Rosedale Press, in partnership with the Greenleaf Book Group, is excited to announce the publication of John Blumberg’s first book, Silent Alarm. It is a parable of hope for busy professionals.
Have the business tragedies over the last five years been just the story of a few misguided business cultures — or a warning sign of a problem with each and every one of us? Denial can be a beautiful short- term fix, but it in fact denies us the critical development we need in life.
It was the springtime of 2002. Typically a time of new beginnings and beautiful blooms — but it felt more like the endings of autumn. I was facing the deep sadness in the surreal implosion of Arthur Andersen. The wounds of 9/11 were still fresh and the Catholic Church was facing nothing short of a crisis with the issues of sex abuse. And all I could see was our human nature tendency to just quickly “get back to normal”. But after so many profound events in such a short period of time, I began to wonder “what is normal?” Or if normal was even real. I knew it was time, not for a few — but for all of us, to step back and ask some really hard questions — not about others, but about ourselves.
I grappled with many questions and in the process created a 12-page outline with the intentions of creating a very hard-hitting business book. It was an outline that went beyond skills, strategy and methodologies — one that went right to the heart and soul. Five unrelated conservative business friends all agreed the aggressive ideas and questions within the outline were not off on some tangent — but were exactly the kinds of questions leaders in business should be asking and answering.
As I sat down to write this business book, it was clear to me that no one would benefit from some preachy business book and I knew I had more questions than immediate answers. As I started to write, I reminded myself that I am not a tenured college professor with 15 graduate students doing my research — but as a professional speaker I am a storyteller. So I looked at the blank screen. It was there that the parable of Jack began to unfold.
Three years later, with the contribution of over thirty pilot readers and three dedicated and talented editors, I am excited to finally publish Silent Alarm!
To partner, on this mission, with the Greenleaf Book Group, has been a real joy. Their insights have been endless. I remember one insight that may have been the most telling. Clint Greenleaf, president of the Greenleaf Book Group, said, “We have to design this as a hardcover gift book because the people who really need to read it won’t buy it — but the people who really care about them will buy it for them as a gift.” I appreciated Clint’s insight to make the outside design of the book reflective of the depth of quality we had hoped to create within it. He also felt that the narrative on the inside front flap of the cover jacket had to be written to the person who would most likely not want this book. That gave way to the narrative of what today is expressed on the inside front flap:
Jack was in the midst of a successfully normal life. He wasn’t the type to read self-help books that give the recipe for life. He didn’t need help. He took great pride in being in full control of his life. He ran at a fast and productive pace. From every appearance he was effective and efficient.
For Jack, it was just another quiet winter morning. The dark stillness wasn’t what it appeared to be — and neither was the success that Jack enjoyed. What appeared to be normal wasn’t real. But the sudden impact of reality was very real.
Jack would never have read this book. Why would he — when a tragedy could just as easily open his eyes.
Maybe you and Jack have something in common. But then again, maybe you don’t. You can always hit the snooze, put this book back on the shelf and just wait and see.