Surviving Your Serengeti: 7 Skills to Master Business and Life

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Overview

Praise for SURVIVING YOUR SERENGETI

"One of a kind. You'll actually know more about yourself after you read this book."—KEN BLANCHARD coauthor of The One Minute Manager® and Leading at a Higher Level

"Beautifully illustrates nature's basic survival strategies—and how they help you create a sense of meaning and purpose."—SUSAN SCOTT New York Times bestselling coauthor of ...

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Overview

Praise for SURVIVING YOUR SERENGETI

"One of a kind. You'll actually know more about yourself after you read this book."—KEN BLANCHARD coauthor of The One Minute Manager® and Leading at a Higher Level

"Beautifully illustrates nature's basic survival strategies—and how they help you create a sense of meaning and purpose."—SUSAN SCOTT New York Times bestselling coauthor of Fierce Conversations

7 Questions This Book Tackles

1. Are you experiencing a challenge that you wish to overcome?

2. Do you want to discover your hidden survival skills?

3. Do you have a goal you have yet to achieve?

4. Would you like to discover your instinctive strengths?

5. Can you benefit from problem-solving thinking?

6. Do you know someone who has potential to excel?

7. Are you looking for a positive message to share?

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470947807
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 3/1/2011
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 192
  • Sales rank: 363,735
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Stefan Swanepoel's life has been a "Serengeti journey"—from his birth in Kenya to schooling in Hong Kong and South Africa to running a New York–based global franchise network with 25,000 sales associates in 30 countries. He has served as president of seven companies and two nonprofit organizations. Stefan has authored nineteen books and reports on business trends, real estate, and social media. He lives with his wife and two sons in California.

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Table of Contents

Introduction.

Chapter 1 Arrival in Africa.

Chapter 2 The Enduring Wildebeest.

Chapter 3 The Strategic Lion.

Chapter 4 The Enterprising Crocodile.

Chapter 5 The Efficient Cheetah.

Chapter 6 The Graceful Giraffe.

Chapter 7 The Risk-Taking Mongoose.

Chapter 8 The Communicating Elephant.

Chapter 9 Coming Full Circle.

Epilogue The Following Evening.

What Animal Am I?

African Wildlife Foundation.

The Serengeti Plains of East Africa.

Acknowledgments.

About the Author.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 46 )
Rating Distribution

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 46 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 23, 2011

    A Must Read....find out which animal you are!

    Surviving Your Serengeti - 7 Skills to Master Business and Life by Stefan Swanepoel was refreshing and informative. Have read lots of business and motivational books over the years but this one stands out as being a cut above the rest. He draws upon his experience growing up in Africa and in the business world and makes relatable parallels. The book attempts to match the reader's basic instinctive skill with one of many animals found in the Serengenti. Stefan Swanepoel has identified 7 skills and drawn parallels to 7 distinctive animals - the "enduring wildebeest", the "strategic lion", the "enterprising crocodile", the "graceful giraffe", the "efficient cheetah", the "risk-taking mongoose" and the "communicating elephant". While the reader may find himself defined as one animal, what is not touched upon is the fact that the reader could be a combination of two or more animals. This book was helpful in identifying business strengths and how to best utilize them but it also helps give you a better understanding of the different "skills" you may encounter in other people and the reader can use that insight to better deal with them and learn from them. We all know an "efficient cheetah" who gets things done in a streamlined manner with everything falling into place or the "risk-taking mongoose" who takes chances and reaps rewards not necessarily seen to the naked eye. It is light reading but quite insightful too. Could not put it down once...read it cover to cover at one sitting. Good for personal reflection and as well as an office book club. Highly recommended. Have discovered my inner Serengeti animal - can you guess which animal from this review? Will give you a hint....it can be found in the Serengeti. Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 13, 2011

    An amazing read-captivating,eloquent,entertaining,educational !

    I had a chance to read Surviving Your Serengeti several weeks ago. I often dislike reading 'business' books,as they are often droll and dull.This was the polar opposite-I had no idea what to expect,but it was simply a phenomenal read.A well crafted and eloquently written fable,that ultimately is not so much about seven skills that will assist in vanquishing any business challenge-but seven skills that are essential in life.
    Entertaining,effervescent,you won't want to put it down,you will want to share this with others-and it will result in an entirely new outlook in your business and personal life,as well as a different perspective on the people who are in both your business and personal lives.
    I think it would make a great gift,for any business person,or recent grad as well.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 10, 2011

    An Enlightening Personal Experience

    It takes a lot for me to choose a book over the computer; my mind doesn't usually rest long enough for me to just read. But this book was different. It becomes personal as it pulls you in; you begin to relate to how these beautiful animals work alone, as competitors, yet coexist together in the Serengeti. You begin to feel the symbolism, how the story parallels our lives,how people in all walks of life can learn from one another and work together. I found this inspiring and fascinating. A must read!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 10, 2011

    Must read for business and life!

    Surviving Your Serengeti is a great read for personal and business life. You are taken on an exciting journey through the wilderness and given an insight how animal and human behaviors relate. If you are part of a team or lead on this book will help you understand and utilize your strengths, as well as others.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 10, 2011

    Fantastic personal journey - a MUST READ!

    This book is a great learning experience for everyone, young and old, business and non-business alike. I liked is so much I even wrote a blog post and made a video review of the book. Please make an effort to read this book, because I guarantee you that you WILL learn something new about yourself, and you WILL learn a lot about other people and why they behave the way that they do. And you will learn all of these things through the telling of an interesting and quick story. Check out "Surviving your Serengeti." You'll be glad you did!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 1, 2013

    As a business book goes, it is actually not a drab as I believed

    As a business book goes, it is actually not a drab as I believed it would be when I finally had a chance to read through it. Using the natural habits of wild animals in relation to the human being is something that most of us can relate to. Thinking about my life and the things that I wanted to accomplish, and then reading through the book, I realized that maybe becoming a business owner isn't the best idea at that particular point in time, and that maybe I should transform myself into the "graceful giraffe" or the "efficient Cheetah". This book is a wonderful read for someone that maybe already has a business and needs guidance on where to go next with it? or for someone that is seriously considering taking on their own business.
    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

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  • Posted February 16, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    A Good Reference Book to Have on Your Library's Business Shelf

    A Good Reference Book to Have on Your Library's Business Shelf

    I was attracted to this book because it's a fable designed to help both in self-discovery and in business life. What an odd mix. I just had to take a peek. As adults, we rarely study fables.

    This fable followers some travelers who witness the annual thousand-mile migration of over two million animals across the African Serengeti Plains. The strength and survival skills of seven of these animals is studied and pared down to seven skills that we can apply to our own struggles in life, specifically in the business realm. Each chapter continues the story, zooms in on one skill and ends with bullet-point application tips.

    It took me a long time to get through this book, it didn't catch me the way I thought it would. This is a good book to have for reference on the self-help or business shelf of your library. You might not read it through, but you might use it for guidance when you find yourself struggling.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 13, 2013

    At first, I wasn't sure if I would like this book. It seems gea

    At first, I wasn't sure if I would like this book. It seems geared towards those in management/business, and since that does not apply to me, I wasn't sure I'd be able to relate.
    However, it didn't take me long to get into the story. I enjoyed how the characteristics of each animal were used to illustrate the things that help people to succeed in life, not just in their business ventures.
    I still feel that this book is most appropriate for those in business, but it was an enjoyable read.


    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255:

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 15, 2012

    "Surviving Your Serengeti" by Stefan Swanepoel; is a

    "Surviving Your Serengeti" by Stefan Swanepoel; is a must read in learning how you deal with your surroundings and the people around you. Using the animals and their characteristics made the information fun and easy to digest, It also challenges readers to set goals and tackle obstacles using their own personal animal styles. I can't say there is anything wrong with the book since I never received it. If you have not read this book I highly recommend it! Well for me I go for cheetah, fastest land animal, great persistence-- for me it defines me! If you have not read this book I highly recommend it! It doesn't matter if your a business minded person or not. Read this you won't regret this for sure.

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  • Posted May 14, 2012

    I have to respectfully disagree with other reviewers that sugges

    I have to respectfully disagree with other reviewers that suggest the author doesn't explain how to tell good stories. It is true that this is not a book you would use in a creative writing class. You won't learn about the elements of a short story, or what personification is. However, the book explains how to use a certain type of story to become more successful. Guber does clearly explain how to tell an effective story.
    Lately, I have been reading about the power of persuasion, and some experts believe stories can be used to induce a trance-like state. I like telling stories, and have found that as a teacher, students remember the personal stories I tell long after they have forgotten basic facts.
    Everyone who reads this book will admire the moral legitimacy of that position. It's the viewpoint of a winner, rather than someone who is afraid to take on the toughest challenges.
    I found the book to be an easy and quick read. There really wasn't anything earth-shattering between its covers. The message was quite simple, and you'd get it just by reading the title on the cover. So I don't really recommend someone waste their money on this tome.

    Highly recommended book!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 27, 2012

    Good Book

    I thought it was awesome.

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  • Posted January 19, 2012

    Fantastic read with immediate application!

    Seven lessons from seven animals that apply to all areas of life? Yes please.

    This easy to read story leads you through a journey to the Serengeti with several couples from all walks of life. While there the lessons/skills are presented conversationally via trips into the wild to observe wildlife as it naturally occurs.

    Endurance, strategy, enterprise, efficiency, grace, risk-taking, and communication - all very valuable life skills are all covered. On a practical level one of the things I really enjoyed about this book was the summary of the skill at the end of each "lesson". Each summary included several bullet points explaining the skill on a deeper level as well as some suggestions on how to maximize the skill. It was possible to put these skills into better practice and take them to the next level almost immediately after reading each section.

    Seven words to describe the book?
    Empowering
    Engaging
    Clarifying
    Powerful
    Enlightening
    Entertaining
    Thought-provoking

    If you have a chance to read it, I hope you do and I hope you get as much out of it as I did.

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  • Posted January 2, 2012

    not worth the time

    Surviving Your Serengeti is a simple book; which is good. It is an easy read, simple words, and easy concepts. It chronicles a fictitious American couple in the midst of life struggles and transitions; and how their trip to the Serengeti in Africa changed them forever. Their three day journey proves eye-opening as they meet an unexpected old friend who is now 'one with the Serengeti'. This friend, Zachariah, leads this couple through the Serengeti step by step while introducing them to seven amazing animals which all possess different life skills which all can glean from. This book while interesting in concept is a bit contrived, and has no natural flow to it, fiction or not - it took me a long time to get through the whole book. In fact, well over four months for such a little book!

    There are some books that just grab you. One paragraph into the volume and you are just hooked. It had been my hope that Surviving your Serengeti would be like that. Unfortunatly...it wasn't. Mr. Swanepoels intent was obvious and his message was strong. The character Zacaraiah explains nature, the wild animals of Africa and their way of life - and how each of us can learn from the animals. Neat idea, but taken a little too far. Although not the most interesting story, nor the most enjoyable, Surviving Your Serengeti is a New York Times bestseller. It¿s more of Zacaraiah ¿ or the author ¿ telling you what it is he wants you to know; lots of facts. There¿s not much of an adventure ¿ more observation.



    Where the author was involved in real estate, many of the ¿Praise for Surviving Your Serengeti¿ are from professionals in that industry. I wonder if it made the New York Times bestseller list because of colleagues buying the book.



    I was disappointed. I was expecting something better.

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  • Posted October 2, 2011

    Surviving Your Serengeti By Stefan Swanepoel

    Near our home, we have a restaurant called "Serengeti". It is supposed to have an interior / theme based on the African wild-life and many friends have recommended it. For some reason, I never thought of visiting this restaurant. Somehow, the name Serengeti was not attractive enough.
    All that changed, after reading this book - It is silly to recommend a book like this, But the truth is, this book was able to create a very grand visual picture in me (someone who had no feelings whatsoever about the name Serengeti) and I could literally see myself roaming around those forests when reading this book. In fact, anyone reading this book will feel like visiting Serengeti.
    But, this is not a travel book. It is a business novel which uses Serengeti as a background. Author Stefan Swanepoel takes seven animals from these jungles and uses them to teach us seven life skills which we need to survive the real world.
    For example, my favorite part in this book is about Elephants. Stefan Swanepoel uses some rich imagery to show how elephants rule the African jungles (in their own way) and how they interact with humans. Using their lifestyle as a base, he explains how communication is an important skill.
    Similar to elephants, this book takes six more animals and explains their life in the real jungle settings. How they live each day and what skills they cultivate, sometimes those skills may be the difference between life and death. After covering each animal a set of detailed review points are given which give us a chance to do a quick review of the book too. A small, but powerful book for anyone to read in a single sitting, and start following the concepts easily!
    Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze dot com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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  • Posted September 27, 2011

    Take this book on your next adventure!

    This book is a fictional story about a few folks who travel to Africa for a vacation but through their encounters in the Serengeti return ready to reshape their business and lives back home. On their African adventure, they encounter seven different animals-all who exhibit a unique survival trait. Wildebeests must endure as they make the annual journey of 1000+ miles around the Serengeti in search of good food and water. Lions must be strategic in working together in order to eat. Crocodiles must be enterprising when opportunity comes their way. Cheetahs have to be efficient in knowing what to pursue in order to get the best results. Giraffes are graceful and are respected out there in the savannah (this correlates to professionalism). The Mongooses take risks and reap the rewards of wise maneuvers. Elephants communicate and pass on important information to the others in their herd, especially the young ones.

    For anyone who likes a simple storyline with a little science lesson thrown in, this is great. It's a quick read and a fun one too. I enjoyed the author's ability to correlate the animals' strengths into easy-to-grasp self-help statements. Perhaps this book should come along with you on your next adventure!

    Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of Surviving Your Serengeti through Book Sneeze, in exchange for my honest review.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2011

    A Disappointment

    Where the author was involved in real estate, many of the "Praise for Surviving Your Serengeti" are from professionals in that industry. I wonder if it made the New York Times bestseller list because of colleagues buying the book. I was disappointed. I was expecting something better.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 31, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Unique Approach to Teaching and Learning Skill Sets

    Stefan Swanepoel, the author, helps readers identify which unique skills they possess through a fable that takes place in the African Serengeti. The fable revolves around the personal struggles of Sean and Ashley, a married couple who come to Africa and meet others who are struggling just as they are, but in different ways. Through exploring the surrounding landscape, witnessing the great migration of animals, and listening to a guide and friend's insights on animals, each person on safari discovers their unique strengths or skills related to one of seven animals. The fictional story set in the heart of Africa doesn't make the book seem like a business goals or personal growth book, and makes the skillsets more tangible with examples. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Any opinions expressed are the author's own.

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  • Posted August 26, 2011

    Inspiring

    I received the book 'Surviving your Serengeti'. I was able to read through it fairly quick and found that it speaks true to human nature and how we can relate to animals in some ways we act. Each chapter has us thinking of what we can do to better our business and everyday life by understanding how the nature that God created works and how we have grown detached from nature and moved into more complex places in our life. This book tells the story of the Serengeti, the survival skills of the animals and how each one from hunter and prey rely on each other. Zachariah, the guide gives a tour to Sean and Ashley helping them reconnects with God by sharing his experiences of the animals he studies with them. As he shows them each animal they move closer to understanding Gods plan and how to deal with everyday situations in their own life. I would recommend this book to anyone that is looking for or needs to be lifted up. This would make a great gift or just a book to have in a personal library.

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  • Posted August 25, 2011

    Well thought out, and wonderful tips for life.

    I recently had the pleasure of reading and reviewing a copy of 'Surviving Your Serengeti' by Stefan Swanepoel. The book is described as an adventure fable that uses metaphors to help you see your inner strengths and use them to overcome challenges in your life both personally and professionally. The fable part of the book is based loosely on the authors life, which started at birth in Kenya and took him to Hong Kong, South Africa, New York, and California. The book is broken up into chapters that describe, through metaphor, the seven Serengeti skills. Each chapter starts with a piece of the fable, which follows a husband and wife on a 3 day safari in Africa, and ends with a summary of the skill written in more plain terms. Through out the story certain quotes or insights are highlighted by a box to draw your attention to that part of the story.

    The good? The authors use of metaphor followed by a more straight forward description of the skill really helps to emphasize the point he's trying to make. He makes it very easy to understand what each skill is, and how it is used in both every day life and the business world. The book was obviously written for a business person, but yet is applicable to one's daily doings as well. I think that the seven animals he chose for his Serengeti metaphors were very well chosen and you could tell a lot of thought went into this book.

    The bad? I felt like the story was forced. No one that I know talks in the manner that he had the characters talk. While the story could have been a fascinating one I felt that I wasn't as drawn in as I should have been. And the punctuation inconsistencies KILLED me... I could never tell who was talking... was the next paragraph the same person talking, or a new one? The editor definitely did not adhere consistently to common punctuation rules.

    All in all though, I definitely enjoyed the book and I felt like I learned something about myself. I also couldn't put it down! I had it finished in 2 evenings after I put my son to bed.

    P.S. I'm a Wildebeest

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  • Posted August 3, 2011

    Great book a must read!!

    Surviving your Serengeti by Stefan Swanepoel is a must read. This book is well written and one that is very easy to read.
    The book takes you an on journey through the African Serengeti. As you go through this journey of learn about the animal in the natural habit you find that they are a lot like us and that we can relate to them. It was amazing to me that there is so much common ground between us and the animal talked about in the books.
    On the Surviving your Serengeti web site there is a quiz that you can take after you read the book to see what type of animal you are. I suggest you read the book and then take the test. I bet you will know which animal you are after you have read the book. You will find that common ground between you and the animal you relate to.
    Thank be to Thomas Nelson publishing for my free copy of this great book. My review is that of my own.

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