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Revelling in Good Reviews

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Circus Master P.T. Barnum said, “All Publicity is good publicity.”, but P. Z. Boross says, “Good Publicity is the Best Publicity!”

We all love to hear that our work has value. When we launched Humourology: The Serious Business of Humour at Work back in June we hoped that the tenets of Humourology would work their way into the daily lives of leaders in every field. When we hear that our book is positively received, it shows that we are one step closer to our goal.

business matters reviewHumourology: The Serious Business of Humour at Work was recently featured in a review by Vincent Burke in London Business Matters magazine. Mr. Burke had nothing but nice things to say about the message of Humourology, the valuable lessons on leadership, and the collection of featured guests from the worlds of business, sport, entertainment, and politics. I am very grateful that Mr. Burke took the time to review the book and share the value of Humourology with his readers.

What to Do When the Press is Bad?

While I am grateful for the good review, I would be remiss if I didn’t take this opportunity to reiterate what Humourology has to tell us when we face bad news. Not everyone is going to like everything you do, all the time. However, we must have the courage to have a sense of humour in the face of a bad review.

My favourite film of all time is the ‘Rockumentary’ This Is Spinal Tap. One of the funniest bits in the film is when the rock band’s members are being interviewed about the awful reviews they have received for their albums.  The interviewer reveals that one of the reviews for their album Shark Sandwich was a two-word review that read Shark Sandwich: Shit Sandwich.

The worst (and yet bizarrely the most memorable and, in my opinion, best) review I received many years ago for the first hit single of my band Morris Minor and The Majors  – it was, I suspect, a tribute to the film. The two-word review in Melody Maker magazine simply read: Stutter Rap: Utter Crap.

When we allow ourselves to laugh at our shortcomings, other people’s opinions start to matter less. When we can recognise that others’ opinions are far more related to their own lives than ours, we can see that a bad review is not the end-all-be-all of our success. Laughing away a bad review doesn’t mean we cannot learn from constructive criticism. We can use our senses of humour to shield ourselves from negativity and push forward with positivity as we continue to prick the bubble of pomposity with Humourology.

I hope that Mr. Burke’s review can help put Humourology on the map of London’s Business leaders so that everyone can benefit from a happier and more humourous workplace. If you want to learn more about the serious business of Humour in the workplace, give the book a try or listen to our fantastic collection of podcast episodes featuring a full lineup of fabulous guests.

See you next Tuesday,



P.S: My good friend Mark Bedford from the band Madness is also a huge fan of Spinal Tap and whenever we catch up over a long lunch or drinks, you can guarantee that we will deploy many classic lines from the film in all our conversations. They still make us laugh uproariously every time. See if you can spot any line from the film in this energising, entertaining and enlightening chat with Mark. NB. If you listen to any Madness tracks, I think you will really like his big bottom!

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