Book Review: Important Advice on a Well-Balanced Life


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Dr. Andrew Temte writes, “Discussing a philosophy for balanced work is really discussing a philosophy for a balanced life.” For me, this is really the true value of his new book, Balancing Act: Teach Coach Mentor Inspire. I love any book that talks about a holistic view to work as included in the entire balanced view of life.

What I have found during my career is that the people who are successful in their business careers are the same people who thrive in all aspects of their lives.

Of particular value in Temte’s book was the chapter on mentoring. I have been a long-time consultant to sales and marketing people, and I find his method of TCMI (Teach, Coach, Mentor, Inspire) is key to working with salespeople and their leaders. I also adhere to the philosophy that the most effective way to mentor salespeople is to talk to them about their lives, goals, important dreams, all for their families. This is the best way to inspire them to achieve their goals—by demonstrating exactly what they can achieve for their families by making their sales goals. I ask them about their dreams for their families: is it a college education for their children, or maybe that lake house? They can make their dreams come true by how they perform at work. Powerful stuff!

This book is particularly pertinent when talking about ethical leadership:

Through the lens of ethical leadership, the task of generating profits should be balanced with the needs of the customers and employees. Without customers and employees, the business will ultimately fail.

I love this sentiment. I have never been comfortable with the Milton Friedman school of thought, which says that the only responsibility of a company is to make profits for its shareholders, (and which to me always dehumanized business), to the point of making the very people in that business inconsequential. Dr. Temte completely dismisses this point of view, and that’s one of the reasons I love this book.

All businesses are alive because they are made up of people—people and their lives, people who work together whether they be employees or customers—who, in the end are human beings coming together to share and work toward common goals.

His emphasis on this point is what makes this book so important and relevant.

One final piece of advice is timely as we continue to deal with the effect of the pandemic, and that’s the ways he worked at protecting the people in his own organization making sure they were safe first. He creating an understanding environment when it came to working from home. He writes:

Putting people first means you will consider the human element of your business as the primary ingredient to success and appropriately balance cold calculation with the realities of families and livelihoods.

I would urge anyone who is serious about a truly balanced life to order your copy, read it, and then keep it handy as a reference for maintaining your own balancing act.

Balancing Act: Teach Coach Mentor Inspire
by Dr. Andrew Temte, CFA
Kaplan Publishing
Publication Date: April 6, 2021
Price: $24.95. Also available for Kindle.

Dan Beaulieu is president of D.B. Management Group.

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