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Bold: How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World Hardcover – February 3, 2015
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“Bold is a visionary roadmap for people who believe they can change the world---and offers invaluable advice about bringing together the partners and technologies to help them do it.”?>??> (President Bill Clinton)
"BOLD is an essential navigation tool for any proactive CEO who wants to remain relevant. In the next decade it is reasonable to assume that some of the corporations at the top of the Fortune 500 will be displaced by the 'exponential entrepreneur'. History tells us that if we don't proactively change and adapt, change will be imposed on us. BOLD, spells out the implications and opportunities driven by exponential changes transforming our world." (Jim Moffatt, CEO of U.S. Deloitte Consulting, LLP)
“Abundance showed us where our world can be in 20 years. BOLD is a roadmap for entrepreneurs to help us get there.” (Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google)
“If you read one business book in the twenty-first century, this should be the one. When Peter and I cofounded Singularity University, we based it on the ideas of exponential change and ‘learn by doing.’ This book clearly explains how to apply these concepts to change the world and overcome the age old afflictions of human civilization.”- (Ray Kurzweil, inventor, author, director of engineering at Google, Chancellor of Singularity University)
“In BOLD, Diamandis and Kotler have written another dazzler. A riveting look inside the world of exponential entrepreneurship—action-packed and action-oriented. I’ve purchased a copy for my entire team at Cisco." (Padmasree Warrior, CTO & Chief Strategy Office, CISCO)
“I loved Peter Diamandis’ and Steven Kotler’s book Abundance, their writing and their Vision. BOLD is an amazing sequel, a book that every entrepreneur should read. It is inspiring, filled with incredible insights and offers a practical how-to game plan for going big and impacting the world.” (Michael Dell, CEO, Dell Computers)
"Expressed with sunny optimism and promise, Diamandis and Kotler share their extensive experience and knowledge, hoping to boost innovative potential within the technology startup arena and inspire readers to "get off the couch and change the world." An empowering and multifaceted "playbook" for the creative entrepreneur." (Kirkus)
"This is a manual for today’s big thinkers to become tomorrow’s bold leaders, using crowd-powered tools accessible to everyone." (Booklist)
"This invigorating discussion drives home the point that with better tools than we've ever had before, what we need most of all are great leaders." (Publishers Weekly)
“It makes bold predictions and teaches entrepreneurs how to thrive in the same way as our mammalian ancestors: by being nimble and resilient.” (HuffingtonPost.com)
About the Author
Peter H. Diamandis is a New York Times bestselling author, and the founder of more than fifteen high-tech companies. He is the CEO of the XPRIZE (XPrize.org), Exec. Chairman of the Singularity University (SingularityU.org). He is Cochairman of Planetary Resources, Inc. and the Cofounder of Human Longevity, Inc. In 2014 he was named one of “The World’s 50 Greatest Leaders” by Fortune Magazine.
Steven Kotler is a New York Times bestselling author, award-winning journalist and the Cofounder and Director of Research for the Flow Genome Project (FlowGenomeProject.co). His work has been translated into thirty-five languages and his articles have appeared in over seventy publications.
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There are three parts to the book. Part One covers exponential technology. If you're familiar with AirBnB, and have read an article on Artificial Intelligence, most of this will not be new information to you. Part Two covers the mindset of bold leaders. If you have never read an article about Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk or Richard Branson, you can find those here. Part Three is entirely related to crowdsourcing and crowdfunding. If you have working knowledge of 99Designs, Kiva, or Kickstarter, you're probably all set.
This book is trying very hard to do everything and does not succeed. In fact there are a few blatant errors along the way. On page 126 the authors highlight a glass bottom plane as an industry "first." How did an April Fool's joke make it into this book as fact? They also repeat the same quotation within a few pages of each other. "This isn't just plumbing and pest control. We've got PhDs on the site. I've seen both quantum physics and aerospace jobs handled perfectly." This snippet appears both on page 150 and 158. Who edited this book?
I am a firm believer that in this life I should aim to contribute, rather than criticize. I suppose my contribution is to you, a potential reader, to strongly consider if this book is what you are looking for before you add it to your cart.
So be it! Let the authors focus only on the positive news and ignore the negative ones. The book was promoted as a "how to" book. I would love to know the how-to's to recreate the successes mentioned in the book. I think the authors failed miserably on providing the how-to's that are beyond any traditional how-to books: have a mission statement, stay around positive people, be persistent ... really nothing new.
Since there aren't any practical breakthrough how-to's in this book, I can summarize the entire book in two words, "Think Big!" This book motivates you in a unique way to think big. You might say there are a thousand books telling you the same thing. You are right.
I am not being negative, since this book tries to prevent such comment by indicating that if you don't think the way this book tells you to think, you are not on the right mindset. I am quite a positive person, but this book is just too Pollyanna for me. When I got to the last part of the book, then I realize why the authors tried to hype up the golden opportunity. Read on...
Success can't just come from thinking big. You need character, emotional intelligence, relational skills, integrity, etc. The Chinese sages say that you need three things to be successful: the opportunity of God (some may call it "luck"), the benefit of environment, and the cooperation of people (including personal character). That was said 2500 years ago.
The author makes it sound like we are at the best of time for exponential success. In fact, for someone who has the character, anytime is the best time. For one who doesn't have the character, any success is a curse.
For those who love deeper philosophy, you would find this book an epitome of the superficial society. For those who are addicted to motivation, this book gives you a fantastic puff of daydream to get high.
Why did I still give it three stars? With all it's shallowness, this book is still well done. Just like a glamorous magic show (e.g. of David Copperfield), you know it's all fake, but you still love the mesmerizing production and entertainment. Even though this is a book of BOLD air, it is packaged in a golden wrapping paper. The author has even got President Clinton involved. For such magic, I have to give him the credit.
Ultimately, by the end of the book, I found out that this book is actually a promotional material to bring your attention to the author's $10,000 motivational event called "Abundance 360." In the Afterword: Next Steps--How to take Action, the author urges you to join his expensive programs and services, to seize the golden opportunity the book has hyped up. Once the book gets you into the dream of possibly becoming a "billionaire in 18 months," their coaching fees sounds like a small change.
I don't have any issue with the price point as long as it provides the equivalent value and results. However, the book doesn't convince me that I will get much value out of those services other than information and motivation, which nowadays is a dime a dozen.
===== UPDATE 02-12-2015=====
Just would like to add value to those who are reading this review: I received a new book for review a couple of days ago which is somewhat in the same vain of this book about futuristic enterprises, but that book spends only a few pages hyping the golden opportunity but the rest of the book is completely filled with practical applications that you can put to action immediately for your company, instead of just a bunch of BOLD air. Please note that I have no association with the book or the authors. I am sharing with you because right at this moment, I am using that book to design new ventures for my organization. The book is: Lean Enterprise: How High Performance Organizations Innovate at Scale. Plus, that book doesn't sell you anything at the end.
Only a select few complaints (but still the 5 star review): The reader on the audio, Kotler, just sounds arrogant. That's a judgement call. But that's how it felt. It also seemed to end abruptly. No neat summary or admonition to go and be bold. Lastly, the section on contests seemed a little long-winded, but I guess that's great if you're going to hold a contest and need detailed advice.
Still--a fantastic, thought provoking book.