Category Archives: books

Made to Stick

If you’re like me, even a little bit, you’ve wondered why certain ideas or images have stuck in your mind for many years. One of the things that has stuck with me is the old McDonald’s jingle about the Big Mac. I don’t remember the last time I saw or heard this commercial, but it sticks with me to this day.

Brothers, Dan and Chip Heath’s 2007 book, Made To Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and others Die seeks to explain this phenomenon. Most interesting, they outline the steps necessary to make ideas or stories or even marketing strategies successful:

  1. Simple
  2. Unexpected
  3. Concrete
  4. Credibility
  5. Emotion
  6. Stories

This book is filled with stories, anecdotes and simple explanations on how we all can (either professionally or personally) ensure that our ideas remain in our audience’s mind years later.

I highly recommend this book. If you’re a coach leading a team, this book will help you understand what will make your players remember what they should be focusing on. If you’re a parent trying to understand how to make your kid complete her homework , you will find invaluable tips. If you’re a marketing professional, this book will ensure that your strategy becomes successful. No matter the profession, this is a book that will help you deal with the people around.

Try it you’ll like it!

Do you have a favourite book? Have you read Made to Stick? Thoughts and comments are welcomed. Especially on the original post.

What goes up

…must come down.

Unless you’re Roger “Rocket” Clemens.

Probably one of baseball’s greatest pitchers, Rocket, has pursued the title of ‘ best ever” for as long as he has known the game.

In The Rocket That Fell To Earth: Roger Clemens and the Rage for Baseball Immortality, Jeff Pearlman introduces us to Rocket and many of the characters that surrounded him during his playing days in Major League Baseball.

I’ve never really been a fan of Rocket. Even when he played for my Toronto Blue Jays. I was always indifferent to him. However, after reading this fascinating tale about why Rocket did what he did (from visiting kids in the hospital, to taking steroids and everything else in between) I have a new found respect for him.

Why, you may ask. Because of his drive and intensity to succeed. Because of his respect for his elder brother and mother. Because of his compassion towards children. He won’t ever be my favourite player but this book did give me a different persective.

There is alot in this book. Jeff is not hell-bent on destroying the image of Rocket. Neither is he a Rocket apologist. Yes, you’ll read about his affairs and his use of PEDs. However, if you’re looking for a story of substance and not just tabloid fodder, this is the book.

I hope you enjoy.

Have you ever read a book which changed your perspective on someone? Tell me about it. Your comments are always welcome.

(image courtesy of


He did get 8. Gold medals. In Beijing.

Yes. This is about Micheal Phelps. Well, not him but his most recent book, No Limits: The Will To Succeed.

It’s an interesting and entertaining read with alot of anecdotes focusing on 8 success principles (following the 8 Gold medal swims.).

There are alot of lessons that I gathered from this book. Most importantly, for me, was his determination and focus on preparing to win. Not just swim -but WIN. Reading about his training regimen and his lifestyle leading up to the past two Olympics made me think about my life and my pursuits.

Am I doing everything it takes to succeed? If I want to succeed to the levels I feel I deserve, am I willing to do “whatever it takes?”

Despite his recent extra-curricular activities I highly recommend this book for any young athlete or young entrepreneur.

2nd of 3 books.

I’m almost done my third book so let me tell you about the second.

The Janitor. Written by Todd Hopkins & Ray Hilbert, The Janitor is not your typical parable-style story. Or maybe it is. Here’s how I would describe it before I confuse myself…

The Janitor is a modern day parable outlining the simple steps necessary to both succeed and balance our family life and career. There you have it. In the style of Og Mandino, The Janitor introduces the reader to 6 simple steps that are taught by a janitor to the CEO of the company he cleans at.

If you want a great, simple read with lessons I recommend this book.

Have you ever read a short simple book? Did you enjoy it?


Happy New Year!

So, have you made your resolutions? Promises? Objectives?

Call it what you may but we obviously want to improve or continue along our merry way this year. Outside of losing weight, making more money and getting more sleep, what do you want to achieve or do?

Here’s something to chew on (sorry dieters!). Read. And I’m not suggesting blogs, newspapers or magazines. Books. The good old fashioned book.


Two main reasons. Entertainment and personal growth. Reading is actually fun when done outside of work or school – trust me! And the knowledge we can get while doing so can help us tackle new problems or even see things in a new light. Studies have even shown that “bibliotherapy” actually works.

We can read at any time in any place! At night in bed, on the “royal throne”, on the TTC, at dinner time, during lunch, and even at your workplace.

No matter what you want to achieve this year let’s do a little bit more reading.

Need help figuring out what to read? Check this list out for those business minded or this list of most recommended books.

Happy reading!

(Picture courtesy of