Release year: 2019

Author: Kim Scott

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Link to my handwritten notes


Essential reading for anyone who has to interact with a manager or employees on a daily basis! (Thanks Anthony for this recommendation!)

Félix rating:

⭐ Star quotes

  1. (p. xxviii) Relationships may not scale (Dunbar’s number), but culture does.
  2. (p. 24) The problem with living at the top of a hill is that you always have to walk uphill just to get back home.
  3. (p. 90) While ideas can ultimately be very powerful, they begin as fragile, barely formed thoughts easily missed, compromised and squished. It’s tempting to shut these down (“I don’t have time right now!"), but taking the time to clarify the ideas will save time in the long run.
  4. (p. 92) Plussing: A technique, where rather than saying ‘No, that’s a bad idea’, people must offer a solution to the problem they see in an idea. This technique is used at Pixar.
  5. (p. 132) To get over the awkwardness of asking your direct reports what they think of your performance, have a go-to question, e.g. “What could I do or stop doing that would make it easier to work with me?”
  6. (p. 134) You may disagree with criticism, if you:
    1. First, find something in the criticism you can agree with to signal you’re open to criticism.
    2. Then, make sure you understand what they mean by repeating.
    3. Then, let them know what you think about what they said and schedule time to talk about it again.
  7. (p. 152) Listen, challenge, commit. A strong leader has the humility to listen, the confidence to challenge, and the wisdom to know when to quit arguing and to get on board.
  8. (p. 212) The only people required to participate in big debate should be those you identified in your staff meeting. But anyone should be able to attend/observe the big debate meeting. The debate “owner” appoints somebody to take notes and send them out to all relevant parties.