What’s it about?

First things first. I received this book for free by one of the authors. Though it was a gift, it was not given to me to review it or put a summary up on my site. I chose to do so on my own. After a long, very humorous, and anecdote-filled conversation with that author (which led to me receiving the book), I felt like I had experienced much of its content already.

You can easily “No, but” your way through life, passing up on opportunities and delaying possibilities. It’s literally easier to issue rejection and do nothing. But what if you were to turn the silver lining of every storm cloud into your new goal?

From the creators of Four Day Weekend Comedy, an improv show in Fort Worth, Texas, comes the story of how building a comedy show turned into so much more. The book explains the specific intricacies of the “Yes, and” mindset through the ups-and-downs of the authors’ time spent building an improv act. Through improvisation jargon and techniques, the reader learns how to implement the simple but complex idea into life.

Why should anyone read it?

The amazing part of this book was that it is written in as simple a way as possible. These guys pride themselves on finding the simple in the complex. It’s incredibly easy to put yourself in their shoes and understand exactly how to implement the work into your own life. That being said, there are plenty of funny side stories peppered in that give credence to the book’s concepts.

Where a leader can find value in this book is in the immediate application, and I mean immediate. You read the book, but in each chapter, there are ‘intermissions’ with tasks that thread each chapter together to get the most out of the material. Then at the end of each chapter, there are chapter highlights (always helpful) and specific exercises from the improv industry to practice your “Yes, and”. In fact, if you could convince a friend or two to read the book at the same time, I’d bet your absorption of the material and return on investment would grow exponentially. Only way to know is to try!

Select Quotations

“We always say yes is the spark plug that ignites an initial idea; however, the word and is the engine that keeps the idea moving forward.”

“To make our customers feel appreciated, we also need to make our staff feel appreciated.”

“One of the first things you learn in improvisation is to answer the questions of Who, What, Where, and Why in a scene. Well, the same rule applies to life.”

“A leader’s job starts when crisis begins.”

“Everyone is an expert in something you are not; therefore, when we honor other people’s special talents, we elevate ourselves.”

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