Top Ten Quotes: Range
I tend to pick a subject and go deep. That’s why this blog is chock full of subject matter in the realm of guest services…I like to figure out all the nuances of that topic. (Or maybe I’m just lazy and don’t want to learn new things. To-may-to, to-mah-to.)
That’s why David Epstein’s Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World was such a challenging read. His premise is that we live and lead best when we break out of our normal learning modes and explore other disciplines. He believes that better, stronger connections can be made if we just look up from our trenches and see what solutions reside in the next trench over.
If you’re a pastor or politician, a homemaker or a horticulturalist, I strongly recommend Range.
Here are my top ten favorite quotes:
- Everyone is digging deeper into their own trench and rarely standing up to look in the next trench over, even though the solution to their problem happens to reside there.
- We all rely on chunking every day in skills in which we are expert…Your restaurant server doesn’t just happen to have a miraculous memory; like musicians and quarterbacks, they’ve learned to group recurring information into chunks…Chunking can seem like magic, but it comes from extensive, repetitive practice.
- The most successful experts also belong to the wider world.
- Exposure to the modern world has made us better adapted for complexity, and that has manifested as flexibility, with profound implications for the breadth of our intellectual world.
- Three-quarters of American college graduates go on to a career unrelated to their major—a trend that includes math and science majors—after having become competent only with the tools of a single discipline.
- [B]readth of training predicts breadth of transfer. That is, the more contexts in which something is learned, the more the learner creates abstract models, and the less they rely on any particular example.
- …the most successful problem solvers spend mental energy figuring out what type of problem they are facing before matching a strategy to it, rather than jumping in with memorized procedures.
- Our work preferences and our life preferences do not stay the same, because we do not stay the same.
- We learn who we are in practice, not in theory.
- “I always advise my people to read outside your field, everyday something. And most people say, ‘Well, I don’t have time to read outside my field.’ I say, ‘No, you do have time, it’s far more important.’ Your world becomes a bigger world, and maybe there’s a moment in which you make connections.” (Arturo Casadevall)
See all posts in the Top Ten Quotes series.
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