When my friend Ted Rubin asked me to read his new book, Return on Relationship, I thought, "There goes a perfectly good Sunday afternoon." Little did he know that I would rather visit a proctologist than hunker down with a business book on any subject, let alone a topic that already occupies nearly all my waking hours.
But, since Ted is a friend (and not in the superficial Facebook-y kind of way) and our relationship was forged over time through "persistence, patience and purpose," I read his book. And damn-if all business books were as interesting, enlightening and inspiring, I might just have to read a few more.
And perhaps I shouldn't sound so surprised. After all, I wrote my first Fast Company.com post on his success at e.l.f. Cosmetics, I've seen his terrific presentation on ROR at various social media conferences and we've hung out at numerous points in between. In fact, we enjoy the kind of relationship that Ted describes in the book as genuine, one that is "built on trust, transparency and honesty."
This review itself is proof-positive of the power of Ted's philosophy and is easy reciprocity for the numerous acts of kindness he's freely thrown my way. And here's the thing: Ted doesn't just talk the talk, he lives it in a way that validates his philosophy day-in and day-out.
In fact, try this experiment: Reach out to Ted via your preferred social channel (his is @tedrubin) or even call or text him on his cell (remarkably, he shares his number at every conference). He will respond. That's his superpower. And if you respond back, he'll continue to respond-relentlessly. Until finally you're out of words or time or breath and just decide to let his last :) end the conversation. And this, my friends, is how you build relationships, the new kind of "currency" that Ted's book will show you how to take to the bank.
Spoiler Alert-When you read Return on Relationship you will find yourself thinking anew about your approach to social media. Even seasoned practitioners will find themselves jotting down ideas. In fact, (true story) I sent three emails to my associates at Renegade while reading the book, each one filled with ideas that we could put into practice right away for one client or another.
So as you may have figured out by now, this is no ordinary book review. Frankly, it's not a book review at all. This is me being a brand advocate for Ted and, by extension, his book. I don't know his co-author Kathryn Rose, but if she's a friend of Ted's, then I'll give her props too because that's what true brand advocates do. Of course, you'll find all that out when you order your own copy on Amazon, which I just did for several of my other friends.
In the book, Ted notes, "your social audience doesn't owe you your attention--you have to earn it." I think the same goes for book authors and without a doubt, both Ted and Kathryn earned my attention, providing a delightfully well spent Sunday afternoon in the process. Thanks guys.