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The Moment of Clarity: Using the Human Sciences to Solve Your Toughest Business Problems

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  312 ratings  ·  23 reviews
Christian Madjsberg and Mikkel Rasmussen, principals at ReD Associates, argue for the role of a new set of tools to understand the “soft” factors that influence how people buy and consume ideas and products. Drawn from the authors’ work with companies like Lego, Samsung, Adidas, Intel, IBM, and Coke, the book will teach you how to understand people holistically in their en ...more
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published February 11th 2014 by Harvard Business Review Press (first published January 1st 2014)
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3.78  · 
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 ·  312 ratings  ·  23 reviews


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Andy Murray
Mar 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: insights
An outstanding book for anyone in Marketing who is faced with an abundance of data but a poverty of insight.

In Leo Tolstoy’s nonfiction magnum opus The Kingdom of God Is Within You, he writes: “The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.”

If you are
...more
Rangi Robinson
I enjoyed reading this and found the case studies interesting. The book looks at how big companies can become stuck in their habitual ways of running, ways which no longer work when the world changes. I liked the case studies about Adidas struggling to understand non-competitive "sports" such as yoga and Lego losing touch with the essence of "play". The authors outline a process called "Sensemaking", to help companies such as these solve their problems using human sciences. It would have been ni ...more
Rodrigo Cornejo
Mar 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Finding business strategy books that are clear in their intentions is a rare ocurrence. While this book doesn't quite nail it, it aims to subvert the conventional wisdom that uses the scientific method as a basis for all business research, which is all too prevalent on most MBA's frame of reference: trial and error and experimentation that treats people as fixed variables and voilà. Too good to be true? You bet. The book makes that clear.

While the authors don't go for it all the way, they make a
...more
Marcela
Oct 09, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Tried to disrupt how we think about doing traditional market and user research but left me a bit confused about what knowledge we could actually gain or if the point was making sense out of ambiguity. Love that they used Genevieve Bell as an example.
Guy Gonzalez
Feb 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
Applying the "soft" human sciences to business challenges may seem like new agey fluff, but the authors do a good job of making their case with a number of interesting examples, including LEGO, Adidas, and Samsung. The underlying idea that most business leaders fundamentally misunderstand human nature (and make bad decisions as a result) is one that has inherent appeal for me, but I was most intrigued by their emphasis on the importance of having a clear point of view. "The ability to take a per ...more
Kumar
Oct 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lisa
Nov 04, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book engrossing and a good introduction on how to approach extremely challenging, vague business problems. I particularly connected with the first few chapters, jotting down notes several times to aid my thinking. I would recommend this book to anyone working on or interested in business strategy - not only is it short, the content is invaluable.
Jacob Senholt
Aug 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english, non-fiction
Excellent introduction to the method of 'sensemaking', using a combination of classical management consultancy practices and the insights from classical humanities studies such as philosophy and ethnography.
Gave me quite a few insights as to what my humanistic background can contribute sensibly with at a higher level of business management.
Jan Tománek
The idea of so called "sensemaking" is generally interesting, but the book is too repetitive and shallow (way too much PR stuff). If you're going to read it, just leaf through it and pick up the rare good bits here and there.
Gillian
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A useful book for anyone, especially business leaders, who is interested in implementing qualitative research into their business. As a researcher, the first three chapters are a bit of a throw-away and quite sales-pitchy, but part 2 is quite useful. The case studies are all interesting reads and there are some useful take aways in the theory chapter and next steps chapters. You can definitely, however, tell this is written from an agency stand point and implementing research in-house is quite a ...more
Paulo
Mar 19, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: inspirational
Um livro sobre sensemaking.

O título NÃO corresponde ao conteúdo. NO original, ver-se-ia "The Moment of Clarity" ou o momento de clareza, ao invés de "A filosofia nos negócios".

Um bom livro, mas não um calhamaço dedicado aos filósofos. São mais análises de cases, com citações esparsas de uma ou outra frase de um filósofo.

Em suma, o autor prega o "Sensemaking" como a solução para os problemas, quando o seu negócio começa a não dar bons resultados. No fundo, trata-se de usar o bom senso e voltar-se
...more
Bogdan Micu
Nov 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A real eye-opener on how insights are generated. His choice and narration of the stories is much stronger than his theorizing. Absolutely LOVED the depiction and critique of the "creativity religion" ☺
Avik Saha
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The authors talk about the importance of human sciences in addition to hard sciences when businesses forget about it's core value propositions
Navid Baharlooie
If you don't know how human sciences operate in the world of business and organizations, I suggest starting with The Moment of Clarity. Books like this are important to argue for a more interdisciplinary approach and broaden our understanding of the value of this in problem-solving.

The book deals with the qualitative sciences in contrast to the quantitative, and why in particular ethnography can be a very useful approach to researching and understanding the experiences and needs of customers.

It
...more
Sokunna
Jul 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A must read for market researchers and strategists.
Jonathan Cook
Apr 17, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: marketing
If you're looking for a how-to guide showing you how to enact the human-centered qualitative research that Christian Madsbjerg and Mikkel Rasmussen have become known for, The Moment of Clarity will not meet your expectations. If you are instead seeking to undersatnd what Madsbjerg and Rasmussen mean when they talk about sensemaking and thick description, you're more likely to be satisfied with this book.

Madsbjerg and Rasmussen do their best at offering a few philosophical guidelines around which
...more
Heath Henwood
Mar 05, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
The Moment of Clarity is about understanding people, whether customers, employees or anyone around us.

As such is mixes practical advice with theory about society, particularly business around us.

The book has two parts - 'Getting people wrong' and 'Getting people right'. As one can guess the first part is about what businesses and managers are doing wrong, while the second part gives us the concept of sensemaking. That is using a mix of participant observation, qualitative data gathering and hol
...more
Jysoo
Mar 23, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The authors explains new ways of setting up strategical direction in organizations by focusing on human aspect. Although I find the topic interesting, the focus of the book need significant improvements. General introduction to the issue probably need a chapter or so, and I feel that the author should give more details on the case studies and/or practical issues on implementation.
Jason
Dec 29, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was almost too short. The authors do an excellent job of going beyond the small views that companies take in understanding their users. Our reliance on data and analytics has pulled us away from truly understanding the consumers and customers using our products and services. I'd like to learn more about the methods for pattern clarification they used in the book.
Mills College Library
658.834 M1836 2014
aljouharah altheeyb
كشخص خلفيته عن إدارة الأعمال صفر، وجدت أن أسلوب الكتاب والتفصيل فيه مفيد جداً وممتع وفتح آفاق عن المشاريع والأعمال لم أفكر بها من قبل.
Rick Yvanovich
I liked the concept of the book and the points it made but was waiting all the way through for the boom moment of clarity ... it was sort of there but not much of a boom.
Julia Lo
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Aug 10, 2014
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Christian Madsbjerg is a founder of ReD Associates and the Director of its New York office. ReD is a strategy consulting company based in the human sciences and employs anthropologists, sociologists, art historians, and philosophers. Christian studied philosophy and political science in Copenhagen and London. He lives in New York City.
“The greatest weakness of the quantitative approach is that it decontextualizes human behavior, removing an event from its real-world setting and ignoring the effects of variables not included in the model.” 1 likes
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