Renaissance man James A. Cusumano has not had one successful profession – he has had five distinct and flourishing careers. Starting out as the lead singer for The Royal Teens, he then became a research scientist and executive at Exxon. Following that, he co-founded Catalytica, Inc., a booming Silicon Valley company with divisions in clean energy
and pharmaceuticals. He then became a filmmaker, producing the movie What Matters Most. Ultimately, he and his wife created Chateau Mcely, a five-star luxury hotel and spa near Prague. Throughout his myriad careers, Jim pursued his passions and found true purpose and balance in life. He shares wisdom and insights in his compelling new book,
BALANCE: The Business-Life Connection.
BALANCE is comprised of three distinct sections that illuminate Jim’s experience and insight. The first part is an autobiographical look at the author’s “five lives.” In this section, it becomes clear how each of Jim’s divergent careers has been strongly connected with his purpose and passion. For example, he describes how despite being on the fast track to a leadership position
at Exxon – the mismatch between the large corporate bureaucracy and his own entrepreneurial spirit propelled him to quit and launch a Silicon Valley start-up, leading the growth of that enterprise to a public company valued at nearly $1 billion. Jim also explains how, at the many critical crossroads he encountered, he learned to listen carefully to the counsel of the wise people – or “giants” – he met along the way, and he reveals how others can do the same.
In the second section of the book, Creating A Fulfilling Life, Jim addresses the critical issue of how to achieve balance in both your personal and professional lives. The crux of this lies in uncovering your Essence. He writes, “We are all born with a unique ‘something’ – which I call ‘Essence’ – that gives us sheer pleasure and the potential to generate great value for both ourselves and the world. You were likely in touch with your Essence as a child, but it may have become submerged over the years by other preoccupations, or other people’s expectations.”
In BALANCE, Jim offers a step-by-step method for identifying and recapturing your Essence. “The passion created in this one step often provides all the motivation, courage and energy you will need to find a new career that will lead to greater enrichment – personally, financially, and even for the world at large,” he says.
In the book’s third section, Building A Successful Business, the author shows how to grow a successful enterprise by using Inspirational Leadership to create an innovative environment. Based on Jim’s own experiences, particularly at Catalytica and Chateau Mcely, BALANCE details precisely what Inspirational Leadership entails, and how its core principles – including courage, authenticity, and service – form
the basis of an organization that is personally rewarding, commercially advantageous, and socially responsible. Jim elaborates on a number
of other key elements that drive long- term business success. These include unique hiring practices; targeting early commercial successes
as well a long-term goals; and maintaining flexibility in any strategic plan. He believes that, when practiced diligently, these methods will yield returns far greater than “business as usual” models.
Chock full of personal stories that illustrate the author’s profound insights, BALANCE is an invaluable guide to finding one’s passion and creating a more meaningful life, both personally
and professionally. As Ricardo Levy writes in the book’s foreword, “The lessons [Cusumano] draws upon apply to all of us . . .They contain fundamental concepts that can increase our happiness and our effectiveness, and simultaneously help make this a better world.”
Here's what notable authors and businesspeople are saying about BALANCE:
“BALANCE is a wonderful reminder that through gratitude and the source of creativity, we have answers to life’s greatest challenges, and can truly find meaning, fulfillment, success, and our purpose in life.”
— Deepak Chopra, M.D., Global bestselling author of more than 70 books, including The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success
“Unlike so many other books on finding happiness, BALANCE does not preach. Instead, it takes you on a journey through a remarkable life. This journey will make you laugh, make you cry, but most importantly, make you think!”
— Gary P. Pisano, PhD, Coauthor of Producing Prosperity: Why America Needs a Manufacturing Renaissance
“BALANCE is a genuinely useful book that’s also a delight to read. It is business and life seen through the eyes of one of the most remarkable people you will ever meet, a true Renaissance Man."
— Gay Hendricks, PhD, Founder of The Hendricks Institute and bestselling author of The Big Leap and The Corporate Mystic