How To Make Better Choices In Life And Work

Book - 2013
Average Rating:
Rate this:
The four principles that can help us to overcome our brains' natural biases to make better, more informed decisions--in our lives, careers, families and organizations.

In Decisive , Chip Heath and Dan Heath, the bestselling authors of Made to Stick and Switch , tackle the thorny problem of how to overcome our natural biases and irrational thinking to make better decisions, about our work, lives, companies and careers.

When it comes to decision making, our brains are flawed instruments. But given that we are biologically hard-wired to act foolishly and behave irrationally at times, how can we do better? A number of recent bestsellers have identified how irrational our decision making can be. But being aware of a bias doesn't correct it, just as knowing that you are nearsighted doesn't help you to see better. In Decisive , the Heath brothers, drawing on extensive studies, stories and research, offer specific, practical tools that can help us to think more clearly about our options, and get out of our heads, to improve our decision making, at work and at home.
Publisher: Toronto : Random House Canada, c2013.
ISBN: 9780307361134
Characteristics: 316 p.
Additional Contributors: Heath, Dan 1973-


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Oct 26, 2017

Great read

Jul 12, 2017

Seminal Book on decision making.

Jun 01, 2017

Offers very practical principles on making better decisions using for categories: widen your options, attain some distance, reality-test your assumptions, and preparing to be wrong.

Mar 31, 2014

Great read full of real life anecdotal examples, which help to explain the research and concepts.

janicedepaula Jan 14, 2014

This book has a lot of good ideas for making decisions. It really makes you think outside the box.

Jul 04, 2013

A fascinating and helpful look at what makes us make bad decisions and how to counteract those habits.

JCLChrisK Jun 24, 2013

For the past few years I've had a fascinating and fun journey working my way through a good collection of titles about how thinking works; more specifically, about how thinking doesn't work the way we think it works. That we are constantly lying to, misleading, and deluding ourselves. That our knowledge, perceptions, beliefs, memories, and actions aren't nearly as rational and reasonable as we like to think. That many of our decisions, both the little, daily ones and the big, life-changing ones aren't as sound and carefully reasoned as we believe.

While there have been times the reading has left me feeling cynical and dispirited--that there is no point trying to communicate or connect with others since their assumptions and biases will confound my efforts anyway--for the most part it has been a helpful, healthy process of improving my self-awareness and interpersonal/emotional intelligence. They've made me a better listener, less sure of my own strident opinions in discussions and more likely to assume a generous "AND" stance instead of a combative "EITHER-OR" one.

Something they all have in common, for the most part, is that they spend the bulk of their time sharing the findings of recent research and studies in order to dispel our common-sense assumptions, and only after that leave a bit of space for talking about what to do with the new information. Decisive, on the other hand, starts with the new perspectives, explains them a little, then spends the bulk of its time sharing ways we can make better decisions in light of that information. It's less theoretical and idea-based, much more practical and applied.

In brief, the authors describe a process to follow when making decisions that will help counteract many of the tendencies that steer us wrong. It's not necessarily a step-by-step formula since each decision is unique and every context requires something different, but it provides guidance and a series of checks and balances to make sure we are properly considering the issue from a variety of helpful facets. I think it will be a very helpful process to get in the habit of following.

LaimaA May 08, 2013

Great insight into the decision-making process and the roadblocks that people are unintentionally throwing into their own paths when contemplating a decision.

May 05, 2013

I love reading these kinds of books. So, much exposure to research and its cool talking to people about the research. The research 'DOESN'T' doesn't apply to them of course (but I feel it does). Learning about these human biases is only helping me avoid making what would have been automatic decisions that I will regret later........

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings


Find it at WPL

To Top