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Book Review | Web Update

Accounting professor publishes book on goal-making

Published: January 21, 2014, 5:58 pm ET
Collegian Reporter

Students who have been wondering about how they can achieve the goals they have set for themselves have a wonderful new resource in the form of a book by one of University of Richmond’s own professors.

Joe B. Hoyle, an accounting professor, recently published a book on success titled “Don’t Just Dream About Success: Stack the Odds in Your Favor.” The book was written after a lifetime of offering advice to accounting students and uses many examples from Hoyle’s experience to illustrate his points.

“Don’t Just Dream About Success” begins with the story of a student who leaves college after his third year to follow his dream of scaling the tallest mountains in the world. This initial story becomes the example of success that can then be followed through the book.

Hoyle said the core of the book was the differentiation between a third-level goal and a first-level goal. Hoyle writes: “A Level-1 goal is a daydream, a fantasy. It might feel real, but it is not.” He writes that although these goals are something we would love to have happen to us, they are things we realize we probably will never achieve.

Contrasting first-level goals are the third-level goals. He writes, “A Level-3 goal verges on obsession.” And finding one’s personal third-level goal is what Hoyle believes to be the largest part of succeeding.

The book offers advice not only on finding a goal, but also on following through with goals. He says one of the major problems people face is dwelling too much on goals that they never will reach. Instead, Hoyle would have people pick a few goals they are passionate about and work on those instead.

Hoyle said he thought the book could be particularly useful for first-year students, and he has been trying to work with the school so that he can get copies to freshmen.

This book would be particularly useful for students who are trying to figure out what they want to do with their time in school. However, it does not provide one clear definition of what success is for each individual. Instead, Hoyle gives the burden of creating a goal and defining success to each reader.

Ultimately though, this is more effective in allowing readers to make what they will of his advice.

Two groups of students who might enjoy Hoyle’s book are accounting students and athletes, because the book is full of references to sports and studying to be a Certified Public Accountant. One sport that gets a lot of attention is baseball, and each example Hoyle uses is as interesting as the story he opens his book with.

Another Richmond professor, Randolph New said, “The book is easy and energizing reading with its concise conversational style and many engaging anecdotes about well-known people and the author’s own life.”

New said the ideas offered in the book were useful for anyone who was willing to think, work and plan for success.

Hoyle said the proceeds from his book would go toward funding his company cpareviewforfree.com.

Contact Collegian Reporter Brennen Lutz at brennen.lutz@richmond.edu

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