Seth Godin’s Poke The Box is a quick, easy read. Unfortunately, I felt after reading it exactly as I did after finishing Tribes: unimpressed. Though Poke The Box has many rave reviews on sites like Amazon, I think the better medium for the short 83-pager would have been a blog post… or two.
I also feel the message in Godin’s Linchpin is overall much stronger and better written. For example, the lizard brain concept is explained and detailed so well in Linchpin that I felt the short paragraph on page 18 didn’t do the idea justice.
While I do understand the need for a short read, Poke The Box, for me, was forgettable. What did I just read? It was meant to be uplifting and inspiring, but for those of us who already have that “Go!” drive and Type-A personality, there wasn’t much new content or material to actually learn from. Again, this is disappointing because I learned so much from Linchpin.
My favorite reviews of the book come from Brian of GoodReads and Guy at Amazon.com. To be fair, there are many more positive comments about Poke The Box than negative. For example: “If Poke the Box communicates nothing else, it presents this one message with a megaphone voice: ‘Go!’ ‘Start now.’ ‘The worst thing you can do is nothing.’ Already, I find myself arguing, since I know that just doing things without careful planning first has led to many disasters. But I keep reading because Seth is so insistent, and he has such a large tribe following him, telling me that maybe he’s worth listening to” (Source). If you lack motivation, as many people do, this may be the book that gets you up and moving.
If you’re already satisfied with life and your domination of it, I’d suggest, especially if you are a diehard Godin fan, that you check out Poke The Box from the library. Save your $5 to purchase Linchpin instead.