Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The Dip by Seth Godin

Book Review: The Dip by Seth Godin

Seth Godin (Baker Books, 80 pp., hardback)

Quitters are not losers. Although most people know this, there is a cultural stigma with quitting. We have all heard this sentiment echoed repeatedly in grade-school, sports and corporate slogans. When someone usually quits, the reason and purpose is unclear.

In The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (And When to Stick), Godin says winners quit all the time, and he enthusiastically encourages the practice. He is not some senile schoolteacher but the author of eight other worldwide bestsellers including Purple Cow. He is also the founder of Squidoo.com (a platform of user-generated pages) and a popular blogger.

Godin explains how people win biggest by getting through the dip, "the long, difficult stretch between starting something and mastering it," according to Godin. While we may cringe in anguish at the thought of that long slog, Godin says that the dip is actually the quickest way to get you where you want.

Only stick with the dips that are likely to work out; otherwise, strategically quit when your situation looks like a cul-de-sac, a situation where you work and things stay the same, or a cliff, a situation where you cannot quit until you fall off.

The whole point of quitting is to put all of your effort into something suited for you. "If your competition is working hard to be well-rounded and balanced but you're obsessed with being the best in the world at just one thing, who's going to win?" If you try to master multiple things, all of them will either fail or become lukewarm successes. "On the other hand, once you learn how to master something, you get good at mastery, and that skill will help you master the next one."

2 comments:

Leo Crosby said...

Great read, tough to swallow. I've been in this boat before. only problem is sometimes you have to stay with it until something else opens...gotta pay the bills if ya know what i mean

McCool --> Manifesto said...

mike, good read. i love seth...his blogs challenge me and now his showing up on alot of podcasts. good blog.