Switch- A Book Review

First, thanks to Steve Garfield for recommending I use a stack of books and a tripod for shooting my video. His great advice shows up in his new book, Get Seen (amazon affiliate link).

So, this is about Chip and Dan Heath’s really amazing new book, Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard (amazon affiliate link). It’s the best book about understanding the mechanics and switches of change that I’ve ever read. I loved MADE TO STICK, by the Brothers Heath, and this book is like that, only even better. The book has LOTS of how-to baked into it, and by the end, you’ll be re-assessing all kinds of projects in your life. Total must-buy. Here’s my review:

Direct link to the video

Get Switch:

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  • http://twitter.com/matt_perez Matt Perez

    I have not read Switch, but the elephant/rider metaphor that you talk about sounds just like the metaphor used by Jonathan Haidt in his book The Happiness Hypothesis (a really powerful book, BTW, which I read based on Tony Hsieh's recommendation).

  • http://www.buildthaltist.com/ Tom | Build That List

    I've heard a lot of great reviews of this book, but I currently have to big a backlog to consider at the moment!

  • http://stevegarfield.com stevegarfield

    Hi Chris,

    Looks great.

    1. It's steady.
    2. At eye level, straight on.
    3. You are not centered. That's good.
    4. Pleasant lighting. Probably from a lamp.
    5. Interesting background.

    Thanks for the links to my book! I appreciate your support.

  • http://www.alertpresence.com/ Brett Pollard

    Very informative. Thanks, Chris.

    The book/tripod setup worked nicely too.

  • http://AntiAgingByDesign.com/ Vicki

    Looks like I have some new books to read. Would like to start with Made to Stick since I missed that one completely and it sounds like a good read (they really do unique, stand-out book packaging).

    I like the way you do short book reviews.. get right to the point.. and stay on topic. Also look forward to your Kitchen table talks.

  • http://scottgould.me Scott Gould

    Thanks from me too on the book, sounds cool.

    And yes – the new camera setup was better!

  • http://jeffkorhan.com Jeff Korhan

    This sounds like a book that takes the idea of the Tipping Point and makes it practical. I'm interested. Thanks.

  • gilly jym

    Would you equal to base a journalist place on my journal?


  • http://twitter.com/kobran_1 Branko Zecevic

    I like the title!
    I am convinced that the book contains a lot of great self improvement tips which you can apply in everyday life!
    Someone said once:”The only thing that is constant is change.”

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  • http://www.twitter.com/danieldecker Daniel Decker

    Totally agree. I read an advance copy as well and believe this book is one of the best I have ever read on CHANGE. Not just the concept of change but the HOW TO’s and WHY’s of change so that we can understand it and leverage it. Lot’s of great practical examples. No doubt this one will be a game changer for many. People need to go pre-order this one now.

  • csread

    I'm so glad you really liked this book! I did too! I LOVE IT! The book is being published Feb. 16th and can pre-ordered through Amazon (of course.)

    I met Dan Heath at a conference in Chicago in '07, the year that Made To Stick was published. I was incredibly enthusiastic about that book and said so after the presentation he gave on brand marketing. In fact, I recommend Made to Stick to every class I teach on social media as a primer for understanding effective communication no matter what communication tool is being used.

    So I was fortunate to receive a proof of the book from Dan. I am equally as excited about the “how to” nature of helping people to effect positive change. I am recommending it as a “must read” for everyone. Weren't you blown away by their case studies? I use them as examples of how “do-able” change is when you can break it down to concepts that are easily understood and steps that can be executed successfully. And yes Matt, he draws on The Happiness Hypothesis and a number of other works and research to support their points. Another is John P. Kotter's The Heart of Change.

    I think the book leaves the reader pumped up and ready take on change from how we interact with our family to how we change the culture of a company. I'm so delighted you liked it! I'll forward your review to Dan. I think he'll be amused by the fact that I told him about your promotion of “Trust Agents” before it's publication and held that up as the ultimate example of how you market a book. ^_^

  • panciuc

    Nice review. Can't wait to get my hands on it :) Also I fell for Amazon's Frequently Bought Together section and I plan to buy 2 more books that seem to be as interesting as this one: Seth Godin – Linchpin: Are you indispensable? and Daniel Pink – Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us.

  • kat

    i think it's great that you put out this book
    it will help so many folks
    little changes that bring large reward
    the best kind!

  • wwwericvogelphotocom

    Way to go, the tips have helped you make a great video post, way to go.

  • http://twitter.com/BTRIPP Brendan Tripp

    Chris … I've done a ton of book reviews over the past few years (I have nearly 350 up on my review site), but had never considered doing videos of them … you seem to have worked up a good format … I may have to give this a try!

    - @BTRIPP

  • http://chrisbrogan.com Chris Brogan

    Great! What video lets me do is be less detailed about the book's guts but speak about the HEART of the book.

  • http://chrisbrogan.com Chris Brogan

    I have both books on my shelf. I've read Drive, but haven't gotten to Godin, too.

  • carolroy

    What a timely book for the times we're in. There's another book all about change that gives you the “nuts and bolts” approach to actually making changes in your life (when you have to) and what you're going to expect during the process of change. It's called “The First 30 Days” by Ariane de Bonvoisin. I recommend this one to all my new clients. Will have a serious look at Switch as well.

  • http://twitter.com/SimpleCEO Michael Werner

    Sounds/looks great. You sold me! Going to pick up the book as soon as it's out.

  • http://twitter.com/RJWeiss RJ Weiss

    I wasn't aware that they came out with a new book. I loved Made to Stick. Looking forward to reading this one.

  • johnknowles

    Big ups from the Roger Smith Hotel! I see you!

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    Nice review..I have made it a goal to read a Megan Hart book this year! :)I've got this one and I can hardly wait to read it! Great review.the start of this story is really very unique! It does sound very interesting.I will add this right away in my wish list !

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    I initiate your web log from lycos and it is superb. Thanks for substance much an illustrative diary install!


  • http://www.r3blog.net/ e. barrett

    I read this book a few months ago (in pre-release format). And it's amazing. They do a great job of taking (sometimes) complicated organizational theory and turning it into something relevant, and therefore easier to apply. Even though I teach Industrial / Organizational psychology at a local university, I still picked up a few tips.

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  • http://www.ridetoremedy.com Courtney

    Hi Chris! I'm so glad I saw your review of this book. I've been waiting for it since late summer when I saw Dan and Chip Heath speak at a Leadership conference. The book captured my attention then and I've been waiting for it ever since. Your review has reminded me that the time in near and I need to keep an eye out ;)

  • quitober

    I have the beginnings for a book that I hope to write some day called:
    Rethink Perfect – How to complain responsibly & prepare for the failures.

    i.e. Prepare for the failures of the future, from the past & of the present.
    At first the Switch book seems to conflict with my idea.

    So what I can see from the article in FastCompany it that you seem to be implying that the “Bright Spot” in the Heaths examples
    are the positive things, i.e. some healthy kids, good sales people of drugs & boy good in one class.
    And using the quote ““What is working & how can we do more of it” Are there any examples in this book of “bright spots” that are “negative” or minority reports being negative?

    Lets change it to the opposite. The boy has 5 classes that he is doing well in but one that he is doing very poorly in.
    Do we ask “What is working & how can we do more of it” or ask what is the thing that is standing out i.e. the minority report.
    I think it would be better to focus on the “bright spot” or the thing that is standing out but not necessarily the “positive” or
    the thing “working”. So the “bright spot can be a “negative” providing it is standing out.

    What about this that for the 3 examples of the Vietnamese village kids, the selling of drugs & the bad kid, at first the
    thought was, “ all kids were malnourished”, “the drug is not selling well”, & “the kid is bad”.
    Finding the failure in the absolute statements leads to finding the “bright spot” in the statement or the minority report and in these cases
    positives but I do not believe that they are always positive.

    In our society though, generally the failures are in the minority but not always as I am sure this book points out.

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  • http://favit.com/panciuc Radu Panciuc

    Hey Chris, I just got Switch and Linchpin from Amazon. Really happy to finally and literally get my hands on them – http://fav.ly/80tQsg :) Gonna start reading asap. Still waiting for Drive though.

  • http://www.tlchome.ca tlchome

    You are a READING MACHINE! Always appreciate your reviews and have made a note. Thanks Chris!

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  • Becky

    I’ve started on this book, “Switch – How to make a change when change is hard” by the Heath brothers. By the way, it is not the book “The Switch” by Megan Hart. These are two totally different books. “Switch” is a great book so far and this was a good review that encouraged me to keep going with my reading. Thank you!

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