A Bigger Prize: How We Can Do Better than the Competition Hardcover – 8 Apr 2014
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"Heffernan systematically deconstructs the social myths associated with hypercompetitiveness while providing a formidable case about how counterproductive, and even perverse, it can be...[She] considers the effects of hypercompetitiveness in the realms of family, education, sports, scientific research, and business and corporate leadership....The step-by-step accumulation of argument and evidence is overwhelming in its thoroughness and attention to detail."--Kirkus, STARRED review"In this bold sociology of organizations, Heffernan sets her sights on an issue that cuts across industries, nations, and individuals: Why is our obsession with winning not only failing to deliver the benefits we expect, but leaving us ill equipped to solve the problems competition creates?..."A Bigger Prize" is an important call to build more collaborative, trustworthy and enduring institutions." --New York Times Book Review
Leading business strategist and former CEO Margaret Heffernan draws lessons from long-successful companies to dispel the myth that competition has to be a zero-sum game, and shows corporations, institutions, and individuals that foster collaboration and a healthy interdependency are more likely to become and remain significant leaders in their field.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
As the author says, somewhat ironically, “…schools might no longer be about learning, work now have little to do with self-fulfillment, and society might not be about relationships anymore; what mattered was to read the manuals, bone up on techniques, buy the equipment, pay the trainer, swallow the supplements, and always keep score…” and in these few sentences could be summarized whole human history of the last 50 years in which frantic race against the competition destroys human lives because we thought that such competition will solve all our problems, motivate our successors and encourage unlimited growth and development.
Instead, Heffernan thinks that people need to again turn to each other because working together is part of us, of our nature due to which we as a civilization reached all that is around us. She invites people to look around themselves and find such people and organizations which think differently, which realized growth, learning and creativity always depend on people and their ideas which are freely exchanged. Such examples should be role models, instead of those things that are these days often taken as benchmark - how many you left behind, how many bad things happened to others for you to become successful.
The author speaks about the challenges she faced while writing her book, on questions such as what else is there besides the competition and how she dare to question it, but as she says, things have started to change.
‘A Bigger Prize’ is her suggestion of an alternative way of thinking with which anyone can start changing this world, make it less crazy and less burdened to do something better and faster than others.
Well-written book by Margaret Heffernan with interesting proposals which certainly makes you think and therefore I can recommend it as a book that teaches reader that in order to change the world we should start with changing ourselves.
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
have pervaded our daily lives at huge cost, and that's not financial cost.
A Bigger Prize. How we can do better than the competition. Margaret Heffernan. 2014. ISBN 9780385679831. The author, after some very thoughtful , thorough research, has put together a well written, concise book that shows how competition is not the be all and end all of moving forward. All to quickly much of society is moving toward a belief that in order fo an individual to get ahead someone else has to lose - the zero sum game.She pretty well slams the counterproductive effects of competition on :
What makes her arguments so compelling is that we have all seen exactly what she is pointing out and that if we allow this win at all cost approach to continue we will all be worse off. Not so say reading this will cause you to become a card carrying Occupy Wallstreet member, but unfettered capitalism /competition (in order for me to get ahead, you have to lose) is taking us down the wrong road. What hit me the hardest is my current research on human development and innovation is pointing to similar conclusions as this author. If you are any kind of leader, coach, educator this is one book you must read.
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