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Getting Naked

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Getting Naked

A Business Fable...About Shedding the Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Don’t sell. Instead, build honest relationships. A familiar concept engagingly presented in a charming business tale.

Editorial Rating



  • Well Structured


Being vulnerable takes guts, especially in business. But the payoff, explains best-selling author Patrick Lencioni, is strong, honest client relationships that engender trust and allegiance. Lencioni puts forth his “naked service” model via a story about a fictitious consultant named Jack Bauer (not to be confused with the main character on the TV show “24”). Jack, an up-and-comer at a big consulting firm, is put in charge of the newly acquired Lighthouse Partners. He’s initially reluctant to embrace Lighthouse’s nonconformist tactics, but when he opens his mind to their possibilities, he has a life-changing experience. Through Jack, you learn about the three fears that block naked service and how to master them. Instead of writing a novel, Lencioni could just have outlined the naked service model in a dozen pages and, in fact, he does so at the end of the story. However, using a business fable as a vehicle is a simple, fun, engaging and relatable way to teach his concepts. getAbstract suggests this charming fable to anyone in a service industry.


Uncovering “Naked Service”

Businesspeople are supposed to be confident and self-assured, so most try to project that image. They work to hide their mistakes and imperfections. However, when you let people see you for who you really are, you can make real connections and build trust. In the service industries, showing your vulnerability, or “getting naked,” is particularly effective in fostering closer client relationships. Most people resist showing vulnerability, but if you overcome this fear you will build stronger relationships, receive more referrals and spend less time haggling over fees. The following business fable illustrates the power of “getting naked”:

Once Upon a Time...

Jack Bauer was a rising star at the management consulting firm Kendrick and Black in San Francisco. As head of sales in the strategy division, he often lost competitions for new business to a small consultancy named Lighthouse. Jack was relieved when he heard that Lighthouse founder Michael Casey was leaving the firm to “spend more time with his family,” usually a euphemism for being eased out after making a big mistake. Jack’s euphoria dwindled when K&B’s founder, Jim Kendrick...

About the Author

Patrick Lencioni, a frequent public speaker, is the author of eight bestsellers, including The Five Dysfunctions of a Team. He heads The Table Group, a consultancy.

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    A. M. 1 decade ago
    This is a great book... Written in the form of a Fable, the story is easy to get sucked into and really hammers down the principles Lencioni is trying to teach. Really enjoyed it.