- Hardcover: 208 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education (16 June 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1259642399
- ISBN-13: 978-1259642395
- Product Dimensions: 14 x 2 x 18.5 cm
- Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
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Winning the Brain Game: Fixing the 7 Fatal Flaws of Thinking Hardcover – 16 Jun 2016
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From the Back Cover
In an era where entire industries are being disrupted and rapid, agile experimentation are becoming mainstream, the question in every leaders mind is 'which side of the equation will I occupy?' In reading Winning The Brain Game, the reader quickly recognizes that the only limitations to ability to be on the winning side are in our own mindsets and approaches. Matthew May's identification of the seven fatal thinking flaws, and the pragmatic application of field-tested fixes are actionable, and this book should be a must-read for any innovator, business leader or problem-solver.
-- BRAD SMITH, Chairman and CEO, Intuit
"This book is a gem! Matthew May has given us a practical research-backed (and downright fun!) guide to creative problem solving.
-- NIR EYAL, author of Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products
"Matthew Mays book reminds me of Irma Rombauers beloved Joy of Cooking book but instead of recipes for meals, May provides recipes for re-thinking. A broad range of creative thinking styles are presented with all pitfalls and plusses clearly highlighted, so that you might just get 'dinner' made and ready in time for a deadline."
-- JOHN MAEDA, Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers
"In Winning the Brain Game, Matthew May has brilliantly coalesced remarkable work from leading scientists and psychologists with his decades experience in design thinking to produce an exhilarating rethink of conceptual problem solving. I recommend designers and marketersstudent and professionalread and make use of this compelling book. Personally speaking, I wish Id come across this book thirty years ago; my hair would likely not be so gray.
-- LINDON LEADER, creator of the FedEx logo
Matthew May is like a Mr. Miyagi for untapped creative brain potential. The good news here is that we can switch a few levers to better unlock our own inner creative Karate Kid and, the principles are backed by science.
-- PETER SIMS, founder/CEO/chief whip, Parliament, Inc. and author, Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries
Do you want to tune up your creative thinking process? Winning the Brain Game is more than a book its a tool chest full of supremely useful tips and techniques. Using them will boost your ability to ship elegant, remarkable solutions.
-- DIEGO RODRIGUEZ, Partner, IDEO and creator of Metacool
"Witty, incisive, and inventive. A refreshing view of creativity in action. You will never think of problems in the same way."
-- TOMAS CHAMORRO-PREMUZIC, CEO of Hogan Assessments, Professor of Business Psychology at University College London and Columbia University and author, Confidence
This is the book I wish I wrote! Smart. Insightful. Practical. It powerfully shows powerfully why we are our own worst enemy!
STEPHEN SHAPIRO, author, Best Practices are Stupid
"Winning the Brain Game reveals the invisible barriers that get in the way of problem-solving. Better yet, it delivers practical ways to jump start an entirely new approach to tackling your biggest challenges. Don't just read this book. Use it as your go-to tool to take things to the next level."
SOREN KAPLAN, affiliated professor, USC Center for Effective Organizations and author, Leapfrogging
Huge kudos to Matt May for giving us these easy-to-grasp, ready-to-use fixes for the screw-ups most of us make in trying to use our brains intelligently to solve the vexing problems of our lives at work and beyond.
-- STEW FRIEDMAN, author of Leading the Life You Want and Total Leadership
About the Author
Matthew E. May is an award-winning author and noted thought leader on strategy and innovation. A popular speaker, facilitator, and coach, he works with individuals and organizations all over the world.
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* Not Invented Here (NIH)
Most, if not all, of these flaws will likely seem familiar to most readers, since they are things we've all done or experienced. For example, anyone new to an organization or company has almost certainly heard "that's not how we do things here" or a variation thereof after offering a new idea (a classic example of Not Invented Here).
For each of these flaws, the book not only describes the flaw, but also looks at the behavioral reasons and neurological basis for each, and provides fixes for each as well. The fixes offered are:
Leaping > Framestorming
Fixation > Inversion
Overthinking > Prototesting
Satisficing > Synthesis
Downgrading > Jumpstarting
Not Invented Here (NIH) > Proudly Found Elsewhere (PFE)
Self-Censoring > Self-Distancing
In addition to describing the specific flaws and their fixes, the authors uses a mantra throughout
the book to illustrate the larger challenge we face when succumbing to these 7 fatal flaws:
"What appears to be the problem, isn't.
What appears to be the solution, isn't.
What appears to be impossible, isn't."
Put another way, we often tend to mis-understand the problem we're trying to solve, identify
incorrect or inadequate solutions to those problems, and give up and claim our problems can't be solved. However, with the proper thinking tools (namely, the fixes he describes), we can identify the real problems we face, devise workable and effective solutions to those problems, and accomplish things we once thought were impossible.
The writing is very engaging and reader-friendly. The examples the author uses are clear and
help illustrate and demonstrate the flaws and their fixes. The author introduces several chapters in the book with thought problems or exercises designed to highlight the specific flaw he is examining, and also challenges the reader to try these exercises on their own (and provides answers to some) to better engage the reader.
I have only one very minor quibble with this book, and that's the lack of a summary chapter. The author does includes some final thoughts towards the end of the last chapter, but I would have liked to see a summary.
I strongly recommend this book to anyone looking to improve their problem solving skills, or looking to learn more about how we think about and approach problems.
I love solving problems, coming up with ideas and just expand my view on things.
Anytime you are presented with a puzzle/problem go through these steps:
1. Spend at least 5-10 minutes reading the question so you can understand the problem.
2. Once you understand the problem, think of the craziest way to solve the problem. It should be insane, and should not make sense at all. The goal is to get from FOCUSED MODE to DIFFUSED MODE.
Let's say you got this puzzle:
A man is lying dead in a field. Next, to him, there is an unopened package. There is no other creature in the field. How did he die?
He died because dinosaurs ate him
He died because an asteroid hit him
He died because a guy kicked the football from China and it traveled 5000 miles and hit it right on his head and he died.
Continue this for about 3-5 minutes keep coming up with crazy ideas, there are no right or wrong, the goal is to get your mind out of focused mode.
3. Now that your mind is in diffused mode. Ask at least 5-7 times why and answer it:
Because he had too much drink
Because he was lonely
Because his gf left him
Because he was always drinking
Because he loved the smell of alcohol
4. Ask "what if"...
What if he's not dead but pretending to be dead?
What if the creature killed him and flew?
What if a ghost killed him?
5. If you are still not able to solve it then list all the assumptions you are making. How do you know you are making assumptions? Here is a clue: you are making assumptions whenever you are uncertain/unsure/not sure what to do. List all of the assumptions and then tackle the problem.
Give these tips a try and I am sure you will solve a lot of problems and puzzles!
Due to using these fixes, we have implemented some creative solutions which has given us some immediate success. This book is like the matrix where you see the world how it really is.
You will not be disappointed.