The Slow Fix: Solve Problems, Work Smarter, and Live Better in a World Addicted to Speed

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Overview

A doctor prescribes a pill to treat symptoms of a disease instead of the root cause. The CEO of a corporation takes a shortcut to financial growth. A new mom embarks on a crash diet to get rid of pregnancy pounds.

Quick fixes have become the commonly accepted approach to problems in almost every area of our lives. And yet these "instant" solutions don't work, lead to more problems, and end up taking more of our precious time.

With The Slow Fix,...

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The Slow Fix: Solve Problems, Work Smarter, and Live Better In a World Addicted to Speed

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Overview

A doctor prescribes a pill to treat symptoms of a disease instead of the root cause. The CEO of a corporation takes a shortcut to financial growth. A new mom embarks on a crash diet to get rid of pregnancy pounds.

Quick fixes have become the commonly accepted approach to problems in almost every area of our lives. And yet these "instant" solutions don't work, lead to more problems, and end up taking more of our precious time.

With The Slow Fix, international bestselling author Carl Honoré doesn't only describe what's wrong with taking the quick or easy route; he shows us a new approach to problem solving that works in any area of life, from health and relationships to business and community. Honoré details a new paradigm for efficient, sustainable problem solving, teaching us how to utilize time to build expertise, take advantage of teamwork, find the right messenger to deliver our message, and much more.

The Slow Fix changes our understanding of problem solving. Whether we're negotiating the family chore load at home, addressing a delicate issue at work, or attempting to tackle something on a large scale, Honoré shows us ways to solve problems today that will prove sustainable for years to come.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
No more shortcuts, argues this scattershot primer on taking the hard way out. Journalist Honoré (In Praise of Slowness) deplores society’s addiction to the cheap, facile, shortsighted, clichéd “quick fix,” and insists that solving our knottiest problems requires long horizons, focused effort, complex strategizing, and deep thought. He applies this perspective to a slew of business and public policy case studies, including corporate turnarounds, the rehabilitation of chaotic ghetto schools, and Bogotá, Colombia’s celebrated bus system. Honoré’s readable but sketchy summaries glean useful insights from these examples, but no coherent approach gels from his contradictory mishmash of managerial buzz-concepts; readers are enjoined to both think holistically and fixate on details, to simultaneously embrace egoless collaborative teams, solitary introspection, and charismatic leaders. Disconcertingly, many of the nostrums he touts sound very much like cursory quick fixes: companies seeking technical breakthroughs can crowdsource them on a Web site instead of funding R&D programs; an online game called Chore Wars magically convinces kids and husbands to do their share of housekeeping; and “research suggests that just two minutes of reasoned reflection can help us look beyond our biases.” Honoré’s slowness paradigm feels like just another glib, split-second substitute for serious analysis. Agent: Patrick Walsh, Conville & Walsh (U.K.). (Feb.)
The Independent
“Accessible, lucid and wise, this book should sit in every government and managerial office.”
Wall Street Journal
“Honore has a winning style and an infectious curiosity about the minutiae of other people’s lives.”
Booklist
“A practical and entertaining guide…a sound, thought-provoking book.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780061128820
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 1/29/2013
  • Pages: 262
  • Sales rank: 388,340
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Carl Honore is an award-winning journalist and author whose revolutionary first book, In Praise of Slowness, was an international bestseller and has been published in more than thirty languages. Honoré is a highly sought after lecturer who speaks around the world on slow living and the Slow Movement, and his work has appeared in publications including The Economist, Observer, The Guardian, The Miami Herald, Houston Chronicle, TIME magazine, and National Post. Honore lives in London with his wife and their two children.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 3, 2013

    In this speed-obsessed, quick-fix world, it has become almost no

    In this speed-obsessed, quick-fix world, it has become almost normal to expend the minimum amount of effort, in business and in life. But that approach is never quick, and usually makes things worse.

    If you make a mistake, admit it. Don't try to blame someone else. If you are the boss, don't treat that mistake as a disaster that requires that someone be fired. Instead, treat it as an opportunity to take a very close look at your entire process. It may seem preferable to worry only about immediate problems. Is that really better, and cheaper, than going through every bit of your business, top to bottom, to make sure everything is working properly?

    An underlying, fundamental problem rarely has just one cause. Try linking the various pieces of that fundamental problem. Don't focus just on today; look at tomorrow, too. Will fixing Problem X now lead to other big problems next month, or next year?

    Naturally, the devil is in the details. Be willing to see things in a new light. Preparation ahead of time, being ready for anything, will help keep problems from rearing their ugly heads. Don't be afraid to collaborate, especially with someone who has a different field of expertise. A different set of eyes may be just what is needed to solve your problem. There are times when crowdsourcing is the best place to go for an answer to your problem. Don't underestimate the power of games to solve problems.

    Meant more for groups than individuals, this is an excellent book. It is very thought-provoking, and is recommended for everyone.

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  • Posted April 28, 2013

    I grew up in the 70s and 80s, at the height of make-it-quick pro

    I grew up in the 70s and 80s, at the height of make-it-quick processed foods and the birth of the home personal computer (so fast! so amazing!). And while my parents did things mostly the old-fashioned way, slowly and from scratch, I was born with a desire to see things happen quickly. It wasn't that I wasn't willing to work for it, it's just that I thought if i worked REALLY HARD, I could get to my goal FASTER.

    But that isn't always the case. In fact, in most cases, working harder and faster does not help you achieve your goal. I'm 41 and I'm just now starting to GET IT.

    When I picked up this book, The Slow Fix, I knew it was the right time to read it. I knew that I had finally reached a point in my life when I could actually absorb what this book had to offer.

    The subtitle is correct. Solve problems, work smarter, and live better in a world addicted to speed. The examples and people that Honore details in this book are amazing. From turning around a failing inner-city school in Los Angeles; to creating an amazing rapid transit system in Bogota, Columbia; to changing the majority of a country's citizens to supporting and wanting to donate organs upon their death (or their relatives' deaths); this book was a revelation in understanding the amount of time, effort and work that goes into solving BIG, long-term problems.

    Honore's style of writing made this book a fun and interesting read. I really enjoyed it. It inspired me to think about how to employ slow fixes in improving my life and my business. This book is a great reminder to think of the end goal, the ultimate goal, and take the time I need to get there.

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