Book Review: ‘Just Ask’ by Andy Lopata: Authenticity and Maturity

Why Seeking Support is Your Greatest Strength

Timely and Authentic

While there appears to be an end in sight from the current pandemic, there are deep scars to heal.  Around the world, there will be people from all walks of life wondering ‘what’s next?’  Andy’s book is a classic example of being timely and authentic. Just Ask goes way beyond the norm in terms of leadership and seeking help. Just Ask provides a deep insight into the ‘why’ and moreover, who.  Author, Andy Lopata produces examples from a variety of sources bringing to life people’s everyday issues. Through this approach, Andy provides a certain authenticity as these are real people with real problems.

Front cover of Just Ask book by Andy Lopata

Just Ask focuses on leadership and seeking help

Reaching Acceptance

Throughout ‘Just Ask’, Andy presents stories of high-profile individuals from all walks of life and their requirement for help. From politicians to mountain climbers, Andy cleverly builds the scene exposing the humanity of these people and their eventual realisation of reaching acceptance. It may seem obvious that we all need help from more experienced ‘others’.

The examples provided consider critical elements and situations that may surprise you. A government minister is guided by a more senior politician from an opposing party. This gives us a glimpse inside Westminster and shows us that people at the highest level require help. When you read through the variety of scenarios, it aids reflection of our own situations.

Authentic and Mature

The authentic nature of the book and the way it introduces a storytelling approach lifts this beyond a ‘self-help’ book. Andy also manages to tackle blocking asking for help such as looking good and nonsense machoistic approaches. Just Ask has a maturity about it that comes from Andy’s vast experience in this field and as an author. Through this maturity, Andy reaches out to the most senior of leaders. This approach provides a roadmap and a way around our own discomfort of asking for help.  Even here, Andy offers advice on how to frame this, some as obvious as seeking expert advice. While Andy does apply a list of ‘rules’ towards the end of the book, it avoids the ‘tell’ style we so often see.

Just Ask was a pleasure to read due to its authenticity, maturity, and well-crafted storytelling approach.  You know when you are in for a good read when it causes reflection right from the first chapter. A great read and highly recommended, especially now.

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