Think Like a Rocket Scientist

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 13 Apr 2020

Member Reviews

An excellent exploration of how scientists approach planning, testing, course correction, problem solving, and failure. With entertaining anecdotes and intriguing examples, Ozan points out again and again how business and the media get it wrong by black-and-white tendencies and a lack of critical thinking. An important read during this crucial time when facts and science are under conscious attack.
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Think Like A Rocket Scientist starts with a great forward. It makes you excited to read it and raises your expectations on what you can accomplish after reading it. This super easy to read book outlines a three step process: Launch, Accelerate and Achieve. You launch ideas, accelerate the process of defining them and finally achieve them.  Being able to do any of these is a perilous process, especially if you work in a corporate environment. The book helps define how failure is good, but only up to a point. It examines the difference between convergent and divergent thinking.  It illustrates the perils of seeing certainties and positive outcomes vs, finding out what might have gone wrong each time.  It shows us how to reframe questions instead of only searching for answers. The author uses examples that everyone can relate to such as Apple, Tom Brady, SpaceX and Netflix.  There is also a website to go to for worksheets, challenges and exercises after many chapters. Learning how NASA rocket scientists navigated success and failure and how they analyzed what they were creating, shows us how we can use this in our own lives at work and at home. It is a book I plan to now reread.
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Great read that helps you establish new thought processes and techniques to improve your productivity. There is a strong combination of real world examples, pop culture, and technical procedures to posit each idea. Ozan Varol provides a workbook with key points, questions, practice activities, and weekly emails for any reader that wants them. The additional resources certainly reinforces the ideas from the book and will assist the reader to gain a deeper understanding of the ideas.
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Thank you NetGalley and Public Affairs for the ARC of this book! I don't normally read self-help or business books, which is where I would categorize this book, but I really enjoyed this! The book is written by Ozan Varol, a former actual rocket scientist who worked on the Mars Rover. The book is divided into three sections: launch, accelerate, and achieve. I found the launch section about forming your ideas and overcoming uncertainty to be the most interesting, likely because of where I'm at in my life. Other people may connect more with the other sections. Varol uses examples from rocket science, business, and history to explain why moonshot thinking is important, how dangerous complacency is, and how boredom can be good for you. He also uses examples of successes and failures which made the book more interesting than just talking about successes. I found myself walking away from this book feeling very motivated and excited to put certain aspects of it into practice. I would definitely recommend this book for almost anyone! I think no matter where you are in life, you could learn something from this book.
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I just completed my book review for the March-April issue of Global Business and Organizational Excellence, which includes this title. 

I received some notes on the book (page numbers for quotes) from Johanna Dickson, so I will send her a pdf when the review is published. If there's anyone else you need me to add to that, just let me know.
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Think Like a Rocket Scientist: Simple Strategies You Can Use to Make Giant Leaps in Work and Life is written by a former “rocket scientist.”  Given that scientific thought is simply a goal-directed process, author Ozan Varol shares strategies to approach and solve our life’s complexities. This is an interesting book, for sure, although I suspect I am not enough of a science Geek to truly appreciate much of the science references, which I subsequently found to be a bit distracting.  For that reason, I deducted one star. Having said that, it is written well, presenting nine useful strategies from rocket science to prompt readers to approach their goals and objectives with confidence.
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I have already recommended this book in social media and signed up for Varol’s newsletter. The book is sharp and insightful, making Varol’s case clearly and effectively. I’ll be purchasing this book for my library’s collection and suggesting it to all my creative friends.
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