Review: The Big Moo

First, let me traingulate you on my feelings for similar books.  “Who Moved My Cheese” – hated it.  I thought it was puerile and condescending, but I’m not a person who has change issues either.  “Good to Great” – excellent book, and I’ve used the advice in my business dealings.  “Everything I Needed To Know I Learned In Kindergarten”– not a big fan of the entire book, but some of the chapters were though provoking (haven’t seen it in many, many years though).

The Big Moo is the brainchild of Seth Godin, but credited to “The Group of 33”.  It’s not written in traditional chapters, but rather short vignettes—written sound bites, if you will—in some cases, possibly originally scrawled on a napkin at a bar and later transcribed verbatim.  Perfect bathroom reading.  Not being in formal chapters means I can’t do my usual chapter-by-chapter technical overview, so look for a short review here.

Some of the vignettes are the “what if” type of philosophy like you got in your freshman dorm after a lot of beer from people you barely knew.  The ones I found the most interesting covered actual situations, such as Rockport shoes or the fall of the Berlin Wall.  Some made me think, some inspired me, and some were just plain dumb (and I don’t mean in the good way as talked about in the sketch entitled “The Power of Dumb Ideas”, which was a good vignette).  Thankfully, there were more of the interesting or thought-proviking ones.  It doesn’t matter which stories did what, because I think everyone will take something different away from the book.  Perhaps my opinion of some of the dumb ones would be different if I weren’t on the loo, but rather in a place in my life where they would inspire me.  This isn’t a book that changed my life, but it is one I’ll keep around and flip through from time to time.

Readers are encouraged to share the book with their coworkers to try and inspire them to be remarkable.  Assuming you have coworkers who can be inspired to be remarkable, this book could really be a good thing.  Everyone will take something different from the book, and that makes for good conversation at the coffee pot or over lunch.  In my experience, good communication on anything is the basis for a cohesive group, and those are the groups that become remarkable ones.  Reading this book isn’t going to help you turn anything into something remarkable single-handedly.  But look around, and if you have a few coworkers you think can help you overcome stagnation, definately share this with them.  Make sure to read it first yourself. 


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