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We struggle to manage complexity every day. We follow intricate diets to lose weight, juggle multiple remotes to operate our home entertainment systems, face proliferating data at the office, and hack through thickets of regulation at tax time. But complexity isn't destiny. Sull and Eisenhardt argue there's a better way: by developing a few simple yet effective rules, you can tackle even the most complex problems.
Simple rules are a hands-on tool to achieve some of our most pressing personal and professional objectives, from overcoming insomnia to becoming a better manager or a smarter investor. Simple rules can help solve some of our most urgent social challenges, from setting interest rates at the Federal Reserve to protecting endangered marine wildlife along California's coast.
Drawing on more than a decade of rigorous research, the authors provide a clear framework for developing effective rules and making them better over time. They find insights in unexpected places, from the way Tina Fey codified her experience working at Saturday Night Live into rules for producing 30 Rock (rule five: never tell a crazy person he's crazy) to burglars' rules to choose a house to rob ("avoid houses with a car parked outside") to Japanese engineers using the foraging rules of slime molds to optimize Tokyo's rail system.
Whether you're struggling with information overload, pursuing opportunities with limited resources, or just trying to change your bad habits, Simple Rules provides a powerful way to tame complexity.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By CR on 12-26-15
This got past my own simple rules. I won't re-read
The concept of simple rules is good and the content is OK. The book wasn't as effective as it could have been in helping the reader come up with these rules for their situation in a concise manner. An abridged version would have been a better deal time-wise. It boils down to:
1. Figure out what will move the needle
2. Choose a bottleneck, a constraint that is holding you back
3. Craft the rules
This book was a deal of the day on 10/5/15. My simple rules for filtering out these deals is to not bother looking at anything under 4 stars (really more like 4.2-4.3 range is my normal minimum) and it has to have a sizable number of reviews (at least a couple hundred but preferably more). 4.5 stars with 30 reviews is not proof of a good book. It has to be a subject mater I am really interested in to At this time I am writing this review, this book has 3.8 starts with just over 300 reviews. I assume it was over 4 stars when I bought and the subject matter interest green-lighted me for the purchase.
Now I look at the reviews, sorted by my recent first, and I see the first several reviews are 5-stars. After the deal of the day, when apparently a lot of us were suckered into buying the book, the reviews are 2:1 negative, dragging the score down below my 4.x threshold.
While there are nuggets of useful ideas, overall, I can't recommend this one if you want a straightforward read with implementable advice. You can probably expand upon the key concepts above from an Amazon review and save yourself 8 hours. That said, if you don't mind some filler and working through the concepts to figure out how to implement, then go for it.
17 of 17 people found this review helpful