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Excellence is the best way to distinguish yourself from others.
This is something I can certainly agree with.
Shine is a book by Gerry Lewis that teaches you how to be a great communicator. It focuses on how to stand out as a memorable communicator and make your message stick.
Where to shine
Lewis suggests that you focus on shining in what he calls the communication proof points, which are meetings, presentations, and networking situations.
In the following sections, he dives into each one, providing tips and advice on how to communicate your best in every environment.
Shining in Meetings
I didn’t take any notes on the meetings section so nothing significant stood out to me.
Shining in Presentations
Lewis encourages you to be focused on what you can control during a presentation situation. He offers some great advice on controlling nerves. He asks you to identify what you fear and then let go.
This is something I can definitely use: Although I am often nervous when giving presentations, it’s more about how the audience will react to me and whether they think I’m competent enough to earn my fee.
He points out that presentations should be tailored to each audience. I’m sure you already knew this.
Some tips I haven’t seen before are:
Write down your open and closed
Don’t be afraid to learn your stuff on your own
Don’t drink water with ice. It’s too hard to drink, and it makes you dribble. It’s useful to know!
Shining in Networking
Lewis redefines networking as “Connecting”. This is a key skill to being remembered, Lewis says. It’s important to remember the book in a positive light.
He offers a tip that can be very useful if you have trouble remembering someone’s name. Say you don’t know it and not you remember it. This subtle change in language indicates that you tried to recall it but couldn’t. This should make the other person feel a little better.
A Shining Attitude
The last section is about improving your attitude and dealing with Imposter Syndrome. Lewis discusses how to build confidence and deal with conflict, manage change, and kill complacency. After being covered in the presentations section, visualization is again a topic that Lewis discusses.
Each section contains scenarios. These are not case studies, but they are clearly made up. You will also find his own personal experiences throughout the book. He also includes an ‘Ask Gerry’ section at the end each section that he uses for answers to questions that aren’t covered in the book.
The book is full of icons, which I found annoying at first. But I soon got used to it. It was fine to read it on Kindle.
Although the change management section is acceptable, it is not very deep if you are leading major transformative change. The book doesn’t go into much detail. This is not surprising considering that whole books have been written on presentation techniques, running successful meetings, and networking (including my short ebook on improving your networking skills).
This book provides a quick overview and options for starting to make your work memorable.
This quote seemed like a great way to close the review.
“When you shine, which I know you will, others will be inspired. People will look up to you for direction, guidance and advice. People will look up to you as someone who is able to make things happen, provide security and, most importantly, as someone they can trust. You will inspire others. Not only will you be noticed and seen as brilliant in their eyes but you will also have a positive aura. You will be more confident, happier, and stronger.