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Smarter Faster Better

The Secrets of Being Productive
Written by: Charles Duhigg
Narrated by: Mike Chamberlain
Length: 10 hrs and 22 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (18 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In the international best seller 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, rigorous reporting and rich storytelling to explain how we can get better at the things we do. The result is a groundbreaking exploration of the science of productivity.

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 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 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: 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 behavioural eco­nomics - as well as the experiences of CEOs, educational reformers, four-star generals, 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.

©2016 Charles Duhigg ; 2016 Random House AudioBooks

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

very good book for performance improvement

book explains the concepts with very good examples,
never felt bored throughout the book.

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lots of fillers and useless stories in between

why can't the writer be straight forward and avoid junks/fillers in between.

they must acknowledge that it wastes a lot of time for listeners

just listen the last 30 min which is the gist , rest 9.5 hrs is a crap

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very nicely narrated book on behavioral science!!

very nicely narrated book on behavioral science, though i find the explanation of illustrations stretched a bit too long. nevertheless, the book leaves you with a profound understanding of habits, patterns and difference they make in one's life over the long term..

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • T. Wolf
  • 10-11-19

Well Summed Up Principles

The book seems to sum up productivity and work principles. Perhaps nothing new, but all in one place with some captivating stories around it. I can only recommend.

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 06-05-19

On my 4th Repeat!

Charles Duhigg sews together ideas that build upon each other mixing real life applications with scientific theory. This has become my go to book when seeking productivity tips.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Rurik McKaiser
  • 12-01-19

Worth a read and needs a second read

This book is definitely worth a read, and may take a second and third read to fully embrace the tools and wisdom it contains.

For me, the last chapter should have been the first chapter, OR at the very least, the author should have offered the reader the option to first read the very last chapter and then start reading the book from the front.

Overall, I enjoyed the book, AND from the time to time the case studies were a bit drawn out. It would be an "even better if" if Duhigg could give very clear and specific tools and suggestions at the end of each chapter, as he did at the end of the book.

I love the personal style of Duhigg's writing and his passion for his subject matter is very admirable. The manner in which he shares his humanity so richly in the final chapter is wonderful. I am burning to read his next book.


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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 08-09-18

Awesome Practical Insights

Loved the book. Kept making sure that everyday made time to listen to it. Narration was great.

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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 17-05-18

Very practical and engaging from the word Go.

I've listened to it for a second time. My first time listen proved that I was a different person compared to this second one. Looking forward to a third listen.

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  • Emmanuel
  • 23-03-18

Great book with wonderful ideas. I recommend this book to anyone looking for ways to maximize productivity.

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  • Artur
  • 03-01-17

Insightful

Great book and great Insights to daily tricks all ties in at the end loved it. Listening to a few chapters many times over

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  • Mubbashir
  • 12-05-16

A lot of stories with some real gems

A nice book and some very good insights and practical approaches around work and productivity. But filled with too widely knit stories and sometined difficult to connect. Overall a gid book.

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  • OGGFATHER
  • 08-04-16

Excellent!

Good stories
Interesting insights
Scientific approach
Very helpful for starting my own business give me the motivation I need.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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  • Abigail W.
  • 23-01-17

Rambling with No Real Message

Not sure what the point of this book was. Never really gives any actual ways of incorporating the ideas. The ideas presented are a bit high level and vague.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Martin Bechtle
  • 28-09-16

Content not bad

The content isn't bad, but the interpretation and the excessively long stories make it boring and hard to effectively pull out useful notions.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-07-16

Very interesting narrative but not very actionable

I have very mixed feelings about this book, but it comes down to two key thoughts:

The stories in that illustrate the books narrative are insightful and interesting, and for the most part unique to this book - Which makes a refreshing change from the usual retellings of the same studies over and over - So if you're looking for something new in that area, this book might suite you.

On the other hand, there isn't really much actionable content, and the book jumps all over the place and while it raises some interesting topics and highlights some real world examples it falls short of bringing the ideas together cleanly in one place.

So, when you're reading books like this if you're drawn to the narrative and storytelling side of the books, or want to explore a new style of writing, maybe give this a go.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • DARREN GILLESPIE
  • 25-06-16

Dissapointed

Examples very long winded. Needs more what you personally can do. Was hoping for more.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Anthony P.
  • 09-03-17

Enjoyable

I enjoyed this audiobook. Some of the examples are quite long winded when he illustrates his point but he makes all of the ideas interesting and accessible.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Khelena
  • 15-08-16

Listen to audio samples before buying audiobooks

Would you try another book written by Charles Duhigg or narrated by Mike Chamberlain?

Not likely.

How would you have changed the story to make it more enjoyable?

I would have someone else read it.

Would you be willing to try another one of Mike Chamberlain’s performances?

Most certainly not.

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

I'd probably attempt reading the book.

Any additional comments?

It wasn't easy to enjoy listening to this audiobook because of the narrator's fast, broken pace, and overly enthusiastic yet somehow monotonous manner of reading. Had to stop 2 hours into the book because of that...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Juri
  • 24-07-16

great book

the book is full of interesting stories that help the reader understand how focus and structured approach to goal setting and attention help us keep up the motivation to achive great results

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Stephanie
  • 08-11-19

Fantastic

This is a great book, the most important chapter on personal productivity is the first. The majority of the rest of the book is better aimed at those managing others. However there are still things for everyone to learn from the other chapters. The whole book is a very enjoyable and entertaining listen.

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  • Michael
  • 28-09-19

Useful nuggets of information.

I found that I was able to take something away from each chapter. Some of these things I could use in the workplace and at home. Im very pleased with my first audible purchase.

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  • Rob
  • 13-01-17

making better decisions

Duhig's second book is a little less compelling than the first (Power of Habits) . He sets out eight ideas for making better decisions and supports each idea with two or three stories illustrating the point (e.g. on building mental models he uses the fate of an Air France pilot team which failed to address a fatal series of warning signals as opposed to a Qantas team who did apply mental models and saved the day).

I enjoyed the stories and there are some elements I can apply to my work environment but I will need to listen again and take more notes in order to distil the lessons.

This doesn't have the flow and engagement of Gladwell's books nor did I find it as easily digested as Power of Habit, but it does have merit and I will recommend it to team leaders and junior managers (perhaps in a hardcover form rather than audible... there are lessons that need to be annoted.)

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Grant Dempsey
  • 16-05-17

Great concept with some terrific ideas

I think too much time was spent on stories, not enough on how to apply

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Sylvain
  • 14-05-17

Easy to listen to

Easy to listen great stories but not that great to put into practice if your looking for a step by step approach Mabey try something else

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • LJC
  • 23-01-17

good snippets here and there

I liked this book but it was not as useful as I had hoped. a lot of stories about others which perhaps went into too much detail.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Anthony
  • 23-07-16

Excellent Book

This is Charles Duhigg's second book, I hope there are more to come. The stories told in this book flow on from The power of Habit and take the reader to the next level of experience by building on the base built by the power of habit.

I enthusiastically recommend this book to anyone wanting to improve their life😊

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Bren
  • 07-05-19

great relevant concepts

easy to listen to
well presented
relevant concepts that can be applied in daily life

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  • Andy
  • 25-11-18

Plenty of valuable insights and lessons

The book is sometimes riveting and occasionally ponderous but the content is great and I recommend it to anyone looking to add to their self improvement collection.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 26-09-18

Interesting

I love the way Charles Duhigg explains his research in a plain manner. Very interesting insights. I'd recommend it to anyone.

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  • Giles
  • 16-10-17

Excellent book and well researched

The stories in this book help to convey the meaning the author is trying to tell you. The book flows well and each chapter leads perfectly into the next.

Highly recommended.

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  • odailson
  • 04-07-17

Awesome book

after listening to the book I decided to buy a hard copy so I could read and learn more from its ideas. that was one the lessons from the book
great book