Piranhas in the Bidet: A Snappy Guide to Better Partnerships with Your Customers, Your People and Yourself! Paperback – 28 Aug 2014
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Simon Gray is the newly-appointed and much harassed Chief Executive of Alderton's, a large company that has known better days. When his boss offers him the use of a chauffeur for one day each month, he is as pleased as Punch - until George Willis turns up, as pristine as his Bentley, immaculately mannered and full of philosophical advice that Simon just does not want to hear. But as Willis drives his boss to various meetings - not to mention up the wall - a tentative friendship forms between the two men, and Simon is gradually forced to admit that some of the chauffeur's ideas, from strategy and account management to leadership skills and fostering team spirit, could be the saving of Alderton's - and of Simon himself. But is George Willis really who he appears to be?
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So what makes this one different? It's written like a novel, with the messages and teachings weaved into the story. This idea could easily have been done badly - however Jesson has done a wonderful job of making it enjoyable to read, and therefore more digestible.
Having the novel-format, for me, meant I was less prone to "learning fatigue"; that burnout you get after a while of reading a professional development book. But I must say I really enjoyed this one.
Jesson also made the excellent decision of having recaps/summaries of the key messages between each chapter. Putting the teachings into "real-world" examples, while a little obvious at times, works well. I regularly found myself smiling knowingly as I saw the next lesson unfold within the story.
Highly recommended for anyone looking to develop their EQ and understand how best to serve their customers/accounts/prospects.
I've read my fair share of management and leadership books. Well more precisely I've started reading plenty. The problem is they are so boring and full of cliches.
It's not just the title of this book Piranahas in the bidet that is different, the whole approach is different. It's a beautifully written, interesting book to read. I found myself really caring about the characters and learned a lot of really valuable stuff, almost without realising it, whilst being entertained. What could be nicer?
I'm really looking forward to putting some of my new learning into practise!
Please write another one Phil Jesson. Mandy Humphreys
Now I like this book for a number of reasons. I won't harp on about the content because looking at the other reviewers, more esteemed and better qualified people have given that part of it sufficient validation for you to by now realise that this has some meaty and worthwhile content if you are a business leader, especially in these testing times.
So let's take it as fact that this has got some great content.
What I like about this book is the way it presents that content to make it not only accessible and interesting, but engaging and memorable.
It targets both sides of the brain with the majority of the book being a well written story drawing out the key themes and ideas through narrative and emotional experience - tick in the box for the right brain.
And then throughout the book each chapter has a summary of the "Wit and Wisdom" from that part of the book if like me you are sometimes a little too dull to pick up on the subtleties of the teaching.
But not only that, the last 38 pages are a collection of ideas, tips, technques, strategies packaged in the form of a very accessible toolkit of ideas - tick in the box for the left brain.
So if you are bored with the textbook type approach of the majority of business books and want something that will be easy and entertaining to read, has great content yet leaves you in no doubt about what the takeaways are, then this is the book for you.
Although it is a fictional tale, each chapter is rounded off with the key learning points you can draw from it, if you are in business. It's a witty piece of writing from one of Britain's leading business relationship experts.
If you are fed up with reading traditional business books, you will love this novel approach to business learning. And if you aren't fed up with reading traditional business books, you'll still love this book because it makes so many good points you can use in your own business life.
Already being recommended to Chief Executives by their own Academy, this book is clearly going to be in demand by business people in all kinds of companies. Get it, read it and act on its lessons. Oh - and have a laugh along the way at Simon and George...!
You will find yourself hooked by the story (I couldn't put it down!) and benefitting from the insightful leadership lessons. The book also includes a highly useful "toolkit" at the end and you get the added bonus of being able to download some very useful additional resources too (these are now downloaded to my laptop for frequent reference - download details are contained in the book). All in all a must read for those in business.