Article by: MaryEllen | Thursday, May 1, 2014

Enemies can now become friends that facilitate your success.

Often times, people underestimate the importance of having people on their side, whether it is in the business world or their personal lives. But  in Adversaries into Allies: Win People Over without Manipulation or Coercion, Bob Burg makes clear how necessary this can be, and just how to achieve it. He details the many ways to go about this, and all the factors that need to be taken into account when doing so. However, he consistently emphasizes that manipulation is not needed in order to get people to agree and that solutions and agreements can be made in a much healthier way. Burg makes the task important but simpler, and never fails to make his ideas and reasoning clear.

A speaker for corporations and associations, Bob Burg spends much of his time explaining his ideas to groups ranging from the tens to the ten-thousands. He is known for his books Endless Referrals and The Go-Giver, which reached the #6 spot on the Wall Street Journal’s Business Bestseller list. However, Adversaries into Allies is considered by many to be Burg’s most significant book thus far.

Throughout the entire book, Burg stresses the meaning of allies. He explains that these are not people you lie to or take advantage of; that they are equals you need to work with in order to get a job done. He explains that although every decision is based on self-interest, one cannot be selfish when making decisions or working with others. He also defines adversaries as anyone that could be in your way; they are not necessarily enemies, but whether they know it or not, they are hindering your success.

Once he explains these key terms, he gets into how his readers can transform their adversaries into allies, and how they can form these relationships in a genuine, lasting way. His teachings focus on an idea called “Ultimate Influence,” which is the skill of being able to get something from someone else while making them feel better about themselves, in a genuine way. Burg puts plainly that this is the best way to make adversaries into allies.

He writes the book in such a way that it is very easy to apply what he says to one’s own life. He speaks from his own experiences, but not in a way that would alienate a reader. Burg’s lessons are not meant to be used by one person in one type of situation; it is his intent to show many people how to build relationships in order to be successful in all areas of their lives.

Burg uses the rest of the book to lay out all of the steps that need to be taken, both in one’s own life and in dealing with other people. The book is broken up into many different sections with many different chapters, making it easier to follow what he is saying; he does not jump from one subject to another without making sure the last point he brought up is fully explained. These sections focus on ideas that include the basics to making allies, emotions that can be involved, disagreements with potential allies, appealing to potential allies, setting up a frame to achieve the goal, communication, and finishes with the importance of everything previously discussed.

Although teaching on a subject that could very easily get confusing, as there are so many different aspects to the process laid out, Burg does a wonderful job of being clear about his ideas and beliefs. He discusses nearly everything a reader could think of and all the questions that could be asked, without going overboard or dragging on. While instructing readers how to act in a way that is very closely related to personality, Burg’s own writing is very personable, and he seems very genuine in all that he says and advises on.

If you are interested in building more relationships in your life that could make you more successful, Adversaries into Allies would be a great place to start. And even if you do not think this is something you need to learn how to do, you may want to read it anyway. It may just change your mind and show you all the ways you could be more successful.

Order your copy of Adversaries into Allies HERE.