West Bloomfield resident releases book that offers tips for life success

‘It’s probably the most comprehensive book on achieving success that’s ever been written’

By: Mark Vest | West Bloomfield Beacon | Published September 30, 2022

 After studying “highly successful people,” a local resident has released a book that details what he considers foundational factors for success.

After studying “highly successful people,” a local resident has released a book that details what he considers foundational factors for success.

Image provided by Barry Franklin


WEST BLOOMFIELD — As the director of preventive cardiology and cardiac rehabilitation at Beaumont Health in Royal Oak, along with a job as a professor of internal medicine at Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, West Bloomfield resident Barry Franklin’s life can be pretty busy.

However, that has not stopped him from pursuing his passion of studying the behavioral characteristics of “highly successful people in all walks of life.”

After having already authored more than 25 books, Franklin decided to take what he had learned from his studies of the people he considers successful and to release his first self-help book.

“GPS for Success: Skills, Strategies and Secrets of Superachievers” was released earlier this year. It was published by Productivity Press, which is located in New York.

“In my humble opinion, it’s probably the most comprehensive book on achieving success that’s ever been written,” Franklin said. “It took me almost four years to write this book. It’s peppered with inspirational (and) motivational stories that the reader can appreciate and relate to.”

Birmingham resident Alex Calderone met Franklin approximately five years ago, when Beaumont was offering a clinic that Calderone attended.

Franklin sent him a copy of his book.

“I’ve, for lack of better terms, been a junkie for self-help and motivational books,” Calderone said. “I started reading it and, in maybe two sittings, read the entire thing. I found it to be fascinating, and I could tell that it had been a labor of love for him and this wasn’t just a guy trying to push another book out there on Amazon — that he truly had spent a good chunk of his own professional career kind of analyzing the characteristics that make some people successful. … I really enjoyed it.”

Some of the “superachievers” Franklin studied include individuals from the worlds of business, sports and entertainment.

He said that a lot of the research for his book came via books he has read on success, as well as interviews he conducted.

“I collected the information in the book over three decades,” Franklin said. “It’s largely based on a course that I taught at Central Michigan from 2012 to 2017 called ‘GPS for Success.’ It was highly ranked; it had rave reviews, but we had no book to go along with it. So this is the book that could be used in future classes. I’m excited — it’s being used at U of M, it’s being used at Penn State; it’s starting to be used at campuses all around the country.”

From Franklin’s perspective, the book is the “missing course” for recent college graduates and early career professionals.

Franklin has a bachelor’s degree from Kent State University, a master’s degree from the University of Michigan and a Ph.D. in physiology from Penn State University.

However, when he reflects on his education, Franklin thinks there is a hole there.

“I got out in the real world, and I realized I wasn’t prepared for the real world,” he said. “What I refer to as real-life skills, they’re not being covered in conventional high school or college curriculum.”

Franklin isn’t likely to get an argument about that from Calderone.

“I think his characterization of it as the ‘missing course’ is proper. I have two degrees; I’ve been through a lot of schooling in my life, and there are elements of learning how to be successful that just aren’t taught elsewhere, and sometimes you have to learn on your own,” Calderone said. “Other times, you have guys like Barry, who study them and combine them with his own personal experiences over a number of decades and kind of hand them to you on a silver platter.”

Franklin has discovered what he considers foundational factors for success. A few examples are to love what you do, take 100% responsibility for your own life and focus on serving others instead of on individual rewards.

He was in Thailand when he saw a sign that read, “We become successful by helping other people become successful.”

“I said to my wife, ‘we just traveled 24 hours — we flew to Thailand from the U.S. — to learn the universal secret to success, that is, serving other people,’” Franklin said. “If you’re a tailor, do a good job; if you’re a mechanic, serve people well; if you’re a doctor, find illnesses and help treat or prevent (them).”

Examples of other topics that Franklin covers include goal-setting; dealing with setbacks; becoming a “master” at writing, public speaking and interviewing; cultivating the “virtues of patience and persistence”; asking for things you want; developing “excellent” people skills; looking for the good in people and situations; creating positive associations; and knowing “the potency of preparedness.”

Franklin provided further insight, in regard to a couple of the key areas that he thinks can help lead to a more successful life.

“Recognize that setbacks line the road to success,” he said. “Persistence pays.”

As for asking for things that you want, Franklin said, “Don’t wait for somebody to tap you on the shoulder; ask for things you want.”

From Franklin’s perspective, of all the strategies there are for success, No. 1 on the list is taking action.

“Take action,” he said. “Just do it.”

Franklin was born in Ohio. He has been married for more than 50 years and has two children and four grandchildren, and he is the former editor-in-chief of the Journal of Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation.

Franklin has also served as president of the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Association of Cardiovascular Pulmonary Rehabilitation, and as a national board member of the American Heart Association.

He is a current board member of the American Society for Preventive Cardiology.

Despite authoring multiple books on health-related topics, Franklin is of the opinion that his latest offering could be the one that has the most positive effect on his readers.

“Probably, out of all the books, by far, this one, I think, has the potential to have the greatest impact,” he said. “This can change young people’s lives.”

Franklin’s book is available at healthylearning.com, through Productivity Press at routledge.com, and at amazon.com.

His website is drbarryfranklin.com.