Want an easy summer read that will help you understand the challenges of working together during a crisis?

June 24, 2020 11:31 am Published by

It’s summer time – which means “light reading” time. But we are also in the midst of difficult circumstances – working from home, team members spread out, and business / financial challenges. Sync or Swim fits into both categories. Through a fun, story format, you’ll be exposed to various personality types and how they often respond to stress, and you’ll learn practical ways to “pull your team together.”

Humans are ‘hard-wired for a story’ and fables cut through complexity to reveal simple wisdom. In them we see our own predicaments and reactions, both wise and foolish. Sync or Swim is written to be a fun, quick read, illustrating ways to communicate effectively that generate productivity and effective teamwork. Each character responds in different ways to the same situation – as each of us as individuals does.

And the challenges the characters face while trying to cope with an impending catastrophe sheds light on practical steps that can be taken to help teams work together (instead of against one another) during highly stressful times.

Leaders’ Reactions to Sync or Swim

We shared Sync or Swim with a wide variety of managers, trainers and other leaders and these were just a few of the positive responses we received:

  • Sync or Swim is a quick and easy read with a simple but powerful message for anyone who hopes to effectively manage and lead others. It reminds us of what we all need to remember but too quickly forget – that everyone needs appreciation, but that everyone needs it communicated in their own unique way.” – Jack Canfield, Coauthor of The Success Principles and Chick Soup for the Soul at Work


  • “I’ve always said the business is easy… until people get involved. The key word is teamwork. If you can’t work together, you can’t win together. In Sync or Swim, Chapman, White, and Myra tell a quick, fun story that gives you the tools you need to bring your people together like never before.” – Dave Ramsey, New York Times bestselling author and nationally syndicated radio show host


  • “I was sitting waiting to board a flight, with twenty things on my to-do list. But I decided to look at this fable… and couldn’t stop reading! It really drew me in and I instantly started thinking about how I purposefully need to tell (and show) my amazing team members how much I genuinely appreciate them – and to do so much more often. Sync or Swim makes a tremendously important point in an incredibly simple way – that I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget.” – Shaunti Feldhahn, Author, For Women Only and The Male Factor

Meet some of the colorful characters in the book:

Sam, CEO: The story is told from Sam’s point of view. He’s an optimist who begins the book thinking he knows it all and can easily step in to fix the company’s problems. He soon learns that before you can lead change, you must learn to communicate effectively.

Tia, Head of Human Resources: “You wouldn’t believe all the negativism around here! … How am I supposed to help employees when they won’t work together, and they sit around blaming each other for all the lost work orders and not meeting deadlines?”

Jackson, Engineer: “Nobody cares. Nobody! Where’s the money we need for equipment? And where’s the new staff to replace my guys who quit? … without equipment, supplies, and staff, now are we supposed to fix that gigantic crack? We’ve been requesting them for months!”

Olympia, Local Entrepreneur, Professor, Consultant: “Sam, everyone needs to feel valued. Work is tough and full of harsh realities. Authentic appreciation isn’t a magic bullet, but the magic dies when it’s missing!”

“Sarcasm is poison. It kills morale. … Changing the culture will take a whole new way of communicating.”

“When workers feel used and not valued as individuals, rewarding them for what they’ve done backfires. They have to feel valued for more than just what they can produce. They’re persons, not replacement parts.”

“Ever run a machine without oil? Pretty soon, metal grinds against metal. Without it, work grinds on worker. Spark ignite resentment and then cynicism. What’s vital is communicating authentic appreciation. It’s organizational oil.”

You’ll also meet:

  • Alana, the condescending marketing manager;
  • Briana, the energetic intern;
  • Frisco, the gruff head of maintenance;
  • Giselle, the smooth communications director; and
  • Henry, the conservative CFO.

Sync or Swim will help you break through the challenges from current life circumstances to inspire teamwork and create an engaging work environment. And after the story, you’ll find responses and questions to stimulate your thinking and discussions.

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For the first time, Sync or Swim is available in paperback! It will be available to the public on July 7th but you can pre-order your copy now.

Thinking about doing a virtual summer book club with your team? Sync or Swim would be a great starting place and we’ve developed a free downloadable PowerPoint discussion guide to help facilitate conversation.

If you’d like to participate in the book club, leave us a comment about this blog and we’ll enter your organization into an end of summer drawing for a $500 credit toward a regular priced Virtual Presentation with Dr. White (one entry for each comment). Contact Seth at seth@drpaulwhite.com with questions or to book Dr. White for your company.


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June 24, 2020 11:31 am

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