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How to Have a Good Day: Harness the Power of Behavioral Science to Transform Your Working Life (Hardcover)
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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 behavioral sciences are giving us an ever better understanding of how our brains work, why we make the choices we do, and what it takes for us to be at our best. But it has not always been easy to see how to apply these insights in the real world--until now.
In How to Have a Good Day, Webb explains exactly how to apply this science to our daily tasks and routines. She translates three big scientific ideas into step-by-step guidance that shows us how to set better priorities, make our time go further, ace every interaction, be our smartest selves, strengthen our personal impact, be resilient to setbacks, and boost our energy and enjoyment. Through it all, Webb teaches us how to navigate the typical challenges of modern workplaces—from conflict with colleagues to dull meetings and overflowing inboxes—with skill and ease.
Filled with stories of people who have used Webb’s insights to boost their job satisfaction and performance at work, How to Have a Good Day is the book so many people wanted when they finished Nudge, Blink and Thinking Fast and Slow and were looking for practical ways to apply this fascinating science to their own lives and careers.
A remarkable and much-needed book, How to Have a Good Day gives us the tools we need to have a lifetime of good days.
About the Author
Caroline Webb is a management consultant and executive coach who has spent fifteen years at McKinsey and at her own firm, Sevenshift, showing clients how to use behavioral science to boost their professional effectiveness. An Oxford- and Cambridge-trained economist, Webb and her work have been featured in the Financial Times, New York Times, Washington Post, The Economist, Forbes, and on the BBC. She divides her time between New York and London.
“How to Have a Good Day is a smart, thorough, and eminently practical book. Just about every page offers a science-based tip to help you become better off — or, in many cases, just plain better.”
—Daniel H. Pink, author of To Sell is Human and Drive
"Behavioral science has come of age in recent years, and it has begged for a world-class translator. Now we have one. Caroline Webb’s peerless translation of the behavioral sciences into tools for shaping the quality of our day is the book we’ve been waiting for. Play with just 2% of the ideas in this book, and you might just end up changing your life's course. Words like 'magisterial' come to mind. Bravo."
—Tom Peters, co-author of award-winning bestseller In Search of Excellence
“Finally, a practical book based on evidence. How to Have a Good Day is grounded in state-of-the-art research on behavior and neuroscience, and animated with vivid examples from professionals who have successfully applied Webb’s advice. It might even leave you looking forward to your next tricky conversation or challenging task as an opportunity to try out her tips."
—Adam Grant, Wharton professor and New York Times bestselling author of Give and Take and Originals
"How to Have a Good Day is an extraordinary book — a wonderful mix of science, practical advice, and stories based on Caroline Webb's years of experience helping a huge range of people transform their professional lives for the better. Every chapter is studded with engaging real-world examples that ring true and illustrate how to make the most of the book's suggestions. Whatever your personal definition of a good day, you'll have more of them after reading this book.”
—Susan Cain, author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking and co-founder of Quiet Revolution
"Almost all of us work in environments where our time is stretched far too thin. How to Have a Good Day helps us rise to that challenge, containing ideas and techniques that show us how to be at our own personal and professional best every day."
—Tony Hsieh, New York Times bestselling author of Delivering Happiness and CEO of Zappos.com, Inc.
"Webb has given us a great gift: she has synthesized all the advice coming out of labs around the world, filtered it for quality, and illustrated it with well-chosen examples. The appendices alone will save you dozens of hours per year — particularly on email — and help you create more great days for yourself. This is the only self-improvement book you will need in the next five years."
—Jonathan Haidt, NYU-Stern School of Business, author of The Happiness Hypothesis and The Righteous Mind
"There's a big difference between having a great, productive day and having a bland, ordinary one. Caroline Webb deftly explains how to squeeze the most out of twenty-four hours, to create more of the former. Very useful."
—Sir Michael Moritz, Chairman of Sequoia Capital
“A powerful toolkit to improve both work and wellbeing. From email and meetings to making the most out of every day, Webb shows us not just how to be more productive, but how to be more fulfilled along the way.”
—Jonah Berger, Wharton professor and bestselling author of Contagious and Invisible Influence
"Imagine what your life would be like if you could simply 'choose' to have a good day. Webb makes a powerful case that we can. Best of all, she shows us how. Webb gets her arms around the vast body of information coming at us from behavioral economics, psychology, and neuroscience, and distills the best of it into the kind of practical advice a wise friend might offer. It's the book Daniel Kahneman might write if he'd been working in the business world for twenty years. Masterful."
—Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen, co-authors of the bestselling Difficult Conversations and Thanks for the Feedback
"This is a brilliantly useful book. Caroline Webb has a quite exceptional range of organisational experience. She uses it to review a vast span of the latest academic 'thinking about thinking' in the clearest possible way. And then she applies this wisdom to help us all sort out the frazzle of our own working day. Her approach is utterly straightforward but based in deep insights into how human beings really behave."
—Peter Day, BBC Business Correspondent, Presenter of In Business and Global Business
“Years ago I was a rower, and in sport everyone knows you need to pay attention to yourself, your intent and your mindset, to be at your best. This book reminded me of all I learned from those days about the importance of having the right attitude. I found it a great, practical guide to applying these and other helpful psychological insights in business – something we do all too infrequently. Built solidly on the latest research, brought to life with storytelling, it offers many simple ways to boost your performance and give you a better day at work – and if you’re a leader, it will show you how to make sure that your colleagues are on top form, too."
-—Matt Brittin, President of Google Europe, Middle East & Africa, former rowing World Championship medalist and British Olympic team member
"How to Have a Good Day speaks to every area of your workday and shows how making a few critical adjustments to your everyday behavior will leave you amazed by the results. By applying the lessons in Webb's book, all based on science, you’ll maximize your performance and be more energized than ever."
— Marshall Goldsmith, bestselling author of Triggers, MOJO and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There
“An absolute must read for the millions of people struggling to overcome the challenges and stresses of work and family life. Caroline Webb’s deep dive into ground-breaking new behavioral and neuroscience research gives us the tools to empower everyone to have a better, more fulfilling day, every day. Finally, we can say, ‘Good morning,’ and mean it!”
—Linda Kaplan Thaler, Chairman of Publicis Kaplan Thaler and co-author of Grit to Great
“The quest for self-improvement usually takes place on a well-trodden path, with many different gurus offering guidance. But the advice, in addition to being contradictory, often lacks solid foundations. Fortunately, How to Have a Good Day is the breakout exception to this category. The evidence and examples packed inside its pages leave the reader in no doubt that Webb's advice will make a real difference. Better days lead to better lives, and this extraordinary book will lead to both.”
—Chris Guillebeau, New York Times bestselling author of The $100 Startup and The Happiness of Pursuit
“In How to Have a Good Day, Caroline Webb offers practical advice rooted in the latest science and psychology for anyone who wants to take a more intentional approach to life and enjoy the greater productivity and success that comes from doing so. If you want to stop reacting to your life and start living it, this book will get you moving in the right direction."
—Bryce G. Hoffman, author of American Icon