3 out of 4 stars
Share This Review
The Smartest Person in the Room by Christian Espinosa is targeted at people in the technology and cybersecurity industry, and I especially recommend this book to employers in the industry. But this book is not the regular technical textbook that teaches endless codes and computer programs. It teaches something even more valuable, a skill that is most important in our modern world: people skills. The author, Espinosa, has developed a training called Secure Methodology to help fight what he considers to be the root cause of cyber insecurity.
The author believes that the real reason for the wave of cyber insecurity that hits many companies and organizations is their employees’ lack of people skills. He claims that tech officials are usually blinded by their ego, their need to be the smartest person in the room, and lack of proper training. He claims that to defeat cyber thieves (the bad guys), cybersecurity officials need to be passionate about their job and possess emotional intelligence. He proposes seven steps in the Secure Methodology technique. These seven steps help to guide both employees and employers to communicate properly, have empathy, and pursue improvement, which will allow cybersecurity employees to win the war against cyber thieves that want to steal both clients’ data and money.
Even though the author wrote this book for people in ICT, I believe that anyone looking to improve their communication and empathy skills should read this book. At first, however, I wasn’t sure where the author’s ideas were headed. He explained the problems of the cybersecurity industry so much that it became repetitive, and I wondered when he was finally going to provide the solutions. The solutions he offers are viable and reasonable. However, his solutions are not at all technical and do not include any computer programs that cybersecurity officials need to learn to improve their knowledge in the field. He focuses almost entirely on people skills. So, any tech person hoping for computer programming lessons will be disappointed.
I appreciated that aside from being very understandable for even non-tech adults, the author gave detailed explanations. He explained every step in his Methodology properly, so there will be no doubt in the reader’s mind regarding what he means. At the end of every chapter, he also included exercises that readers can do to test their understanding. These exercises specifically target employees in an organization, but any reader who picks up this book can join in the fun! I especially had a eureka moment when the author explained the last step: “Kaizen.”
The author was crisp; his writing style was direct and conversational; I hardly found any errors, and the editing was almost perfect. While I learned a lot, the tone that the writer took shook me. It felt harsh and too direct, which was ironic because this book is about emotional intelligence. Also, the author took a lot of jabs at a former employee named Doug. He used Doug as an example of almost everything not to do. This seemed unnecessary and extreme at times. For smooth writing, life-changing insights, and detailed information, I award this book 3 out of 4. I removed a star because half of the book sounded repetitive, and the writer’s tone was too direct.
The Smartest Person in the Room
View: on Bookshelves | on Amazon