Summary of The Naked CEO

The Truth You Need to Build a Big Life

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The Naked CEO book summary
A CEO offers sound advice for those at the start of their careers.


8 Overall

9 Applicability

7 Innovation

7 Style


Business leader Alex Malley, the CEO of CPA Australia, offers basic training for young people at the start of their careers. Malley shares worthy advice on networking, writing a résumé, interviewing, finding your passion, learning to cope with failure and becoming a leader. Some of his tips are generic: Be yourself, have a firm handshake, set goals. But his underlying message is much more individualized and provocative: “Nothing great comes easily,” he says. Growth – stretching yourself – is the true goal of a business career, and you grow through struggles and challenges. Malley argues that when you like your job and your co-workers and you reach a certain comfort level, it’s time to look elsewhere. Unfortunately, he presents most of his advice as abstract instructions though readers may wish he’d offered more war stories from his experiences to illustrate his concepts. Nevertheless, getAbstract warmly recommends this wide-ranging compendium of career wisdom to young professionals starting or changing their careers.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why mistakes and other difficult situations are productive because they spur professional growth,
  • Why personal relationships are the most important aspect of business, and
  • How to prepare for a leadership role.


“A Big Life”
Young people anticipate the transition from college to a career with a mixture of excitement and anxiety. They know they could face plenty of difficult experiences. Instead of fearing these difficulties, welcome them – they are the keys to building a big life. You won’t get...
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About the Author

A former university lecturer, Alex Malley is CEO of CPA Australia. He hosts The Bottom Line television show in Australia and mentors young people via the Naked CEO website.

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