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The Infinite Game

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4.31  ·  Rating details ·  731 ratings  ·  87 reviews
Do you know how to play the game you're in?

In finite games, like football or chess, the players are known, the rules are fixed, and the endpoint is clear. The winners and losers are easily identified.

In infinite games, like business or politics or life itself, the players come and go, the rules are changeable, and there is no defined endpoint. There are no wi
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Hardcover, 272 pages
Published October 15th 2019 by Portfolio
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Benjamin Marcher More or less, yes. This is more "user-friendly" expansion on the core ideas expressed by Carse, I would say. I strongly recommend reading the source…moreMore or less, yes. This is more "user-friendly" expansion on the core ideas expressed by Carse, I would say. I strongly recommend reading the source material alongside this book, as Sinek does help to break down some ideas, and add some insight, in my opinion. (less)

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s e a n
Oct 27, 2019 rated it it was ok
This is a review of the book and not the concept. And full disclosure: I’m a Simon Sinek stan and I have been powerfully moved by Start With/Find Your Why and it was a catalyst for wholesale review of my leadership approach. Leaders Eat Last was similarly inspiring.

The concept of infinite rather than finite games is compelling. The first chapter adequately explains finite and infinite games, explains what a just cause is and how to measure/identify it. This is where the great concept is let dow
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Tõnu Vahtra
Oct 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
I got the first warning with Find Your WHY that Sinek's "best before" might be passing but I ignored this warning hoping to find something at the level of Start with WHY or Leaders Eat Last, but this book does not reach to that level. I was annoyed by the fact how the author was conflicting with his own preaching (tolerance and seeking synergies) when coming back again and again to criticize Jack Welch (General Motors), Microsoft (while over-idealizing Apple), Collins and others. In some cases i ...more
Russ
Oct 17, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would best describe this as a whiny rant against the modern incarnation of capitalism and the psycho and sociopaths that run them. Sinek does well to differentiate between the finite game of business with clear cut winners and losers and the infinite game played by long term visionaries who take a more nuanced look at capitalism. Milton Friedman and Wall Street come off roughly as the villians in the new form (according to the author) of share price maximization and management compensation fra ...more
Stuart Ashenbrenner
Oct 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Simon Sinek's books on leadership are the BEST there are. This one is no exception. Any book he writes, I will read. They're all on the top of my list of leadership books, along with John Wooden.
Kevin
Oct 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Would give it 6 stars if possible. Amazing book.
Maddie Nastase
Oct 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It's good to have you back, Simon!
Benjamin Marcher
Do yourself a favor and read the source material instead of this hyper-opinionated book. While the author does do a lot of work to make good points and detail different companies and institutions that have made finite and infinite choices, he often looses track of his point, and rambles for pages, oft repeating himself back to back to back to back to back to back to back to back to back to back to back until you're glad you read this book from a friend to ensure he receives no royalties.
Davor
Nov 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A great addition to Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take ActionStart with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action with yet another very simple idea: true winners are the ones who play the infinite game. This means that even if a decision might have negati ...more
Kurt Pankau
Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sinek's basic premise is to take the idea that long-term choices are stronger than short-term ones for the overall health of a company and expand on it using game theory. He splits business leaders into two mindsets: finite and infinite, that is, focused on short-term profits and growth versus focused on the long-term health of the company. He posits that companies should have a broad, affirmative, aspirational goal that speaks to the betterment of all humankind and that this should guide them r ...more
Mehrsa
Nov 08, 2019 rated it liked it
I was going to avoid reading this book and I knew I was going to fail to avoid reading this book because these sorts of books are my weakness. I did not like for the same reason I knew I was not going to like it: it's a book full of cherrypicked stories of success and failure that tries to tie up a theory into a neat binary that shows how to fail and how to succeed. In this book, it's about infinite games vs. finite games. And the same stories of success: apple vs. microsoft, Blockbuster vs. Net ...more
Alexander Rivas
Nov 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-books-read
This is such a well-timed book for the internship I have right now because I can see how the company is playing the game they are in. All the case studies in this book reinforce the idea of having an approach to the business your in as an infinite game. This goes contrary to what most businesses do and what seems logical, that nothing lasts forever and milk it for all its worth. Plus you add variables like pleasing the shareholders who seek appreciation and dividends on their investments, and th ...more
Diana Suddreth
Nov 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
In the Infinite Game, Simon Sinek gives us a different perspective on leadership in organizations where the goal is a vision that will never be reached. Although his examples are all in the business world, where acting like the dollar is the goal instead of adhering to the vision the business began with, I couldn't help but make connections to education. Even though each year has an end, and each student eventually ends their career as a public school student, in fact, the educating of our youth ...more
Pankaj
Oct 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A fantastic read from Simon Sinek, very insightful and highly inspiring. It has all that we expect from Simon's writing. It begins with some of the well-known thoughts that Simon has been talking for some time and slowly advances to a deeper level where we get immersed into the finite and infinite mindset. This is applicable not only in the world of business but pretty much any conversation we indulge in or to any aspect of life, we have a choice of being in a finite minded game and accordingly ...more
Matt Cannon
Nov 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Simon Sinek is a great thinker and communicator of ideas. If you read his books or watch his speeches on subjects such as “Start With Why” and “The Infinite Game” you will see how reframing your perspective can change your life. In his latest book, he explains the best path forward for society and businesses from a practical and actionable perspective. The Infinite Game expounds on ideas covered in another book by James P. Carse which I’m a big fan of https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1.... Recognizing the short term finite games ver ...more
Sean Gayle
When I started the book for the first couple hours I thought I would be reading a rehash of "Start with Why" (SwW) with a few new ideas and examples thrown in. In other words, another additive book by an author with a historical central theme. While the book bears some similarity to SwW, it would be fair to call it a sequel or a logical next step to the ideas presented in the past. While the "Why" of an organization is firmly rooted in its origin or reason for being, the concept of "Just Cause" ...more
Tim Hughes
Nov 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Infinite Game is an excellent book, I liked it so much that I purchased another one for my co-founder, Adam Gray. If you are in Leadership, Marketing or sales it is certainly a book to read.

The book describes the difference between Finite and Infinite mindsets (different from growth and fixed mindsets) and provides a framework for companies to recognise which mindset they have and how to implement an Infinite Mindset.

In Finite games, the rules are fixed and the end po
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Willie Green
Nov 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I'm biased as I like the general premise of what Simon Sinek shares. This book provides significant illustration of the mindset required to evaluate the things in life with a much more long-term or infinite perspective. Simon does a good job of giving well-rounded examples of the difference in the short-term and long-term perspectives of successful and unsuccessful companies over the years. Some of these examples are a bit obvious and re-used from other places (ex. Eastman Kodak). But many provi ...more
Chad Manske
Oct 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
In business and life exist finite and infinite games. Understanding the difference opens windows into our character, success, motives and a host of other ideals. Sinek introduces some new and interesting concepts—labels at least—to describe conduct in today’s business world, including the difference between a cause and a just cause (in a business context); ethical fading (the idea that imposed rigidity and standards over time become lax); the power of worthy rivals over sheer competitors; and ex ...more
Sebastian Gebski
Nov 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
It's a book about brilliant concept (TBH it's not Sinek's original one, but something he just popularizes), but it's issue is that ... there's not much book around the concept itself :) Majority of examples did not really add much to the rhetoric, there's not much "depth".

It doesn't mean there are no good observations here. I've noted down handful of very good points about:
* how weak cultures correspond to finding safety in rules (banzai!)
* the important of relationships
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Harjas Singh
Nov 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
The book definitely gave me set of heuristics to use in thinking about different facets of life; particularly, work. A lot of the examples hit close to home especially in regards to Trusting Teams, Ethical Fading and the general theme of playing with an Infinite mindset. There were enough examples in the book to substantiate the message but I wish there were more or that the existing examples went into more detail.

Maybe this is me being nitpicky but some of the anecdotes seemed to justify a mea
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Nitin Kishore
Oct 30, 2019 rated it really liked it
Given that so many startups are popping into existence to disrupt the industry or the market, they should understand that it is not just about the idea, performance or competition that matters. It's about the culture at work, trust between people, having worthy rivals and a just cause. This isn't just a book for a manager or a leader. This contents of this book is applicable to everyone despite the stage of life they are because life in itself is an infinite game and we could all benefit from un ...more
Scott Wozniak
Nov 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Sinek is a great writer, so the ideas are clear and flow smoothly from one to the other. But what's better than the skill is the power of the big idea. Playing a finite game means thinking short-term, that in order for me to win others have to be cut down, and being too narrow in your measure of success. But when you play the infinite game, then there is still competition, but it's the spurring on of worthy rivals (who are often friends) and building for the long-term, etc.

The genera
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Mike Jorgensen
Oct 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed this book! It isn't perfect, but I had to give it five stars for every time I said "ah ha." It is less that he discovers an original concept and more than he applies a familiar concept to many recognizable real-life examples. This provides a vocabulary for talking about fundamental differences in our approach to life and work.

I enjoyed Sinek's other books but thought they tended to be light on content and drifted into sensationalism when aiming for inspiration. Everything comes
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Robert
Nov 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
EDIT: Upgraded to 5 stars for the stickiness of the ideas, which have redefined a lot of how I look at the world. I keep realizing people need to read this book.
Fantastic. Gave me a lot to process and apply on a conceptual level. I think this book stands at the forefront of thinking that will lead to the next steps to make the world of work, and the world, a better functioning and better place. (Originally 4 stars because the writing could have been rather more concise; it's not boring, it
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Carlos Alberto Ledezma
Nov 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: essays
Quite an interesting theory and, as Simon Sinek presents it, sounds quite reasonable. It is somewhat surprising, though, that business-people need to develop a theory that says that they should be morally correct. Such is life.

The main downfall of the theory is that it is only tested retrospectively. We will have to wait and see if someone decides to change their ways how this book prescribes to prove it right or wrong.

Just on the side, the narrative is quite repetitive and the prose is not as
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Gabe Wood
Nov 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was amazing. He's done it again. While reading this—even though he is talking about the past— I continually thought, this guy has so much vision or sight. Not because he was able to predict the future, but because of his ability to pierce into the past and extract the lessons that history has to teach. I'm just honestly impressed with his abilities. He has such an intimate knowledge of company culture and output and input and numbers and he just somehow spits out perfect lessons from it all ...more
Andre
Oct 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another hit book from Simon. I am definitely seeing this book as a transformation book for leaders. I initially learned about the concept of the Infinity game from one of Simon’s webcasts and it intrigued me. I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the book. After completing just over half the book I see this is a must read for any leaders who are looking to build the best teams and lead into a changing workforce where things are becoming more uncertain. I will be passing recommendations to all my fr ...more
Sri Shivananda
I loved this book!

Life, business and leadership are infinite games. They are that are not bound by a window of time, players or fixed rules. They are not measured in wins and losses, but, the concept of being ahead or falling behind. Simon talks about playing the long term game with a just cause for which becomes a singular purpose, building trusting teams, having worthy rivals, being strategically flexible and having courage. Gems in every chapter.

As I listened, it caused me to pause, smile,
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Noah Tolson
Nov 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
A great book that covers a leadership in Simon Sinek’s own way. I don’t hold any contention with the content of the book, but a little over halfway through this book does begin to beat you over the head with the same material (think: presenting evidence and supporting it over and over). While this works to support Sinek’s argument, it is monotonous after a while.

This book comes with my full recommendation. Be warned for what it’s worth, though, this reads much like a Cal Newport book
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Patrick
Nov 06, 2019 rated it liked it
Perhaps I just expected too much. Perhaps I was less taken by his ideas because I, simultaneously, read reframing Business by Normann from -2001- which argues along very similar lines.

It is definitely an interesting (at times inspiring) read and well written throughout...but just not necessarily ground-breaking. Moreover, it feels like some case studies follow a cherry-picking approach and I would love to see also examples where businesses that followed a Just Cause did not succeed besides them
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Simon Sinek is an optimist. He believes in a bright future and our ability to build it together.

Described as “a visionary thinker with a rare intellect,” Sinek teaches leaders and organizations how to inspire people. With a bold goal to help build a world in which the vast majority of people go home everyday feeling fulfilled by their work, Sinek is leading a movement to inspire people to do the
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“The true value of an organization is measured by the desire others have to contribute to that organization’s ability to keep succeeding, not just during the time they are there, but well beyond their own tenure.” 0 likes
“Where a finite-minded player makes products they think they can sell to people, the infinite-minded player makes products that people want to buy. The former is primarily focused on how the sale of those products benefits the company; the latter is primarily focused on how the products benefit those who buy them.” 0 likes
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