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Smarter Faster Better - Charles Duhigg

Smarter Faster Better

By Charles Duhigg

  • Release Date: 2016-03-08
  • Genre: Management & Leadership
Score: 4.5
From 150 Ratings


NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the author of The Power of Habit comes a fascinating book that explores the science of productivity, and why managing how you think is more important than what you think—with an appendix of real-world lessons to apply to your life.

At the core of Smarter Faster Better are eight key productivity 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.


  • An Insightful view of motivation

    By Not "outta time"
    I began reading this book searching for the obvious clues behind the title. What I got was an insightful view that motivates those who encounter with great frequency-the uphill struggles against the many who see things as they are. This book encourages understanding why so many people follow the norms of conformity and why so few are able to see beyond the norm of “falling in-line.” Excellence requires determination. Persistence pays off. A clear vision can only be obscured by discouragement. A focussed mind struggles against the norms that are easy to follow. The mind is a complicated wonder that functions on instinct, emotions, and memories built from experiences. To be great, it requires being different, thinking freely, and reaching constantly for things many won’t dare to try. Failure is only tempered but permanent if you quit. These are not in the book but this is what inspires in the reader after you read this book.
  • Review

    By Turjdhdjdhdvdb
    People should buy this book, the paperback version is $25. This book is like a sequel to the author's last book. But in this one it explains about productivity, which is essentially the reward at the end of the habit loop. When I was reading his last book "Habit", I didn't really found it helpful, since it keeps explaining about the loop and stuff. But in this book, I finally understood that the reward at the end is basically the "why". The cue can sometimes be a task, then you do the task and finally get your "why".
  • Good but wordy

    By Tichito
    There are some very clever insights (I particularly liked the chapter on Bayesian thinking and poker) but for the most part I believe it takes an inordinate amount of words to describe very simple concepts. To some extent, I believe some of the ideas can be derived from common sense and yet are presented as great scientific breakthroughs in the field of productivity.
  • Smarter faster better

    By Power of habit
    Outstanding analyses. Would like to have seen a concluding chapter summarizing the material into an index card of thoughts and applications for team leaders.
  • An Incredible Read!

    By DrMcDougall
    One of the very best non-fiction books I've ever read - reads like a novel! I love his points made, and have already used them in my class, with promising results - example, I have reworked my lessons towards the students' internal locus of control, realizing that, while not intending it, my coursework was more external in its locus of control - as students have seen more choices, they've taken more ownership, and as a class, we seen more success! In my top five non-fiction books EVER! It works - thank you, Charles!!!
  • Smarter Faster Better

    By GoGoetz
    Excellent well written read!
  • One of the best books I've read

    By ashabasha91
    I was raving about this book and reading it aloud to people even before I finished it. The stories are incredibly interesting and each chapter is concise, well written and packed with powerful messages. Highly recommend this book for anybody.
  • You know it's a good book when..

    By Nicholas A Beaird
    Your halfway into it and return to leave a review. After reading The Power of Habit and learning about the release of Smarter Faster Better I decided to pre order it. Although I have not finished the book entirely, I am enjoying it more so than I did with TPH. Another book full of amazing stories interwoven with deep psychological foundations that help us understand or everyday movements. Highly recommend.