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How to Have a Good Day: Harness the Power of Behavioral Science to Transform Your Working Life
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How to Have a Good Day: Harness the Power of Behavioral Science to Transform Your Working Life

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  2,372 ratings  ·  288 reviews
In How to Have a Good Day, economist and former McKinsey partner Caroline Webb shows readers how to use recent findings from behavioral economics, psychology, and neuroscience to transform our approach to everyday working life.
Advances in these behavioral sciences are giving us ever better understanding of how our brains work, why we make the choices we do, and what it
Kindle Edition, 370 pages
Published February 2nd 2016 by Crown Business
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☘Misericordia☘ ⚡ϟ⚡⛈⚡☁ ❇️❤❣
Mar 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Behavioristics & Psychology buffs. Consulting wannabes.
Recommended to ☘Misericordia☘ by: My bookshelf. Its gorgeous cover.
The Art of Having a Good Day.
Then I spent countless hours reading academic articles and books (more than six hundred at last count) in the three disciplines, looking for findings that I could translate into actionable advice for my clients. And that abundance of research and practical experience is the bedrock of How to Have a Good Day. (c) Not too abundant, though, is it?
... those days when our workplaces feel like a Milgram experiment. (c)
Before we dive into the advice on creating the se
Oct 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business, arc, wellness
Caroline Webb has managed to write a heavily researched, evidence-based manual that can be helpful to just about anyone. Which probably makes it sound horribly boring, but it really isn't!

Most of the book is written for people who work--at the top or the bottom of the food chain, it doesn't matter. But even I, as a stay-at-home mom and writer, found plenty in here to apply to my life. Webb's tone is very conversational, and while the content is dense, she manages to inject levity and humor often
Jun 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've read dozens of this kind of book in the past - blends of how to be more productive, more fulfilled, more content, more energised, better at decisionmaking and leadership, all while trying to keep a career moving at a good pace. This is quite literally the most useful book I've ever read.

It has practical advice on virtually every aspect of a modern work day - meetings, email, relationships, communiation, sharp thinking - grounded in interesting research and then brought to life with stories
This book is sort of a review of the literature of productivity, efficiency, being calm, conflict resolution, focus, etc., all the stuff of a "good day" at work. All of that is pure ruby and pearls to this superdork.

But while I enjoyed this, what David Brooks did in The Social Animal, which is similar in topic (though it's about how to have a good LIFE instead of a good day), made that a book I'm positive will stick with me longer than this one. He reviewed the literature via fictional characte
Feb 05, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to the audiobook read by the author and should unforunately acknowledge that it is not well read. She reads the book with a very slow speed and her voice may not keep your interest very long.

The book is a comprehensive collection of tools and techniques useful for having a good day (at work). However, if you have previously been reading self-help books, you may not find many new tips and techniques on offer here that would be considered game changing.

The author has dedicated a complet
Jul 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You know those books where you find yourself dog-earing every page to ensure you come back, because there is so much valuable information? Caroline Webb's How to Have a Good Day is quite possibly one of the only books you'll ever need to read on practical ways to enhance your productivity, relationships, strategy making, and energy with simple, doable tips based on behavioral science studies.

Sound like a bore to you? Trust me, it's not. Webb writes in a personal and honest way, sharing her own m
Feb 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book should be called “how to be an effective adult.” Although nominally it’s about how to have a good day at work, it covers a whole lot more. The book revolves around three themes:
1. The brain’s activity is split across System 1 (deliberate and controlled) and System 2 (automatic and instinctive).
2. The discover-defend axis: Our brains function best when it’s in discovery mode instead of defending against perceived threats.
3. Mind and body are deeply entwined. Simple physical interventi
Jul 19, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I read this book because a friend of mine recommended it. He said "it made sense." Since my friend is someone I highly respect, I bought the book without giving it a second thought.

But now I read the book. I don't think I have learned anything new. Change your attitude, the way you approach things, prioritize, I mean, haven't we heard about them before? Where is the new idea?

Maybe I missed some important message. I just didn't feel enlightened. I didn't really see anything that I haven't alrea
Justin Jackson
Mar 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Bought this book on an impulse. Best impulse decision I made as this book uncovers so many actually science-backed FACTS to improve your life and productivity.

Really enjoyed the appendices at the end as well.

Will definitely be coming back to this book over and over again for refreshing.
Nicole H
Jan 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Behavioral science, exploring and explaining the reasons why people behave as they do, makes for a fascinating read in itself, but information alone is not enough to change behaviour, as we know! That's where this book comes in: How To Have A Good Day not only explains the theory but it distillates this knowledge into useful techniques to tweak the way you go about your day. The tone is warm and engaging, the real-life examples illustrating the application of these techniques keep you turning th ...more
Daniel Frank
This would be a great starting point for those unfamiliar with the research already out there on applied psychology. That being said, it's meant to be a pop-book for the layperson, and doesn't offer anything new.

I would highly recommend it to some people (and think it would be a 5 star book to them), but since I'm already familiar with the material, I can't fairly give it a rating.
Emma Sea
Nov 20, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: pn-library
1.5 stars
Aug 19, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018
I don't usually read work-related books, but I was intrigued by this one because I usually find behavioral science research to be interesting. (My favorite "work book" is Don't Shoot the Dog!, ostensibly a dog-training manual, but actually full of great behavioral science tips you can use on all creatures.) There is a lot of great advice in here, and I particularly liked the chapters related to interpersonal topics like influence, confidence, and difficult conversations. I'm kind of over the pro ...more
Feb 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Usually it's quite difficult to break through the noise that is self-help/productivity books. There's a lot of noise out there. This is one that stands out for me.

I actually have a hard copy on my shelf, which is rare. I only keep those books I know that I will return to and what Caroline Webb has done has created a manual that I have and will continue to reference.

Informative, research-based, well thought-out and an enjoyable read. Lots of little tips and tricks based on facts. It is grand!
Bartek Czempik
Feb 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is as far from "self help", full of obvious things, shouted in bold, boring books, as you an imagine. There is science here, there are real world examples and most of all it connects, creating a blend that is irresistible to go an have a try in real life. Its like somebody finally wrote a "manual" how to operate "You".

Its fabulous and it did transform my life.

Jan 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2016
Practical advice and mindfulness tips for the modern work world.
Mar 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How we spend our days is how we spend our life. Annie Dillard
Will Once
Apr 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
There are two kinds of management/ self help books out there - the ones written by people who know what they are talking about and those written by chancers. It is sometimes hard to tell them apart because the chancers sound as if they have something worthwhile to say. What the chancers are really doing is to take a few principles, adding in more or less relevant examples, and packaging the whole thing up with over-blown promises about how this book will change your life.

"How to have a good day"
Nopadol Rompho
Aug 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
One of the best books I've read this year. The book is about how you can use behavioral science to change your day from bad to better to best. I love it very much. It is filled with a very practical tactic backing up with a lot of researches and also interesting examples. If you want to have a good day, and I hope you do, read this book. ...more
Jan 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I enjoy reading self help books so I'm familiar with a lot of the most popular techniques around today. This book manages to pack a lot into its pages and I found it entertaining and informative reading. I alternated between reading it and listening to the audio book version read by the author herself. She has a light hearted and conversational style which makes you feel as though she is a friend helping you to turn your life around.

All the usual things such as mindfulness, prioritising, list ma
Feb 23, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-improvement
It's as if every book about productivity, efficiency and collaboration was distilled down into the most useful gems. I wish I'd had this book fifteen years ago - EVERYONE can benefit from it. It's perhaps especially important if you're in the early stages of your career, so you can avoid learning a few things the hard way, but even those of us in a mid/late career stage can improve our game, so to speak. Clear, immediately helpful tips and solid, science-based reasoning make this a book I'll be ...more
Uwe Hook
Feb 23, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellently and conversationally written, Webb combines aspects of behavioral science and how the applications can be actually applied to improve life. There is focus (as is true in most books like this) on priorities and productivity, but the behavioral science tweaks add a lot to the reader's understanding. There are also sections on relationships, resilience (resetting after setbacks), boosting energy, and influence. She includes chapters on "making it stick" and things that improve meetings, ...more
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Listened to this as an audio book which was surprisingly easy to do. There is lots of familiar territory but the book is all the better for that with reference to works I already use adding credibility to the wider subjects cover. The summary at the end of the chapters and the cross reference through the chapters is a really useful tool . I have ended buying the book so that I can have an easy reference guide and have also bought copies for members of my team. A great all around guide for those ...more
Morgan Schulman
Feb 19, 2016 rated it liked it
As a psychodynamically-oriented therapist, it is always horrifying to me that people would use the field of psychology to teach sociopaths how to get ahead at work, as opposed to working towards world peace and/or universal intrapsychic wellness. However, these are the skills that are most necessary to thrive under late-model capitalism. I would imagine behavioral scientists would consider this "reframing". ...more
Aug 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How to have a good day explores the latest studies in behavioural science to help us understand how to have better relationships, be happier and enjoy day-to-day interactions with others.

The author lays her research out in an easy to understand way, backed with anecdotes and stories to highlight what the reader might learn.

I learned a number of interesting tips and techniques while reading this book, and I can see it being a book I return to again in the future to re-read.

Andrew Ning
Dec 15, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hardcover
First third is excellent (5 stars). But then it keeps going and tries to do way too much without really adding new insight. I had to force myself to finish. Still the beginning is totally worth it. It combined a lot of ideas I've read elsewhere but was more comprehensive and provided a stronger scientific basis for the ideas as opposed to just anecdotal evidence. ...more
Sep 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Generous tips on how to face daily challenges and keep a positive outlook.
Sep 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really good, helpful, practical stuff. I liked it, marked a lot of pages to get back to, and will bring it to the office to refresh myself with periodically.
Oct 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Practical and actionable. Most likely staying on my desk for easy referencing.
Aug 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: waiting
This book is like reading blog posts about someone's favorite books... ...more
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Caroline Webb is an economist, management consultant and executive coach who has spent the last fifteen years showing her clients how to apply insights from behavioral science (neuroscience, psychology and behavioral economics) to boost their professional effectiveness and job satisfaction. After a first career at the Bank of England, she worked for 12 years at management consulting firm McKinsey ...more

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