Book: The Accidental Scholar
Authors: Jagdish N. Sheth with John Yow
Review: Phil Bolton, publisher, Global Atlanta
Three cheers for Jagdish Sheth. On page 167 of his autobiography, “The Accidental Scholar”, he comes right out and says it: “…to me, understanding global issues is fundamental, not discretionary.”
Dr. Sheth, a chaired marketing professor at Emory University, has had such a profound influence on so many in Atlanta that when I heard he had published a biography, I immediately jumped at the chance to read it.
Given his extensive research and scholarly contributions about consumer behavior, relationship marketing and geopolitical analysis, it would have been easy to be intimidated. But since I have known over the years of his approachability, engagement, good humor and dedication to the progress of Emory, Kennesaw State and so many companies and individuals around town, I plunged in.
Many years ago, a former Global Atlanta reporter who had virtually no background in marketing or business was able to conduct a series of video interviews with Dr. Sheth simply by asking to come by. Both our staff and our viewers benefited from his insights then, as anyone would from reading his account of his life now.
It’s truly a remarkable life, which began in Burma (now Myanmar), and has taken him around the world and throughout the United States. Yes, the book gets pretty technical when covering some of his research, and it provides detailed insights into the twists and turns of a successful academic career. But there is such secure grounding in so many core human values, a reading applies to any field and any occupation, and is inspiring for anyone who takes his or her life seriously.
Dr. Sheth’s life also is a testament to how a view from a variety of cultures and experiences can provide a crucible for new initiatives and perspectives.
To Dr. Sheth: Thank you for showing so many examples of how to build relationships, both professional and social, as well as how to value co-workers, how to cooperate with others, how to inspire students and how to give back to a community.