The Secret of the Seven Seeds
Author: David Fischman
The Secret of the Seven Seeds is unlike any management book I've ever read - which doesn't necessarily mean it works, or that it delivers anything new.
It tells the story of Ignacio Rodriguez and his search for a more successful business and control over his life. At risk of heart disease, Ignacio heads reluctantly to a spiritual guide to ask for advice on meditation. What he receives is a life treatise from 'the Master' through the lessons taught by seven seeds.
The first seed symbolises self knowledge, the second meditation and the value of quiet thought. The third symbolises the value of egolessness, the fourth disinterested service, the fifth is about ethical decisions, the sixth taking control of your life, and the final one is to be flexible and be willing to change.
Sound a bit familiar? Yes, I thought so too. The writing style is naïve, although to be fair, the author doesn't claim it's a novel, but a parable. The book has a certain innocence, appropriate to the main message of keeping things simple, but it grates at times. The research that convinced Ignacio to continue his lessons with the Master lacks depth. As a result, we are left with his personal conviction that meditation and ethical behaviour in business are jolly good things.
I suspect that the actual experience of meditation in our manic and pitiless world might be no bad thing, but the book left me cold. Having said this, if it has sparked my interest at all, perhaps that's sufficient to fulfil the author's 'dharma'.
Useful? 3 out of 5
Well-written? 2 out of 5
Practical? 2 out of 5
Inspirational? 3 out of 5
Value for money? 2 out of 5
Overall 3 out of 5
Reviewed by Karen Drury, partner, FE3 Consulting