Crush It was published, amidst much praise and publicity, back in 2009. I’m not sure why I didn’t get a copy then. I’m British, female and of ‘mature years’ and I confess to struggling a little with Gary’s puppy like enthusiasm and at some level decided the book was not for me.
Well, not only did I do Gary a disservice by prejudging him, I also missed a really useful book.
I recently bagged my own copy having bought Gary’s latest book The Thank You Economy, and giving in to the upsell invariably offered by that popular online book store.
(Book review of The Thank You Economy to follow shortly).
For me, Gary Vaynerchuk personifies passion and his book is almost allegorical in the way he sandwiches insights into his own background and story with the ‘how-you-can-do-this-too’ instruction.
Gary appears to have been born with the opportunity gene firmly within his DNA. He is on the ball with trends and predictions. The doubters may nay-say this comment and perhaps think that Gary’s predictions create his future – there is no doubt that a Vaynerchuk blessing of a social media site now sees throngs of ardent followers embracing the medium with enthusiasm – but I believe this is one talented young man.
While many took a back seat to watch the Internet unfold (I confess that I was one of those who thought EBay would never take off when I first heard about it back in the late 90s!), Gary began to think thoughts about how he could use this new opportunity. He freely and openly confesses his lack of ‘tecchie’ experience but that hasn’t stopped him making full use of all the tools this new economy has offered.
Gary lives in the real world. He interacts with his customers (still). He hasn’t banked his royalties and retreated to an ivory tower. For this reason he is real. He walks the talk – and he knows what he is talking about.
The book is about working with your passion. Finding a way to earn a living from what you love. I’m not sure many of us Brits do the ‘passion’ thing – but am open to the accusation that I am old, jaded and cynical! We do show enthusiasm and we get warm fuzzy feelings and we clap politely whilst muttering ‘Good Show Old Chap’. There’s some sort of cultural expectation, which is diminishing but nevertheless still within many of us, and it suspects anything that tells us work needn’t be hard, monotonous and unsatisfying. We want to believe that doing what we love will put food on the table, but we need proof.
Well, that proof can only be provided by our own efforts and unless we are willing to try, we’ll never know.
So, as we navigate through some difficult times, do we have anything to lose by reading Gary’s book and allowing his heartfelt enthusiasm inspire us to give it a go. No-one is saying it will be easy BUT the hard will not be so painfully hard when you are doing what you love.