What are you afraid of?
The old rules: Play it safe. Stay in your comfort zone. Find an institution, a job, a set of rules to stick to. Keep your head down. Don't fly too close to the sun.
The new truth: It's better to be sorry than safe. You need to fly higher than ever.
In his bravest and most challenging book yet, Seth Godin shows how we can thrive in an economy that rewards art, not compliance. He explains why true innovators focus on trust, remarkability, leadership, and stories that spread. And he makes a passionate argument for why you should be treating your work as art.
Art is not a gene or a specific talent. It's an attitude, available to anyone who has a vision that others don't, and the guts to do something about it. Steve Jobs was an artist. So were Henry Ford and Martin Luther King, Jr. To work like an artist means investing in the things that scale: creativity, emotional labor, and grit. The path of the artist isn't for the faint of heart - but Godin shows why it's your only chance to stand up, stand out, and make a difference.
The time to seize new ground and work without a map is now. So what are you going to do?
©2012 Seth Godin (P)2012 Random House Audio
Author, consultant and thought-leader on problems at intersection of sales and marketing
One of the top 5 audiobooks
A plus that Seth reads it himself.
This book has a very strong message which Seth hammers home many times.
I recently downloaded Seth Godin's “The Icarus Deception” on Audible as my work habits have changed and I have a couple of 90 minute commutes every week. I consider it a real plus in the audio version that Seth reads it himself.
The message in The Icarus Deception resonated strongly with me, an Australian Baby-boomer. I grew up in a culture where “flying too close to the Sun” was actively discouraged in an Aussie version of the myth called the “Tall Poppy Syndrome”. The message many boomers bought and which is still being promoted by industrial-based thinking today is “Play it safe, be a good worker, you’ll get promoted, own your own home and get to send your kids to University.”
Interestingly in the past 200 years, the Icarus myth somehow deleted Deadalus’ other warning to Icarus, not to fly too low, less his wings get wet and ruin their lift. Seth states that this is even more dangerous than flying too high and it’s the driving idea in the book that must have been repeated 20-30 times in various stories, case studies and anecdotes.
Seth’s message is most certainly appropriate for my daughter and her generation Y cohort. They are going to have to be very brave and make powerful art that connects billions of people to solve the problems humans have created in the past 200 years of industrialization that threaten our very survival as a species.
The Icarus Deception is about taking risks, finding your passion, leaving the certainty, commoditization and interchangeability of the industrial-age work-style and making art for yourself and your tribe. I felt like Seth had written the book for me, because the model our cohort grew up with was the industrial model.
The biggest problem with the old model is that industrialists, beginning with Henry Ford have created mass production and interchangeability of people and roles and the value of work and compensation has slowly been eroded as work is moved to the point of lowest cost, wherever that may be.
If you don’t buy this then you are obviously disconnected from the plight of the middle-class, who have seen their standard of living steadily erode over the past 10-15 years.
The new model is going to take guts and determination. To make art, connect and build a tribe of followers who will buy your art in the new “connection economy” is not for the faint hearted.
Another strong theme in the book that resonated and will be familiar to readers of Steve Pressfield’s book “Do the Work” is "to ship". To make art you must ship, and this means learning to dance with the "resistance" or “lizard-brain”, that diverts attention from the task at hand in a myriad of uncanny ways and learn to focus your individual creative powers on the task at hand.
When I finished listening to the book, I simply clicked go and listened to it again.
This book is not for everyone, it’s intelligent, brave, urgent and compelling and it’s a wake-up call to a civilization running out of time. I highly recommend it.
You would think someone who wrote the book would know how to read it without stopping 3/4 into a sentence as if it were done. Very distracting. Obviously like any author, he is entitled to his opinion, but he sure comes across as someone who was picked last as a kid and is now making a statement because he can. Also the constant referring to a third person as a female is annoying. What is wrong with saying "he or she"? You definitely don't get a sympathy vote from this female. For as much as he talks about the art of connection, he lost me in the first chapter.
Didn't get there...that says it all
He tries not to be monotonous, and runs into fake tones and artificial stops.
It has som interesting points of view that could have been summarized in a blog.
The idea behind the book is good but it is way toooo long. Seth keeps repeating himself over and over again.
Seth Godin is a genius and knows how to read the tea leaves on the wall. Then he puts it together masterfully. Made me think quite a bit and if some portions do not apply to my life now, they did in the past and know I will benefit from his words in the future.
Husband/Dad/Son/Brother/Friend and Companion to my Dog Sheena! Love all things leadership, contemplative & introspective considerations, and organic growth.
Yes... Hearing Seth read his own material adds the right tone and considerations for given aspects of the material.
This book kept me engaged the entire time. I looked forward to my 45 minute commute to and from work so I could listen to more. I believe totally in the foundation and premise of his position. There were great metaphors and stories to go along with each point. I will likely read this again. I also recommended to both my wife and my daughter.
As noted above, the right tone and inflection can make all the difference ein the world. I was particularly appreciative of his book and even more appreciative of him reading it to me. I really connected with the book, the stories, and the main concept he offered.
I absolutely loved this gem of a book. It came at the perfect time when I was contemplating scary work and waiting for someone to give me permission to do it. It's happening now and Seth's thinking was a major catalyst. Another recommendation is Seth's Startup Business School podcast (free) - also brilliant! I'm listening to it for a second time. You can find it in iTunes.
Its all great.
I really don't understand other reviews that complained about the speed of Seth's narration - I thought it was perfect?
This is an instant classic by Seth Godin. I've been a huge fan ever since Tribes. This book will challenge you and make you think. Must listen!
I have listened to all of Seth Godin's book and have to say this one is my favorite. It appeals to the artists in all of us and reminds us that you too can create art. A great book for business people, musicians, bloggers, writers and anyone who would like to create something for the sake of creation.
I love Seth Godin - my favorite author. Tribes...Linchpin...Purple Cow...Free Prize inside...Meatball Sundae...love all of his books and own all of the recordings.
Like another reviewer...20 minutes into it I had to shut it off.
#1 - His voice ... I LIKE the fact that he reads his books...it adds to it. In this recording, he is flat - has no enthusiasm and is almost whispering. It will lull you to sleep.
#2 - We've heard all of this stuff before from him. It's good stuff, but it's freshman year 101 Seth Godin material. I was expecting master's level material since he felt another book warranted.
I am bored with it and will move on. The rest of his books are OUTSTANDING, however.
His books are the best out there. This one is a stinker.
He is whispering.
The concepts were profound and motivating, and hearing them from the man himself made the experience seem special.
Clear and pleasant voice, as well as his carefully tempered passion.
Seth said something like "I'm trying to get under your skin" to compel listeners to get off their butts and create art. At that moment, I realized he had achieved his goal.
This is an important book for anyone who dreams of quitting their day job and living their own life. Thanks Seth!
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