Give and Take

  • by Adam M. Grant, Ph.D.
  • Narrated by Brian Keith Lewis
  • 11 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

An innovative, groundbreaking book that will captivate listeners of Malcolm Gladwell, Daniel Pink, The Power of Habit, and Quiet
For generations, we have focused on the individual drivers of success: passion, hard work, talent, and luck. But today, success is increasingly dependent on how we interact with others. It turns out that at work, most people operate as either takers, matchers, or givers. Whereas takers strive to get as much as possible from others and matchers aim to trade evenly, givers are the rare breed of people who contribute to others without expecting anything in return.
Using his own pioneering research as Wharton's youngest tenured professor, Grant shows that these styles have a surprising impact on success. Although some givers get exploited and burn out, the rest achieve extraordinary results across a wide range of industries. Combining cutting-edge evidence with captivating stories, this landmark book shows how one of America's best networkers developed his connections, why the creative genius behind one of the most popular shows in television history toiled for years in anonymity, how a basketball executive responsible for multiple draft busts transformed his franchise into a winner, and how we could have anticipated Enron's demise four years before the company collapsed - without ever looking at a single number.
Praised by best-selling authors such as Dan Pink, Tony Hsieh, Dan Ariely, Susan Cain, Dan Gilbert, Gretchen Rubin, Bob Sutton, David Allen, Robert Cialdini, and Seth Godin - as well as senior leaders from Google, McKinsey, Merck, Estée Lauder, Nike, and NASA - Give and Take highlights what effective networking, collaboration, influence, negotiation, and leadership skills have in common. This landmark book opens up an approach to success that has the power to transform not just individuals and groups, but entire organizations and communities.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Give ‘Til it Helps - Your Company

My first reaction to Andrew M. Grant’s “Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Management” was “You’ve got to be kidding! Are you really telling me that if we hold hands, sing ‘Kumbaya’, and share our shovels in the sandbox, everything will be okay at the office?”
That’s not what Grant was saying - at all – but it took an uncomfortably long time for him to get to that point.

Grant advances the position that those who give generously, both professionally and personally, are more likely to be successful than “takers” (about 15% of people) or “matchers” ( about 70%). It’s a compelling argument, and Grant backs up his position with widely regarded studies and valid statistics. According to Grant, a business organization is well served by finding and developing givers (sharers), whose collaborative work with other givers often returns far more than the work of takers or matchers.

Grant also points out an important fault of givers: Statistically, givers are also more likely to be low achievers or failures, if they become “doormats.” Grant has some valuable tips for doormats to recognize takers, and extract themselves from “no sum” or “negative sum” relationships.

I listened to “Give and Take” on the heels of Sheryl Sandberg’s 2013 “Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead” I wondered until halfway through the book if Grant was even considering women in the workplace. Many of the “giver” techniques he recommends are the very techniques that, when used by women leaders, erode whatever leadership foundation they have.

Grant eventually points out that the communication techniques he is recommending will not work for anyone presenting in a leadership role (at a board meeting, for example), although they will work for a leader as a team member.

Grant has some invaluable tips for how women can effectively negotiate higher salaries and gain respect in an organization, even while they are “givers” (or “sharers”, in my parlance).

This book didn’t have the impact “Lean In” did for me, but it had some invaluable suggestions I will incorporate into my life. I am now much more confident about being a “giver” and recognizing “takers”.

I had an unexpected issue with the narration of this book: Brian Keith Davis, the reader, is so smooth, he reminded me of Casey Kasem, the host of American Top 40. I listened to that radio show every Sunday night as a teenager, eagerly waiting to find out what the new Number 1 song was. Several times, after an especially positive anecdote in “Give and Take”, I expected to hear a current pop song. As I write this review, the Number 1 Billboard song Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ “Thrift Shop.” That is especially apropos for this book.
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- Cynthia

recycled material

since I just finished this, my thoughts are very fresh and, I assume, will change over time as I reflect on the material...I have heard so many great things about this book, but it seems that it was essentially a book report around the "giving" theme of other, more original work. This reinforced the benefit I gained by reading all of the referenced books, and connected those books around this theme, but provided little new value. However, maybe the genius of the book isn't that Mr Grant has new ideas, but that he wanted to shine a spotlight on other great works and GIVE them more exposure. My guess is that if I was one of the authors of the several books referenced, I'd be flattered and happy to hear my work so highly spoken of.
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- Matt Dallas

Book Details

  • Release Date: 04-09-2013
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio