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September 6, 2005

Jack Covert Selects: Jack Covert Selects: Instinct

By: Jack @ 5:48 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

Instinct: Tapping Your Entrepreneurial DNA to Achieve Your Business Goals by Thomas L. Harrison, Warner Business Books, 229 Pages, $24.95 Hardcover, September 2005, ISBN 0446576840 When I first came across this book, I admit I was slightly anxious to learn more about the part genes play in my success. I was quickly reassured when Author Thomas Harrison explains that, "If you think you got shortchanged in the genetic lottery, you can still be successfulbut only if you know what youre starting with and more importantly, how to make up for what you may not possess." Ah, relief, heredity plays only a part in my success. The question is, how big is this part? Thomas answers this question in Instinct. While exact percentages vary from person-to-person, the question still pertains to each one of us. In this book, Harrison provides an "entrepreneurial personality quiz" that divides personalities into five categories of traits: openness to experience, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness, and neuroticism. He then fully explains each trait and offers "Success Promoters"which are ways to help us better utilize (or use less) those traits with which we were endowed. The "Success Promoters" are tied to Harrisons belief that people become addicted to success. The more we succeed, the more we crave future success. As Harrison states:
Addiction is a complex issue, of course, and science hasnt yet tackled the concept of addiction to success. But it's clear to me that some people's systems get wired to need constant hits of success. Their genes just seem to crave the pleasure that comes from new challenges. When they don't get it, they experience psychological withdrawal symptoms.
This book was a fascinating mixture of entrepreneurial advice and scientific data. It is spotted with famous examples from the Home Depot founder to Thomas Edison. Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur (or as Thomas calls it: "entreprenear") or simply a business person wanting to learn more about your genes, this is definitely a book to peruse.