By Margaret Heffernan
Get into the easiest faculties. Land your subsequent monstrous promoting. costume for achievement. Run swifter. Play more durable. paintings more durable. retain rating. And no matter what you do—make definite you win.
Competition runs via each point of our lives this day. From the cubicle to the race music, in company and love, faith and technology, what issues now's to be the largest, quickest, meanest, hardest, richest.
The upshot of a lot of these contests? As Margaret Heffernan indicates during this eye-opening ebook, pageant frequently backfires, generating an explosion of dishonest, corruption, inequality, and chance. The demolition derby of contemporary existence has broken our skill to paintings together.
But it doesn’t need to be this fashion. CEOs, scientists, engineers, traders, and inventors all over the world are pioneering larger how you can create nice items, construct enduring companies, and develop relationships. Their mystery? Generosity. belief. Time. Theater. From the cranberry bathrooms of Massachusetts to the lecture rooms of Singapore and Finland, from tiny start-ups to worldwide engineering businesses and loved American organizations—like Ocean Spray, Eileen Fisher, Gore, and Boston Scientific—Heffernan discovers methods of residing and dealing that foster creativity, spark innovation, make stronger our social cloth, and consider lots higher than profitable.
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Extra info for A Bigger Prize: How We Can Do Better than the Competition
But for most children, success hinges on being able to compete at every stage of their educational career. For their parents, failure is a constant, imminent, and terrifying threat. “What happens if the kids don’t play the system? If your child goes to the wrong school, he will be scuttling coal somewhere,” Betsy Rapoport tells me. ” She’s laughing, but she’s put two children through the New York State education system and now she coaches many more through the college application process. In the kids she works with, and their parents, she sees the sense of emergency that characterizes their thinking about education as a permanent crisis.
Offered additional or mildly oblique supplementary material, what’s the response? ” You can’t blame the kids; theirs is an intelligent, rational response to a structure in which rewards drain motivation. And teachers whose pay derives, even in part, from exam results are caught in the same trap. At a time when we badly need to develop imagination, creativity, and the intellectual initiative that generates new ideas, competitive testing is tailor-made to do just the opposite: it cultivates a talent for playing it safe, a tendency to secondguess, and a belief that there is such a thing as the right answer.
The landmark experiment that suggested otherwise was conducted forty years ago by Edward Deci and Richard Ryan. Ever since their original work was published, different versions of it have been tested and retested, without any significant challenge: the findings remain robust. In the original experiment, nursery school children were divided into three groups and given the opportunity to draw. Children in the first group were promised a reward: if they drew, they’d win a certificate. Those in the second group were told nothing—but were surprised by a certificate when they had finished drawing.
A Bigger Prize: How We Can Do Better than the Competition by Margaret Heffernan