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Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  26,414 ratings  ·  1,756 reviews
Give and Take highlights what effective networking, collaboration, influence, negotiation, and leadership skills have in common.

For generations, we have focused on the individual drivers of success: passion, hard work, talent, and luck. But today, success is increasingly dependent on how we interact with others. It turns out that at work, most people operate as either take
Paperback, 320 pages
Published March 25th 2014 by Penguin Publishing Group (first published January 1st 2013)
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Feb 15, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
After I read the NY Times profile on Adam Grant last year, this book has been on my list. The idea that giving and being generous with your time will help you get ahead in life seemed sort of interesting. Now that I'm in social work school, I think that most of his argument is bullshit, and is written for business/finance/wealthy people in general. Grant writes from a place of incredible privilege (white, male, educated, wealthy, heterosexual, you name it), and the premise of the book is that by ...more
Kater Cheek
Sep 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A lot of books like this aren't nearly as groundbreaking as they claim to be, but this one definitely changed the way I think about the world.

The authors divide the world into three types of people, givers, takers, and matchers. Not surprisingly, givers are the chumps, those people who mentor and donate and always help others at personal cost. Matchers who give and take equally, do better. Takers, the kind of people who say that it's dog-eat-dog out there and that's why they're justified in scr
Otis Chandler
If everyone in the world read this book, the world would instantly become a better place. Mental models, while never perfect, are very powerful tools, and Grant has come up with a compelling, research backed view of what makes some people successful, and others less so.

Grant divided the world into givers, matchers, and takers. Through a lot of research, Grant determined that the most successful and the least successful people are often givers, that takers often do well but not over the long term
Mar 30, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Note to self: only read nonfiction in Kindle from now on so I can share my notes and highlights on Goodreads. It's a pain having to type up all these notes!!

Apologies to readers of this "review" - it's not actually a review, more a collection of notes and insights from the book for my future reference.

Adam Grant divides the world into three groups:

Takers - usually burn bridges by constantly asking for favors and not giving back. Seen as selfish and therefore people respect them less. Have littl
Dec 14, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The concept is good in that it tries to prove that givers are ultimately more successful than takers. However the numerous examples that are used to prove the same point again and again is extremely off putting. its like the author is showing off his knowledge of trivia. He has commented on how givers should avoid being taken advantage of, but the pearls of wisdom are interspersed with boring examples, so making it difficult to cut to the chase.
Sara Alaee
Apr 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In traditional old-school reciprocity, people operated like matchers, trading value back and forth with one another. We helped the people who helped us, and we gave to the people from whom we wanted something in return. But today, givers like Adam Rifkin are able to spark a more powerful form of reciprocity. Instead of trading value, Rifkin aims to add value. His giving is governed by a simple rule: the five-minute favor. “You should be willing to do something that will take you five minutes or ...more
Andrea McDowell
Apr 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
A lovely antidote to any cynicism you may have about who succeeds in business and life, and maybe a gentle nudge for anyone most concerned with getting what they can to give a little, too.

Grant is a business professor who has studied the career and life trajectories of people he labels givers, takers, matchers and fakers. (Fakers being those people who have taker values, but try to seem like givers to higher-ups and powerful people to create good impressions and get the rewards of being generous
Kaj Sotala
Had some interesting and inspirational anecdotes, part of which resonated with my own experience. Also had a few nice ideas that seem worth trying out, e.g. reciprocity rings.

Main criticisms: felt that at times, the book was bending a bit too much to take whatever perspective ended up painting "givers" as the best group of people. Also saw some claims which I felt weren't entirely supported by the state of existing research. Much of the book also seemed to be built around anecdotes, as well as s
Apr 07, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is unscientific self-help under the guise of science. It's fine, it's helpful, but there is no formula or even an attempted test for whether someone is a giver or a taker. The basic takeaway here is don't be an asshole because if you're an asshole, you will lose in the end. But people are not always one thing or another. A lot of people are assholes in certain contexts and not others. Also, some "giving" is just the Dale Carnegie variety of social manipulation, which is basically just about ...more
Sean Goh
Aug 04, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Short-sighted networking:
-only with those who you perceive can be of use (matchers)
-receivers feel manipulated (takers)

Strong ties are bonds, weak ties are bridges.

Pronoia VS Paranoia (People are out to help you)

Dormant ties (strong ties that drifted) provide more novel insights.

5 minute favours, for anybody.

Make it a norm to add values

Success is only portable when the team moves. (e.g. surgeons need their operating theatre team)

Expedition behaviour - put the team first

Responsibility bias: We ov
Leo Polovets
Jul 07, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I thought this book was terrific. The gist is that there are three kinds of people in this world:
- takers -- those who selfishly exploit every situation to their advantage
- givers -- those who give to others without much regard for themselves
- matchers -- those who play a tit-for-tat game and match the giving styles of the people they deal with (i.e. they are takers when dealing with other takers and givers when dealing with other givers).

The author claims that while it seems like takers would b
Colin Gunderson
Apr 08, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is excellent. It highlights the power and joy in giving. While I appreciate and respect this work because of the good it should spread, the main point in giving is not to get ahead or be more successful. The point of giving is simply to do the right thing.
Vipul Murarka
Jan 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
For me this book was groundbreaking. It is second of the top five books I will recommend (after Blink by Malcolm Gladwell) to everyone to read.

You will relate with this book if you are (or if you know) a person who does for people without thinking much about yourself (himself/herself). Prof Grant has termed them as givers. The book is laded with examples from numerous fields such as business, startup, publishing, movies, legal, sports and many more.

Prof Grant will make sure you stay glued to th
Michael Slavin
Jan 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: business
This book explores how we give and take as the title implies. We are all a combination of givers, takers or matchers, but have a dominate preference. You already have a feel for this in your daily activities, but his helps to quantify it and shows you why you should strive to be more a giver who has there own long term interests at heart as they help the world. Excellent book.
Apr 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Brian by: Otis Chandler
(4.0) Actually pretty good for pop social science--written by actual academic

See my Kindle notes for my thoughts and read Suzanne's review for a great summary of salient points. I may try to give a similar summary at some point soon as well.
Aug 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I hope you don't get too sick of me posting reviews of books I had to complete for my course. I really did enjoy this one a lot. It had a lot of interesting facts and data/examples to show why helping others leads to win/win. It's hard out there if you are a manager and you have employees or bosses that are set to win and they want to make sure that you lose. Heck, I have to deal with agency officials at times that don't want to concede a point since that will be saying (to them at least) that t ...more
Jun 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Many books aim to take a look at the world with a view to discerning some principles and ideas from successful people that others can apply. Few books manage to do this, combining being immensely readably with research and conclusions truly worth listening to, upon which would stem profound implications about the world we live in and the interactions we have with each other and that can have meaningful, lasting impacts. I’m making the claim that Give and Take is one such book.

Wharton professor A
Daniel Taylor
As entrepreneurs, what kind of people do you think do best in business – the Givers, the Takers or the Matchers?

Adam Grant has an answer to that question, and it’s one he’s qualified to give. He’s the youngest tenured professor at the Wharton Business School, USA.

Most people, he says, expect that Takers will finish first. But the research he’s done has found an answer that will surprise you. Givers finish last, but Takers don’t finish first. While some Givers do finish last, other Givers come ou
Nov 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is yet another "psychology lite" bestseller for professionals with short attention spans. Like others of its genre, it has a clear moral, anchored in modern-day anecdotes and Cliff-Notes-style research summaries.

The author's core claim: Acting generous is heathy, sexy, and profitable - it makes you feel good, makes others like you, boosts your odds of success, and can actually make you a better person over time.

I already believed this, more or less, and I appreciated seeing it played out i
Aug 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I know I wouldn't have chosen to read this book if it hadn't been one of the summer reading options for my job, but I'm so glad I did. I just loved it.

Grant's writing style, telling people's stories to illustrate his philosophy, was a perfect fit for me. There are studies and there are numbers, but it's definitely more about the stories.

And, while I didn't find the concept of a world divided among givers, takers and matchers revolutionary, I did appreciate applying that philosophy to professiona
Karen Chung
Jul 23, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Learning how to be a giver without being a doormat is a basic life skill every human on earth should learn - it benefits others and it benefits you. Highly recommended.
Jan 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Read this book for the second time. Will probably do another read later in the year. The lessons never get old!
Jun 13, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Much or most of the book consists of anecdotes and summaries of other books, so I don't think this qualifies as a "revolutionary approach" to anything. Even the core idea of win/win is of course nothing new. But by circling around this one concept over and over from many different angles, he did hit on a few specifics I had not read before (e.g. measurable impact of giving decreases burnout; telling people to act as an agent for someone else can improve their negotiating). If I apply any tips su ...more
Aaron Arnold
Don't ignore this book, because even though it seems like it follows a lot of business/management book clichés, it's actually insightful and seems like it could be very useful in your career or personal life. It's structured like every other "improve your business performance in ten easy steps!!!" clone, but stick with it.

Danger signs:
- An extremely broad subject ("giver" personalities" vs "matchers" or "takers", who aren't as generous to other people or are downright parasitical)
- Cutesy chapte
Simon Eskildsen
May 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As with any business book with respect for itself, Give and Take uses a model to simplify the world: there are three different types of people: takers; who take more than they give, matchers; who give and take about equally by keeping score, and givers; who give more than they take. When you look at their performance, givers do worst, then takers, matchers, and finally givers again. Why? Because if you only give without ever asking for help, you're off poorly. However, if you give and ask for he ...more
May 10, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good one! The premise is that there are three kinds of people:

1. Givers: Invest in others without expecting return
2. Matchers: Invest in others but don't expend more resources than they expect to receive.
3. Takers: Those who only invest in others because they expect to gain more than they give.

In the long run, givers can suffer in job performance and life outcomes because they give to others at their own expense. But the author crafts an argument, using empirical data, that demonstrate
Dolly Mastrangelo
Incredibly powerful book. I consider this essential reading for all ages. I have bought copies for my kids. I did not expect to be so impressed. I expected it to be yet another book about life. Instead it left me understanding that there is no logical reason NOT to be a giver in life. It provides real life examples of givers, takers and matchers. Answers the essential question of how not to be taken as a giver. Finally it gives you at test to assess yourself and to invite others for a 360 degree ...more
Headley Mist

"The good ended happily and the bad ended unhappily. That's what fiction means." - this OW quote seems the best description of the book.

The author is trying to persuade us that it is a good idea not to be an asshole. Nobody loves them and they get punished by the destiny. This is a very fresh suggestion. Worth writing a book.
Apr 28, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great concepts and guidelines to become better professionals, leaders and personal development in general. But also way too many success stories, details, etc. which makes the book a bit difficult to keep up with and remember the essentials. Great references and links as take aways for further use at the end / final chapter.
Saleh MoonWalker
Onvan : Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success - Nevisande : Adam M. Grant - ISBN : 670026557 - ISBN13 : 9780670026555 - Dar 320 Safhe - Saal e Chap : 2013
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  Speaking with Adam Grant feels like having your brain sandblasted, in a pleasant sort of way. As an author, professor, and psychologist,...
80 likes · 2 comments
“As Samuel Johnson purportedly wrote, “The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good.” 41 likes
“The more I help out, the more successful I become. But I measure success in what it has done for the people around me. That is the real accolade.” 22 likes
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