Customer Reviews


19 Reviews
5 star:
 (9)
4 star:
 (6)
3 star:
 (1)
2 star:
 (2)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant explanation of what triggers insights, what interferes with recognizing them, and how to nourish them
Long ago, I realized that the true value of most (if not all) breakthrough insights is best determined by the nature and extent of the disruptive impact they have on the given status quo.

Here is a three-part challenge:

1. How to create an environment within which insights are most likely to occur?
2. How to recognize and then grasp them...
Published 21 months ago by Robert Morris

versus
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not my cup of tea
Pretty disappointing book not meeting the expectation actually getting insights on getting insights.
This book is based on 120 cases of someone having an aha moment. These are sorted in categories, some are discussed in length and show up in pretty every chapter indicating some redundancy. Main conclusion is a chart named 'triple path model' which will not haunt...
Published 4 months ago by Vroomfondel


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A brilliant explanation of what triggers insights, what interferes with recognizing them, and how to nourish them, 31 Aug. 2013
By 
Robert Morris (Dallas, Texas) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Long ago, I realized that the true value of most (if not all) breakthrough insights is best determined by the nature and extent of the disruptive impact they have on the given status quo.

Here is a three-part challenge:

1. How to create an environment within which insights are most likely to occur?
2. How to recognize and then grasp them?
3. How to nourish their development and, if necessary, defend them while in that process?

These are among the questions to which Gary Klein responds and he does so with a series of brilliant insights of his own.

In 2005, he learned about a movement called "positive psychology," started by a psychotherapist - Martin Seligman - who was determined to add "meaning and pleasure to the lives of his clients" by emphasizing the positive dimension of their experience. "I felt that the concept of positive psychology applied to decision making as well," Klein notes, and suggests that to improve performance - increase the quality of decisions - "we need two things. The down arrow is what we have to reduce, errors. The up arrow is what we have to increase, insights. Performance depends on doing both of these things."

Klein focuses on 120 "cases" that demonstrate one or (in most instances) several of five strategies: Connections (dots, yes, but also similarities, causal relationships, and interdependence); Coincidences (clues to possible patterns of evidence and verification); Curiosities (initially, inexplicable phenomena that require closer attention); Contradictions (initially viewed as absurdities but then...); and Creative Desperation (unexpectedly resolving a problem that seems unsolvable). It should also be noted that there are situations when what seem, at first, to be insignificant insights are in fact like individual pieces of a puzzle that, when fully assembled, replicates one of Jackson Pollock's abstract expressionist paintings such as "No. 5, 1948" or "Autumn Rhythm, 1950." Hence the importance of mastering all five of the strategies, and, developing discipline sufficient to eliminate irrelevancies but the determination to explore anomalies and the courage to stay the course to increased understanding.

These are among the dozens of business subjects and issues of special interest and value to me, also listed to indicate the scope of Klein 's coverage.

o Architectural Trenches (Pages 28-31)
o The Battle of Taranto (33-36)
o The Mother of All Scientific Insights (39-41)
o The Greatest Astronomical Discovery of the Twentieth Century (46-48)
o Banking on Contradictions (62-69)
o Looking at the Data (91-93)
o The Logic of Discovery (101-108)
o Stupidity in Action (114-118)
o Flawed Beliefs (121-125)
o Rescuing Jemima Boone, wife of Daniel Boone](140-148)
o The Motivations [to Stifle Insights] (151-157)
o Down-Arrow Methods to Reduce Errors and Uncertainty (160-167)
o How NOT to Hunt for Insights (171-178)
o Diagnosis [when helping others], and, Diagnosis Plus Action (193-199)
o [How to] Increase Organizational Willpower (213-221)
o Tips for Becoming an Insight Hunter (235-236)

When concluding his book, Gary Klein makes a number of especially important observations that I have pulled together in a mosaic of brief excerpts. They suggest the thrust and flavor of his insightful curiosity. "I see the examples in this book as a collective celebration of our capacity for gaining insights, a corrective to the gloomy picture offered by the heuristics-and-biases community. [The same community of negativism and myopia that Martin Seligman rejected years ago.] Insights help us to escape the confinements of perfection, which traps us in a compulsion to avoid errors and in a fixation on the original plan or vision...The magic of insights stems from the force for noticing connections, coincidences, and curiosities; the force for detecting contradictions; and the force of creativity unleashed by desperation. The magic lives inside us, stirring restlessly."

Those who read this book will be well-prepared to release that magic and then use its power for discovery and creation in ways and to an extent that may once have been inconceivable.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gary Klein – Seeing What Others Don’t | Review, 15 Mar. 2014
By 
This review is from: Seeing What Others Don't - The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights (Paperback)
Disclaimer: While I aim to be unbiased, I received a copy of this for free to review.

Now, I’ll be honest – when I started reading this, I was a skeptic. I didn’t believe in the so-called ‘science of insights‘, or the field of naturalistic decision-making that the author helped to pioneer. Boy, was I in for a surprise.

Klein writes with such passion and such conviction that you quickly come round to his point of view, and he’s done the hard-work for you by researching over a hundred cases of insight, from Napoleon‘s insight to cut off the supply lines at the battle of Toulon to Alexander Fleming‘s discovery of penicillin and the cop who realised a carjacking was in progress when a driver flicked ash over the dashboard of a brand new BMW.

Klein classifies each of the insights in his collection as connections, coincidences, curiosities or contradictions, although insights can also come about through creative desperation or through a combination of multiple factors – in fact, these combinations are the most common source of insight.

I could talk about it forever, but suffice to say that Klein explains each of the concepts clearly and concisely, using real examples to illustrate his theories. The rest of the book explains how companies and organisations try to block these insights, no matter how much they may claim the contrary.

And Klein will also reveal how you can boost those insights – that’s invaluable advice, and it more than pays for the cost of the book. So go out and get it!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars From the Trench, 24 Nov. 2014
By 
John M. Ford "johnDC" (near DC, MD USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Inspired by Martin Seligman and other positive psychologists, Gary Klein turned away from studying errors in decision making and focused on how experts like firefighters solve problems successfully. He is most interested in how we have and use insights. "When we put too much energy into eliminating mistakes, we're less likely to gain insights. Having insights is a different matter from preventing mistakes."

Klein began by observing instances of creative problem solving that did not fit the accepted four-stage model of creativity consisting of preparation, incubation, illumination, and verification (from economist Graham Wallas' 1926 The Art of Thought). He also saw important differences between the lab experiments and unfamiliar problems used to study problem solving and the real-life insights of experienced professionals working in their areas of expertise. Klein started from scratch, collecting his own set of critical incidents and examining them for patterns. He was careful to include instances of failed insight as well as instances of success.

Klein concluded that we achieve insights by reorganizing our thinking into a new story about the problem we are trying to solve. His model highlights the importance of five factors in achieving insights. "Eventually I was able to sort these 120 cases into five different strategies for gaining insights: connections, coincidences, curiosities, contradictions, and creative desperation. Did the incident rely on a person making a connection? Did the person notice a coincidence as a trigger for the insight? Was the insight triggered by some curiosity-- an odd fact or event? Did it depend on seeing a contradiction? Or was the person stuck, desperately seeking some way out of an impasse?"

The first section of the book describes Klein's research methods and how each of the five factors was identified. It also debunks common beliefs about problem solving. For example, an incubation period is unnecessary for creative insight, reasoning by analogy is productive when it involves an expert applying analogies from previously-solved problems, and computational models of searching a problems space to choose between possible solutions do not match how human experts think.

The final two sections describe how insights are often blocked and what can be done to facilitate insightful problem solving. Most interesting is Chapter 12: How Organizations Obstruct Insights." It discusses how the high value many organizations place on predictability and reduction of errors discourages risk-taking and pursuing new strategies. "Insight is the opposite of predictable. Insights are disruptive. They come without warning, take forms that are unexpected, and open up unimagined opportunities. Insights get in the way of progress reviews because they reshape tasks and even revise goals. They carry risks-- unseen complications and pitfalls that can get you in trouble. So insights make you work harder." Another nugget is Klein's tongue-in-cheek list of methods to block insight. If you have a distaste for arbitrary deadlines and other organizational nonsense, you will find it enjoyable as well as useful.

This is a useful discussion of the nature of insight and how to recognize and foster it. It strikes a good balance between research depth and practical application. Researchers will also find it useful for Klein's candid discussion of this methods and the value of a naturalistic approach to studying decision making. Readers who enjoy Klein's approach might also take a look at Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions, Working Minds: A Practitioner's Guide to Cognitive Task Analysis, and The Power of Intuition: How to Use Your Gut Feelings to Make Better Decisions at Work.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It is incredibly easy to read, 5 Sept. 2014
By 
Clarke (Linlithgow, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
I wish I could give this book 6 stars. It is incredibly easy to read, fascinating and full of insights. Brilliant.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great. Very interesting and relevant, 12 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Seeing What Others Don't - The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights (Paperback)
Great. Very interesting and relevant. Hit the spot with me with the term "breakthrough solutions through the force of desperation"! I have been very innovative in my life and I recommend this book for the newcomers! I must warn. though .. insights come from within.. the rest is history.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not my cup of tea, 17 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Seeing What Others Don't - The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights (Paperback)
Pretty disappointing book not meeting the expectation actually getting insights on getting insights.
This book is based on 120 cases of someone having an aha moment. These are sorted in categories, some are discussed in length and show up in pretty every chapter indicating some redundancy. Main conclusion is a chart named 'triple path model' which will not haunt one's memory for too long.

The book might be actually ok if your expectation is right. Expect some nice anektodes around insights, accept some redundancy and finally be prepared that comon sense is wrapped into some mild academic lingo and you get what you are looking for.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed the discussion he developed, 23 Jan. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Almost a 5-star review but for my personal gripe about American authors including comparisons with "Baseball" (which means nothing to me) and to pin-ball machines (I've never seen one and have little idea what they do). "Tilt!" = Tilt???

However, I enjoyed the discussion he developed. Clearly, insight is an intangible subject- one that is going to be difficult to examine under a microscope or measure with a Vernier gauge nonetheless there it's still good science to attempt to extract some meaning from an unempirical review of 120 cases of insight - again, it's an approach that has it's limitations and it will, as you might expect, draw criticism from detractors who expect a perfect model. The author has tried to develop a structure and some appropriately descriptive language to allow the various cases to be grouped, described and distinguished from each other - but it's not like identifying elements in a periodic table with definite physical and chemical properties - as a subject, insight proves to be harder to define exactly BUT I think the author does a good job or taking the reader through the evolution (changes and refinement) of his thinking - I find it very hard to agree with the 2-star review given by "Vroomfondel" who says "Pretty disappointing book not meeting the expectation actually getting insights on getting insights."

I liked the authors style enough to want to take a look at his other books and I wouldn't be surprised if I bought something else written by him.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars Rescuing Jemima can make you think, 10 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Seeing What Others Don't - The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights (Paperback)
This is an interesting book. Based on a collection of 120 stories, of which Klein says '57 are major examples', Klein seeks to find commonality within the stories which could then lead him to a better understanding of how Insights are generated.
Don't get over-excited by the 5-star ratings and don't be fooled by the 1-star either. Klein takes you on a journey through his thinking. You learn on the way. I agree with one reviewer when he said that Klein can get a bit repetitive. Klein does keep going back to the 'fag-ashing' example far too frequently. I found myself skip-reading the repetitive examples, but that led me to realise that I either had ADD or I was allowing his writing style to get in the way of my own learning.
It's very easy to stick in the groove of what you already know rather than looking more deeply and that's what Klein invites you to do. I found his 18th century example 'Rescuing Jemima' to be a very good example of developing insights and, despite the antiquity of the example, the insight generating processes are equally valid today. I also reviewed this book for red10 people development.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2.0 out of 5 stars It's very easy to read, 18 Feb. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is an interesting area, but the style of presentation is much too American for me. It's very easy to read, but there's a lot of repetition arising from the fact that he draws repeatedly on a the same selection of examples of instances of insight (although whether they are in fact all instances of insight is debatable). It reads like a transcript of one of those American-style day-courses in sales or something - slickly presented, very well rehearsed, with a few bits of reasonably interesting information along the way, but strung out over a lot of PowerPoint slides with a lot of 'summaries of main points so far." I was reading it out of general interest - possibly it might have more to offer if you were reading it from a 'corporate' point of view to try to see how you can change your business ethos to give people more freedom to arrive at creative insights and apply them.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars a must-read for anyone interested in what makes some people exceptional, 2 April 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Seeing What Others Don't - The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights (Paperback)
One of the most fascinating books i've read this year. The first section, on the 5 different ways in which we find insights, is the best part (later sections are on what companies/individuals can do to increase chances of having insights). The narrative style, with stories illustrating each example, is what makes the book so memorable and makes me able to recite his theories without learning or studying or trying to memorize. Highly recommend for anyone interested in psychology, innovation, corporate/management strategy, sociology, and the nuances of what makes an individual exceptional in their chosen field.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Seeing What Others Don't - The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights
£10.39
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews