Book Club Tuesday – The Ride of A Lifetime

old books on shelf

Welcome to a new recurring #baldinbusiness feature called Book Club Tuesday. Each week I will spotlight one book, and have a little fun in the process.

Book: The Ride of A Lifetime

Author: Robert Iger

Length: 272 pages / 8 hours and 45 minutes via Audible

Why I chose to read it: Growing up in the 1980s, Disney has always fascinated me. I can remember Disney CEO, Michael Eisner, standing in front of the iconic castle introducing the Disney program that I was about to watch on T.V. I remember going to Disney World several times, including once in seventh-grade with my parents and all four grandparents (their last major trip together). Disney always brings many happy memories to mind. Thus, my fascination put this book in the “must read” category.

My Takeaways (3 or less): Despite what people in non-leadership positions might think, leadership is overwhelming. I chuckled one morning driving to work –I was in the midst of a crazy week where 5 a.m. workouts were followed by work responsibilities until 6:00 P.M., then followed by my “real” job at home –when Iger shared the day Disney announced one of their many acquisitions and his day went from 3 a.m. until 10 p.m. I still have room to grow, I thought. Duh. As Iger’s work-life demonstrates, you never “arrive.” His relentless pursuit of “better” stands out. Although, my world-view might guide me to make different decisions than he did in terms of moves, ladder-climbing, etc. Please hear that as a difference and not a criticism. I am inspired by, and definitely respectful of, his tireless work-ethic.

Here is a quote from the book that I have been pondering this week: “But those instances in which you find yourself hoping something will work, that’s when a little bell should go off and you should walk yourself through some clarifying questions: What’s the problem I need to solve? Does the solution make sense? If I am feeling some doubt, why? Am I doing this for sound reasons, or am I motivated by something personal?”

Finally, Iger’s willingness to talk about how he deals with terminations is practical, humane, and helpful.

What does this book motivate me to DO? Work harder, believe in bigger and better, and utilize a white-board to determine where Hoffer Plastics needs to go next (note: I didn’t need this book to do any of these things, but it inspired me. Leaders: It is up to us to fill our tanks. This book was a tank-filler for me).

Who should read this book? Business-minded fans of Disney, Pixar, Lucas films, and ESPN! Critics would also find something in this book.

I would sum my rating of the book as…Inspirational

“If you haven’t read hundreds of books, learning from others who went before you, you are functionally illiterate. You can’t coach, and you can’t lead.” Jim Mattis

Special note: I am taking next week off. The next Book Club will be November 26.