Who Not How Book Summary - Who Not How Book explained in key points
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Who Not How summary

Dan Sullivan with Benjamin Hardy

The Formula to Achieve Bigger Goals Through Accelerating Teamwork

4.5 (561 ratings)
21 mins

Brief summary

"Who Not How" by Dan Sullivan and Benjamin Hardy is a guide to shifting from a "how-to" mentality to a "who-to" one, showing how collaboration and the creation of partnerships can lead to more efficient and successful outcomes.

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    Who Not How
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    "Whos" help you focus on your unique abilities and achieve your goals.

    The year is 1984. A promising young basketball star has just been drafted by the Chicago Bulls. His name is Michael Jordan, and it soon becomes clear that he’s one of the best players in the NBA – maybe even the best.

    And yet, despite the emerging star’s best efforts, Jordan’s first three seasons with the Bulls are frustrated by early eliminations in the playoffs. For the Bulls, Jordan’s individual athletic prowess just doesn’t translate to championship victories – or even making it past the first round of the playoffs.

    Rather than figuring out how to win a championship alone, Jordan needs help – someone who can support his amazing abilities in the context of a team sport. Jordan doesn’t need a How; he needs a Who.

    The key message here is: Whos help you focus on your unique abilities and achieve your goals.

    When you enlist a Who to assist you in a project or goal, you find someone who can take over tasks that don’t belong to your core talents. As it turned out, Jordan needed several Whos before the Bulls embarked on their famous run of six championship victories. The first arrived in 1987 – a rookie by the name of Scottie Pippen, who helped Jordan improve his own game while also becoming a better team player. But even then, for the next three seasons, the Bulls still couldn’t make it into the finals; they still relied too much on Jordan’s solo abilities. Jordan and Pippen needed another Who with the vision to grow the team into a tight-knit powerhouse.

    When Phil Jackson became the Bulls’ head coach in 1989, he soon realized that, while several players were very talented, he needed to develop a strategy using the whole team. He called this the triangle offense. Over the next few years, the Bulls perfected this strategy, and they went on to win six championships between 1991 and 1998. None of this would have happened through Jordan’s virtuosity alone.

    The Chicago Bull’s road to success isn’t just a nice story. It also begs the question at the crux of the Who Not How philosophy. If one of the greatest basketball players of all time needed several Whos to achieve his goals, what about you? What are you trying to accomplish, and who can help you do it?

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    What is Who Not How about?

    Who Not How (2020) introduces a new way of thinking about entrepreneurship, goal setting, and collaboration. Developed by business coach Dan Sullivan, the Who Not How mindset shows the importance of delegating tasks to others. By inviting them to help you achieve your goals, you’ll gain more free time, increase your income, and develop valuable, lasting professional relationships.

    Who Not How Review

    Who Not How (2021) explores a powerful paradigm shift that can revolutionize the way we approach our goals and tasks. Here's what makes this book worth reading:

    • It introduces the concept of collaboration and delegation as key drivers of success, allowing readers to tap into the expertise of others and achieve more.
    • With its insightful case studies and practical examples, the book offers a roadmap for leveraging the talents and skills of others to overcome challenges.
    • The book's focus on relationships and teamwork adds depth to the content, making it not only informative but also inspiring and relatable.

    Who should read Who Not How?

    • Aspiring entrepreneurs looking to realize a business idea
    • Burned-out professionals with a desire for more free time
    • Perfectionists on the hunt for procrastination cures

    About the Author

    Dan Sullivan is an entrepreneurial coach, consultant, and strategic planner. As founder and president of The Strategic Coach Inc., Sullivan has helped entrepreneurs around the world accomplish personal and professional goals. He’s the author or coauthor of numerous books and publications, including Who Do You Want To Be A Hero To? and The Gap and the Gain.

    Dr. Benjamin Hardy is an organizational psychologist. Hardy’s blogs have been read by over 100 million people and featured in publications such as the New York Times and Harvard Business Review. He cowrote The Gap and the Gain with Dan Sullivan, authored Willpower Doesn’t Work and Personality Isn’t Permanent.

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    Who Not How FAQs 

    What is the main message of Who Not How?

    Focus on finding the right people to achieve your goals, instead of trying to do everything yourself.

    How long does it take to read Who Not How?

    Reading time varies, but the book can be read in a few hours. The Blinkist summary takes around 15 minutes.

    Is Who Not How a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Who Not How is worth reading for its invaluable insights and practical approach to achieving success.

    Who is the author of Who Not How?

    Who Not How was written by Dan Sullivan with Benjamin Hardy.

    What to read after Who Not How?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Who Not How, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • 10x Is Easier Than 2x by Dan Sullivan with Benjamin Hardy
    • The Gap and the Gain by Dan Sullivan with Benjamin Hardy
    • Be Your Future Self Now by Benjamin Hardy
    • The Worry Trick by David A. Carbonell
    • The Replaceable Founder by Ari Meisel
    • The NFT Handbook by Matt Fortnow and QuHarrison Terry
    • Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday
    • The ONE Thing by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan
    • The 5 AM Club by Robin Sharma
    • The Coaching Habit by Michael Bungay Stanier