was, however, skeptical of Dr. Goldsmith's suggestions for how you might duplicate his process on your own. I suspect you'd be better off to give this book to someone who is a coach and ask them to help you by playing the Marshall Goldsmith role.

Fans of Buddhism will enjoy reading Dr. Goldsmith's many perspectives on executive life drawn from those sources.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book found me!!, 19 Mar. 2008
By 
M. Birchall - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful (Hardcover)
I wasn't looking for it, didn't think I could use it, and thought I had reached a place where I didn't really NEED another book to point out the way to success. I've always respected Marshall Goldsmith for his consistently impressive coaching techniques, but like most people, I'm not the CEO of anything. I liked where my career had taken me, loved what I was doing, felt I had the ideal job, and stopped wondering what my next step would be. So when I saw this book, I was not expecting it to have the impact it did - I knew it was going to be good - but it was so much more than that!

Dr. Goldsmith gave me some very useful insight about things I thought I was clear on but apparently not - no glaring character flaws, but what he calls "behavioural tics" or habits we repeat many times a day in the workplace. The key, he says, is the fact that we seldom have any idea how we are coming across to other people. We tend to view our behaviour in one way, while others see it as something else.

He presents his concepts in such a conversational way that they don't seem preachy, in fact when I picked up the book and started reading, I found myself well into it before I realised that I didn't want to stop and put it down! There aren't many books about self-improvement I think anyone could say that about. The title intrigued me and the content of the book delivered more than it promised. I think it offers something for everyone, from the newest members of the workforce with their eyes on the next rung up the ladder to those who have had many decades to carve out a place for themselves and notice an inkling that there might just be one more step they'd like to take to make it even better.

Buy this book and actually read it. You will emerge from the experience with an appreciation of what you've done to get yourself here and some tools to develop a gameplan that will get you "there." I think this book is great.
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35 of 38 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars 20 habits makes for good odds, 9 April 2007
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This review is from: What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful (Hardcover)
The first half of the book presents 21 bad habits, so unless your superhuman there's a good probability you're going to be doing at least one of the habits that you know you shouldn't be doing but are.

The second half content includes how to change these bad habits and includes better ways of receiving feedback, apologising, reminders on listening and thanking and practicing feedforward.

This book is a very easy read and you are sure to benefit from something in it. However my quest for that magical book that really changes my practices must continue!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Far More Thought Provoking and Horrifying Than You Might Think!, 8 April 2011
By 
Chris Downing "Chris Downing" (Chippenham, Wilts England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful (Hardcover)
The reviewer Birchall pretty much say what I think.

I was recently hit from two directions by the same person. They said, "You're the one person that stands out in my mind as someone who's never seemed to reach their full potential." And secondly, "You are actually the worse listener I've ever met. You are dreadful!" Ouch!

I found those comments motivational and started to work on changing through using this book. The book is analysis and workshop methods you need. The methods are in the book are not always obvious and certainly not easy fix-ups. But I think having to work at finding the what's and how's better than just being given the routemap.

I'd bet everyone has weak areas in their empathy with others and this book will tell you how to self diagnose and then how to start fixing the problems. You might find this book much more interesting (or horrifying) than you thought it would be. I started using the techniques with my wife - now that was interesting...

Once you are on the recovery route try "Just Listen" Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Marshall, you're there!, 1 Nov. 2007
This review is from: What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful (Hardcover)
I had the pleasure of watching Marshall at the 10th anniversary conference of the Worldwide Association of Business Coaches (WABC) in Vancouver. Experiencing the Feed forward method first hand and watching him perform is not just a pleasure but a sincere privilege as well. This book will be known as a classic, no doubt about it.
Marshall is already there. I couldn't help wondering why then does he need to start this book with six pages of recommendations, not about this book, but about him. He doesn't need that. But as he teaches us: take a deep breath and let it go, just let it go.
The book is just brilliant, a new bible for executive coaches and C-level executives who are smart enough to learn and gain the upper hand in their profession.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Its about what you shouldn't be doing......, 28 Oct. 2008
Wow what a refreshing little read of all the things we often complain about others but never seem to see in ourselves. Whilst intention may be to take your time and read little by little you'll probably keep page turning seeing these bad habits in people you know (some probably very well) and go a-ha. It is focused on the bad behaviours that we develop over time wether knowingly or more often not. With an explanation of ideas to how to soliciting feedback to help you spot these bad habits (as often we our not always our fairest/objective judges). Insights to why we believe these habits and how to stop doing things (rather than the war and peace list of what we should be doing)or as headed slipping into neutral. This has the potential be become one of those books that will be used in a lot of companies to develop and grow all levels of leaders in the future.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Rueful recognition, 19 April 2009
By 
Dr. Peter Davies (Halifax, UK) - See all my reviews
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I wanted to say "this book is awful, you'd never catch me doing that, I wouldn't dream of it..."

And if I did I would be lying. This book is powerful, and makes the strong case for 360 feedback- we all have our blind spots, and sometimes it is worth knowing what they are. Goldsmith knows his quarry, and our common flaws, very well.

This book makes the good point that most successful people get where they are on a mixture of ability and spin, and that may take them a long way up the corporate or professional ladder. Classically Western education has been about learning a subject, not about learning to understand yourself and your motivations. What the author adds is an appreciation that all virtues are shadowed by the vices of their excess and their lack. He shows how using 360 feedback on the basis that you don't know how you come across unless you've asked your co-workers and significant customers can help people develop further, increase their insight and their contribution to their work. The workers he assesses may well end up enjoying their work more, and getting promotions.

This book is well written, and it is on the great old theme of how we come to know ourselves accurately.

I think it would help most people in business and in professions to progress further, and even better to do this with their own and their colleagues sanity and respect intact.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, 13 Jan. 2009
By 
Martin Schröder (Stockholm, Sweden) - See all my reviews
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When was the last time your efforts to prove your boss wrong worked as a career enhancing maneuver?

It probably never worked and never will. In fact proving someone wrong often has the opposite effect to what you might think. We all have certain bad habits like this.

It's usually easy to find faults in any proposal and it's usually just as easy to find strengths if you look for them. Why not pick the strengths, throw away the rest and make suggestions on how the idea can be improved instead of pointing out the faults? Doing so will create a stimulating environment for fostering creative novel ideas. After all, most novel ideas usually need a great deal of refinement before becoming good enough for implementation.

The first step for you is to become aware of your problems and thats what the first half of this book is about. It lists 20 annoying habits that you might be a victim of. The second step is to put some effort into fixing these problems and that's what the other half of this book is about.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Certainly not a classic, 6 Nov. 2011
By 
P. Pechey (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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I'm an avid consumer of the books of this genre but I can safely say that this one didn't grab me. The author devalued his own advice by being far too fond of his own self-worth and telling the reader why you should listen to him. There may well be useful advice to be gleaned from this book but I rather suspect that it depends on you being able to associate it with specific character traits that you probably already know about, which therefore makes it rather superfluous and lacking in any real insight.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Some wise words for business folks, 8 Oct. 2009
By 
R. Das (Florence, Italy) - See all my reviews
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I picked up a lot of good insights from this book as to why business professionals can become 'stuck' and why their careers may falter. The author - Marshall Goldsmith - is a respected 'Executive Coach' who has coached hundreds of senior people in companies around the world. The book captures Goldsmith's 30 plus years of experience in executive coaching and identifies the 20 common traps individuals can fall into e.g. wanting to be the Alpha all the time and dominate groups, becoming too critical of other people's ideas and inputs etc.

We all have blind spots and cannot sometimes see our own shortcomings. This book will help the reader stop and think about which of the 20 traps they may be falling into and what to do about it. It is a great self help book for business professionals. As a coach myself, I give the book to clients to read and then use it as a starting point to discuss the areas they want to be coached in to improve themselves.

Strongly recommend this book.
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