Grit – A Book Review

Grit – A Book Review

Angela Duckworth’s book Grit has been well-received and it is generating debates in scientific as well as education circles. The book is based on the research carried out by the author. It provides an entertaining, lucid and informative take on Angela’s findings. The author outlines a wide variety of ways to develop grit and how to nurture it in compatriots. The outstanding concepts about grit outlined in this awesome read point to the quality as a reliable predictor of success. She states that grit can be learned and adopted by virtually anyone regardless of age, gender or creed.

Talent versus Grit

However, some sections of the media seem to miss the point by suggesting that the book is anti-IQ and talent. Instead, the book clearly recognizes the existence and role of talent. The author defines talent as the rate at which individuals understand concepts with effort. She goes on to state that talent has the capacity to distract from the effort needed to accomplish goals.

The author stresses the critical roles played by other qualities, such as social intelligence, kindness and humility. Grit, on the other hand, is typically regarded as the least class-based predictor of future prospects when compared to aptitude. It is viewed by many as being egalitarian.

While measurable intelligence is largely dependent on genetic endowment and environment inputs, the development of grit does not rely on culturally-specific prompts. The later appears to be a more dependable engine of social mobility.

Duckworth manages to bring her discoveries to the reading public in a way that resonates with business approaches. It comes as no surprise that some commentators are convinced that the publication has a place in the business section of bookstores.

Grit paragons

It features two equations showing how grit is better than talent. The first one combines effort and talent to yield skill. On other hand, skill x effort = achievement. However, one does not need just effort but focused effort. In the book, Angela profiles a number of people with indefatigable resolve, whom she referred to as grit paragons.

One of those gritty individuals is thirteen-year-old Kerry Close who managed to clock more than 3,000 hours of practice. The teenager was working towards becoming a National Spelling Bee champion. Her fearlessness and relentless approach to practicing paid off at a tender age. She exhibited amazing commitment to identifying her mistakes and correcting them countless times.

Some of the other grit paragons mentioned in the book include a woman who won the battle against cerebral palsy to become an outstanding British comic. Duckwork also highlighted West Point cadets who survived the rigors of a grueling rite of initiation.

Duckworth’s Grit Scale

The Grit Scale is a set of questions that are aimed at determining one’s resolve, optimism, diligence, stick-to-it-iveness, willingness to work hard, focus and more. She also offers a four-step program aimed at reinforcing grit and a sense of purpose. The first step involves identifying a burning interest whereas the second step is all about regular practice. Meanwhile, the third stage revolves around developing a indefatigable sense of purpose.

In the book, Angela illustrates the importance of purpose-driven grit with the inspirational story of Kat Cole. This young grit paragon is the child of a financially struggling single mother. Yet, she managed to work her way to becoming president of the Cinnabon bakery chain after waitressing at Hooters.

However, some Grit book review comments suggest that this example is feeble and exposes a flaw in the book. The arguments arise from Cole’s proclamations that she is willing to help change the world. The reviewers dismiss the claims as a corporate PR stunt.

Should You Read It?

If you’re interested in the key points of “talent vs grit”, I highly suggest this interesting read.  It goes to show that persistence pays off no matter what you put your mind to.


Top 3 Business Books of 2016

Top 3 Business Books of 2016

Why You Need To Read These Books ASAP

Several top selling business books have hit the market this year. Authored by the gurus in the game, it is detrimental not to get your hands on a few of them and get to know where the business world is headed. It is progressive to keep afloat with new strategies, insights, and advice from respected business persons and authors to keep expanding and growing as an entrepreneur. This article gives a brief summary of the top 3 business books that have topped the shelves in the year 2016. I will tell you why these books is a must read.

Money: Master the Game

money-master-the-gameWritten by the well known Tony Robbins, this book is quite the tool you need to gain mastery over your finances. Robbins enables you to achieve the above by following seven basic principles that have been recommended by financial experts and if observed to the letter, will deliver the results. First, you need to take control of your finances, save it, do not channel out your money left right and center. Secondly, know the rules and costs of investing your money. Thirdly, set goals that are realistic to your earnings and lifestyle. Fourth, know to balance between high risk ventures with potential high returns and the secure investments. Fifth, learn how to aim at increasing your margins by targeting top returns, while at the same time reducing risks. Sixth, do not ignore professional advice. Keep learning how to invest small and reap big through making informed choices. Lastly, make your life and that of others better, it is why you are earning your money anyway.

The Third Wave

the-third-waveIn his book The Third Wave, the lead author Steve Case gives an entrepreneur’s vision of the future. I personally recommend this book as its visionary approach sounds like inside information which business people and companies must embrace to remain relevant in the future. It is ideal for giant tech company executives, tech enthusiasts, and entrepreneurs with a keen interest on the Internet evolution. The book looks at how the Internet has evolved in waves. The first wave involved the development of infrastructure by companies such as AOL, the second comprised the emergence of companies such as Google that moved with speed to utilize the laid out infrastructure. The third wave will be an opportune time for new start-up establishments and the existing to integrate with the Internet of things. Those who will not take the steps to innovate for the future will likely face a decline.

Shoe Dogshoe-dog-book

Produced this year, this is a first from the founding member of the giant Nike, Phil Knight. In these intriguing memoirs, the chairman of board at Nike gives a candid account of his journey from selling shoes from the back of his car to being the founder of one of the most recognized brands in the world. The story is about a strong will to achieve, expertise, and unrelenting self drive that combined with luck to gift the world a brand that symbolizes pure greatness.

A Review of Blink by Malcolm Gladwell

Blink: A Timeless Review Of Malcolm Gladwell’s Timeless Book On Thought Processing And Decision Making

We have all been bombarded with endless clichés about action and thought at least once in our lives. ‘Think before you act’, ‘actions speak louder than words’, and as the philosophical playing field widens, one wonders what the newest adage will be. However, amidst all the smokescreen of clichés, there has finally risen a voice that makes more sense than what has been said over the centuries. It was with this in mind that Malcolm Gladwell penned his newest release, Blink, a novel about how decisions made ‘in the blink of an eye’ are perhaps the defining difference between success and failure. The author invites us to think about how we think, a challenge that most of us actually think twice about considering the somewhat apparent double negative.

Fighting Stereotypes

Blink attempts to fight stereotypes about thought processing that have captivated the minds of humanity for centuries. In a world of depleting resources it is only natural for humanity to think ‘preservation’, ‘caution’, ‘conservation’ and to direct thoughts in a guided manner that shuns impulse. Now, this is where things get interesting. Based on observing society, world trends and the opulent lives of the successful, rich or famous, the book takes a peak into how thinking ‘in the blink of an eye’ has been the a consistent mark in most success biographies.

A well thought of catastrophe, Or Not?

The book sifts the air and allows the eager eye to notice how decisiveness is key to making decisions that have an impact. So when one thinks about how some well thought of decisions end in catastrophe or disaster, the lingering question is why? Well, the answer is well-reasoned in the book as being simple: there is no guarantee that when you think before you act the result will always be in your favor. There are times when day-long thought processing is a waste of time. With the right intuitive skill one can learn how to streamline possibilities quickly and come up with a decision that will be to everyone’s benefit, for instance.

This is not to say that one must not think, no! In Blink Malcolm Gladwell is basically telling us to learn how to think fast, as some decisions do not require a harsh stretch of one’s imagination that extends farther than is absolutely necessary. The authoritative evidence of a leading psychologist mentioned in Blink who mastered the art of predicting future events based on a moment’s glance, is testament to the fact that sometimes the truth is right before our eyes, and if we ‘blink’ for too long, it might fade into falsehood and pretentiousness.