Practical Intelligence: The Art and Science of Common Sense / Edition 1

Hardcover (Print)
Buy New
Buy New from
Used and New from Other Sellers
Used and New from Other Sellers
from $1.99
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
(Save 92%)
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (16) from $1.99   
  • New (6) from $7.97   
  • Used (10) from $1.99   


Karl Albrecht’s bestselling book Social Intelligence showed us how dealing with people and social situations can determine success both at work and in life. Now, in this groundbreaking book Practical Intelligence, Albrecht takes the next step and explains how practical intelligence (PI) qualifies as one of the key life skills and offers a conceptual structure for defining and describing common sense.

Throughout Practical Intelligence, Albrecht explains that people with practical intelligence can employ language skills, make better decisions, think in terms of options and possibilities, embrace ambiguity and complexity, articulate problems clearly and work through to solutions, have original ideas, and influence the ideas of others. Albrecht shows that everyone’s PI skills can be improved with proper education and training and challenges all of us—from parents and teachers to executives and managers—to upgrade our own skills and help others develop their own PI abilities.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Albrecht’s practical intelligence builds on the ideas of multiple intelligence, outlining a series of guidelines and exercises to promote better approaches to problem solving" (Financial Times, Thursday 19th July 2007)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787995652
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 6/15/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 1,034,827
  • Product dimensions: 6.46 (w) x 9.55 (h) x 1.35 (d)

Meet the Author

Karl Albrecht is a management consultant, executive advisor, futurist, speaker, and author. As chairman of Karl Albrecht International, he oversees the practical application of his ideas through consulting, seminars, and publishing. He is a prolific writer and the author of the bestselling Service America!, The Northbound Train, Brain Power, The Power of Minds At Work, and Social Intelligence.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents


About the Author.

1. A Problem and an Opportunity.

Accidental Intelligence:The Terminal Assumption.

The Widening “Smart Gap”.

The Dumbing of America and the Culture of Amusement.

Knows and Know-Nots:The New Social Divide.

Who Cares? Who Needs to Care?

2. Multiple Intelligences: The Possible Human.

IQ Doesn’t Tell the Whole Story.

There Are at Least Six Kinds of “Smart”.

Building Out: Applying Theories to Everyday Life.

Build-Out 1: Emotional Intelligence.

Build-Out 2: Social Intelligence.

The Next Build-Out: Practical Intelligence.

3. What Is Practical Intelligence?

Thinking Is a Bodily Function.

MeetYour Biocomputer.

Brain Cycles, Brainwaves, Brain States, and the Daily Trance .

Mindmodules:You Have Many “Minds”.

Mindmodels:Your Portable Reality.

Four Habits That Unlock Your Mental Capacity.

Four Dimensions of PI:Your Mega-Skills.

Getting Started: Upgrading Your Mental “Software”.

4. Mental Software Upgrade 1: Developing Mental Flexibility.

Are You a Finished Product?

Dynamic Thinking and Archaic Thinking.

You Might Be a Mental Redneck . . .

The Creative Paradox.

The “Beginner’s Mind”: Innocence and Humility.

The “Plexity” Scale.

There Is No Truth—Only Your Truth, His Truth, Her Truth,Their Truth . . .

How I Learned to Stop Arguing with People.

A New Way to Think About Opinions.

Three Phrases That Can Keep Your Mind Open.

5. Mental Software Upgrade 2: Adopting Affirmative Thinking.

Cleaning Out the Attic: Mental Decontamination.

“Sensorship”: Choosing What You Will Allow intoYour Mind.

Resistance to Enculturation, a.k.a.“Crap Detecting”.

Cleanse Your Mind with a “Media Fast”.

Re-EngineeringYour Attitudes.

The Attitude of Gratitude.

The Attitude of Abundance.

Practical Altruism.

Meditation, Mindmovies, and Affirmations.

6. Mental Software Upgrade 3: Adopting Sane Language Habits.

Language as Mental Software:What You Say.

Is What You Think.

How Language “Packages” Your Thoughts.

Jumping to Confusions: Inferential Thinking.

“Clean” and “Dirty” Language: Strategies for Semantic Sanity.

Expressions You Can Remove from Your Vocabulary.

The Self-Conversation: Cleaning Up Your Internal Dialog.

Snappy Comebacks:The Language of Funny.

7. Mental Software Upgrade 4: Valuing Ideas.

Do You Have Lots of Good Ideas? (Almost Everyone Does).

“It Slipped My Mind . . .” (Almost Everything Does).

The Greatest Thinking Tool Ever Invented.

Thinking in Pictures.

Are You a Yes-Person or a No-Person?

The P.I.N. Formula: Protecting Ideas.

Using Your Magical Incubator.

“Metaboxical” Thinking: Breaking the Boundaries.

8. Mega-Skill 1: “Bivergent” Thinking.

The Divergent-Convergent Polarity:The D-C Axis.

Process Consciousness: Managing the “Pivot Point”.

Groupthink:The Collusion to Fail Brainstorming: More Often Talked About Than Done Systematic Creativity:The Balancing Act.

9. Mega-Skill 2: “Helicopter” Thinking.

The Abstract-Concrete Polarity:The A-C Axis.

Visionaries and Actionaries:We Need Both.

Connecting the Dots:You Have to See Them to Connect Them.

Painting the Big Picture: Mindmapping.

Explaining the Big Picture: Using the Language of Ideas

10. Mega-Skill 3: “Intulogical” Thinking

The Logical-Intuitive Polarity:The L-I Axis

Thinking Styles:Yours and Others’

Sequential Thinking: Re-Owning Your Logical Abilities

TrustingYour Hunches: Re-OwningYour Intuitive Abilities

The “Zen Mind”: Flow and Mindfulness

11. Mega-Skill 4: “Viscerational” Thinking

The Rational-Emotive Polarity:The R-E Axis

First We Decide—Then We Justify: Irrational Thinking Explained

We’re All Neurotic, and That’s OK

The Five Primal Fears We Live By: The Psychology of Risk

Signal Reactions: Disconnecting Your Hot Buttons

Emotions and Health: If It’s on Your Mind, It’s on Your Body

Can You Motivate Yourself? The “Popeye Point”

12. How to Become an Expert Problem Solver

Forget Those “Five Steps” They Taught You

Using Heuristic (a.k.a. Natural) Problem Solving

Your Five Key Mindzones

The High Speed Problem Solving Process

13. Success Programming: Causing the Outcomes You Want Using What We’ve Learned

Mindmovies:Who’s Producing Your Life’s Story?

Alpha Programming: Making the Movies You Want

Your Life Wheel:Taking Stock, Setting Priorities, and Making Changes


A Answers to Thinking Exercises

B Fifty Tips for Better Thinking

C A Vocabulary for Practical Intelligence

D A Code of Intelligent Discourse

E Learn to Meditate in “One” Lesson: The Harvard Mantra


Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2007

    A reviewer

    Everyone knows a few super-smart people who continually do super-stupid things. Sure, they can finish a Sunday New York Times crossword puzzle in less than 10 minutes, play and win three simultaneous chess games handily and multiply seven digit numbers faster than a calculator. But they also can¿t hold a job, are given to fulminating about bizarre pet causes (¿Restore the Carolingian Dynasty now!¿) and can¿t shut up about their ¿brilliant¿ ideas (¿You mean you didn¿t read my 427-page proof of Goldbach¿s conjecture yet?¿). What¿s going on? Well, if Karl Albrecht¿s ideas are right, IQ isn¿t the whole story of human intelligence. And it may not even be most of the story. Perhaps more important than raw IQ, particularly in today¿s world, is practical intelligence: the ability to use common-sense reasoning in a structured way to solve relevant problems. Fortunately, practical intelligence, like other mental skills, is not fixed at birth. How can you develop it? Start with this sensible book, which we recommend to anyone who wants to be not only smart but also effective.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)