Thursday, October 2, 2014

Book Review: "The Four Elements of Success" (Laurie Beth Jones)

Maybe you're the kind of person who's always been fascinated by the effects of birth order upon the people in your life. Your older brother or sister is an independent, entrepreneurial type, and your younger brother or sister steals the spotlight at every family gathering.

Or maybe you've always been interested in personality types and what defines a person most accurately. Melancholic or choleric? Golden retriever or otter? INTJ or ESTP?

If any of that describes you or sounds intriguing, prolific and renowned author Laurie Beth Jones has a work for you: The Four Elements of Success: A Simple Personality Profile That Will Transform Your Team.

In this work, Jones maintains that one of the simplest and most accurate ways to organize people and discover their innate strengths and weaknesses is to define each person according to his or her propensity to one of the four elements: earth, water, fire, and wind.

She lays the groundwork for each of these elements with their respective characteristics and traits, and then points to the ways in which each element transfers to a human personality type. If you're an Earth, for example, you tend to be grounded, consistent, and routinized. If you're a Fire, you'd rather be the center of attention, always active and spontaneous.

After a personality assessment so the reader knows which type he or she identifies as most accurately, Jones spends the rest of the book drawing conclusions and comparisons, with examples, between how the elements work together (or don't, in some cases).

For instance, if your marketing department is made up of only Fire personalities, you'll have a lot of fantastic ideas, but you might not have a lot of follow-through unless you add an Earth personality to the mix.

The book is easily worth a read-through if for no other reason than the fascination of studying those around you to see if perhaps you don't get along with that coworker because he's a Fire and you're a Water and you have opposite priorities. On the other hand, if you're a business manager or employer, you can easily gain a better understanding of your entire team and how best to put each elemental personality to work so that their strengths benefit the company or organization as a whole most effectively.

An enjoyable, conversational, easy-to-understand and -apply read, start to finish.

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Title: The Four Elements of Success: A Simple Personality Profile That Will Transform Your Team
Author: Laurie Beth Jones
ISBN: 978-0785288107
Purchase here:

Disclaimer: The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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