Sharing news and commentary about education, careers, investing, and life.

Sharing news and commentary about education, careers, investing, and life.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Book Review: "Let My People Go Surfing"

CK Book Reviews: We read 'em so you can pick 'em...

In Let My People Go Surfing, by Yvon Chouinard, each reader gets a sense of what it really means to strike out on one's own. The book is a poignant portrait of his life, from humble (very humble) roots to his ongoing success as a "reluctant" businessman. It's a quick read and I was amazed at how Yvon just did whatever made him happy (and yet was ultimately "successful" as measured by his and other people's standards). The reason I'm doing this book review now is that a conversation I had in Baltimore/Philadelphia over this weekend made me think about what we're trying to do here at College Knowledge, and so this book I recently read popped back up in my head.

Oh and for those that didn't know, Yvon is the founder of Patagonia, an outdoor clothing and supplies company. They are a values led company, which to me is incredibly exciting (think Clif Bar, something we've talked about here) and something to strive towards.

Even if you're not an entrepreneur (or ever plan on being one) the book is an entertaining, interesting read. It's definitely worth a look.

Well, the book itself makes a very interesting read mostly because Yvon's voice really comes through and you can tell he's being honest throughout the book. In fact, the quote that sticks out to me is the same quoted in the Amazon book review: The Lee Iacoccas, Donald Trumps, and Jack Welches of the business world are heroes to no one except other businessmen with similar values. I wanted to be a fur trapper when I grew up.

The book is quick, easy to understand and follow, and certainly provides a new perspective on business and even life. Is it as good as Raising the Bar? No... but it's an entertaining read that only takes a few hours to get through. Go check it out, but after reading Raising the Bar.

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