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Why People Fail: The 16 Obstacles to Success and How You Can Overcome Them Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (November 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118106172
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118106174
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 6.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #439,643 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“This is a book on success disguised as a book on failure. A little like real life. Straightforward, clear, and actionable.”
—Seth Godin, author, Poke the Box

Why People Fail is a wonderful gem of a book. Reynolds hasdone all of us an extraordinary service by reading and listeningto everything there is on self-improvement, testing it in his life, discovering what works, and then pulling it all together for us to use. It is a stunning collection of practical tips, proven techniques, and useful advice on how to make your life more meaningful and fulfilling. Buy this book and put it to use today, and tomorrow you'll be on your way to turning your failures into successes.”
—Jim Kouzes, bestselling author, The Leadership Challenge and Credibility, and The Dean's Executive Fellow of Leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

“Reynolds has done it again! In Why People Fail, the successful entrepreneur and internationally-recognized expert on achievement shows business leaders, educators, coaches, and anyone who's struggled to succeed, how to incorporate a handful of simple ideas into a powerful plan for triumph.”
—Marshall Goldsmith, bestselling author, MOJO and What Got You Here Won't Get You There

From the Inside Flap

Success is often just a moment—a goal fulfilled, soon to be replaced with new goals. But failure is the ambitious person's constant companion, often dogging us for months, years or even decades before we finally reach our aim.

Siimon Reynolds transformed himself from a directionless twenty-something (in his own words, "one of the most disorganized people I've ever known") into the founder of one of the largest marketing services firms in the world by identifying the habits that lead people down the wrong path and then by consciously avoiding them. In Why People Fail, he draws on that experience to explore the main causes of failure and presents proven strategies and tips for defeating the sixteen most common behaviors that lead to failure such as destructive thinking, low productivity, not asking the right questions, holding on to a fixed mindset, not following daily rituals, and more. Surprising, entertaining, and inspiring, Why People Fail will you help you drop the behaviors that hold you back and reach your full potential for success in your professional and personal life.


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I have read lots of self-help books and this is the best book out there.
Ava
Right now I am feeling like my life has taken on a new direction and I can't wait to put all that I have read into action.
Jacob
The best motivator / inspirational / reminder how personal and business goals are achieved.
Reno Capanna

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Booklover on November 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Highly recommend for business-minded achievers and even family-minded readers. For example, did you know that drinking less coffee, or thinking about an octopus can help you succeed? Or, that your client roster can double from an outrageous and ridiculous idea like being rude? Parents, did you know that you can increase your child's potential for success each and every night by ensuring they don't sleep in a room with a night-light?

Reynolds offers research-based studies and makes a case on failure and success being highly predictable inside Why People Fail. Reynolds, a high achiever and business coach for companies including, Apple, BP, Citibank, IBM, IKEA, Sony, and Volvo, has been studying the science of failure and success as related to human behavior for more than 20 years. During this time, he isolated 16 barriers to success and presents them alongside research-based facts, along with rules, exercises, and techniques for surmounting failure, such as:

* Devote 30 minutes each day toward mastering your industry. "Within just one year, I guarantee your coworkers will consider you an absolute expert in your field," states Reynolds.

* Pause for a minute and appreciate the momentous impact of the following con- cept: You may not be the person you think you are. Research has proven that the average person has around 60,000-70,000 thoughts a day, but the extraordinary fact is that around 70 percent of those thoughts are recycled from yesterday. We believe that we are thinking new thoughts, but in reality our think based processes are mechanical and highly conditioned to our environments and beliefs. The key is to retrain your brain.

* Enhance your relationships, and subsequently yourself, by identifying Inner and Outer Circles of Influence.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Jacob on November 20, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I recently bought Why People Fail.

Highly highly recommend it! It's the type of book that inspires you, and then shows you the way to make your goals happen!

I literally sat there with a highlighter and a bunch of post-it notes.

Right now I am feeling like my life has taken on a new direction and I can't wait to put all that I have read into action.

Highly recommend it for anyone that feels that they've lost their focus or just need a bit of help reaching their goals (or even setting their goals!!!).

Why People Fail will get you back on track!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Elisabeth Forrest on September 6, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Overall I thought this book was quite good. The author's presentation of reasons people fail and how to avoid those pitfalls seems right on the money. I found the concepts to be lucid in their presentation and walk away from the book feeling like there are some specific areas I can pay attention to and ideas for what to do differently.

What I found lacking was concrete real life examples - ones that can be verified. So many "business success" books now are filled with vague things that happened to "some guy" or, purportedly, to the author. There were some specific examples about people you have heard of, but they were all stories I had heard before in other books. The ones that were new to me - ones from the author's own life or people he knows - were fuzzy. No names of companies or real specifics that could be verified. Maybe it's just me, but it bothers me. If the topic you are discussing as an example in your book happened, then spell it out with details so the reader knows it is true, not some feel good story you made up for the book. He also followed the boringly predictable pattern of "tell them what you are going to tell them; tell them; tell them what you just told them" for the book's general outline. That's great for a talk to the local rotary, but it you are going to take the time to write a book, perhaps a some more work on the craft of writing is called for.

The book was good, but it could have been great if the author had put more work into it and had given more fleshed out responses to how to change your behavior so you don't fall into the same traps of failure. Surely there has been research done that could actually be cited. Basically, it seems to me that the author is no writer and was a little lazy in his rush to press. I liked the book.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Jim Estill on December 17, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I rarely give 5 stars but for this one I did.

I normally like reading about success although I do always say Fail Often, Fail Fast, Fail Cheap.

I loved the book. It starts with a chapter "Unclear Purpose". It is so obvious - the main cause of failure is not lack of clarity. "Vagueness leads to failure". The chapter goes on with concrete examples of how you can set your purpose. It even suggests setting a purpose for the week. For me, purpose comes before goals. The book tends to lump them together.

There is a good chapter on low productivity and what to do about it (perhaps a trick like planning ahead might work).

And one of my favourites - Daily Rituals (or habits). We are the product of what we repeatedly do. And having habit makes things take no willpower.

I guess if I have any beef with the book, it is the negativity of the title. It really is a success book.
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