This book review is slightly non-traditional because this book is nearly a historical text (being published in 2002 after all.) However, with the additional discretionary time I now have, I am catching up. So, what did I gather from Tim Sanders’ book, Love Is the Killer App?
The Main Premise
The most effective point of differentiation in business is love. Not the romantic love we see portrayed in romantic comedies, but business love, which he defines as “the act of intelligently and sensibly sharing your intangibles with your bizpartners.” The three intangibles we should share are our knowledge, our network and our compassion. Bizpartners (a term he coined and uses liberally throughout the book) are anyone we come across in our business dealings; bosses to bankers, competitors to clients.
Philosophically I love the premise of the book. Virtually everyone in the business community would agree with him that knowledge is valuable. That the more knowledgeable you are the further you’ll get. Most people will also agree that the size and strength of your network is also a large contributing factor to your successes. The idea that compassion and kindness are integral to the entire picture…I don’t believe that is as generally accepted. He points out and I agree that some business people feel they must constantly maintain some type of hidden advantage. Some knowledge that can be held in reserve should someone try to get a leg up on you. Knowledge that would be used to place yourself firmly above that person once again. The typical zero-sum game.
However, Tim portrays the abundance mentality. Love is a currency that you can print and print and print without decreasing its value. You share knowledge and connect people not because they are bound to reciprocate, but because you truly care about them and their well-being. I also have read Linchpin by Seth Godin recently and I feel this meshes quite well with Seth’s idea that you need to make yourself indispensable. How better to be indispensable than to share knowledge freely, connect people liberally and show compassion openly?
Areas I Need To Improve
Tim is obviously a voracious reader. I have no doubt that he could recommend a relevant book to anyone in any business situation (and probably in most personal situations as well.) The sheer volume of his mental library is impressive and I was reminded that I need to be a more active reader.
Tim also exhibits definite extroverted tendencies. Much of this may be attributable to the amount of practice and effort he puts forth, but in the world of social ability, he was dealt pocket aces. While I doubt many people would consider me an introvert, I definitely need to put forth more effort to make a connection with the people around me.