The Adventures of Johnny Bunko

📃 Table of Content

🎨 Book Details

Name – The Adventures of Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You’ll Ever Need

Originally Published – 1 April 2008

Author – Daniel H. Pink

Illustrator – Rob ten Pas

🚀 Book wrap-up

The Adventures of Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You’ll Ever Need is a manga-style business book but you got to say, the title is a dead giveaway.

The book promotes six foundational, easy-to-remember lessons that could help youngsters make the best career options.

🎨 Should you read The Adventures of Johnny Bunko?

If you are struggling in your career or have an appetite to take in more career advice, I suggest you read The Adventures of Johnny Bunko.

If you already have your stomach full with career advice, The Adventures of Johnny Bunko won’t offer you anything ground-breaking that you haven’t already heard in some shape or form.

📒 My Book Notes of The Adventures of Johnny Bunko.

The book The Adventures of Johnny Bunko hardly takes up about an hour to finish reading. I think it is kind of absurd to summarize something that already is very capsulated. Anyhow, here is your summary of the book.

These are the six life lessons that can help you make the right choice in your career and hopefully in life.

Lesson 1: There is no plan

If you have devised some grand scheme of things laid out for the next 10 or 20 years, this is the lesson that tells you that you can’t ever predict the future. No matter how much you try to calculate or second guess the future, it will invariably have something else in store for you.

I don’t think the book is telling you to scrap your plan and throw it into the bin. What the book suggests is that your career choices can be of two reasons.

  • Instrumental reasons

Instrumental reasons are the reason that can depend on external factors, like selecting a career because of financial security, wider job opportunities, or social expectations.

  • Fundamental reasons

Fundamental reasons are what you might consider as inherently valuable, reasons that excite you, or what is more suited to your skillset. Something you value no matter what the outcome is.

Instrumental reasons are variable and unpredictable, on the other hand, fundamental reasons are more reliable.

The basic idea is a variation of the ‘follow your passion’ advice. Make what you love and excites you as your career option. If you follow conventional wisdom or current market trend, the future will eventually turn out to be something else and you will reach a dead end.

Lesson 2: Think Strengths, not weaknesses

This is the lesson that urges you to capitalize on your strengths rather than trying to fix your weakness.

You need to figure out what your strength and weakness. Your career options or any activities you take should be in line with your strengths or at least something you can leverage your strengths.

You need to be smart about your life choice. You should choose things you are good at rather than frittering away time doing what you are terrible at. There is significantly more leverage in improving your strength and fixing your weakness.

Lesson 3: It’s not about you

Changing mentality from thinking inwards to outwards.

The lesson urges you to provide value to people around you, your colleagues, your project team, your company, your client. You can improve your life by improving the lives of others.

It’s about forgoing our egos and doing what is more important for the larger good.

Lesson 4: Persistence trumps talent

Doggedness beats talent in the long run. People who put in the time and effort to do something will be better off than the people who are talented but not persistent. In other ways, success rides a lot on your hard work than your talent.

Another reason for this is compounding. Hardworking people will bring slight improvement each day which when cumulated in the long run will provide exponential growth. Similarly, if you are not improving, then that will compound as well.

Another point added is the importance of intrinsic motivation. You only persist when you are intrinsically motivated to do it because external motivation will eventually run out.

If this got you exciting about conquering the world through your hard work. You might want to read this before you start your escapade (Not from this book, by the way).

Lesson 5: Make excellent mistakes

Many people spend too much time avoiding mistakes. But we often overlook that a good mistake can teach us a lot more than a minor success.

This doesn’t mean that you can go on making as many mistakes as you want. But never shy away from doing something great because it might fail. You will be better off with that failure than not doing anything at all.

There is a great way to summarise this lesson

Stay Hungry Stay Foolish – Steve Jobs

Lesson 6: Leave an imprint

This is the last lesson in this book.

When you get old, some fundamental questions will cloud you. Like, what difference did I make? What it all worthless?

Before you grow old and go scratching your head for answers, think about it right now. Find your reason to get out of your bed. Something larger than yourself. Do it while you still can.

⏳Review of The Adventures of Johnny Bunko

I read this book based on the recommendation from Kevin Kelly through The Tim Ferriss Show. Not a poor decision, I would say.

The book is targeting young professionals who just forayed into corporate life without a clue. People who might need the fundaments of making a career. You can make out that the manga-style illustrations are for pleasing the youth who aren’t fond of reading.

I think Daniel devised this book to be a simple, fun, and yet a foundational guide to career advice and that is what this book is. It doesn’t take more than an hour to read; it is graphical which makes it more interesting and it all boils down to 6 lessons. The book is what Daniel visioned it to be.

But I find the lessons not very enriching but that is because I have had enough career advice before. Though the manga style format makes it a breeze to read, the lessons are not articulated nor substantiated well enough to make it convincing. The book often left me muddled after finishing the chapters.

So for me, The Adventures of Johnny Bunko is an enjoyable but not very insightful book.

💯 My Rating


🏬 Where to find the book?

Here is the amazon link for The Adventures of Johnny Bunko if you are interested in buying one.

Click here to go to the Amazon page.

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