The Business Romantic | Tim Leberecht

Summary of: The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself
By: Tim Leberecht


Prepare to embark on a journey towards embracing the role of a business romantic with ‘The Business Romantic: Give Everything, Quantify Nothing, and Create Something Greater Than Yourself’ by Tim Leberecht. This book challenges the notions of our social media-driven world and urges readers to seek true connections and meaningful experiences in both our personal and professional lives. From fostering a culture of giving at work to embracing the excitement of unique experiences, this book will make you reevaluate your approach to engaging with others and rekindle a sense of wonder in the magic of everyday life.

Building Meaningful Connections in a World of Likes

Social media platforms may promise connection, but they often leave us unhappy and distrustful. The solution is not to delete our online presence, but to adopt a new mindset. By becoming business romantics, we can find meaning in our work and build authentic relationships with others. This is the key to genuine happiness and success.

We live in a world where we constantly seek connection through social media. We share our lives and connect with others, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that we trust them. In fact, less than a fifth of millennials say they trust others. Social media platforms amplify our anxieties and leave us feeling unhappy. The good news is that we don’t need to give up our online presence or leave our jobs to build authentic relationships. We just need to change our mindset.

Business romantics are people who seek out work that offers valuable experiences rather than just financial rewards. Research by the Harvard Business Review shows that employees who find meaning in their work are more likely to stay with their company, be more engaged, and have higher job satisfaction. Unfortunately, business romantics are a rare breed. According to a Gallup poll, only 13% of employees worldwide are fully involved and enthusiastic about their jobs. The rest are either disengaged or actively disengaged.

Companies should focus on developing more business romantics to benefit from increased productivity and happiness among their employees. To do this, they should provide opportunities for meaningful experiences and encourage employees to adopt a business romantic mindset. By doing this, we can find genuine happiness and success, and build meaningful connections with others.

The Power of Workplace Socializing

Based on a study conducted by the London School of Economics, the only aspect of work that creates happiness similar to that experienced outside the workplace is casual interactions with coworkers. However, many employers discourage socializing as it is believed to harm productivity. This approach may lead to negative feelings among employees, resulting in a lack of motivation and disengagement. Instead of preventing workplace banter, businesses should encourage it to thrive. Happy employees experience higher satisfaction, and connecting with others is one of the essential components of a good life. The author shares an example of a dinner he hosted that brought together leaders from different fields who were total strangers to each other. The guests were asked to offer a toast that answered the question, “What is a good life?” The event gave the guests the opportunity to connect as human beings, leading to a sense of genuine connection with every single guest. Encouraging socializing in the workplace could lead to happier and more engaged employees, thus benefiting both the employees and the business itself.

The Power of Giving in the Workplace

The act of giving has the power to enhance workplace culture and boost employee motivation. In Give and Take, Wharton Business School professor Adam Grant explains that by promoting a culture of altruism in the workplace, companies can expect improved collaboration, innovation, and service excellence. Grant suggests that giving employees opportunities to give back can help create a positive work environment. For instance, companies such as chocolate manufacturer Anthon Berg and social platform Reddit encourage employees to give to others without expecting anything in return. Anthon Berg created a pop-up store in Copenhagen where customers pay for chocolate with the promise of a good deed for a loved one. On the other hand, Reddit’s “Random Acts of Pizza” campaign allows users to buy pizza for other users based on their creative and entertaining requests. These examples illustrate that promoting giving within a company can have positive effects and make the workplace more enjoyable.

The Value of Experiences

In a world where convenience is king, many customers still seek challenging and rewarding experiences when buying products. Companies that offer such experiences increase the perceived value of their products, as exemplified by the long queues outside the Apple store and the popularity of IKEA’s self-assembly furniture. Striking a balance between ease of purchase and a degree of effort yields happy customers who value the products they buy.

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