Book Review - Who Moved My Cheese? by Dr Spencer Johnson
Change is something that we all have to deal with.
Having to learn to adapt and succeed in ever changing environments are skills that we all have to acquire if we’re to succeed in both our professional and personal lives. Whether you like it or not; change is inevitable, and we all have to be prepared for it.
This is wonderfully explained in Dr. Spencer Johnson’s best -selling book ‘Who Moved My Cheese?” Written in 1999, this has become one of the most successful business books of all time with over 24 million copies sold.
The book is a metaphorical fable that centers around four characters, living in a maze, who are constantly looking for cheese to nourish them. The four characters are meant to represent the simple and complex parts of ourselves, and as you read the book, you’ll find yourself identifying with them and the situations they find themselves in. Each has a different outlook to life and reacts to change in their own individual way:
Sniff – who sniffs out change early.
Scurry – who scurries into action.
Hem -who denies and resists change, fearing it may lead to something worse.
Haw – who learns to adapt in time when seeing change can ;lead to something better.
The ‘cheese’ that they spend their time searching for in the story represents the things you want from your life; that may be more clients for your business, a better job, a loving lasting relationship, wealth or possessions.
The ‘maze’ represents the places you visit to search for these things, your community, your workplace, your home.
Whether you’re an avid reader of business books, or you’ve never really picked one up before – this is a great book to start with. Firstly, it’s less than 100 pages long, so it’s hardly a daunting prospect and could be read easily in a day. Secondly it doesn’t really read like a business book. There’s no jargon or pretentious corporate speak or clichés to wade through either, just simple powerful messages that get exactly to the point, giving you plenty of food for thought.
It’s the simplicity and the metaphorical style of writing that Dr. Spencer Johnson adopts that gives this book the marmite factor – you’ll either love it or hate it. Many love the fact that the messages in the book are delivered in a fun, easy manner – others don’t, considering it to lack substance.
Well, all I can say is that I urge you to read it for yourselves and make your own mind up.
Personally I think it’s the simplicity of this book that makes it so good. Let’s face it, sometimes the most obvious and simple lessons in life are the ones we often ignore! The story is thought provoking and the way it’s written allows the reader to interpret it in their own individual way.
Who Moved My Cheese? Is a great read, short and to the point, and I guarantee this book will have you thinking about it long after you’ve put it down.