‘Joining the Dots’ by Alex Mathers is a book for creative people to build their creative skills and expand their business and increase their numbers. The London based author is also the founder of Red Lemon Club that helps creative people build and grow.
Though I haven’t done any reviews in the past, this would be my first and it seemed very apt for my audience.
The book is beautifully illustrated by Claire Powell. It wouldn’t seem like you’re reading a book about marketing, branding, and growth. Instead, more like a story, with bright and colorful illustrations. Nothing, but an eye-candy for the mind.
The book is ‘the A-Z handbook for making a success of creative skills’ establishing 26 chapters in an alphabetical order for a creative entrepreneur. The idea of alphabetically arranged chapters is creative, systematic and organized, it also displays the author’s creativity, and reveals that there is so much more to learn from his knowledge of that subject. Keeping things easy to remember the author incorporates chapter titles like, ‘Jazz’ and ‘Karaoke’. What could these have to do with entrepreneurship? We’ll read about it later.
Ever wondered if you could have a notes section after every chapter to jot down the main points to remember, rather than having a separate book to do it?
‘Joining the Dots’ solves the problem. A two-sided note section to make things easier and simple.
The author uses simple language and easy to understand words, which makes learning less tedious. The book keeps the reader engaged and well-learned by examples from Alex’s life and the world.
“Whether you consciously work on branding yourself or not, eventually you show the world is communicating your brand.”
You may not require a degree to understand branding when you understand it from this book. The author effortlessly and intelligently puts down about branding skills for your business. Tackling challenges during the process, and the importance of establishing a Unique Selling Proposition (USP). are the other main topics that are focused on, which few aspiring entrepreneurs struggle with.
Living in the fast-paced internet world, the ideas of transparency, hyper-connectivity, and quality of work become relevant.
The author also specifies the dynamics of caution:
“There is a difference between providing great work and over-delivering”
Entrepreneurs need to bear all risk and uncertainty, but to be cautious of such is a sign of a whip-smart. A book that speaks of both pros and cons is a genius.
Ethics of business standards are indispensable, and so believes the author, and establishes the most pertinent of them to be- honesty, self-awareness, hospitable, and being zealous.
We’ve always read that there are no friendships in business, but Alex Mathers thinks otherwise. Friendships go a long way and help with networking. It’s always good to remain in other’s good books.
Few takeaways from the chapters that can be listed are:
- Seeking bigger and better clients.
- Creating more every day.
- Sharing creative output- Paid or not.
That’s what I thought.
“When you meet your basic financial needs you have the liberty to work more creatively with the dream clients you always wanted”
Money is not child’s play. Everything we do is for money. The bootstrapping model of business (where you reinvest the profits from your business) is explained with no-frills, unlike few entrepreneur textbooks.
“Every form of creative output has a backlog of borrowed ideas”
Just the way we pick our favorite song to sing at a karaoke bar. Plagiarism is not encouraged, but inspiration can be.
The last-second chapter reads “Yell”, meaning self-promotion. Self-promotion is not always boastful and it can be done confidently without seeming like a brag.
I’d conclude this review with four cardinal elements:
1. Market Creatively
2. Do more
4. Package and Present
Collaborative Book Review by Harsha Sheelam for Author Alex Mathers’ book ‘Joining the Dots’.
Illustrations by Claire Powell.