A More Beautiful Question

  • by Warren Berger
  • Narrated by Michael Quinlan
  • 7 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Audie Award, Business/Educational, 2015
In this groundbreaking book, journalist and innovation expert Warren Berger shows that one of the most powerful forces for igniting change in business and in our daily lives is a simple, underappreciated tool - one that has been available to us since childhood. Questioning - deeply, imaginatively, "beautifully" - can help us identify and solve problems, come up with game-changing ideas, and pursue fresh opportunities. So why are we often reluctant to ask "Why?"
Berger’s surprising findings reveal that even though children start out asking hundreds of questions a day, questioning "falls off a cliff" as kids enter school. In an education and business culture devised to reward rote answers over challenging inquiry, questioning isn’t encouraged - and, in fact, is sometimes barely tolerated.
And yet, as Berger shows, the most creative, successful people tend to be expert questioners. They’ve mastered the art of inquiry, raising questions no one else is asking - and finding powerful answers. The author takes us inside red-hot businesses like Google, Netflix, IDEO, and Airbnb to show how questioning is baked into their organizational DNA. He also shares inspiring stories of artists, teachers, entrepreneurs, basement tinkerers, and social activists who changed their lives and the world around them - by starting with a "beautiful question".
Berger explores important questions, such as:

Why aren’t we nurturing kids’ natural ability to question - and what can parents and schools do about that?
Since questioning is a starting point for innovation, how might companies and business leaders begin to encourage and exploit it?
And most important, how can each of us reignite that questioning spark - and use inquiry as a powerful means to rethink and reinvent our lives?
A More Beautiful Question outlines a practical Why/What If/How system of inquiry that can guide you through the process of innovative questioning - helping you find imaginative, powerful answers to your own "beautiful questions".


What the Critics Say

"Michael Quinlan's narration will strike many listeners as calming. Buoyed by his near flawless diction and phrasing, his performance has the confidence of someone in total control of his craft and his connection with his listeners." (AudioFile)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

How not to be Malcolm Gladwell

Ever since The Tipping Point came out, there have been hundreds of non-fiction books that purport to describe the secret workings of some phenomenon. Most of these are actually pretty darn good. This book, however, is almost a satire of the Gladwellian approach.

The issue is the overarching message – that asking the right questions is the key to success. It's way too broad of an idea to make work. To marshall evidence, the author casts such a wide net as to be useless. Any development from the past century has been repeated and recast as an example of asking the right question. This is correlation without causation.

Evidence counts if the protagonists did the thing you are advocating. Not in this case. Instead, the examples are merely *descriptive* – one way to understand these innovators is to look at the questions they were implicitly asking – not *prescriptive* – you should ask questions the way they intentionally did.

He should have asked himself, "In what circumstances are questions NOT appropriate?"

His answer, it seems, is "never." The resulting advice really is that generic – "ask more questions." And his evidence is even more generic – any example of a successful innovation is shown to come from someone who asked the right questions. A completely useless insight.
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- Andrew

Another heavily branded cheap inspiration

I don't know if Americans just love to fall for stuff like this, but for me, as a European and as a former scientist, this extremely cheap take on the great topic of the Art (or science) to ask questions sounds almost offensive. No methods of proper formulation of questions is presented in the book, the domain of science, where questions are the daily bread, is completely skipped in favor of entrepreneurship examples that sound like advertising.
The use of question asking as a social skill is also skipped over and using it for interfacing with others is suggested only in order to create a product or service in order to, wild guess, make money.
It is a depressing book if you are looking for actionable knowledge and especially if you are turned off by the cheap self-help lit meant to keep the antiquate American Dream alive.
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- Fabrizio

Book Details

  • Release Date: 03-04-2014
  • Publisher: Audible Studios for Bloomsbury