Book club gets down to business

Poppy Wortman caught up with Tracey Olivier recently to find out about a book club she started for business-minded folk.

Rebecca Jenkins, Tracey Olivier and Rosalie Lunson are part of a business book club that meets on the second Friday of the month.

It’s one for the books, for those on the same page.

Chamber of Commerce member Tracey Olivier has started a book club for like-minded locals with a business focus. Meeting on the second Friday of each month, the group discusses their latest reads over lunch and shares their findings and recommendations with each other.

“It actually stemmed from a bit of a selfish reason.” Tracey said, “I had a massive pile of business books I was wanting to get through, but other things would get in the way and I wouldn’t have time to read them.

“I thought, ‘There’s probably quite a few people who feel like this’, so I approached Tania, the Chamber CEO, and we decided to give it a go.”

With the first meeting drawing in six participants, it was evident Tracey was right.

“We’ve now had two meetings, and the group has grown,” she said. “And in an informal and relaxed environment, it just gives yourself some reading accountability when it comes to investing in ‘you’ and aids you in reaching those reading goals. Anyone is welcome!”

Chamber of Commerce CEO Tania Whiteford said the Chamber warmly welcomes Tracey’s initiative as a fabulous way to learn, share and connect, all key to supporting business.

“And being headed by Tracey, with her passion and energy being brought to the table, furthers it as a great way to putting an hour in yourself.”

Each meeting, every member brings along a book they have read and shares it with the group – their perspective and what they took from it. Books are then exchanged, with ‘who has what’ recorded down to keep track of everything.

Tracey has also created a little form that is put into the books on completion, where each reader rates the read, writes in a nutshell what it was about, what aspect proved good for them and answers the question, “What are you going to do about it now?”

“Not everyone has the same needs in business, so a book that might work for one person may not be relatable for another. So instead of chugging through a book someone isn’t interested in, rather everyone hears a synopsis and a bit of what it’s about, and can make the decision of, ‘Oh man, I really need to read that book’ and add it to their wishlist, or, ‘Nope, that’s not really what I need right now’.

“And rather than everyone reading the same book each month, we get a bunch of different people with different radars, so we get exposed to ones we may never have heard of – it’s a win, win, win and you get to read!”

Tracey Olivier is a life strategies coach, who has also written her own book, The Journey From here to There. She moved to Cambridge from South Africa three years ago with her husband and three sons, saying the majority of the boxes in the relocation contained bundles of books.

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