Working - Tales of life, love, mechanical mayhem . . . and getting even!
Do you like a good story? Here are 41 of them - just for you. They're all based on incidents that actually happened. Well, sort of. I got to strech them a little, but not that much. I think you'll like these characters. Some of them, you've probably met at one time or another.
Put a copy of Working in your the bathroom. You won't be sorry.
"I enjoyed Working so much because it took me back to a time of my youth and upbringing. Dan's writing makes it easy to visualize the words that he paints on his colorful canvas." - John R. Hall, Business Management Editor, The Air Conditioning, Heating & Refrigeration News
"What business are you in? You think it’s heating, hydronics, plumbing or the sanitary arts? Although I’m a “Rent-A-Geek” by trade, you and I are in the same business. Or should be. Don’t believe it? What do computer consulting and pipes have in common you ask?
Perhaps a read of Dan Holohan’s book Working - Tales of life, love, mechanical mayhem . . . and getting even! would provide an answer. This is a compendium of short stories compiled from bits and pieces from Dan’s extensive experience in the heating business. Although none of the stories are necessarily true events, they are amalgams and representations of true-life experiences that Dan has observed through the years.
There are 40 stories, each about 5 pages, written in the clear and witty Holohan style. The stories range through the clever such as “Buddy’s Beaters” wherein a heating contractor comes up with a unique way to get his deadbeat customers to pay; to “The neighborly thing in which a certain “The Duke” passes his vast knowledge of everything to his neighbors, mostly involving pouring Oatmeal into what ever’s broken, including leaking boilers; “Phelan on the phone” details how to create telephone tag, to assure you never have to talk to a client.
Each story takes a bite out of the contractor or the client or the manufacturer, or the poor slob who works for them. Some stories have a wonderful sense of sarcasm (“The power of negative thinking”), some poignantly funny (“So thorough. So quiet!”, “Katie Delaney’s marshmallow roast”), others are just plain clever and funny (“Bailey’s great experiment”, “Flott’s bold move”; “Doc Feeney and the Trickle-Down Principle”).
In all, Dan’s tales present real and recognizable characters and situations, many of which could be us in any of the roles. Recognizing ourselves in these stories is what I believe Holohan is trying to show in the diversity of stories in “Working”. It may even show you what business you’re in, or, perhaps, should be in.
Recognizing that we approach situations without awareness of our context and conditioning. Without recognizing what business we are really in, without understanding what we are truly trying to accomplish in our businesses, and in our daily transactions can we really know what business we are really in?
Which brings us back to my first question. What business are you in? Me? My business is Customer Service. My product is Technology. It’s what keeps me working. Reading “Working” made that clear. Try it. If nothing else, you’ll at least get 40 smiles and maybe as many chuckles.
N.B. A good follow-up would be the “serious” “The E-Myth Revisited: Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It” by Michael E. Gerber. Dan recommended this to me after I read “Working”. It’s made a real difference in my daily struggle to run a small business. It’s available on Dan’s Reading list (see the navigation bar)." - Alex Marx