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Book review on The Start-up of You, by Reid Hoffman and Ben Casnocha.

The Personal Fitness Training program now uses this book as a supplement to our PCD (Professional and Career Development) class. It was written by the cofounder and chairman of Linkedin and thus predictably focuses its content on professional networking. Many of us go through our work weeks in a tunnel without connecting intellectually or creatively to our LHAA contacts from other programs. This could mean many missed opportunities for referrals, business growth, and a deeper understanding of how our disciplines complement each other. Even if you are content with your daily work, this is an excellent book to inspire multidimensional growth via new professional relationships.

The format of this book is very reader-friendly with short chapters and a targeted assignment list titled “Invest in Yourself” at the end of each. The “It Takes a Network” chapter ends with network building assignments such as

Look at your calendar for the past six months and identify the five people you spend the most time with – are you happy with the influence those five people have on you?

Imagine you got laid off from your job today. Who are the ten people you’d email to solicit their advice on what to do next? Reach out to them now, when you don’t need anything specifically.

With other chapters addressing opportunities, adaptations, and risk taking, this is a valuable career building resource to read again and again (I read it every 6 months when I teach the course and get something new from it each time!) The book ends with 19 titles suggested for further reading and the author offers free resources, videos, and advanced tips at www.startupofyou.com. Read and DO!

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