Think Again by Adam Grant – From tech product and tech startups point of view

Hipster’s Book Review Summary

Reading Adam Grant’s new book Think Again, one is made to question and analyze their own beliefs and perceptions. We found that the ideas and quotes shared in the book hold a lot of relevance in today’s fast evolving world of technology and that every entrepreneur should give it a read and ponder upon for their businesses. Entrepreneurs and working professionals are bound to be moved by the importance and power of rethinking and rethinking creates Blue Oceans in businesses and rethinking also creates new innovation in technology.

It is easy for us to lean towards ways of thinking and doing things that align with our comfort. However, the world is constantly evolving. In order to be truly successful one has to keep an open mindset. An open mindset that has the ability to unlearn. In the world of technology, new inventions and processes are sprouting every year. Companies want to stick with what has worked for them. At one point, the technology, or perhaps the lack of it- becomes outdated. One is forced to move to new ways of doing things. The power of rethinking makes that transition from one step to another a voluntary one, instead of being forced.

Advancements in technology are an everyday affair. From the up-gradation of mobile devices and software tools to the use of Artificial Intelligence- as businesses we are faced with new technologies every year and have to make a decision keeping our best interests in mind. For any technology improving with newer versions, for technologies where they were relevant 10 years back they are no longer relevant now. However, in most cases we follow the herd without rethinking our choices. Or even worse, we stick with the technology and processes that are established in our workspace simply because it’s easier. The power of rethinking can help us succeed in every walk of our life, be it business or personal. Emotional and intellectual intelligence are developed by keeping a mindset that has the ability to question its own thoughts and take disagreement in a positive manner.

Quotes from the Book to Ponder Upon

Adam Grant’s Think Again is a reflection of how as social beings we can keep evolving in all walks of life. We have compiled a list of quotes that we think will benefit every person to process their behavior and grow-

“If you don’t look back at yourself and think. Wow, how stupid I was a year ago, then you must not have learned much in the last year.”

We’ve all had this thought at least once in our lives. Whether it’s your taste in music, dressing style, or choices you’ve made before; at one point in your life you look back and feel embarrassed. However, this is something that teaches us that we’ve grown over the years. A higher frequency of this type of thinking denotes that we’re learning new things and broadening our mindsets with time. In terms of business and technology, a company’s growth is directly proportional to constant up-dation in terms of processes employed. Therefore, one should always have the ability to look back and see their shortcomings while incorporating new trends and ways of thinking.

When you read a study that surprises you, how do you react? Many people would get defensive, searching for flaws in the study’s design or the statistical analysis. Danny did the opposite. His eyes lit up, and a huge grin appeared on his face. “That was wonderful,” he said. “I was wrong.”

This quote highlights the usual norm of trying to look for flaws in studies that do not support our own thinking. What it’s trying to teach us is that instead of looking for ways to defend our own beliefs, one should feel more educated and profound while grasping ideas that contradict our own and getting a new perspective on things.

Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge”– Charles Darwin

Truer words have not been spoken. Someone that is ignorant towards the changes in technology and perceptions in the world is aggressively confident about the cocoon of ideas that they wrap themselves in. A person who is always eager to learn, will understand that knowledge is an immense ocean with a limitless supply of wisdom.

“YOU MUST UNLEARN WHAT YOU HAVE LEARNED”

Throughout history we have seen ideologies being dismantled and established beliefs being usurped. It teaches us that the world and its principles are constantly evolving. Codes of morality, societal roles, gender structures, etc. are changing. There used to be a time when same-sex relationships were considered an unforgivable sin. However, LGBTQ relationships are steadily being supported and accepted now. The people who do not have the ability to unlearn what they have been taught previously, will never be capable of learning new things. They will be branded as outdated, hypocritical, and foolishly ignorant.

We learn more from people who challenge our thought process than those who affirm our conclusions.”

We often surround ourselves with people that agree with us and affirm our opinions. Those who disagree with us, we tend to avoid or distance ourselves from. However, true knowledge is gained when someone challenges our ways of thinking and confronts us with a different opinion. Whereas the people who agree with us at all times, are only giving us validation to please our ego. They have nothing new to teach us. Entrepreneurs have a lot to learn from this quote. It is not necessary to favour the employees that always agree with you. The ones that are bold enough to express their own opinions that are different from yours, should be cherished and respected as you can truly learn from them.

We listen to views that make us feel good, instead of ideas that make us think hard.”

When faced with the option of choosing between what’s easy and what’s right, we often make the mistake of picking what’s easy. It’s easy to stick with an outdated software that still functions than learning about a new one and getting it installed, irrespective of whether or not the new software is better. This is just an example and the quote can be applied to a broad range of circumstances. However, the bottom line is that making the choice of doing the right thing requires effort, which many of us are simply lazy to put in.

Key Takeaways

One has a lot to learn and benefit from the book. Here are some key takeaways we think will enable the reader to grow personally and professionally in life.

  • Think like scientists: never outright reject the possibility of you being wrong and others being right. Be actively open-minded and do not assert why you’re right, but assess how you may be wrong.
  • You are defined by your values, not your beliefs: our values and principles are long-term and mostly unchanging. However, our beliefs can constantly evolve and upgrade. Define yourself not by your beliefs, but your values.
  • Have confidence in your humility: this will allow us to not be crippled by realising that we’ve been wrong. Be humble, and always keep an unbiased outlook. Try to look at things from different viewpoints to gain a broader meaning of things. Accept your shortcomings with humility and you will foster better relationships all around.
  • Keep asking yourself what you’re doing to learn new things: this will help you stay motivated and come up with a comprehensive plan to learn.
  • Think before you act- then stop and rethink: there’s so much you can learn from thinking again. Never forget to question your own conclusions and try to learn other viewpoints.

After reading Adam Grant’s book Think Again we highly recommend business to read this book as well as it is not just a good book that one should read, it is a book that one needs to read. It is essential for growth as a business owners in a diverse and constantly evolving world.

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