What's Next? One Big Thing (Book Review)

What’s next? What are you born to do? What is your calling? A vital topic for me and for those I lead.

Phil Cooke contributes well to this conversation with his book, The One Big Thing.

“It’s tough not to notice a raging fire”
~ Phil Cooke

He starts with two Big Questions about what’s next:

  1. What am I supposed to do in my life?
  2. In a hyper-connected, cluttered, and distracted world, how do I get noticed?

From there, he asks readers to consider 4 key questions about what’s next:

  • What comes easy for you
  • What do you love?
  • What drives you crazy?
  • What do you want to leave behind?

My favorite of these was, “what drives you crazy”

The more I live, the more I notice that what ticks me off strangely brings me closer to my calling. In fact, I had a great conversation with a wonderful leader today who asked me “who is your enemy?”

Turns out, my answer, which I hadn’t articulated until today is”bad leadership.”

There are lots of us fighting that fight working toward a common big thing.

Why Phil’s Approach is Intriguing

  • He is an interesting guy while completely advocating for a focus on “One Big Thing” he also recognizes that having broad interests creates paths to discovery and nurturing of that goal, “no matter what your OBT might be, you’ll be better because you approach it from a wide variety of perspectives”
  • He creates a tight linkage with finding a platform and getting noticed, “It’s tough not to notice a raging fire”
  • He’s got relevant experience (leadership, writing, film producing, non-profit change) he’s been successful in various arenas and yet continues to refine his big gig with grace
  • He writes from the perspective of the Christian tradition in relevant ways, and yet is very open and accessible to those with differing backgrounds

What could be done better

  • He seems to assume that this concept is a bit new to the reader he offers lots of great fodder, but I imagine this will not be a new thought for most picking up this book
  • He relies a lot on frequently cited and tweeted leadership quotes, I would have preferred to hear more call-outs from his thinking

Overall a good read,to get people thinking about what’s next

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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Karin Hurt

Karin Hurt, is CEO of Let’s Grow Leaders and a former Verizon Wireless executive. Karin was named on Inc.’s list of 100 Great Leadership Speakers for Your Next Conference, the American Management Association List of 50 Leaders to Watch, and as a Trust Across America Top Thought Leader in Trust. She’s the award-winning author of two books, Winning Well: A Manager’s Guide to Getting Results— Without Losing Your Soul, and Overcoming an Imperfect Boss. She’s regularly featured in business publications including Fast Company, Entrepreneur, and Inc.

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