Game-Changer

  • by David McAdams
  • Narrated by Grover Gardner, David McAdams
  • 6 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The aim of David McAdams’s Game-Changer is nothing less than to empower you with this wisdom - not just to win in every strategic situation (or “game”) you face but to change those games and the ecosystems in which they reside to transform your life and our lives together for the better.
Game-Changer develops six basic ways to change games—commitment, regulation, cartelization, retaliation, trust, and relationships—enlivened by countless colorful characters and unforgettable examples from the worlds of business, medicine, finance, military history, crime, sports, and more.
The book then digs into several real-world strategic challenges, such as how to keep prices low on the Internet, how to restore the public’s lost trust in for-charity telemarketers, and even how to save mankind from looming and seemingly unstoppable drug-resistant disease. In each case, McAdams uses the game-theory approach developed in the book to identify the strategic crux of the problem and then leverages that “game-awareness” to brainstorm ways to change the game to solve or at least mitigate the underlying problem.
So get ready for a fascinating journey. You’ll emerge a deeper strategic thinker, poised to change and win all the games you play. In doing so, you can also make the world a better place. “Just one Game-Changer [is] enough to seed and transform an entire organization into a more productive, happier, and altogether better place,” McAdams writes. Just imagine what we can do together.

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What the Critics Say

“David McAdams’s Game-Changer is a rare book: A nontechnical first introduction to game theory that also offers a fresh perspective, on how the best strategy for playing a game can often be to change the rules. I can see that I’ll have lots of opportunities to recommend it.” (Alvin E. Roth, winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Economics)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Interesting but not gripping

There is a decent overview of game theory in this book. However, the content becomes extremely tangential and I even forgot several times that I was listening to a book about game theory at all. The author clearly did a lot of research (even toots his own horn at the end of the book about it), but failed to leave out any unnecessary information in the text so as not to lose the reader (listener). In short, while the language of the book is certainly written for the layperson. The format is akin to that of a scientific research paper and is a little (lot) boring.

The narrator did not help things. I may enjoy this narrator for a novel of some kind, but for this type of book his tone bored me to sleep. He did not have that knack for making the material exciting and interesting.

Another small point - and this may be more related to my inaccurate expectations, but worth mentioning for others - is that this book does not really talk about how to strategize within the confines of a typical issue - such as how to navigate a prisoners dilemma type situation. There is more examples on how to introduce regulation or something that removes the elements of the prisoner's dilemma type situation. Not actually what I was looking for. I was hoping to learn about anticipating other people's moves and so on. Again, my incorrect assumptions don't make the book bad, but might be useful for anyone looking for something similar to what I was (am) looking for.
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- Tom

Wanted it to be good

I was really hoping this was going to be good. However the author goes down these rabbit holes for half an hour and then tells you to refer to 3 chapters back to understand the point trying to be conveyed. Meanwhile the half hour just spent was mostly worthless. There is good information in here but you have to put it together yourself.
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- Reese

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-27-2014
  • Publisher: Gildan Media, LLC