Book Review: Managing The Matrix By Dawn Metcalfe

At some point in your career, someone you saw as below you has been promoted and you sat thinking “How did he/she get promoted? I’m smarter and work harder.”

Dawn Metcalfe, who is a seasoned and practiced trainer, facilitator and coach, offers the frank and honest truth that you don’t want to hear but need to. Her refreshing and blunt perspective illuminates the importance of Soft Skills, in particular, Coaching and EI (Emotional Intelligence).

Companies in the Middle East have a predominant theme – you find yourself working in a matrix. For success in this environment, individuals’ need to adopt new approaches to their training. We need to stop keeping ourselves busy with the misconception of needing more technical skills to excel and move up the corporate ladder. Instead, we need to focus our attention on training the equally important, Soft Skills.

The book is not a Soft Skills sales pitch – the ideas make sense with the proper perspective.

Each chapter is followed by ‘Key Takeaways’: The book begins with a focus on the why and justifications for coaching, “Organizations that continuously support mentoring tend to achieve increased retention rates, improved morale, job satisfaction and commitment, accelerated leadership development, reduced stress and stronger, more cohesive teams.” Still not convinced? The following chapters move on to action steps and by the time you’re half way through, even the most sceptical person is seeing the value in developing soft skills.

This is a business book with a refreshing writing approach to the conventional business book writing style, it’s a real page-turner, you become immersed from the first chapter and your subconscious takes over the learning. I highly recommend spending a few hours at the weekend reading this book, especially if you are a soft skills skeptic.

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