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Work the System: The Simple Mechanics of Making More and Working Less

Author: Sam Carpenter

Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group Press

ISBN: Mandy Leonard

Summary:Whilst we may know the systems we should use, we’re not necessarily implementing them to best advantage. This books shows you how.

Work the System

ISBN:  978-1-929774-87-6


There are numerous books out there that promise ways to get rich by putting in very little effort. At first glance it’s easy to think that this book may fall into that category – but it is not. As you learn a bit about Sam Carpenter, the author, you realize that this book is anything but. As the author points out in the introduction, this book is not about “esoteric theory, politics or religion”. It is about common sense and simple mechanics.

The systems he uses he calls “a workingman’s philosophy.” Carpenter has been a telecommunications entrepreneur for over 20 years and managed to turn around his own business by implementing systems to simplify both his work and his life. It is these systems that he covers in the book.

Work the System is divided into three straightforward parts, The Mind-Set, Critical Documentation and Further Considerations.  Carpenter uses the first section to take an honest and open look at how he did business himself, and he uses his company Centratel as the example. Through his narrative the reader learns about the frustrations and failures of the company and how close it came to closing down. Deciding to take a risk on a new way of thinking, Carpenter changed the way he ran his business and overhauled the systems that were in place. The chapters are dotted with examples of sub-systems either within the business or his personal life that may have needed minor changes but all resulted in improved performance. These snippets encourage the reader to question examples within their own lives and to reflect on changes that they could make for the better.

Critical Documentation covers detailed examples of systems put in place in Centratel and shows the three types of activity needed for things to become truly effective, Strategic Objective, General Operating Principles and Working Procedures. Carpenter’s approach to writing the book is especially useful for those who prefer to learn from examples.

Finally the author provides readers with tip and tricks to help understand and best implement these new systems within their business and personal lives.

Whilst there is nothing revolutionary in this book, the basic ideas are solid and it is a good read. And Carpenter’s stress on the importance of teamwork and good communication are as valid as other books on the subject. Many will read Work the System and find themselves agreeing with lots of the points mentioned.

The message in this book is that, while we may know the systems we should use, we’re not necessarily implementing them to best advantage.