August 1, 2000
Jack Covert Selects: Jack Covert Selects - Sandbox Wisdom
I got a copy of this book a couple of months ago, but can't remember who gave it to me. I wish I could remember, though, because this was an absolutely delightful fable, and I would love to tell he/she how much a enjoyed this book. When I was explaining the book to my wife, she asked, "Like Everything I Learned I Learned in Kindergarten?" Not really. It is a story of a very stressed and confused CEO who talks with a college pal who, in turn, tells him about a mentor who helped him. The CEO, the mentor, along with the mentor's granddaughter, spend a day together. The story is far from unique, but nonetheless worthwhile. The Goal, Zapp and many other books use the mentor/guru to teach. Like those books, this book gave me some strong insights on running this company, which are being implemented immediately-that is how much I value this book. One teaser in Sandbox Wisdom is: "Never follow the golden rule" because it isn't 'do onto others what you would like done onto you'. It is 'do onto others that they want done onto them'. Forget you. Not profound, but when was the last time you talked with your customer about what they want. I know it has been too long for me.
It turns out that if I had read this book before I was interviewed for the Industry Standard article about "pop" business books, I would have been able to explain one of the reasons for the success of those kinds of books. In this book, Chapter Seven includes a quote from Tom Peters: "It turns out human beings reason by means of stories, not mounds of data." Like me, you may indeed find something of value within this story that will help clarify how you look at your business.
About Dylan Schleicher
Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.