Books are powerful and capable of giving twists to our lives. One such book is Randy Cage’s “Mad Genius!” I bought this book after reading a glowing review by one of my favorite authors, Steven Pressfield of “The Lion’s Gate” fame. Randy’s “Mad Genius” motivated me to read Steven Pressfield’s three books, “The War of Art,” “Turning Pro,” and “Do the Work,” as well as Seth Godin’s book, “The Icarus Deception.” These books were on my bucket list, but I had “resisted” reading them for a long time! Randy refers to them as the “Fearsome Foursome.” However, I devoured all three books by Steven Pressfield in one sitting, and I am yet to read “The Icarus Deception.” “The War of Art” changed my life!
What I like about “Mad Genius” is its easy readability. I finished reading this 222-page book in a straight two hours. Randy has presented his ideas in small chapters. Large typeface chapter headings capture the gist of the chapters, while highlighted typefaces emphasize key points. There are also bullet-pointed notes. Sentences are short and composed of simple words. The author justifies the name “Mad Genius” by explaining, “Entrepreneurs display a capacity to see the world in a novel and original way, literally, to see things that others cannot.” He carefully clarifies that being ‘mad’ is not about being psychotic. Though he quotes Wikipedia: “Psychotic individuals are said to have a capacity to see the world in a novel and original way, literally, to see things that others cannot!”
The book is divided into three parts. Book one is about “The Mysterious and the Secret System That Runs the World.” As I read a lot of motivational books, there were very few mysteries or secrets for me, but it could be enlightening for a novice. The same goes for the third part, “The Age of the Entrepreneur.” However, the second part, “The History of the Future,” discusses the mobile phone revolution, social media, apps, big data, and artificial intelligence, and their future business opportunities. Wannabe entrepreneurs can benefit from this section.
Three innovative takeaways I’ve learned from this book are:
1. Schedule at least forty-five minutes of thinking time every week.
2. Use the SCAMPER technique to develop more creativity in the workplace. SCAMPER is an acronym for seven different ways one can view an idea.
3. Don’t buy into conventional beliefs.
Randy Gage is a member of the Speakers Hall of Fame and has authored several books translated into more than twenty languages. His book “Risky Is the New Safe” is a New York Times bestseller (I am yet to read that one!). I won’t dismiss this book lightly. People ask me why I buy and read so many books. If even one idea proves useful to me, my friends, or relatives, that’s enough for me. This book pushed me to read the game-changer, “The War of Art.” I couldn’t ask for more!
Prof. Dr. Prahlada N. B
11 January 2019