I came across Dr. Jim Murray at a time of significant change in my life. After 9 years with a company in progressively senior roles, the last one a VP position, I decided I wasn’t learning enough and it was time for a change and new challenge… and I left my company. It was a monumental leap – for the first time ever in my life, I had no job. It was a courageous, exciting and very scary decision. Shortly after I left my job, I took Dr. Murray’s course “Becoming… what you really want to be”; Jim’s insights and no-nonsense way of delivering his message really connected with me. So I bought his book of the same name… and I love it!

The book is inspirational, informative and an excellent reminder of the things that are truly important in life – personally and professionally. The comprehensive topics are covered succinctly in short (3-4 page) chapters and have become ‘go to’ readings for me when the need (often) arises. The chapters on leadership and risk are personally very relevant and helpful for me – I often re-read them when I think about why I left my company, what I am looking for and what is important to me.

I think this book should be in everyone’s hip pocket: leaders, people looking to drive change whether in their careers or personal lives and quite frankly – everyone. As a testament to how good I think this book is, I bought it for the President/CEO of my former company and bought an extra copy for when I come across someone dear to me who is looking to make a change in their lives. I hope the book will be as helpful for them, in valuing themselves and finding a path forward, as it has been for me.

– Elizabeth Mitchell, Toronto

Each week or when needed, depending on what I was dealing with (professionally and/or personally), I would find a suitable theme in Dr. Jim’s book and make notes to guide my future actions. His advice is always relevant and resonates. It’s like a crack of light shining into a dark room and provides wise counsel and immediate comfort, especially in times of utter despair. I’ve kept his book near me for important meetings or critical conversations at work. It’s my rudder for continued growth – definitely one of those books you can really never put down. I’ve haven’t encountered anything like it before.

– Tyler Nahorny, Winnipeg

A compelling call to action. Jim Murray’s “Becoming…what you really want to be” grabs your attention and won’t let go. No BS here – I was captivated. Once I sat down to read it, I didn’t put it down. From Prologue to Epilogue, every page has advice and wisdom that really hits home.

Jim Murray’s Becoming … inspires us because he shows that we are all a “work in progress” and have the choice to drive our lives along the path of our choosing. Whether we are beginning, ending or just “fighting the good fight” in the middle, Jim provides crisply written contemplations to help us identify and seize opportunities, make sense of our current challenges and begin the journey to becoming what we truly want to be.

These short engaging topics are laid out alphabetically to help you find the exact bit of advice and tuition required in quick and digestible chapters. Jim treats the reader to big ideas that encourage us to grow and continue to improve no matter where we find ourselves. The only actions that will change us are those that we plan and begin in the current moment.

This should be mandatory reading for everyone in your life whom you care for –  full of gems and ideally suited to any stage of life or career. I wish Jim had written it sooner so that I could have got started sooner.

– Kevin Irvine, Vancouver

Dr. Murray’s latest book is an absolute gem. It is not a book to be devoured in one sitting; but to be sipped like a fine wine. Give the content time to breath; sip, swirl and enjoy slowly.

“Becoming … what you really want to be” is a book of essays that covers just about every important area of personal and professional growth. Topics range from Advisors to Awareness, Confidence to Conflict to Compass, Failure to Friendships, Leadership to Luck, and Power to Purpose. Each presents an excellent summary, not only of why the topic is germane; but, more importantly, how to develop and harness its potential.

Jim is at his absolute best synthesizing the most up-to-date research, in addition to his own thinking on each topic and providing us with insightful and easy-to-understand steps to help us become the person we really want to be. As he suggests, “It is easy to find people who are willing to give you advice. It’s harder to find those whose advice is worth listening to”. His advice is not only worth listening to; it is worth acting upon.

I highly recommend Dr. Murray’s book to all: young, old and those in-between. It provides great direction on how to be successful. I guarantee it will become a well-worn companion on your journey to reaching your full potential, as a person and as a professional.

– Dr. Don MacRae, CEO, London

Someone once said five years from now we will be the same person, except for the people we meet and the books we read. Add Becoming … to your library.

This book is different from the mainstream non-fiction, there is just no nonsense to charm you. It’s direct and to the point. It will not tell you everything will be great as long as you just wish it hard enough. Instead, Jim’s essays are hard truths about the endeavours and joys we experience in life combined with practical down-to-earth advice. Getting advice on key life issues can be hard, yet Becoming… succeeds because of Jim’s decades of personal research and eclectic experiences.

Expect to read this book many times. The essays are compact and guarantee that every “next pass” will elevate new knowledge into the spotlight. His expert advice and insights on human nature assures Becoming... will become your go-to reference guide for everyday use. I highly recommend this book.

[I met Jim though his Negotiating course in Vancouver and have followed him year after year, taking most of the courses he offers, including his immersive CEO Program. My actions are testament to how much value I assign to his teaching.] While no book can be a substitute for an in-person course with Jim, Becoming … is a companion for the times when you will need some straight talk about the rest of your life.

– Volodya Gusak, CFO, Vancouver

I have had the privilege to learn from Jim Murray for the past two and a half years. I have hundreds of emails and pages in my notebook filled with his thoughts and advice. Now with Becoming…, his wisdom is organized in concise chapters covering a wide range of topics. At first I thought the book was too small but, after reading it, I realized it is a pocket guide to life and I carry it in my purse every day. In spare moments instead of looking at my phone, I take out the book and read a chapter. I have shared this book with colleagues, friends and family of all ages as it spans generations and is applicable to all aspects of life.

– Ellen Bensky, CEO, Toronto

Dr. Murray’s latest book is a remarkably simple yet profoundly powerful tool. While reading the different essays, I was quickly engaged in deep reflection, the counsel and lessons encouraging me to review my life choices with renewed introspection. I found myself reassessing both my personal and professional goals, making thoughtful decisions and choices about the future. The learnings from Jim’s book, whether you follow all or only some, will impact anything and everything you will do during the rest of your life. Read this book – it may well change you. It’s your choice.

John Chow, Principal, Toronto

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