Great Work: How to Make a Difference People Love

Summary of Great Work: How to Make a Difference People Love

By Benjamin Meyrand

For my Managers independent book study I have reviewed Great Work: How to make a difference people love. I am to discuss how to implement the book into my work, however this is not an easy task. It is not just a book of “take said idea and implement”, but more of a way to see anew. This book has provided me with a mind frame of how to view problems not as hindrances, but as opportunities to look at the issue, make changes, discuss new ideas, talk to outside sources, and not fear failures. Reading this book has provided me with the idea of “owning” my job – not just going to a job. I plan on taking a step back, and seeing what ideas I can come up with to improve my job experience, my employee’s experience, and most importantly improve the customer’s experience that we provide to them. Below I have attached the strong points from the book that anyone can review to attain a sense of what this book can provide to them.


Reframe your role:


“That’s what reframing your role is all about: thinking about how your work affects others, looking at the larger purpose of your work and whom it benefits, and seeing yourself as a potential difference maker.”


Work with what you’ve got:


“It’s perfectly natural to feel limited by the constraints of our jobs from time to time. But rather than seeing those constraints as limitations, we can see them as a starting point for making a difference.”


Ask the right question:


“Great work begins when we take the time to ask if there’s something new the world would love. If we ask the right question and no great improvements come to mind, there’s no harm done.”


-Take the time to ask what people might love. Tackle a problem. Consider what you’re good at. Think out on the edge.


See for yourself:


“Each of us has a unique perspective on the world around us, an inner eye that has more to do with how we think than with what we see.”


-Observe everything that affects your work. Watch what people do. Look at the process. Explore other disciplines. Examine the details. Look back. Look to the future.


Talk to your outer circle:


“Novel ideas are formed by making new connections. When what we know collides with what someone else knows, a new connection is made. Objectivity won’t come from those who are closest to us. It will come from outsiders. That’s where we’ll find divergent thinking.”


Improve the mix:


“We find improvements worth making by adding and removing ideas until everything fits. A model allows us to look at the elements of change that are staring us in the face and ask: Will this improvement make a difference? Will people love it? How desirable is it? How cool? How doable? How profitable? How well does it integrate with the good we started out with?”


-Work with ideas to find improvements that are worth making. Add something new. Improve by remove. Check for fit.


Deliver the difference:


“People who do great work have a different set of criteria for declaring a job complete: whereas the typical definition of complete is “the work is done,” the great work definition of complete is “a difference is made. When people don’t love our work, when our work stumbles, stalls, or otherwise flops, we need to remember that this is just an opportunity to become a more intelligent difference maker. We need to relax into the experience and allow ourselves to soak up some knowledge. ”


-Be obsessed with outcomes. If your work isn’t loved at first fine tune it for success. Make one difference lead to another. Create great work that inspires others.


Get on the wall:


“To become a difference maker involves some risk. After all, chasing ways in which we can improve the world is much more of an adventure than doing the same old same old.”

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