Brené with Adam Grant on
the Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know
It’s a total geek-out, nerd-fest conversation with my friend Adam Grant about his new book Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know. Adam weaves together research and storytelling to help us build the intellectual and emotional muscle we need to stay curious enough about the world to actually change it. This is such an important book for the world we live in today.
Adam Grant is an organizational psychologist at Wharton, where he has been the top-rated professor for seven straight years. A #1 New York Times bestselling author and one of TED’s most popular speakers, his books have sold millions of copies, his talks have been viewed over 25 million times, and his podcast WorkLife has topped the charts. His pioneering research has inspired people to rethink fundamental assumptions about motivation, generosity, and creativity. He has been recognized as one of the world’s 10 most influential management thinkers, Fortune’s 40 under 40, and Oprah’s SuperSoul 100, and has received distinguished scientific achievement awards from the American Psychological Association and the National Science Foundation. Adam received his B.A. from Harvard and his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, and he is a former magician and Junior Olympic springboard diver. He lives in Philadelphia with his wife and their three children.
Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know by Adam Grant examines the critical art of rethinking: learning to question your opinions and open other people’s minds, which can position you for excellence at work and wisdom in life. Intelligence is usually seen as the ability to think and learn, but in a rapidly changing world, there’s another set of cognitive skills that might matter more: the ability to rethink and unlearn. In our daily lives, too many of us favor the comfort of conviction over the discomfort of doubt. We listen to opinions that make us feel good, instead of ideas that make us think hard. We see disagreement as a threat to our egos, rather than an opportunity to learn. We surround ourselves with people who agree with our conclusions, when we should be gravitating toward those who challenge our thought process. The result is that our beliefs get brittle long before our bones. Think Again reveals that we don’t have to believe everything we think or internalize everything we feel. It’s an invitation to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility, humility, and curiosity over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom.
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