Thrive by Mark Barnes


‘Thrive’ is a witty, informative guide designed to simultaneously educate and entertain. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, partly because of the author’s light-hearted approach and partly because the survival guide layout was a novel way to explain a dry topic.

Barnes’ guide to survival in the corporate world was intertwined with a bustling jungle theme. The author’s attempt to “inject a little fun” into business by comparing it to the cut-throat ecosystem of the rainforest was especially successful because it turned a serious, complex topic into something relatable and easy to understand. Though I tend to prefer fiction over non-fiction, I enjoyed this book more than some of the recent dystopias I have read, simply because of its fun manner and colloquial prose. I also found that I learnt a huge deal about corporate life along the way.

Chock-full of analogies and little exemplar speech bubbles, this guide was both helpful and factual. By using real-life observations, Barnes’ advice was really able to resonate with the reader. I’m sure that many readers – myself included – could recognise some of the scenarios outlined in this book! Barnes generated an empathetic bond with his readers, and through this bond was able to teach his audience the key ideas behind business. Reading ‘Thrive’ has taught me how to not only survive in the corporate jungle, but how to succeed and flourish.

Everything about this book was fun yet factual. The numerous references to snakes, insects, bears and other forms of jungle life were cleverly linked to their corporate counterparts with stunning precision. Insects are, indeed, those low down on the corporate ladder who do the actual company work that has been delegated to them, and snakes are found in every office, identifiable by their charm and silver tongues.

I would recommend this book to anyone who finds themselves trekking through the corporate jungle, hacking at the greenery and struggling to reach the foliage. ‘Thrive’ is a highly motivational, business-driven survival guide that will never cease to inspire and educate.


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