Topgrading, 3rd Edition

The Proven Hiring and Promoting Method That Turbocharges Company Performance
Narrated by: Erik Synnestvedt
Length: 10 hrs and 33 mins
3.5 out of 5 stars (160 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Great companies, large and small, rise or fall because of their talent: The more high performers on your team, the more successful your organization will be. Of course, that’s easier said than done. Research shows that only about 25% of all new hires turn out to be high performers. But companies that have used Brad Smart’s Topgrading system over the past two decades have boosted their hiring success rates dramatically - sometimes even to 90%.

Three huge problems account for the typical poor results in hiring: dishonesty (via deceptive résumés), incomplete information (via shallow interviews), and lack of verifiability (via biased references). Topgrading shows how to solve all three problems. Instead of hir­ing by your gut reactions to résumés and interviews, you can start using a scientifically honed process that compels candidates to be totally honest. Smart, one of the world’s foremost experts on hiring, has personally helped hundreds of companies double, triple, or even quadruple their hiring success rates. His clients have ranged from global giants to small businesses in every field imaginable. Hundreds of thousands of followers have applied the lessons and tools of the first two editions of Topgrading.

The Topgrading system makes hiring easier, faster, and more successful than any other process. And it works at every level, from the front lines to senior management. For the first time in seven years, Smart has fully revised and updated Topgrading with many new tools, techniques, and case studies.

Topgrading isn’t just about hiring and promoting - it’s also about developing talent. It enables leaders to reward their A Players, coach their Bs to become As, and weed out the Cs who are beyond improvement. Many great leaders know that Topgrading works. Find out how it can help your company gain a big competitive advantage.

©2012 Bradford D. Smart Ph.D. (P)2012 Gildan Media LLC

Critic Reviews

“Brad helped us develop the tools to pick A-player leaders at GE.” (Jack Welch)
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Very self serving

top grading is an excellent idea and practice. the 20% 9f this book that focuses on the what and how of top grading was excellent and worth the read.

the 80% of the book that was extremely self serving, self complimentary, and ego stroking of the author made the book almost unbearable at times. I had to keep telling myself to focus on the positive educational parts and to keep going despite the hours and hours of the author's endless self promotion. Greatly disappointing.

7 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Self promotion and repetition overshadows

Would you try another book from Bradford D. Smart and/or Erik Synnestvedt?

No. If I was not required to read it, I would have returned it.

What could Bradford D. Smart have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Reduce repetition and self promotion.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

It seems that the hiring process he developed has a lot of value but it was difficult to get through the book without choking on the repetition and sales pitch.

4 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Obnoxious!

Sure top grading method is useful but this book is a 12 hour infomercial on his method. The guy sounds like a complete narcissist even claiming that the Europeans moving to America employed top grading when choosing who would go on the boat. He takes it too far it's a shame because the top grading method is good but the rest of the content in his book including terrible makes it hard to take him seriously.

4 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Very tough to follow as an audiobook

Good content, but lots of forms, visualizations, and figures made it though to follow and repetitive-feeling while listening. I eventually stopped listening and bought the print version. Wish I'd saved the Audible credit.

2 people found this helpful

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Infomercial!

Is there anything you would change about this book?

This book has some hidden gems of knowledge for sure, but it is overly laden with blatant sales pitches for the Topgrading consulting program. The voice of the reader is annoyingly arrogant, as well. He sounds like an infomercial. I recommend buying the paper book, so you can skim to your pleasure...and be ready to pay for some online tools to actually implement the recommendations.

What could Bradford D. Smart have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

To make this book more enjoyable, Bradford Smart could have stepped off his high horse and spoken in a more relatable tone, providing information about what Topgrading is all about before touting the benefits of his program for hours.

What does Erik Synnestvedt bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Nothing - just an annoying tone of voice.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

NO!

4 people found this helpful

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Book is a sales pitch

I've spent about 2 hours listening to this book, have learned nothing, and have been "upsold" on top grading products around 20 times

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Just get “Who?” Instead.

2 hours of info made into 10. The author spends hours (1) trying to sell the concept, (2) saying it’s taking over the world (been here 30 years),, (3) selling his other products, and (4) reading “case studies” that only regurgitate names of companies without stories - and I mean whole hour chapters of this stuff.
Who? Is by this guy’s son and incorporates and discusses “topgrading” in its stated protocol. If you are a small to medium business owner, Who will do fine. There really are only 3 or 4 very small “needles in a haystack” of additional tips in this book to add to what you’ll learn from listening to “Who”.
If you’re the head HR person of a Fortune 500? You’ll probably have to listen to this mega advertisement book. I feel your pain.

1 person found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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Shallow self promoting advertisement

Do you want to hear how amazing Topgrading is for 9 hours without ever hearing what it is? Then buy this book!

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Great topic, hard to listen to this book.

This book feels like a long promotional ad about hiring and promoting workers. I like the concepts and would use these techniques but I kept getting the message that if I want more, just sign up for training or hire us.

So why did I pay for this book? It could have easily been shortened to 2 hours and not repeated itself so many times. Obviously this book has some use and it may be best to just buy the actual book, which is what I did. I expect to look further into the online resources and will likely take a course.

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    3 out of 5 stars

Slow book

I got this book as a recommendation from a friend. I am sure the TopGrading method is pretty good, but this book is a thinly veiled advertisement for their company's services and barely tells you how to do the TopGrading method. To be clear it does tell you, but it spends well over 1/2 the book telling you how great the method is before using the last 1/3 of the book to give you a little insight into the process and encourage you to call their company. I am not a customer of theirs, so I cannot comment on that, but my peers do like the company and its services.