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Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success download ebook

by Shane Snow

Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success download ebook
ISBN:
0062302450
ISBN13:
978-0062302458
Author:
Shane Snow
Publisher:
HarperBusiness; Edition Unstated edition (September 9, 2014)
Language:
Pages:
272 pages
ePUB:
1450 kb
Fb2:
1535 kb
Other formats:
azw mobi docx txt
Category:
Management & Leadership
Subcategory:
Rating:
4.8

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Shane Snow distills his growth philosophies down in his book Smartcuts, How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success, providing insights into how this is possible. Of course, we all want to accelerate success; however, Shane’s approach is a bit different

Shane Snow distills his growth philosophies down in his book Smartcuts, How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success, providing insights into how this is possible. Of course, we all want to accelerate success; however, Shane’s approach is a bit different. He was named Inc Magazine’s Inc. 30 Under 30 in July 2012 and Business.

In Smartcuts, Snow shatters common wisdom about success, revealing how conventions like paying dues prevent progress, why kids shouldn't learn times tables, and how, paradoxically, it's easier to build a huge business than a small one. From SpaceX to The Cuban Revolution, from Ferrari t. . From SpaceX to The Cuban Revolution, from Ferrari to Skrillex, Smartcuts is a narrative adventure that busts old myths about success and shows how innovators and icons do the incredible by working smarter-and how perhaps the rest of us can, too. Business Leadership & Motivation Management.

Snow defines smart cuts as short cuts with integrity. Snow outlines nine foundational smart cuts principles that can accelerate anyone’s career or one’s company growth. These individuals worked smarter, more creatively, and better understood how to take their next step. Most often, they were guided by a life-passion, an interest, a focus that kept them honed like a heat-missile towards their target. They all make perfect sense, are intuitive, not controversial, and not far-fetched.

Hence its subtitle is How Hackers, Innovators and Icons Accelerate Success In his book, Smartcuts, Snow walks the reader through ten steps t.

Hence its subtitle is How Hackers, Innovators and Icons Accelerate Success. By example, the author Shane Snow analyzes how certain successful people move seemingly faster to the top than others. And while there is no overnight success, you have to work hard to be among the best, there are ways to stand out and to arrive at the top a bit faster. In his book, Smartcuts, Snow walks the reader through ten steps to achieve more than conventional hard workers by working smart and using the knowledge and platforms already out there.

Smartcuts solves a major mystery, illuminating how visionaries and . Shane is living proof that Smartcuts work.

Smartcuts solves a major mystery, illuminating how visionaries and pioneers find faster ways to achieve their goals. --Adam Grant, Wharton professor and author of Give and Take. He hacked his way into Fast Company, Wired and Ad Age, built a multi-million dollar startup by age 30, and now he's written his first of what I'm sure will be many excellent books.

Journalist and entrepreneur, Shane Snow, sets out to answer these questions in his book, Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success. Snow is a gifted storyteller and makes his case with numerous examples and mini case-studies. His quips are both entertaining and enlightening. Snow condenses his lessons into nine specific smartcuts. Snow points out that the average age of . presidents is younger than that of .

Shane Snow’s book describes 9 major steps to approach mastery. This is a perfect example of ladder hacking (note: the word hacking is used in a positive constructive light throughout my blog post and throughout Shane’s book). I dare to say that his book is as good as, if not better than, Robert Green’s Mastery. So, all you apprentices out there, unite! The Smartcut Approach. 1. Hacking the Ladder. Mormon’s game implies knocking on people’s door and asking them to trade stuff. First, you get to someone’s door holding a toothpick (or a very insignificant object in your hand) with the intent to trade it for another similar object (sometimes of a little more value).

Smartcuts is a narrative adventure that shatters common wisdom about success. Brought to you by Wired and Fast Company writer and entrepreneur Shane Snow, it shows how innovators and icons do the incredible by working smarter-and how perhaps the rest of us can, too. If we can get the author in here, it would be awesome.

Entrepreneur and journalist Shane Snow (Wired, Fast Company, The New Yorker, and cofounder of Contently) analyzes the lives of people and companies that do incredible things in implausibly short time.How do some startups go from zero to billions in mere months? How did Alexander the Great, YouTube tycoon Michelle Phan, and Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon climb to the top in less time than it takes most of us to get a promotion? What do high-growth businesses, world-class heart surgeons, and underdog marketers do in common to beat the norm?One way or another, they do it like computer hackers. They employ what psychologists call "lateral thinking" to rethink convention and break "rules" that aren't rules.In Smartcuts, Snow shatters common wisdom about success, revealing how conventions like "paying dues" prevent progress, why kids shouldn't learn times tables, and how, paradoxically, it's easier to build a huge business than a small one.From SpaceX to The Cuban Revolution, from Ferrari to Skrillex, Smartcuts is a narrative adventure that busts old myths about success and shows how innovators and icons do the incredible by working smarter--and how perhaps the rest of us can, too.
Reviews:
  • Goltizuru
Most business strategy and self improvement books are dry and boring. This one is none of those. It was the right mix of tech language yet some of the more complex ideas were explained in laymans' terms. In each chapter or section, Shane gives multiple examples of what he's trying to explain, and often like a novel, will track 3 or 4 different experiences at once. He'll then bring them all back together by the end of the chapter to make a cohesive point about what he's explaining.

He presents not just the examples that support his ideas, but also gives examples of people who, when faced with similar situations, also fail. This lends some credibility and lets you see what that line is between a "smartcut" and a "shortcut". While there's still a lot of factors that go into creating and capitalizing on a Smartcut, he supports his ideas and the concept well.

At the very least, this book will give you the awareness that climbing the ladder rung by rung is not the only option. It's not always easy to spot and use a Smartcut, but reading this book will help you prepare for doing it. I'd say this book is a lot like Rich Dad, Poor Dad. It's a philosophy and mindset that needs adopted in order to get any benefit. And while it might not always be at the front of your mind, having this knowledge in your back pocket will add to your skillset and strategy as you make your way through your career.

Smartcuts is honestly one of the most well-written books I've read.
  • Nalmergas
This book serves as an original career and entrepreneurship guide in the 21st century (which was not the intent of the author). The main thesis of Shane Snow is that luck does not just happen. Using surfing metaphors, Snow indicates that the ones who catch the wave (luck) are the ones who were ready all along looking for it. These remarkable individuals were bound to catch a good wave (luck) sooner or later. It was just a matter of time. And, the way they went about it; they did not waste much time doing it. They did not pay their dues for decades. They spent no time in stagnant situations. They kept moving forward and often laterally (typically a lot faster than the rest of us). This does not mean they did not work very hard. They did. It does not mean they cheated and cut corners. To the contrary, they maintained superior ethical standards. Snow defines smart cuts as short cuts with integrity. These individuals worked smarter, more creatively, and better understood how to take their next step. Most often, they were guided by a life-passion, an interest, a focus that kept them honed like a heat-missile towards their target.

Snow outlines nine foundational smart cuts principles that can accelerate anyone’s career or one’s company growth. They all make perfect sense, are intuitive, not controversial, and not far-fetched. Snow does not make anything up. Every single of his smart cuts principle is well supported by research and documented by many examples.

The smart-cut thinking is an offshoot of “lateral thinking” as defined and developed by Edward de Bono. And, Snow gives de Bono his due credit for the concept. However, while I have read most of de Bono’s books, and did find them interesting; I find Snow’s book far more insightful.

Each chapter describes thoroughly one of the smart-cut strategies on a stand-alone basis. Of course, they overlap a bit and work well simultaneously. But, it is amazing how powerful each one of those strategies is on a stand-alone basis.

There are numerous passages within the book that are pretty fascinating. The contrast between the careers of US Presidents and US senators is amazing. The Presidents are often outstanding smartcutters with a surprisingly short career in Federal office before acceding to the Presidency (Eisenhower, Carter, Reagan, Clinton, Bush Jr., and Obama among others). Meanwhile, the senators are for the most part stagnant plotters; and, very few of them ever make it to President. Snow even makes the case that some of the Presidents who paid their dues with a lifelong career in politics were some of the worse Presidents (example: Andrew Johnson). Good Presidents mainly acquired leadership credentials outside the field of (national) politics. Meaning, paying your dues career-long is no guarantee of mastery once you get there.

Another interesting fact is that companies who switch fields are often very successful. Moving laterally often causes one to accelerate. The IPhone was developed not by a telecommunication company, but Apple a PC company. Start-ups that “pivot” once or twice raise 2.5 more money, have 3.6 times faster user growth, and are 52% less likely to plateau prematurely.

In another section, you learn about a team of hospital surgeons who learn how to synchronize their surgeries and patient treatments inspired by the exactitude, speed, and efficiency of a racing car formula I team of outstanding mechanics working at the races. Quoting the author: “Before long, the hospital had reduced its worst … errors by 66%.” As an extra, the formula I racers, mechanics, and hospital doctors became very good friends and participated together in fund raisers for various charities.

The whole “Rapid Feedback” strategy (chapter 3) is really interesting. It details the comedians learning processes at The Second City in Chicago. It also shares research on how we learn from mistakes and feedback. Much research show that we actually learn more from the mistakes of others rather than our own. This is because we readily attribute the mistake of others to humans. Meanwhile, we attribute our own mistakes to external circumstances beyond our control so as to protect our own ego. Apparently, what differentiates some masters in whatever discipline from others is their ability to withstand, or even their eagerness to solicit negative criticism. They find negative criticism far more actionable to facilitate their progress.

“Waves” (chapter 5) is at the essence of the book. That’s where Snow goes all out with surfing metaphors that he effortlessly transfers into a multitude of real life and career related examples. He quotes a professional surfer stating: “Being able to pick and read good waves is almost more important than surfing well.” You can see how you could plug in this concept effectively in many situations. There are a couple of specific gems in this chapter that will stay with you. One of them is the amazing power of pattern recognition. If you analyze deliberate trends, use criteria, observe the facts, etc… amateurs undertaking this kind of trend analysis will invariably outsmart experts’ intuition in just about any field. Snow mentions a few weird examples such as the ability to recognize the difficulty level of a professional basketball shots; or the ability to pick out Louis Vuitton fake bags vs authentic ones. Thus, “you can be right the first time” without years of apprenticeship. This will be music to the ears of all the data guys out there (not just the Big Data one). “Deliberate pattern spotting can compensate for experience” as stated by the author. Another gem is that you don’t need to be the first to do something and be successful. Research showed that 47% of first (company) movers failed. By contrast, early leaders-companies that took control of a product’s market share after the first movers pioneered them had only an 8% failure rate. Fast followers benefit from the free-rider effect. Examples: Google beat out Overture in search engine. Facebook beat out Myspace in social networks.

“10 x Thinking” (chapter 9) will turn you into an Elon Musk fan if you are not already. This chapter outlines the genius, perseverance, and sheer bravado Musk demonstrated in pursuing his most daring venture: SpaceX. The concept here is that to revolutionize a field you can’t go for just marginal improvements (10% better, etc…). You have to go for the big swing, 10 x better, or 10 x cheaper, etc… So, it is called 10 x thinking. And, Musk after many failures did just that with SpaceX. His company is literally 10 times more cost effective and 10 times faster in terms of project turnaround time than the former best in the aerospace business: NASA. As a result, SpaceX is now a very viable commercial entity swamped with contracts from all over the world to launch satellites transport resources back and forth to the Space Station, etc… A counterintuitive thought is that sometimes the 10 x improvements are easier than the + 10% one. This is because the former are challenging high-hanging fruits no one dares to go for. While the latter ones are low-hanging fruits crowded with competitors. And, this runs into the N-Effect. The more competitors in a given field the weaker is the individual performance. They found that test takers (SAT, ACT, etc…) perform much better when in a smaller class room with fewer test takers than when in a much larger class room with many test takers.

There is a lot more to the book than what I covered. But, my review should give you a good idea if this book is for you. If you got that far in reading my review, it most probably is.
  • Kupidon
I'm scratching my head trying to figure out what are the actual "Smartcuts".

The book argues that successful innovators don't do things the way everybody else does and they certainly don't take the well worn path to success, i.e. "hard work". They figure out the hacks, the short cuts or the "smart cuts" and get to the top faster than anyone could have imagined. Great premise. However, the examples given don't really support these "smart cuts'' other than don't take the accepted path, especially the one of working hard & following the well-tread ladder of success because that one takes longer. The Techniques/ "Smartcuts" presented are either incredibly obvious and contradict themselves.

The book features "momentum" as a smartcut. Momentum being get a lot of publicity and notoriety and use that to catapult yourself to the next level of success. I don't think anyone needs to read a book to understand this principle. Yet, the author warns that in this event you are better served having worked very hard and having body of work to draw from. He compares the make up artist Michelle Phan (who had worked very hard to create an extensive) was prepared to leverage the burst of fame to someone else who just got lucky and had no depth and thus their 15 min of fame was wasted. Ok, this seems to contradict the "work less, go farther" "Shorten" that is presented in the beginning of the book.

Some of the reviews thought it was too "Malcolm Gladwell-esque". I like Malcolm Gladwell and was hoping this book would be in that vein. Unfortunately it is not. While the author is a good writer; he's not a good storyteller. The ideas are clearly articulated but they are not told in such a fashion to make me feel there is something original and groundbreaking here.

And the conclusions I'm left with after reading the book are: If you want to succeed then work very, very hard, learn from the best (even if it means watching that individual on TV, old movies or videos), keep at it and once you get some success figure out how to ride that success so it builds on itself. Sounds like pretty tried & true advice which is fine except that is author is claiming he is giving your something better, something smarter.