From the author of the New York Times best-selling phenomenon The Power of Habit comes a fascinating new book that explores the science of productivity, and why, in today's world, managing how you think - rather than what you think - can transform your life.
A young woman drops out of a PhD program and starts playing poker. By training herself to envision contradictory futures, she learns to anticipate her opponents' missteps - and becomes one of the most successful players in the world.
A group of data scientists at Google embark on a four-year study of how the best teams function and find that how a group interacts is much more important than who is in the group - a principle, it turns out, that also helps explain why Saturday Night Live became a hit.
A Marine Corps general, faced with low morale among recruits, reimagines boot camp - and discovers that instilling a "bias toward action" can turn even the most directionless teenagers into self-motivating achievers.
The filmmakers behind Disney's Frozen are nearly out of time and on the brink of catastrophe - until they shake up their team in just the right way, spurring a creative breakthrough that leads to one of the highest-grossing movies of all time.
What do these people have in common?
They know that productivity relies on making certain choices. The way we see ourselves and frame our daily decisions; the big ambitions we embrace and the easy goals we ignore; the cultures we establish as leaders to drive innovation; the way we interact with data: These are the things that separate the merely busy from the genuinely productive.
At the core of Smarter Faster Better are eight key concepts - from motivation and goal setting to focus and decision making - that explain why some people and companies get so much done. Drawing on the latest findings in neuroscience, psychology, and behavioral economics - as well as the experiences of CEOs, educational reformers, four-star generals, FBI agents, airplane pilots, and Broadway songwriters - this painstakingly researched book explains that the most productive people, companies, and organizations don't merely act differently. They view the world, and their choices, in profoundly different ways.
©2015 Charles Duhigg (P)2015 Random House Audio
The book provided useful information on being productive. However, it's not structured well so that the reader can easily grasp the concepts. The chapters start with long narratives sometimes leading to a point, sometimes not. It may diverge into another narrative before finally making a point. It's best to read the last chapter to get a summary of the key concepts and then start at the beginning of the book. I was disappointed with one chapter about SMART goals. That concept has been around for decades, and there are plenty of books about goal setting.
This book has a lot of useful insights and examples that can improve individual and team effectiveness in many situations. It's written in the typical style that journalists use, (the Malcolm Gladwell approach) and so it's engaging, interesting, at times even riveting. Where I think it falls short is in the application department. There is a short chapter at the end where the author briefly explains how he applied what he learned writing the book to how he actually works. Mostly, the listener is left to work out the application of the principles for themselves. This would have been a much more effective book if the author had paused at the end of each chapter and taken the time to suggest how the principle covered in the chapter could be applied to individuals and teams with practical examples instead of story examples.
I think it's worth a read and full of useful material, but I feel that the author failed to complete the last lap.
I love AUDIBLE! I never get mad at traffic jams and can listen to many different books, despite of my short time.
I liked Charles Duhigg's first book, so I read this second one with enthusiasm. What called my attention is that the book is very practical and useful.
What worked for him, to write this book, works for virtually everyone.
Here are his key concepts to become more productive and work smarter, faster and better:
First: prove to yourself you are in control (when answering to e-mails, write short sentences then fill in).
Second- ask Why you are doing this (marines)- affirmations of our deeper values and goals.
Third- two kinds of aims: stretch goals (to spark big ambitions) and a smart goal - to form a concrete plan- write to do lists with overarching ambitions and subgoals (plans) and timeline- did you do in a week what you planned? If not, change plans
Fourth- maintain focus- what to expect to see (envision once a week or every day)- mental model of what to ignore or go after (a story inside his head)
Fith: decision making, when confronted with the unexpected- envision multiple futures beforehand- wiser decisions
Definitely a great book, worthy of listening to.
This book is just a string of anecdotes about people who are smarter, faster, better, but does very little to try to extract what makes them so and help you apply it in your life. It says "x people do x thing," as summary, then moves on to another really long and boring anecdote about jet pilots or CEOS or trainers of cross-eyed dolphins (made that last one up). I'm still as dumb, slow, and mediocre as I was before I listened to this one, sadly.
Lengthy stories with no clear sense of direction and no memorable takeaway. I don't feel like I have any clear sense of how to be ' better, faster, smarter.' Why did I listen all the way to the end?
Enjoyed the format of dramatic stories to explain the individual themes. The appendix pulls the eight themes together into an actionable strategy.
Was really hoping for a continuation to his book on habits but this just did not deliver for me. The stories were entertaining but at times all over the place making it difficult to actually ascertain the point. Did not take as much away from this book as I expected, hence the disappointment.
the book had a few inspiring moments but for the most part it was a bit fluffy. Some of the examples just drowned on and on and were not furthering the point as much as just adding extra content to the book.
Not sure if I will read Habit now if it is anything like this.
I am pretty harsh on books like this because I have listened to and read a bunch of them. the struggle is original content. while this book had a little it just wasn't enough to really impressed me.
Wow. Simply wow. This is a book that gripped me from the first chapter all the way to the very end. Duhigg is masterful storyteller, on top of that, he is a skillful and in-depth researcher. My favorite aspect about Duhigg's books is the fact that he uses so many different scientific studies. More than some academic scholars use in their publications. He makes sure to get the whole story. Just when you think he's run of examples... Boom another one. Don't get me wrong. This is not just a book laden with stories. However, Charles has way of giving you lesson by giving you the story. Then backing up the story with scientific research, and then providing very concrete and practical steps to apply the principles in your life. This book, even more than his last book, has made me a better person. I'm going to to buy at least 2-3 physical copies. For myself to highlight and read again. And at least two to give and invest into someone's life. This book will show how to do, how to think, and think about how do, and how to do what you think. Yea.... All of that! Chamberlain's rendition of narration is another smashing hit with Duhigg. I thoroughly enjoyed this audio book.
I enjoyed the listen, but it was hoping for some exercises to implement. The stories were very detailed and make a good deal of sense in the context, but there isn't really a "conclusion" that revisits each concept touched on.
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