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Last Updated: Apr 7, 2015 - 5:51:15 AM 

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Book Reviews

R.P. BenDedek Book Review: "Tough Conversations" by Richard Tiller
By R.P. BenDedek
Apr 7, 2015 - 5:51:15 AM

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I recently decided to take a look at some of the pdf copies of books that publicists sometimes send along with their publicity material and since this book "Tough Conversations" by Richard Tiller had never been picked up by any of our reviewers I decided to take a look at it.

The first thing to realize is that this is a 'Christian' Book, but I don't think that should put a non-Christian off. The book is filled with knowledge and experience.

The book commences with a tough conversation that the author had with a fellow boarder in a Christian school when he was a young man. That conversation impacted the author who later in the field of management was required to have other tough conversations. Being a Christian, his purpose in tough conversations is to demonstrate the 'manner' of Christ, who himself had some rather tough conversations.

The purpose of this book is to help you get the most out of tough conversations by embracing those moments as opportunities for beautiful transformation for yourself as well as others. We'll explore the skills and mind-set for success in tough conversations in the light of the heart of Jesus -- the light in which we find the right kind of strength and influence for achieving the best results.

The book is something along the lines of an instructional manual with the instructions being provided within the body of a story that the author relates. Sometimes that story is directly from the Bible and at other times it is about situations from contemporary life. The author points out that 'tough' does not equate with angry or even difficult but that it means bringing people to a point of understanding about what they 'need' rather than what they 'want.' He points out that tough conversations are not about achieving victory over someone but rather about speaking the truth in love, and it is difficult to do that sometimes when we as frail human beings are loaded down with so many 'self-preservation' fears.

The author could easily have produced a non-Christian version of this book. If you remove the Biblical aspects, it reads like it is written by a therapist. The book is full of examples and advice about achieving positive results in difficult situations, and the author does warn that a hoped for outcome is not always guaranteed. Nevertheless, when one approaches these difficulties in life from a positive loving perspective, there is more likelihood of success than following all the negative methods that we tend to learn in this hate filled angry spiteful world.

The layout of the book is excellent and the author has achieved a balance between storytelling and advice giving. It is professionally written by a person whose qualifications indicate that he ought to know what he is talking about.

I would recommend this book to anyone in need of learning some positive leadership and/or counseling skills.

R.P. BenDedek

Richard Tiller has spent the past four decades in the business world as a manager, salesperson and author serving people in management and sales. He has also been a Bible teacher for the past three decades. He lives with his wife, Christina, in Vienna, Virginia.

"Tough Conversations with the Heart of Jesus"
By Richard Tiller
Westbow Press
Published May 13, 2014
ISBN: 978-1-49083-451-1
180 Pages
Paperback $14
e-Book $4

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