Some books are meant to tell a story and some books are meant to inspire others. Books meant to inspire are those that are generally described as “self-help”, but they are those small minorities where those “self-help” books can transform lives and businesses. Self Help books have the intention to motivate, instruct, and inspire those to do better. For this book review, The Harada Method the Spirit of Self-Reliance by Takashi Harada, Norman Bodek, is meant to inspire not only individuals but also inspire corporations, businesses, and entities. Within this book review, an overview will be given on the book with the aid of quotes, and chapter analysis of the purpose of the book that has been endorsed by major corporations such as The Cumberland Group, The Toyota Company, and The Coca-Cola Company.
Norman Bodek created the book when got interns from Utah and Portland State colleges, he then contacted a friend in Japan, Shigheiro Nakamura, to teach his interns about the 38 MAP method, according to Bodek was an instrument that teaches them cost, delivery, set-up improvements, equipment management, automation, first class skills, etc. On one of Nakamura’s last weeks of his Skype lesson, he discussed Takashi Harada and the Harada Method. After listening to him explain the Harada Method, Bodek jumped at the opportunity to contact Harada and meet him. Once flying to Japan, Harada agreed to come back to America with him. They agreed to co-author a new book with him on Harada Method that he wrote over two years. Since then, Bodek has been doing seminars, conferences and teaching the Harada Method to his students at Portland State. During his conferences and seminars he was able to certify a number of executives and managers that were trained in the Harada Method that they were able to bring back to their corporations and trained their employees.
“The Harada Method” provides a systematic step by step guide, which teaches employees to take responsibilities for making their self of importance to their business. The employees will find their own self-reliance that leads them to become more accomplished and reaching higher levels of professional and personal performances. “The Harada Method” is also used as a motivational tool for managers to help their employees bring out the best in them in order to achieve corporate and personal goals. However, “The Harada Method” is not just for employees, Harada also used it in schools.
“By promoting educational efforts and sports programs, I could help them understand the importance of having dreams and clear goals in life. Having dreams and goals helps guide people in the right direction. It helps them build great character and it eventually helps them succeed in their lives.” (Bodek, Harada, 2012)
When he taught these students and coaches the “The Harada Method” they were significantly transformed. Within years, they were winning medals, becoming the number one in their sports field, students that were once considered underachievers had received scholarships to colleges, and transformed that school.
According to Bodek self-reliance is the main feature of the method. “Self-reliance is the ability of each person to become so skilled at something that they become artisans in disciplines they choose that serve their future and also the success of their organization.” (Bodek, Harada, 2012) Bodek throughout his book emphasizes the concepts of self-reliance, self-improvement, and making goals to achieve. “The Harada Method” is broken down into chapters, but it focuses on the five forms of the method which include, “33 Questions for Self-Reliance” that measures how self-reliant the person views themselves. Second, was the “Long-Term Goal Form” which is the main factor of the “The Harada Method.” It focuses on an instrument used to organize their purposes and goals, and a self-analysis that is transformed into an action plan. This form is divided into multiple sections that allows people to set their goals at different levels. It helps to keep the individual encouraged, on track, motivated, and the option to find someone to help them coach them along the way to help reach their goals. The third form is the, “Open Window 64 Chart” which is a particular framework that allows the individual to create tasks and routines that will help them accomplish their goals. The fourth form, “Routine Check Sheet” is just for people to create daily checklists that keeps them on track and makes them stronger in their routines. The last form is, “Daily Diary” which is used as a tool for planning that helps people be organized and improve on their productivity skills. The individuals create to-do lists that allows them to write out their tasks and also reflect on how far they have come.
Within the chapters of the books, he provides readers with systematic steps that are first for individuals to become self-reliant in order to become a winner. They then select the goals that they feel they want to succeed in life. These goals help to define their values in purposes within their lives. They are then instructed to analyze their past failures, opportunities, and success that they then are instructed to provide countermeasures that will help with their future goals. The next step is them creating their 64 tasks and actions charts, and they begin with 10 select tasks, pick out their routines, and create new habits. The other chapters provide the last steps which coincide with the five forms explained earlier.
Overall, Bodek gives not only individuals their encouragement that they are beneficial not only in their lives, in the lives of those around them, and invaluable to their company. The book helps to take people to their full capacity, and learn their full capability in and outside the workplace. Unlike other self-help guides, Bodek also encourages leaders to be motivators, coaches, and mentors to their employees in efforts for them to realize their full potential in helping the company be more successful, and working towards individual successes. These methods help companies compete on a local, national, and global level with other companies by teaching to be more lean, productive, and prioritized.
Bodek, Norman, Harada, Takashi. (2012). The Harada Method the Spirit of Self-Reliance. PCS Press.