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The Little Book of Talent: 52 Tips for Improving Your Skills [Kindle Edition]

Daniel Coyle
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (191 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $18.00
Kindle Price: $7.99
You Save: $10.01 (56%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

The Little Book of Talent is a manual for building a faster brain and a better you. It is an easy-to-use handbook of scientifically proven, field-tested methods to improve skills—your skills, your kids’ skills, your organization’s skills—in sports, music, art, math, and business. The product of five years of reporting from the world’s greatest talent hotbeds and interviews with successful master coaches, it distills the daunting complexity of skill development into 52 clear, concise directives. Whether you’re age 10 or 100, whether you’re on the sports field or the stage, in the classroom or the corner office, this is an essential guide for anyone who ever asked, “How do I get better?”

The Little Book of Talent should be given to every graduate at commencement, every new parent in a delivery room, every executive on the first day of work. It is a guidebook—beautiful in its simplicity and backed by hard science—for nurturing excellence.”—Charles Duhigg, bestselling author of The Power of Habit
 
“It’s so juvenile to throw around hyperbolic terms such as ‘life-changing,’ but there’s no other way to describe The Little Book of Talent. I was avidly trying new things within the first half hour of reading it and haven’t stopped since. Brilliant. And yes: life-changing.”—Tom Peters, co-author of In Search of Excellence


From the Hardcover edition.


Editorial Reviews

Review

Advance praise for The Little Book of Talent
 
The Little Book of Talent should be given to every graduate at commencement, every new parent in a delivery room, every executive on the first day of work. It is a guidebook—beautiful in its simplicity and backed by hard science—for nurturing excellence.”—Charles Duhigg, bestselling author of The Power of Habit
 
“It’s so juvenile to throw around hyperbolic terms such as ‘life-changing,’ but there’s no other way to describe The Little Book of Talent. I was avidly trying new things within the first half hour of reading it and haven’t stopped since. Brilliant. And yes: life-changing.”—Tom Peters, co-author of In Search of Excellence

Review

“It’s so juvenile to throw around hyperbolic terms such as ‘life-changing,’s but there’s no other way to describe The Little Book of Talent. I was avidly trying new things within the first half hour and haven’t stopped since. Brilliant. And yes: life-changing.”
       —Tom Peters, co-author of In Search of Excellence (Tom Peters, co-author of In Search of Excellence )

Product Details

  • File Size: 1436 KB
  • Print Length: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; 1 edition (August 21, 2012)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007JC1RM2
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,315 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
101 of 106 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Little Book, Big Impact July 6, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This concise little book packs a lot of wisdom into 120 pages or so. It quickly dispels what assumptions you have about talent and makes a compelling case for the science of building your talent. There are some great tips here, though none that are earth shattering - I have read most of these before, but it is nice to have everything condensed down to one book. The only critique is that some of the tips just read like other tips repackaged and could probably have been cut. That said, a few of my favorite tips and quotes from the book are below:

Tip #3 - Steal Without Apology - Build on other's work

Tip #11 - Don't Fall For The Prodigy Myth - Early success is poor predictor of future talent (see Albert Einstein, Thomas Edison, Michael Jordan, etc)

Tip #12 - 5 Ways To Pick A High-Quality Teacher Or Coach - This is great - some of the best advice in the book
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Tip #30 - Take A Nap - Science says so . . .

Tip #33 - To Learn From A Book, Close It - Great advice. Don't read to retain information. If you follow this tip you will retain more information, much faster. Valuable advice.

Tip #46 - Don't Wast Time Trying To Break Bad Habits - Instead, Build New Ones - Great advice

Tip #51 - Keep Your Big Goals Secret - Why you should not share your newest dream with your friends - very interesting and helpful as well.

There are plenty of gems here that make this book a worthy buy. Just about anyone can read it in a few hours, and it could potentially change every day of the rest of your life. Hard to ask any more than that from a 120 page book - Recommended.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A quick concise self-improvement read July 19, 2012
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
It is hard not to admire a little book like this. Distilling masses of information into small applicable/usable bites is no mean feat. Putting it into an easy to carry around format is just icing on the cake.

The book is broken into 3 broad topics: Getting started, improving and continuing improvement. Each topic takes about 1/3 of the book although some tips are very short one paragraph type things and others are a few pages long.

The source material for the tips originate from notes made while researching his other book The Talent Code. Since that book has a decided tilt towards measurable performance activities (sports/music/etc) this book can't escape those confines and thank goodness it doesn't really try to awkwardly create generalities to fit specific observations. That is, Coyle spares us endless attempts at applying his observations to stuff he thinks his readers might use the information. I found that refreshing because any effort on his part along those lines would only create artificial boundaries to how you or I might proceed.

I haven't read the other book yet but so I am not sure how much of a companion this small book is to the other. From the blurb on the other book it seems like there is a lot of duplication. Of course, this book is distilled down and physically printed in 'fit in your back pocket' size.

It was interesting to me that, in broad terms, a whole lot of what Coyle talks about is also the sort of things that Zig, Tracy and Hopkins talk about too. A nice affirmation of their work through Coyle's independent research.

There's bad news all throughout the book. It takes hard work to be successful. It takes commitment.
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149 of 190 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The author of The Talent Code, Daniel Coyle, is a man driven to find out how people train for excellence. The Little Book of Talent is Coyle's attempt to distill this wisdom into one volume, arming you with the 52 tips that will help you improve your skills. Although I really wanted to like this book, I really felt that it fell short. The book gives a laundry list of great techniques to foster genius, but is too general to be successful.

That said, I have not read Coyle's Talent Code. It may well be that in conjunction with The Talent Code book, the Little Book of Talent is more helpful.

I doubt it though.

[Note (10/16/2012): since writing this review, I have read Coyle's The Talent Code and have now posted my reveiw. I do not feel that the information within The Talent Code added anything that would change this review, so I have let this review stand as is. After reading The Talent Code and researching the evidence for myself, I admit that I had severely underestimated the role of deliberate practice when it comes to developing talent. Even so, there is enough evidence for me to believe that there is still a significant component to talent and expertise that goes beyond deliberate practice. My opinion would be that this is an innate component, but this is only my opinion. See my review of The Talent Code for further details.]

Part of the problem lies in Coyle's method of discovering his tips to success. He does research, he speaks to educational scientists, and--most importantly--visits actual training grounds for successful musicians and athletes. He makes observations and takes meticulous notes. He then distills it all down and provides us with the tips--the very tools--for success.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great little book. Lots of valuable insight.
Published 8 days ago by Phil
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have for anyone trying to improve any talent
This tiny book is loaded with great, easy to implement ideas that really did completely change the way I practice and drill for dancing. Read more
Published 17 days ago by Nanette Morges
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical, life-changing skill development.
This is a life-changing book, along with its companion book, The Talent Code. It explains how the brain's neurons speed and memory retention can be significantly improved in a... Read more
Published 23 days ago by W. Zienert
5.0 out of 5 stars packed full of important information for learning anything.
Very concise, densely packed with practical immediately useful information. This book has already changed how I approach learning a new skill.
Published 27 days ago by Dana S. Wheeler
5.0 out of 5 stars ... "self help" books and most of them are really good or probably...
There are hundreds of "self help" books and most of them are really good or probably really good……I haven't read them all. Read more
Published 1 month ago by michael clevenger
5.0 out of 5 stars Great ideals and methods
Great ideals and methods, trying to use the ones that can be applied to my life, which are plenty and plenty are already in use. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Mister Miracle
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of cool ideas.
Interesting bathroom reader on the subject of talent building. Lots of cool ideas.
Published 1 month ago by ScottSgr
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Good book; enjoyed his book "The Talent Code" even more.
Published 1 month ago by John Danise
5.0 out of 5 stars easy to understand
This is indeed a short book. The tips are research-based, easy to understand, and easy to implement. This book has been quite useful for me, thanks Mr. Coyle!
Published 1 month ago by Julia Mira
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it.
I love it. A must read.
Published 1 month ago by D. Alba
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More About the Author

Daniel Coyle is the New York Times best-selling author of The Secret Race, The Little Book of Talent, The Talent Code, Lance Armstrong's War, Hardball: A Season in the Projects and the novel Waking Samuel. He is a former editor at Outside Magazine and a two-time National Magazine Award finalist, and his work has been featured in The Best American Sports Writing. He lives in Ohio and Alaska with his wife, Jen, and their four children.

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