What if we’ve been served a big, fat lie about what it takes to be successful at work?
Pro-hustlers will tell you living in a work-more, sleep-less world is how we get ahead. But on the back of the pandemic, entrepreneur and Business Chicks founder Emma Isaacs believes the hustle is now dead. Moreover, traditional ways of working – long commutes, unproductive meetings and outdated systems of bureaucracy – actually don’t work at all.
Emma believes we don’t have to work harder; we just need to work better. In fact, we can slash our hours, take shortcuts and still get more done – without feeling depleted. By becoming more intentional and reimagining the way we work, we can rewrite the old work rules and reinvigorate our lives.
The New Hustle condenses Emma’s wisdom into 77 anti-rules for maximum dip-in-and-out efficiency. Drawing inspiration from her team, the member of Business Chicks and the many entrepreneurs and leaders who have graced the Business Chicks stage – from Elizabeth Gilbert to Simon Sinek – she guides us towards embracing radical flexibility, making quick decisions and working smarter, from the emails we craft to the talent we recruit . . . and say no to the things that don’t matter, so we can say yes to the things that do.
Written with humour, insight and a serving of tough love, The New Hustle is your go-to for more productive, creative and meaningful work by one of Australia’s most unconventional and effective entrepreneurs: a bestselling author, mum of six – and a woman determined to start an anti-hustle revolution.
Emma Isaac’s The New Hustle is the latest addition to a long suite of go-to business guides with practical, useful advice to people working within a professional environment. The New Hustle will also suit readers wanting to pursue a new passion — people who are perhaps afraid to take a leap towards something different.
Given we’re eighteen months into COVID-19, there’s a lot of content in here that feels relevant and timely. Businesses have had to learn how to adapt to the pandemic, and Emma’s inclusion of COVID makes the book a welcome inclusion in this genre.
“Making better deals is not just about making more money. It’s about being able to enjoy our work more and it’s about being able to truly work smarter and not harder. Sometimes to make a better deal you just need to be a bit more creative and think of alternative ways to structure it.”
There is an element of vulnerability to this book — it’s as much about advice and rules as it is about Emma revealing the lessons that she has learned throughout her career. She’s experienced hardship and failure, and she doesn’t shy away from introspection and delving into personal stories.
The book is broken up into short chapters to allow for easy reading — you’ll devour this very quickly. I can imagine many of Emma’s fans, particularly members of Business Chicks, will enjoy having this on a bookshelf for the odd occasion that you need some life tips.
“Sometimes we’re so used to something being normal, we forget to interrogate why we’re going along with it in the first place. A great example of this is the work hours that most workplaces accept as normal.”
Whilst there is plenty of advice and wisdom in here that readers can take away from, if you’re the kind of reader who regularly delves into these kind of books, you will find a bit of similarity here. There were a couple of nuggets in this book that I felt I hadn’t read before, but some of this is common sense and I wonder if the target audience of this book might already know what they’re reading.
Something else I felt when reading this book is that it seems to mostly serve people who work in management roles, rather than professional workers who are lower down the pecking order within the business. There’s a chapter about companies needing to adapt work hours to reflect contemporary lifestyle — great! love it! but that’s not a decision I can make, nor is my boss. We’re a company with thousands of employees. Ideally, we’d need the CEO to read this book.
It felt like the book never really settled on the type of reader it was speaking to. Is this for creative people wanting to start their own business? Is this for bosses? Management? Is this for entry-level workers wanting to move up? What about middle-level? Each category of reader may find something relevant in this book, but interest will differ depending on what chapter you’re on.
What does feel different about The New Hustle are the personal experiences, the anecdotes, and the life lessons along the way. Whilst sometimes, and it’s just sometimes, Emma tells a story from a time she did something ‘right’ and it comes off like a humble brag, it is nice to have examples tied to most of her advice so that we can gain further understanding. It is also refreshing when authors admit what they’ve struggled with over the years, how they’ve failed, and the lessons they’ve picked up along the way.
“Another great way to keep in touch with the people who matter to you is just to drop them a short email from time to time. I do this regularly with our members. I’m never after anything from them, but a random, unexpected note to say ‘I’m thinking of you’ can go a long way towards making others feel great and building upon a relationship.”
Recommended for readers wanting some direct advice on their career, and how to achieve what they want. Readership skews female, 35+
Thank you to the publisher for sending me a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
The New Hustle
Pan Macmillan Book Publishers