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Art of Fairness: The Power of Decency in a World Turned Mean

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From a New York Times bestselling author, a fresh and detail-rich argument that the best way to lead is to be fair Can you succeed without being a terrible person? We often think not: recognizing that, as the old saying has it, “nice guys finish last.” But does that mean you have to go to the other extreme and be a bully or Machiavellian to get anything done? In The Art of From a New York Times bestselling author, a fresh and detail-rich argument that the best way to lead is to be fair Can you succeed without being a terrible person? We often think not: recognizing that, as the old saying has it, “nice guys finish last.” But does that mean you have to go to the other extreme and be a bully or Machiavellian to get anything done? In The Art of Fairness, bestselling author David Bodanis uses thrilling case studies to show there's a better path, leading neatly in between. He reveals how it was fairness, applied with skill, that led the Empire State Building to be constructed in barely a year––and how the same techniques brought a quiet English debutante to become an acclaimed jungle guerrilla fighter. In ten vivid profiles featuring pilots, presidents, and even the producer of Game of Thrones, we see that the path to greatness doesn't require crushing displays of power or tyrannical ego. Simple fair decency can prevail. With surprising insights from across history––including the downfall of the very man who popularized the phrase “nice guys finish last”––The Art of Fairness charts a refreshing and sustainable new approach to cultivating integrity and influence.


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From a New York Times bestselling author, a fresh and detail-rich argument that the best way to lead is to be fair Can you succeed without being a terrible person? We often think not: recognizing that, as the old saying has it, “nice guys finish last.” But does that mean you have to go to the other extreme and be a bully or Machiavellian to get anything done? In The Art of From a New York Times bestselling author, a fresh and detail-rich argument that the best way to lead is to be fair Can you succeed without being a terrible person? We often think not: recognizing that, as the old saying has it, “nice guys finish last.” But does that mean you have to go to the other extreme and be a bully or Machiavellian to get anything done? In The Art of Fairness, bestselling author David Bodanis uses thrilling case studies to show there's a better path, leading neatly in between. He reveals how it was fairness, applied with skill, that led the Empire State Building to be constructed in barely a year––and how the same techniques brought a quiet English debutante to become an acclaimed jungle guerrilla fighter. In ten vivid profiles featuring pilots, presidents, and even the producer of Game of Thrones, we see that the path to greatness doesn't require crushing displays of power or tyrannical ego. Simple fair decency can prevail. With surprising insights from across history––including the downfall of the very man who popularized the phrase “nice guys finish last”––The Art of Fairness charts a refreshing and sustainable new approach to cultivating integrity and influence.

30 review for Art of Fairness: The Power of Decency in a World Turned Mean

  1. 5 out of 5

    Alok Kejriwal

    "Can you succeed without being a terrible person?" The headline caught my attention along with this book's recommendation by The Economist. A HIDDEN GEM. A MUST BUY The point of 'good people FINISH FIRST' comes through, albeit very slowly. In the meantime, the content inside is STUNNING and is good enough to warrant a BUY. - Interesting story about how the London Olympics managed to keep its opening ceremony a TOP secret. - Lessons from the construction of the Empire State Building and how being 'goo "Can you succeed without being a terrible person?" The headline caught my attention along with this book's recommendation by The Economist. A HIDDEN GEM. A MUST BUY The point of 'good people FINISH FIRST' comes through, albeit very slowly. In the meantime, the content inside is STUNNING and is good enough to warrant a BUY. - Interesting story about how the London Olympics managed to keep its opening ceremony a TOP secret. - Lessons from the construction of the Empire State Building and how being 'good', won! - The AMAZING differences between Steve Ballmer and Satya Nadella as respective CEOs of Microsft. The peek inside the UNIMAGINABLE, HARD life of Satya and how that transformed him. (gives me shivers) - The unbelievable tale of Captain William Blight, the story of The Mutiny on the Bounty (ship) and how his kindness was converted to wrath(?) by uncontrollable circumstances. - Franklin D Roosevelt. His life, his story, his ascension and the manner in which is boldly battled and defeated the Nazi menace & built the foundations of the new world order. Again, this book is worth it JUST to read about FDR. The book starts well, then slows down to the point you want to abandon it and then FLIES HIGH. Just keep this in mind! A must read.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Amy

    The intent of the book is so powerful. Fascinating individuals, that the author has us study in the context of Fairness and decency, and their contrasts. I recommend this book if you are at all interested. Why only 3 stars from me? My bad - I didn’t realize how many of the stories in the book I was already familiar with, so I lost some patience reading the details (FDR, Goebbels, Durocher, and to a lesser extent Bligh and Nadella). I WAS excited to see the story of Al Haynes, United Flight 232 p The intent of the book is so powerful. Fascinating individuals, that the author has us study in the context of Fairness and decency, and their contrasts. I recommend this book if you are at all interested. Why only 3 stars from me? My bad - I didn’t realize how many of the stories in the book I was already familiar with, so I lost some patience reading the details (FDR, Goebbels, Durocher, and to a lesser extent Bligh and Nadella). I WAS excited to see the story of Al Haynes, United Flight 232 pilot, because I saw him speak at a safety conference a long time ago and will never forget it or him.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Halli

    As previously stated Bodanis is a talented story teller and at times this book was very difficult to put down. The author makes substantial arguments for being (choosing) the better path, regardless if one has experienced a life upheaval. The differences in leadership (such an overused word, I hate it) are striking and this book inspires one to be and choose the considered, considerate, compassionate, way through life. One does not need to be "cutthroat" or "out for blood" when one has goals. I As previously stated Bodanis is a talented story teller and at times this book was very difficult to put down. The author makes substantial arguments for being (choosing) the better path, regardless if one has experienced a life upheaval. The differences in leadership (such an overused word, I hate it) are striking and this book inspires one to be and choose the considered, considerate, compassionate, way through life. One does not need to be "cutthroat" or "out for blood" when one has goals. I think that if an idea occurs to one, the world has made room and allowances for that idea and it needs to be shared. Would absolutely recommend.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Glenn Myers

    David Bodanis is a good storyteller and this is an entertaining and fascinating set of stories, all reinforcing the idea that good people (don't) finish last. How did Danny Boyle keep the London Olympics' opening ceremony secret, despite its cast of thousands, its embedded tabloid journalists, and his decision not to use non-disclosure agreements? How do you compare the lives and choices of Goebels and FDR, contemporaries and adversaries? This is all excellent stuff. Less convincing is his attem David Bodanis is a good storyteller and this is an entertaining and fascinating set of stories, all reinforcing the idea that good people (don't) finish last. How did Danny Boyle keep the London Olympics' opening ceremony secret, despite its cast of thousands, its embedded tabloid journalists, and his decision not to use non-disclosure agreements? How do you compare the lives and choices of Goebels and FDR, contemporaries and adversaries? This is all excellent stuff. Less convincing is his attempt to distill general principles from these stories. But there's plenty here to justify the entrance money. Super, even inspiring, book for a cynical age.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Shahiron Sahari

    An enjoyable and informative book that manages to make parallels between the likes of a recent indecent president and several excellent examples of decent human beings, without once mentioning his name. A book many people who think of themselves as leaders should read, and learn from.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Daphne

    More a self-help book through biographical examples than the sociological study I was hoping for.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Christine Sulerzyski

    Excellent, thought provoking & somewhat comforting.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Madison Davies

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The chapters about World War Two were hard to read for me personally. There was enough context but I just wasn’t engaged. The earlier chapters I enjoyed!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Samir

  10. 5 out of 5

    Graciela Pineda

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cdizzle

  12. 4 out of 5

    Terry Levenberg

  13. 5 out of 5

    Stephen King

  14. 4 out of 5

    Ann

  15. 5 out of 5

    Pablo Amor

  16. 5 out of 5

    Anli Kotzé

  17. 5 out of 5

    Liz

  18. 5 out of 5

    Melinda Owens

  19. 5 out of 5

    Alex

  20. 4 out of 5

    Kirk

  21. 5 out of 5

    Eugene

  22. 4 out of 5

    F.G.Cottrell-Boyce

  23. 5 out of 5

    Josh Nicholas

  24. 5 out of 5

    Charlotte Williams

  25. 4 out of 5

    John Mulvany

  26. 4 out of 5

    Mark Falcon

  27. 4 out of 5

    Clara Wilson

  28. 5 out of 5

    Richard Hargrave

  29. 4 out of 5

    Bahar

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kevin Martelli

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