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Left Brain, Right Stuff: How Leaders Make Winning Decisions

4.04  ·  Rating details ·  274 ratings  ·  18 reviews
Left Brain, Right Stuff takes up where other books about decision making leave off. For many routine choices, from shopping to investing, we can make good decisions simply by avoiding common errors, such as searching only for confirming information or avoiding the hindsight bias. But as Phil Rosenzweig shows, for many of the most important, more complex situations we face- ...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published January 7th 2014 by PublicAffairs (first published September 1st 2013)
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Omar Halabieh
Jan 24, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I recently finished reading Left Brain Right Stuff - How Leaders Make Winning Decisions by Phil Rosenzweig. The author had graciously provided me with a copy of his new book, as I had previously read and reviewed an earlier work of his (The Halo Effect).

Below are key excerpts from the book that I found particularly insightful:

1- "They make predictable errors, or biases, which often undermine their decisions. By now we're familiar with many of these errors, including the following: -People are sa
...more
Sergio Caredda
Libro molto interessante che cerca di contestualizzare le ricerche comportamentali nell’ambito delle decisioni aziendali. Negli ultimi venti anni il cosiddetto “behavioral economics” si è imposto come una spiegazione spesso semplicistica: l’uomo è diventata un essere irrazionale vittima di innumerevoli “bias”.
Secondo l’autore questa lettura non può però applicarsi a decisioni su aspetti verso i quali si possiede un’influenza. Il leader che decide la strategia aziendale, il commerciale che decide
...more
Kyle
Mar 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
3.8/5 - By now I love Phil Rosenzweig, I hope he keeps writing books. I love his data-driven exploration of fallacies in thinking about business and decision making. I didn’t like this as much as The Halo Effect but it was still great. The last chapter or a summary is worth revisiting down the road.
Wilte
Nov 22, 2016 rated it liked it
Central idea: real-world decisions demand the combination of left brain analysis (eg careful analysis and management of risk) and right stuff ambition (willingness to step into the unknown) (p18)

Again some good debunking, but not as strong a book as The Halo Effect: ... and the Eight Other Business Delusions That Deceive Managers

Results from carefully designed lab-experiments have some merit, but cannot always be transferred to messy, real world. Also, in many experiments, respondents have no in
...more
Phil Simon
Jan 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: business
I am a big fan of Rosenzweig's prior book The Halo Effect. To me, it's an important criticism of ex post facto management texts that trumpet the virtues of successful companies. Left Brain continues with this theme of questioning what we think we know about decision making.

Rosenzweig has a knack for letting the reader understand areas that many books of this ilk overlook-or fail to adequately address. For instance, laboratory experiments might tell us something about individual decision making i
...more
Pete
Apr 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Left Brain, Right Stuff (2014) by Phil Rosenzweig looks at how people make decisions, how psychological tests are not like the real world and how we predictions about things we can influence and can't influence are completely different.
A lot of people would be familiar with the Dunning-Kruger effect and surveys that show that a huge majority of people think they are a better than average driver. It's little remarked that for other questions such as are you good at drawing a majority of people wi
...more
Andrea James
Apr 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
I liked the author's other book, The Halo Effect, probably because it echoed what I felt (someone agreeing with one's own views is not a prudent reason to like them). And once again, I probably enjoyed this book because I'd been having similar thoughts when reading other decision books.

In general, I am a fan of using models and taking into feedback especially in repeated scenarios and I encourage my clients to at least attempt to be aware of their emotions and biases. But I'm also conscious tha
...more
Ananda
Apr 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Rosenzweig's previous book, The Halo Effect, was a great and well-researched debunking of common business-book wisdom about best practices. It exposed the futility of a perennial project to determine a formula or procedure that businesses can follow to guarantee success.

In this book Rosenzweig takes on another modern sacred cow: the volume of research related to decision-making and cognitive bias. He argues that while there's much of value in the experiments that show we do not make decisions op
...more
Devin Partlow
Jan 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
First there were books born of rigorous research like Good To Great, then behavioral research illuminated figures like Daniel Kahneman and concepts like the survivorship bias and overconfidence, and now this book has advanced knowledge even further.

The great thing that this books points out is that all the findings based on those inherent human biases from nice, controlled laboratory experiments don't translate to the complex decisions we face in real life. The cognitive bias research itself wa
...more
Pierre
Dec 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
I already knew most of the ideas in the book (a lot are common sense indeed) but Phil Rosenzweig still managed to bring me new insights and advice that I should follow to improve my way of dealing with business and teams.
I think the book has brought me valuable information and hopefully it will have tuned something in my brain (be it left or right) that will add value longer term.
The only nagative comment is that the ideas in the book are too spread out. The chapters are very long and dwell too
...more
Joseph
May 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book explores some important distinctions to consider before agreeing wholeheartedly to behavioural economics.

I find it thought provoking and it allows me to appreciate the nature of 'experiments' conducted in the name of behavioural science.

specifically the 4 areas that we need to reconsider:
(1) is the outcome independent or dependent on effort?
(2) is performance absolute or relative?
(3) is result real time or lagging?
(4) is the decision to be made by a leader (who has to consider other
...more
Leader Summaries
Feb 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Desde Leader Summaries recomendamos la lectura del libro Cerebro izquierdo y lo que hay que tener, de Phil Rosenzweig.
Las personas interesadas en las siguientes temáticas lo encontrarán práctico y útil: habilidades directivas, analizar y tomar decisiones, y estrategia y modelos de negocio.
En el siguiente enlace tienes el resumen del libro Cerebro izquierdo y lo que hay que tener, Cómo tomar decisiones acertadas: Cerebro izquierdo y lo que hay que tener
...more
Michael
Mar 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Great book, but it felt like the title including words Left Brain/Right Brian threw off my expectations. It's a wonderful book about how we make decisions, and dispelling some common myths about overconfidence, assuredness, and bias.

I had a hard time putting it down, and saw a lot of the behaviors described in some of the organizations I work with.

Highly recommended.
...more
Richard Fieldhouse
Not so much about how to make a right decision, but more to show what the territory around decision-making is like. What to avoid, how to avoid it and what to look out for. Particularly, areas where we should be making less decisions, and areas where we should be making more.
Bao
Aug 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
good stories and examples: base probability, over confident etc.
Udai Tennati
Aug 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great counter point to lot of decision making books!
Anupam Kumar
Apr 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very nice book and a must read for the corporate world.
Nancy Seamons
Apr 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
how to use your analytical left brain and the emotions from the right brain, which the author refers to as the 'right stuff' to avoid overconfidence when making decisions. ...more
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“THE ONLY WAY TO MAKE PROGRESS IN BUSINESS IS THROUGH CHANGE. AND CHANGE, BY DEFINITION, HAS A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF RISK ATTACHED TO IT. BUT IF YOU PICK YOUR SHOTS, USE YOUR HEAD, AND APPLY GOOD MANAGEMENT, THOSE ROLLS OF THE DICE CAN TURN OUT PRETTY” 0 likes
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