©2008 Ted Turner; (P)2008 Hachette Audio
... compared to Mr. Boone's biography. This one is much richer (not only longer), and is one of the better examples where the author reads his own book (I have a few in my collection that serve as negative examples of such a set-up). Hands-down the best value of any of my Audible downloads (which amount to 278 over the course of 6 years)--in a good way. The story is very exciting throughout, and to top it all off, there is even an interview of the author included at the end (of the Audible version). I'm already eagerly looking forward to the sequel (you'll know what I mean by this when you listen to the book).
After seeing Ted Turner interviewed on 60 Minutes, I knew I wanted to listen to his book. Definitely worth the time. I found his business deals fascinating, but didn't admire his personal life.
I was disappointed with this book because, perhaps mistakenly, I expected it to be a memoir. Rather, it reads like a biography/business school case. Ted methodically takes us through the factual details of his life, which mostly consisted of work and sailing. I often found myself drifting off while listening and took many "breaks" to listen to more captivating material.
Great read. Recounts great moments from the past. Ted legacy in recent times has been overshadowed but this book really highlights his achievements and impact he has had on the world.
The Impact CNN has had
Americas cup and sailing stories
In 1984 - when my parents were one of the first cable subscribers on a tiny Caribbean island - I had no idea that CNN was a fledgling cable network. I have always known the name of Ted Turner. I guess that it is easy to assume that rich, powerful, outspoken Southern billionaires have always been so. Not quite.
Ted Turner was once a rambunctious, badly-behaved boy who was chucked off to boarding schools at a very tender age, expelled from several schools and repeatedly physically abused by a controlling alcoholic father. Despite his harsh childhood, there is no pity party in the book. Ted tells the story of his troubled childhood with brevity and a matter of fact quality. He continued his career of academic delinquency through military school, where he learned some discipline but eventually dropped out of University, never earning a college degree.
And then come the details of his staggering accomplishments. The trajectory goes like this: troubled child - college dropout - multi-billionaire. He was forced to eat humble pie by joining his father's billboard business, but then went on to win the America's Cup, start a cable net work and eventually CNN, own the Atlanta Braves, become an exceedingly wealthy person and the largest single landowner in the United States. He even gave a billion dollars to the United Nations.
The story is so astounding that, like a work of poor fiction, it is almost unbelievable. He is passionate, outspoken and in many ways a stubborn brat. How did he do it? Vision, belief in his dream and hard work. It makes your head spin, but the failures and frailties are candidly presented too. An important component of the book is the space given to key persons in his life, including ex-wife Jane Fonda and arch-enemies to share their uncensored thoughts on him and experiences they shared. The book is so much richer for it.
I now have both a healthy respect and deep admiration for this extraordinary man - entrepreneur, visionary, humanitarian. Ted Turner is truly a living legend.
I really enjoyed this and was pretty dissapointed when I completed all 18 hours worth of audio - only because it was over. Much of it is fascinating, and Ted had me laughing throughout as well. I really find business self-help titles to be pretty boring, this on the other hand was very inspiring. His personal life is quite a failure really, but there's much to be learned from here, with his energy, vision, and people skills. The Time Warner details at the end were a downer I thought, he seemed to go into too much detail and it seems the events are maybe still a bit raw. His early life and sailing, CNN etc stories we're absolutely awesome. I'm looking forward to listening to this again sometime. Easily the best audiobook I've listened too. This makes me want to get the book - though there's a great richness hearing this story in Ted's own southern accent. Hard to beat.
The book was good and entertaining until the last hour when he became preachy on the subject of over population (this from a man with 5 kids and 10 grandkids), the evils of a capitalistic, consumer driven society (this from a billionaire), and Americans who drive big cars and own big houses (this from a man with a number of properties all over the country). Until his "do as I say not as I do" finale, the book was very entertaining.
Fantastic business book. The deal comes second, first is a no nonsense, non-academic articulation of what business combinations make sense and why. So many businessmen end up successful through high energy, hard work, and being in the right place at the right time. Not so with "Ted". He is a natural strategic thinker, and he's brilliant at it. The personal side is also very insightful. An engaging book, full of humor and strategic insight.
"drive and determination"
Ted is clearly quite an extraordinary fellow. fascinating. not sure I learned a lot, but quite an eye opener about drive and determination.
Not many business books out there that are also entertaining. To be honest this is more a story of Ted's life but it really is a great listen. Highly recommended.
This is a very personal and real account of a very succesful business man. Lots of lessons to be learnt; very interesting to listen to, and very inspiring. Would recommend without a doubt.
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