Range : why generalists triumph in a specialized world

by Epstein, David J., 1980-

Format: Print Book 2019
Availability: Available at 3 Libraries 3 of 25 copies
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Summary
The #1 New York Times bestseller that has all America talking: as seen/heard on CNN's Fareed Zakaria GPS, Morning Joe, CBS This Morning, The Bill Simmons Podcast, Rich Roll, and more.

"Fascinating. . . . If you're a generalist who has ever felt overshadowed by your specialist colleagues, this book is for you." --Bill Gates

"The most important business--and parenting--book of the year." -- Forbes

"Urgent and important. . . an essential read for bosses, parents, coaches, and anyone who cares about improving performance." --Daniel H. Pink

Shortlisted for the Financial Times /McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award

Plenty of experts argue that anyone who wants to develop a skill, play an instrument, or lead their field should start early, focus intensely, and rack up as many hours of deliberate practice as possible. If you dabble or delay, you'll never catch up to the people who got a head start. But a closer look at research on the world's top performers, from professional athletes to Nobel laureates, shows that early specialization is the exception, not the rule.

David Epstein examined the world's most successful athletes, artists, musicians, inventors, forecasters and scientists. He discovered that in most fields--especially those that are complex and unpredictable--generalists, not specialists, are primed to excel. Generalists often find their path late, and they juggle many interests rather than focusing on one. They're also more creative, more agile, and able to make connections their more specialized peers can't see.

Provocative, rigorous, and engrossing, Range makes a compelling case for actively cultivating inefficiency. Failing a test is the best way to learn. Frequent quitters end up with the most fulfilling careers. The most impactful inventors cross domains rather than deepening their knowledge in a single area. As experts silo themselves further while computers master more of the skills once reserved for highly focused humans, people who think broadly and embrace diverse experiences and perspectives will increasingly thrive.
Published Reviews
Booklist Review: "Those who take the circuitous path find success more often than we realize. In his astute call for us to question what we think we know about effective skill development, Epstein (The Sports Gene, 2013) states that much of what we assume about hyperspecialization is wrong. Rather than dedicate oneself to a life path as early as possible, experimentation and a slow development of broad knowledge provide noticeable advantages. Because real-world problems don't exist in a vacuum with stable, consistent rules, decisions made by a hyperspecialist can at times create worse outcomes. Postulating that relying upon experience from a single domain is not only limiting, it can be disastrous, Epstein explains why, instead of depth, breadth is the most important factor in determining success. A more robust exchange of information between fields allows people with range to make new connections. Epstein cites many discoveries and innovations that could have only been made through the interaction of multiple disciplines. Equally entertaining and enlightening, this will appeal to readers with an eye on the future.--Kenneth Otani Copyright 2019 Booklist"
From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Publisher's Weekly Review: "Journalist and self-identified generalist Epstein (The Sporting Gene) delivers an enjoyable if not wholly convincing work of Gladwellian pop-psychology aimed at showing that specialization is not the only path to success. His survey finds no shortage of notable athletes, artists, inventors, and businesspeople who followed atypically circuitous paths. Some are household names, such as J.K. Rowling, who by her own admission "failed on an epic scale" before deciding to pursue writing, and Duke Ellington, who briefly studied music as a child before becoming more interested in basketball and drawing, only returning to music after a chance encounter with ragtime. Others are more obscure, such as Nintendo's Gunpei Yokoi, who turned his limitations as an electronics engineer to his advantage when he created the cheap-to-produce, durable Game Boy, and Jack Cecchini, "one of the rare musicians who is world class in both jazz and classical." Epstein's narrative case studies are fascinating, but the rapid-fire movement from one sketch to the next can create the impression of evidence in search of a thesis. While this well-crafted book does not entirely disprove the argument for expertise, Epstein does show that, for anyone without 10,000 hours to devote to mastering a single skill, there is hope yet. Agent: Chris Parris-Lamb, Gernert Company. (June) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Additional Information
Subjects Expertise.
Ability.
Publisher New York :2019
Language English
Description 339 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Bibliography Notes Includes bibliographical references (pages 297-328) and index.
ISBN 9780735214484
0735214484
Other Classic View