Mini Review: Who's Got Your Back by Keith Ferrazzi

When my friend Karl Schlegel told me that Keith Ferrazzi's new book (Who's Got Your Back: The Breakthrough Program to Build Deep, Trusting Relationships that Create Success- And Won't Let You Fail) was out, I immediately picked up a copy from my local library.  His first book, Never Eat Alone: And Other Secrets to Success, one Relationship at a Time was a favorite of mine and I devoured his ability to combine name dropping with a fresh approach to relational work.  Keith knows networking and has built his company around the concepts of relational work and respect for the individual.

Ferrazzi's sequel to Never Eat Alone left me, well, wanting to eat alone.  As with so many best-selling authors who find success with a breakout hit, Ferrazzi's latest sadly disappoints.

There are a few things that turned me off from the start, including:

  • The mention of "breakthrough program" in the title.  Do we really need more programs for self help?

  • Keith is a dynamic, gifted young man who lives the life of a rockstar.  I get this and even admire it but for the average guy, Keith can fall into the same category of Tim Ferris of 4 Hour Workweek fame.  I think that most of us are pretty ordinary, successful in our own right and practical people.  It's not that Keith's latest bit of advice (form deep relationships at all costs) isn't dead-on.  It is.  The disconnect is that most people are not even remotely like Keith and can find his story and style a bit condescending.  Hard to dig the message when you can't relate to the author.

  • Too much information.  Much of Who's Got Your Back is autobiographical.  A little is ok, a lot gets old fast.  I ended up skimming much of the book as a result.

Would I recommend the book?  Only if you can't find a copy of Never Eat AloneWho's Got Your Back leaves the reader scratching his back rather than running to tell others about it.