Smarter, Faster, Better by Charles Duhigg

The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business

Smarter, Faster, Better examines productivity through ideas that have been around even for decades and applying them in new ways. “The power of combining old ideas in new ways” resumes the concept behind this book.


                                                       Related: Winning the Brain Game by Matthew E. May

Charles Duhigg uses a compelling writing style that works pretty well for all the stories shared in these eight chapters.

Chapter 1.- Motivation: Reimagining boot camp, nursing home rebellions, and the locus of control. How the brain works.

Chapter 2.- Teams: Psychological safety at Google and Saturday Night Live.

Chapter 3.- Focus: Cognitive tunneling, Air France Flight 447, and the power of mental models.

Chapter 4.- Goal Setting: Smart goals, stretch goals,and the Yom Kippur War.

Chapter 5.- Managing Others: Solving a kidnapping with lean and agile thinking and a culture of trust.

Chapter 6.- Decision Making: Forecasting the future (and winning at poker) with Bayesian Psychology.

Chapter 7.- Innovation: How idea brokers and creative desperation saved Disney’s Frozen.

Chapter 8.- Absorbing Data:  Turning information into knowledge in Cincinnati’s public schools.

Overall, I enjoyed reading this book, plenty of engaging stories to explain every concept, for example, part of the brain called the striatum. On the other hand, I disagree with chapter six about applying Bayesian Psychology to predict a future event based upon past experiences as humans own plenty of resources to succeed against all odds, for instance, Dr. James Doty.


Available on: Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon UK | Apple iBooks | Powell’s Books | IndieBound

Author Charles Duhigg
Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business
Published by Random House; 1 edition, 2016
ISBN: 978-0812993394


NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of The Power of Habit comes a fascinating 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.

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.

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 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 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.

In The Power of Habit, Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Charles Duhigg explained why we do what we do. In Smarter Faster Better, he applies the same relentless curiosity, deep reporting, and rich storytelling to explain how we can improve at the things we do. It’s a groundbreaking exploration of the science of productivity, one that can help anyone learn to succeed with less stress and struggle, and to get more done without sacrificing what we care about most—to become smarter, faster, and better at everything we do.

ARC by NetGalley

There are affiliate links. I receive an affiliate commission if you decide to purchase from Amazon, Apple iBooks, Powell’s Books or IndieBound, at no additional cost to you. Thank you in advance.




Add a comment...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s