Gini Dietrich

#FollowFriday: The Synergist

By: Gini Dietrich | December 2, 2011 | 
36

One of my favorite business books of 2010 was, hands down, Les McKeown’s Predictable Success.

In it he talks about the phases a business goes through, from start-up and growth through becoming stodgy and old.

I actually keep my copy on my desk so, when I’m having a bad day, I can refer back to it to see if what we’re going through is normal.

It always makes me feel better.

So, when he asked me if I’d review his latest book, The Synergist, I gave a resounding yes.

This is a leadership book, in the truest sense of the word. Even if you’re not a “leader” by definition inside your organization, but you work with others, this book is for you.

The Synergist is the person who is typically unseen and unrecognized, but is crucial in every successful team that is trying to achieve common goals. He believes these people exist in every organization and that you don’t have to learn new skills or become someone you’re not, in order to achieve this level of leadership.

He believes the natural Synergists exist, though they’re rare, so he teaches you how to emulate that style, irrespective of your natural style.

Even an ADD, introvert like me can learn how to lead meetings and conference calls that don’t drone on forever (I hate meetings) and get the most out of people without conflict.

But what I like most about the book is he discusses the three types of people you’re likely to work with: The visionary, the operator, and the processor. These types of people exist at all levels of the organization and learning to work with each personality type is crucial not only to business success, but your own success.

When I worked at Fleishman-Hillard, I had a boss who would say, “You need to learn how to manage up.”

I never understood that. Wasn’t I the one who was supposed to be managed? But she was right. And Les teaches you how to manage each, no matter what level you are in the organization.

Written in the form I’ve come to love from Les, he includes case studies where names have been changed, so it’s almost as if you’re reading a good fiction book where you learn something you can apply to your business, your career, or even your outside-of-work involvement.

And for you social nerds, he has a QR code at the end of each chapter, which you can scan to get more information, case studies, and exercises to work on becoming The Synergist.

The book isn’t released until January 3 so put it on your holiday gift list. It’ll be the gift that keeps on giving and will start your 2012 out right.

Disclosure: I did receive a free and uncorrected advance reader’s edition of the book. He even signed it (though I’m waiting for my actual signed copy). I also had dinner with Les and his wife, Julie, several months ago. But in no way, shape, or form did that influence my review of this book because he hadn’t even started writing it yet. And he didn’t buy my dinner. Or my wine. On the other hand…this books sucks!

About Gini Dietrich


Gini Dietrich is the founder and CEO of Arment Dietrich, an integrated marketing communications firm. She is the author of Spin Sucks, co-author of Marketing in the Round, and co-host of Inside PR. She also is the lead blogger at Spin Sucks and is the founder of Spin Sucks Pro.

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36 Comments on "#FollowFriday: The Synergist"

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KenMueller
4 years 6 months ago

This sounds right up my alley, so I’m adding it to my Christmas list. Feel free to buy it for me.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@KenMueller Too bad my advance copy is signed. I’d “buy” that for you.

HowieSPM
4 years 6 months ago

@ginidietrich@KenMueller best gift for Ken is wine and lots of it.

KenMueller
4 years 6 months ago

@HowieSPM@ginidietrich right now i have lots of whine

hackmanj
4 years 6 months ago

@KenMueller@HowieSPM@ginidietrich want some cheese to go with that?

Off the rails… 🙂

HowieSPM
4 years 6 months ago

I am definitely a Visionary Synergistic Operating Leader and some say part swine, but affectionately of course. But damn it i refuse to process. Leave that work for others.

sounds like a great book and I don’t read business books. I now have a few of interest to check out out of the blue.

If you sell enough books for Les maybe he will reimburse you for your dinner.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@HowieSPM You forgot alien. Or are you retiring that part?

HowieSPM
4 years 6 months ago

I am definitely a Visionary Synergistic Operating Leader and some say part swine, but affectionately of course. But damn it i refuse to process. Leave that work for others.

sounds like a great book and I don’t read business books. I now have a few of interest to check out out of the blue.

If you sell enough books for Les maybe he will reimburse you for your dinner.

HowieSPM
4 years 6 months ago

I am definitely a Visionary Synergistic Operating Leader and some say part swine, but affectionately of course. But damn it i refuse to process. Leave that work for others.

sounds like a great book and I don’t read business books. I now have a few of interest to check out out of the blue.

If you sell enough books for Les maybe he will reimburse you for your dinner.

lesmckeown
lesmckeown
4 years 6 months ago

Hey thanks, Gini – I really appreciate your typically insightful review.

If only I’d known had I actually paid for that blade of grass and a peanut you ate that I’d have got an even better review, I’d have done so with a heart and a half 🙂

Anyhoo… if you or your vast legion of friends and commenters are interested in finding out if they are a Visionary, Operator, Processor or Synergist (the work styles you mention), here’s a sneak access to the free quiz that comes with the book:

http://PredictableSuccess.com/quiz2

Thanks again, Gini, and next time, dinner’s on you.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@lesmckeown Bah. Humbug.

KenMueller
4 years 6 months ago

@ginidietrich@lesmckeown Hey, Les, Thanks for the wine. I really appreciate it! you’re the best!

lesmckeown
lesmckeown
4 years 6 months ago

@KenMueller@ginidietrich I await your 5-star review, Ken

John Falchetto
4 years 6 months ago

I am in the middle of reading @lesmckeown advance reader edition and yes so far it doesn’t disappoint.

I also love the case studies, now that you stole my book review @ginidietrich I have to get back to work and write a new one 😉

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@John Falchetto You could just write, “Until Les sends a bottle of red wine to both Gini and me, this book sucks.”

lesmckeown
lesmckeown
4 years 6 months ago

@John Falchetto@ginidietrich Cut and paste is fine, John

jasonkonopinski
4 years 6 months ago

Excellent. I’ll have to put this one on the list. @lesmckeown

terence.stephens
terence.stephens
4 years 6 months ago

Just put on my reading list for next year and recommended for my company’s book club.

Soon we’ll see if my trust in you is warranted or not. 🙂

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@terence.stephens I hope it is!

jasonkonopinski
4 years 6 months ago

@ginidietrich You know, this would make a wonderful gift for that wonderful soul who recently added a cookbook to your collection. I wonder who that was?

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@jasonkonopinski It’s not out yet.

SocialMediaDDS
4 years 6 months ago

Thanks @ginidietrich for the awesome book review AND for introducing me to Les McKeown’s Predictable Success…it now resides in my Kindle. I love your Friday book reviews….this is great!!!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@SocialMediaDDS You will love this one equally as well. Or maybe even better. I haven’t yet decided.

Soulati | PR
4 years 6 months ago

I signed up already to get this book, and I am sending Predictable Success to someone for a holiday gift. Thanks for this review!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@Soulati | PR They’re that good, aren’t they?

balemar
balemar
4 years 6 months ago

I love Friday book review times! It’s fun (and helpful) to see what you’re reading. I’ve preordered @lesmckeown ‘s book. Can’t wait to read it. I’m dorkily looking forward to the QR codes at the end of each chapter!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@balemar I believe that makes you a social media nerd!

Dick_Foster
4 years 6 months ago

I’ve not read any of @lesmckeown’s work, but based on your review, I will be taking his quiz (http://PredictableSuccess.com/quiz2) and order the books. Thanks for the heads-up Gini.

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@Dick_Foster You’re welcome! I’ve probably read Predictable Success four or five times.

Raj-PB
4 years 6 months ago

Interesting theme for a book – Would love to read it. How true is the ‘managing up’ part. Bosses actually expect their subordinates to Manage Up. It takes some time to grasp really! Maybe you could have asked him to give away some free books to bloggers who comment here 😉

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@Raj-PB His publisher may give us a few books to give away. Stay tuned!

EricaAllison
4 years 6 months ago

I’m a huge @lesmckeown fan…as I’m sure he knows by now! Predictable Success is my go-to book as well and one that I recommend over and over to clients. I’ll for sure have a copy of The Synergist in 2012. Great #FF and book review, Gini!

ginidietrich
ginidietrich
4 years 6 months ago

@EricaAllison Thanks! xoxo

Collectual
4 years 6 months ago

I just laughed out loud “And he didn’t buy my dinner. Or my wine. On the other hand…this books sucks!” Remind me to buy you wine if, one, I ever write a book and two, I have you review it.

HerzogIND
HerzogIND
4 years 6 months ago

LOL on the disclosure!

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[…] out on January 3, 2012, “The Synergist” continues the story of Predictable Succes – this time, focusing on the personality types that […]

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