Insights—like Darwin's understanding of the way evolution actually works, and Watson and Crick's breakthrough discoveries about the structure of DNA-can change the world. We also need insights into the everyday things that frustrate and confuse us so that we can more effectively solve problems and get things done. Yet we know very little about when, why, or how insights are formed—or what blocks them. In Seeing What Others Don't, renowned cognitive psychologist Gary Klein unravels the mystery.
Klein is a keen observer of people in their natural settings—scientists, businesspeople, firefighters, police officers, soldiers, family members, friends, himself—and uses a marvelous variety of stories to illuminate his research into what insights are and how they happen. What, for example, enabled Harry Markopolos to put the finger on Bernie Madoff? How did Dr. Michael Gottlieb make the connections between different patients that allowed him to publish the first announcement of the AIDS epidemic? What did Admiral Yamamoto see (and what did the Americans miss) in a 1940 British attack on the Italian fleet that enabled him to develop the strategy of attack at Pearl Harbor? How did a "smokejumper" see that setting another fire would save his life, while those who ignored his insight perished? How did Martin Chalfie come up with a million-dollar idea (and a Nobel Prize) for a natural flashlight that enabled researchers to look inside living organisms to watch biological processes in action?
Klein also dissects impediments to insight, such as when organizations claim to value employee creativity and to encourage breakthroughs but in reality block disruptive ideas and prioritize avoidance of mistakes. Or when information technology systems are "dumb by design" and block potential discoveries.
Both scientifically sophisticated and fun to listen to, Seeing What Others Don't shows that insight is not just a "eureka!" moment but a whole new way of understanding.
©2013 Gary Klein (P)2014 Brilliance Audio, all rights reserved.
Gary's investigation into and understanding of how insights occur is thorough and a testament to insightfulness. The narration is lovely and the voice type well matched to the topic. I love the use of story as the frame also. Will have to listen to it again.
"Not enough actionable ideas"
It is an interesting book but seems to be more of a collection of interesting stories than actionable items. The narration was excellent. It is entertaining but I was looking for more of a how to experience.
"felt like I was listening the same thing all over"
I like all his insight stories and his analysis of each story. But his explanation is too tedious and repetitive.
I was waiting the whole book for the moment he would finally say how we can really trigger insights, but as this question has no answer he just gave us many stories for us to figure out by ourselves. I think my expectations were too high for the end of the book and I got really sad when it suddenly ended with no clear answer. I enjoyed and had fun with all his little cases and stories, and I definitely learned something from listening. But my feeling when it ended was a feeling of "really? is that all? I listened to the same stories over and over again for nothing?"
I just think he could had explained the same things in a much shorter book.
"Thought - provoking and full of practic insights."
Highly engaging. I recommend this book to those who want to learn about their world, their business, their relationships.
The author tells the story of how he approached his study of insights, - - a story which was itself full of insights into unpacking insights from events.
He didn't just tell what he learned... He explained his path. He told a story of his study. In doing so, he drew me into his search in a way that a mere report of his final results could never do.
It was a pleasure to listen to. I intend to buy several hard copies... One for myself, one for my boss, and one for each of several colleagues.
In our office, we are struggling to capture insights and drive practical lessons to shape our work. The organization is pushing to standardize processes, reduce error, and increase predictability. I'm concerned that we will stifle our ability to learn from our projects in the drive for perfection.
The author addresses exactly this phenomenon.
We aren't doing a very good job of balancing the natural forces that seek perfection with the freedom to innovates , but if we can apply the author's framework, I'm certain we'll have a much better chance at doing both well.
I read his previous book on rapid decision-making. It too is a masterful study that opens the mind to a richer understanding of that field. I recommend both books.
I don't know the author but I am moved to engage him in conversation.
"Valuable for leading a project"
Good book for managers and project-driven professions.
It helps you have breakthroughs in your thinking. The author analyzed 130 insights to see what led the person to discovery - was it creativity, seeing connections, spotting a contradiction? He goes through many of these stories (good, so you can recognize similar situations in your own life, but also boring, like he's doing a book report on many life incidents and also referring back to them). This caused the book to become boring at times. Helpful, but boring. I felt like I was listening for professional development's sake, not because it was also a fun listen.
I definitely had a few takeaways from this book. One is the idea of the "up arrow and down arrow." We focus too much on not making mistakes, without rewarding riskier efforts to improve our situation. That improves our current situation, but doesn't allow room for advancement. Encouraging creative improvements will improve a business, even if the new ventures and products result in a few kinks that need ironing out in the future.
"Seeing What Others Don't"
Mr. Klein, by virtue of insight, uniquely addresses the creative insight process with an insightful approach if his own. Relying on his depth of expertise to guide him through an unorthodox research approach, Mr. Klein has added contextual depth to the complex process of insights. After reading this book one will realize that those who claimed insights could be had by "connecting the dots" or by following a simplified equation with set variables not only look foolish, but also don't fully understand the driving multitude of layered variables necessary for genuine insight creation. Furthermore, Mr. Klein demonstrates that there is more than one way to categorize the creative insight process.
I look forward to reading/listening to this book again in order to deepen my understanding of insights and the generating process. Thank Mr. Klein for such an insightful book!
I like to listen to books at 3X playback speed and this narrators voice sounds a bit to hissie like a snake at that speed. The story was pretty good, I listened to it 3 times through before it lost my interest.
"A bit repetitive, but otherwise OK"
There were some good nuggets of wisdom, but it felt like the author covered the same ground over and over.
interesting stories but not much of theory. .but Exford narration kept me listening on and on
Good narrator, great stories used to enlighten us and tell us how to not take insight too lightly. Great for leaders in larger organizations.
"Nothing really actionable"
Otherwise, it was a decent book. I really only noticed two things in there that I hadn't already noticed for the most part before, and this may just be my bias but even with those things that I hadn't noticed before there was still no real actionable way step by step to implement any of the insights.
I literally needed my own insights into the insights!
"Great listen, will buy the tactile copy too!"
Full of really useful info that enables individuals in business to really make the most of their aha! & eureka moments or even how its possible to have them and innovate in a business that's being strangled by process & protocols!
"Interesting and somewhat useful"
The main thing I learned is that it's a good idea to let go of what we think is right or usual in order to achieve new insights. For me, I found most of the book interesting but not completely useful. This would seem to be a hard area to research and to come up with any specific strategies.
"The value of listening and the multiple ways we get to discoveries"
Great text and great performance.
This is a nice view of how easy it is to not see what others might and how quick we are to explain way they are wrong and then maybe just how obvious things are. Nice blend of historical and personal stories to highlight the multiple paths one might travel in discovering something new.
"Insightful! A great overview of the workings of insights"
I purchased this book expecting it to be a practical guide for increasing the rate of insights I have, at work and otherwise.
This book is not a how-to guide.
Nonetheless, I found it very informative, well narrated, and I learned a lot from each of the anecdotes shared. I can't help but feel that by expanding my world view, even just slightly, this book has inadvertently provided me with more tools to help me get ahead in every day life.
A good listen from start to finish. The three path to insight model is also an novel way of thinking about how we arrive at insights.
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