In this controversial and eye-opening book, distinguished businesswomen and writer Margaret Heffernan examines the phenomenon of wilful blindness in all its forms: in history, in business, in government, and in the family. Heffernan takes as her starting point the 2006 case of the US Government vs Enron, in which those in charge failed to observe the corruption that was unfolding before their very eyes, but not knowing was no defence. More recently, bankers and governments were wilfully blind to the looming financial crisis. However, in our own lives, too, we can be guilty of overlooking what is right in front of us, whether in the office or at home - with potentially disastrous consequences.
Drawing on a wide array of sources from psychological studies to interviews with the people involved, Heffernan examines what it is about human nature that makes us so prone to wilful blindness.
Packed with fascinating and relevant stories and science told clearly without being dumbed down. You're bound to have some 'ah ha!' moments. A good 'dipper' as chapters fit well with the daily commute. I found I revisited some sections after I finished the book, just because there's so much good stuff in here. Ms Heffernan's voice is very individual and added to the experience - she does laid back passion well (and I'm not usually enamoured of the American accent for extended listening). If you enjoyed Freakonomics, Predictably Irrational (Dan Ariely), Snoop (Sam Gosling), or What the Dog Saw (Malcolm Gladwell) you'll love this.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
Was Willful Blindness worth the listening time?
In parts it was really thought provoking but sometimes it felt a little like I was being told the same thing over and over after I got the point. It is worth a listen though
Well structured and easy to understand with clear relevance to many areas in life, business, healthcare...wish it was compulsory reading for politicians and policy makers!
Interesting and inspiring in equal measures.
Some of the points are repeated slightly but that doesn't diminish what is a fantastic book and it's well worth listening to from start to finish