Multiplication Center

The 4-Hour Workweek

January 14, 2008

The 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, And Join The New Rich by Timothy Ferriss

You may ask yourself why I’m recommending this book.  Just based on the title there are some concerns for those in ministry like:

  • Can you only work 4 hours a week in ministry?
  • Is my goal to be rich, or join the “new rich”?

Keeping those questions in mind, this is the one book that I overhead talked about in more conversations this past month or two, and it was the one book recommeneded repeatedly again by those that I really respect.  So I figured, I need to read this book.

Though you will find this book irreverent in many places; raising ethical questions in others; I think there are some really important things to take away from this book. 

This book has helped me think through issues rgarding my own work productivity and efficiency in ministry.  Ministry is not the typical 9-5 job anyways, and I think because of that there is this need to “work4work’s” sake, something that Timothy Ferriss is not a big fan of.  How often do we find ourselves generating meaningless work in ministry, so that we can justify our jobs.  When we spend the majority of our time outside of the office with people, there is a need to be in the office to put in our 9-5, even if it has little or no relationship to the work we are doing.

Ferris also raises other questions about pursuing work that we are really passionate about, rather than pursuing jobs that give us a money, security and ensure us a retirement at the end (something Ferriss is very against).  He also raises important questions about emphasizing strengths, rather than trying to improve on our weaknesses.  This is something not often emphasized in ministry and which I think leads to burnout.  If we can get people to emphasize their strengths we can better help them to pursue their passions, be productive, etc.  This also leads to more teamwork and collaborative efforts in my opinion, because we can compensate for people’s strenghts and weaknesses in a group.

This is a book you will find yourself disagreeing with in many areas, and Ferriss’s writing style and confidence/arrogance may rub you the wrong way, but I think it’s a book worth reading.  There will be some important principles you will take away with you.  Most importantly I think it will turn the 9-5 on it’s head which is something that needs to be done, or needs to be revamped as we move further and further into this internet age.

Have you read this?  Thoughts?

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