This is a book that tells you how to succeed in life. It focuses mainly on picking the right goals for you, the right career for you, and the right spouse for you. If you get those three correct, the rest of it kind of falls into place. 324 pages, 8 1/2 x 11 paperback
I encourage you to read the reader comments linked above. I am very proud of all of them and astonished at how strong many of them are. Here are some examples:
Absolutely and Totally Excellent... in every regard! In fact, I am overwhelmed. It's not just the information... it's the willingness for you to share your personal info... and to "call it like it is" regarding your life experiences! I know I will need to read "Succeeding" many more times to get the full benefit. You are an inspiration.
“Hello to Marty and John, I have purchased all three of your previous editions of Succeeding. Now I am buying them for other people. It is the best non-fiction book I have ever read. Even at 58 it is not too late for me to learn from it. Many thanks...Bill Orland
New 3rd edition of Succeeding
The new third edition of the book I sell the most of has new chapters on:
Being yourself as a competitive advantage in both career and romance
recognizing that many activities, like hitting a golf ball, are Zen, but that others, like bunting a baseball, are NOT Zen; non-Zen skills can be acquired by practice; Zen ones, by allowing your subconscious to take charge
change over time including how to handle both internal (inside your body, mind, and family) and external (like technology, fashion, and laws) changes
‘I wish I had this book when I was young’
This is one of the most common comments I heard from readers about Succeeding. My response is, “Me, too.” Although I wroteSucceeding, I could not have written it until after I was in my fifties. I had to try all the things I tried in a rather varied life and see what worked and what did not.
I graduated from West Point and Harvard Business School, was an airborne ranger platoon leader and company commander in the military and the Vietnam war, worked for the government and private companies and myself, coached dozens of athletic teams, met an extraordinary number of attractive women through The System a friend and I invented and which is described in detail in Succeeding, appeared on TV shows like 60 Minutes and Good Morning America, got married to my current and only wife 40 years ago, raised three sons who are now adult college grads, tended bar, invested in real estate in three different states, written 39 books and over 5,000 articles. I have succeeded and failed many times and watched my family, college and grad school classmates, and many others do the same. I have read thousands of books, attended hundreds of seminars and clinics and speeches, etc. etc. trying to figure out the best ways to deal with all sorts of life’s challenges.
Succeeding is a book that's worth its weight in gold.
I've read the book cover-to-cover several times, and even now, every time I read a section, I learn something new. All of the advice in Succeeding pertains to topics that are hugely important to me. I appreciate the details regarding achievement, risk, success, and happiness.
What impresses me most is that the advice in Succeeding is highly credible. You have a collection of impressive achievements, longevity, and no hidden agenda. As a skeptical reader who has read over a hundred self-help books, it is often hard to determine what advice I can trust. I pay especially close attention to your words because you are someone who, based on decades of experience, understands what it takes to achieve goals that are universally respected. You include your failures, and the lessons you learned from them.
What I can say is that the vast majority of your advice is damn good, and my life has been greatly enriched by studying Succeeding carefully.
The real world stuff grown-ups were too embarrassed about to teach you
People tell you that all you need to succeed is an education, that is studying some subject like chemical engineering or business management. Bull! The world is not a college or a high school. Most success in organizations stems from your ability to play office politics, not your knowledge of your college major. If you want to be judged on your merit, not your ability to suck up, read Succeeding. It tells you how to succeed on your real merits either in your own business or working for others—but in the right organizational and incentive structure where your true value will be visible, undeniable, and rewarded.
Hello Mr. Reed,
I am a college senior currently reading Succeeding. I haven't read a personal development/success book as dense with valuable content as yours.
Another reason why Succeeding is needed is that the world is far more competitive than it was just eight years ago. Globalization, astonishing leaps in communications, the Internet, and technology, unemployment, foreclosures, emerging countries, are changing all the rules.
Bureaucracy did not become any more fun in the last eight years. And corporations did not become any more loyal to their employees. More than ever before in modern times, you are on your own. Your children and grandchildren are going to be on their own. More than at any time in recent memory, we need the best possible advice on how to make the most of our strengths, and work around our weaknesses in order to prosper.
Don’t try to change your personality
Millions of people are wasting huge amounts of time trying to change their personalities to please their boss or their girlfriend or boyfriend.
Number one, you cannot change your personality. All you will accomplish is turning yourself into a phony. Secondly, and more important, you don’t have to change your personality. What you do have to change, if your personality clashes, is your boss or your career or your girlfriend or boyfriend.
Your success and happiness require that you recognize those things about you that you can change and those you cannot. And you are going to know which they are because I put lists of each in Succeeding. I also discuss item by item how you change the things that can be changed, for example, when moving to a new geographic location is advisable and when it will not solve the problem in question.
Dear Mr. Reed,
I have recently finished reading your book, Succeeding, and reviewed it twice. It was by far the best success book I have ever read. To put it more accurately, this is the first and only book I read in regards to succeeding, which is authentic, thorough, brutally candid, and relevant to the current time. Almost all of the contents are backed by your real life experiences. I laughed, got emotional and sometimes disturbed.
Well, your readers' raves about this book are certainly right.
The main message of my book Succeeding is that you need to get a very accurate and complete handle on who you are, then match who you are with a career opportunity. The better you do that, the more successful you will be and the happier you will be with that success.
In today’s world, this is more important than ever before. A hundred years ago, the keys to success were believed to be working in your father’s business or the family farm, getting a “good” union job in a factory, or going to college. But in today’s world, where you must compete with others worldwide, you’d better find the career that matches you better than any other so you have your best chance to compete.
Hi John, I just finished Succeeding. The only thing I hated about reading that book was finishing it. I did not want it to stop. I cannot thank you enough for having produced a work of such insight.
Your marriage is also key to your success. Your spouse must share your dreams and be able to tolerate the difficulties of your career. For example, if the best career match for you is a career with risks, and your spouse freaks out because of the risks, you have the wrong spouse.
It is also true that the quality and character of your spouse or lack thereof can doom you to misery even if he or she has no issues with things like your career choice or the difficulties of that career. You must match up well with your spouse in terms of consumption of alcohol and drugs, child-raising decisions, adultery, and so forth. Divorce rates are still high. Today, many children are being raised by their grandparents or a single parent. This is a very, very bad situation that can happen to anyone and you need to take more pains than previously to do better than that with your spouse choice.
The 3rd edition of Succeeding’s second longest chapter is the “Spouse choice” chapter. (The “Career choice” chapter is a little longer.) Most success books say little or nothing about spouse choice. They figure it just happens by chance as you go about your life. Seriously!? That is a formula for a life disaster. It is the most important decision you make.