Berwyn Native Mike Shereck Pens Book on Berwyn, Business and the Connection Between the Two

“Berwyn, it’s more than a place, it’s a state of mind.”

Berwyn native Mike Shereck is bursting at the seams with #BerwynPride. His first book, Berwyn Rules: Leadership Secrets of 26th Street, is the beginning of Shereck’s “third act” of creating a legacy, giving back and making a difference. The book ties Shereck’s lessons learned from growing up in Berwyn to the leadership issues encountered in today’s businesses, communities and organizations—with a bend towards pragmatism and a sense of humor!

Take a peek inside the mind of the author below! Want a chance to meet Mike? Head out to his book signing at Cigars & Stripes on Saturday, July 29 from 3-6pm. More information here! Buy a signed copy of the book at the event or purchase a copy here. For further details, please email mikeshereck@gmail.com or browno@mx.lakeforest.edu.

About the Author
Mike Shereck is a born and bred Berwynner from 26th Street, a product of generations of Berwyn natives. He is a leadership coach and organizational consultant, helping a range of people across the globe. This is his first book. He currently lives in Naperville, IL.

What was the inspiration for this book?
I realized a few years ago that I have lived a rich and amazing life. I also realized a tremendous amount of unworkability in the world, organizations and communities. I have several friends that are highly successful that are all Berwynners, from serial entrepreneurs to CFOs to global experts. I asked myself, “What is it about us that gave such a different experience and different approach to issues than everyone else?” The answer was Berwyn. The lessons we learned growing up in Berwyn were incredibly valuable — ones that were not only valuable in 1970 but also valuable today (perhaps even more so).

I have been inspired by a guy named Werner Erhard, a creative and critical thinker acting as a source for fresh perspectives. His work ranges from conflict resolution to business and education to community building. This is truly inspiring. I really would love to make a positive impact on Berwyn and the community that gave me so much.

Where does your Berwyn Pride come from?
I think the thing that inspires me and connects me most to Berwyn is the four generations of family that have lived here. My grandparents were the original owners of a bungalow on 26th Street. My dad was born here as well as my brother and his son (my nephew)…so there is a long family connection to Berwyn. If there is something I am proud of, it is being the founder of the longest running fantasy football league, which was started in 1981 with my friends from Morton West High School.

What is the event you tell family or friends they can’t miss out on seeing when they visit Berwyn?
The thing I tell people not to miss in Berwyn is the food and the music. Go to Fitzgerald’s Nightclub for music and Benny’s Pizza for food…they have the best pizza on the planet—readers will even find a chapter in the book about Benny’s!

Where did you spend your Friday nights in high school?
Friday nights, before I drove, I’m sure I went to sock hops at Morton. In the summer, I played softball at 28th and East Ave, got pizza at Salerno’s and hung out (or tried to) with girls.

Did you work in Berwyn while you were in high school?
You bet! I delivered papers for the Berwyn Life and the Chicago American.

Tell us a little bit about the values you discuss in the book.
Berwyn Rules identifies the importance of appreciation, gratitude, forgiveness and compassion. There are four core distinctions that are laid out in the book:
1. Integrity: honoring your word.
2. Authenticity: being real and connected to your heart, living life fully and vulnerably.
3. Being at cause: no victimization, 100% ownership.
4. Being used by something bigger than you: being humble and living in service of something.

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