Book Review: The Father Factor, How Your Father’s Legacy Impacts Your Career by Stephan B. Poulter, PhD

Poulter postulates that fathers have a great deal more to do with their children’s lives, specifically their career choices then previously recognized. The kind of emotional bond shared with your father, intermittent, avoidant, depressed or secure could provide insights into the way you interact in professional and personal relationships. A brief, true/false questionnaire allows readers to evaluate their knowledge and beliefs on the value of a father’s role in a child’s emotional upbringing before moving on to examining how that influences the adult child’s work history.

Listing seven father factor issues that surface in the workplace including self-doubt, lack of focus and motivation, shame and fear of failure, the reader is invited to recognize their own roadblocks to workplace success. An assortment of questionnaires allow one to identify whether their father was a “super achiever,” a “time bomb,” “passive,” “absent” or a “compassionate/mentor.” The following five chapters take an in-depth look at each of the fathering styles and their impact on relationships, the pitfalls to avoid and helpful mental exercises to cope with and diffuse potential trouble spots as well as recognizing your strengths.

Poulter has presented a compelling argument for the importance of a father’s role in professional, workplace relationships and given some useful behavioral modification tools. This should be a handy reference for anyone looking to better themselves and avoid unknowingly repeating their father’s mistakes.

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