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Summary

The old adage is ingrained in us that if you don't have anything nice to say then don't say anything at all. While this advice may work for home life, as Kim Scott has seen firsthand, it is a disaster when adopted by managers in the workplace.

Scott earned her stripes as a highly successful manager at Google before moving to Apple, where she developed a class on optimal management. Radical Candor draws directly on her experiences at these cutting-edge companies to reveal a new approach to effective management that delivers huge success by inspiring teams to work better together by embracing fierce conversations.

Radical Candor is the sweet spot between managers who are obnoxiously aggressive on the one side and ruinously empathetic on the other. It is about providing guidance, which involves a mix of praise as well as criticism - delivered to produce better results and help employees develop their skills and boundaries of success.

Great bosses have strong relationships with their employees, and Scott has identified three simple principles for building better relationships with your employees: make it personal, get stuff done, and understand why it matters.

Radical Candor offers a guide to those bewildered or exhausted by management, written for bosses and those who manage bosses. Drawing on years of firsthand experience, and distilled clearly to give actionable lessons to the listener, Radical Candor shows how to be successful while retaining your integrity and humanity. Radical Candor is the perfect handbook for those who are looking to find meaning in their job and create an environment where people both love their work and their colleagues and are motivated to strive to ever greater success.

©2017 Kim Scott (P)2017 Macmillan Digital Audio

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What listeners say about Radical Candor

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Not a pleasant narrator

I personally can’t bear with the voice of the narrator. I almost stopped listening because of it. Check out yourself before you buy the audio book. Content is solid though.

13 people found this helpful

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good info, hard to listen to it

to be honest, if I hadn't heard great things about the book I would have put it down as the voice is not pleasant to listen to and makes it hard to stay focused. saying that, when I could tune in the information was incredibly valuable so I'm glad I stuck with it.

5 people found this helpful

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  • LC
  • 25-04-19

Valuable practical advice for managers on feedback

Gives extensive actionable advice on getting and giving feedback for managers, and also for non-managers. Backed up with plenty of examples.

5 people found this helpful

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Interesting concept - could've been a blog

Two things for me:
1. Like most of these types of types of books, the author thinks she's stumbled across something so mind-blowing that it needs a huge book about it. Don't get me wrong, the concept is interesting and I've found it useful in my day to day, but it could've been about two sides of A4. There's a short YouTube video that explains the concept (also by Kim Scott) that gets the main thrust across concisely in about 5 mins...I'd do that.
2. Perhaps it's my British sensibility, but the author's voice is incredibly difficult to listen to. The mid-west drawl is a bit much for me - perhaps a personal thing but it grated to the point that I lost my concentration a fair amount and had to stop listening every so often.


As I say, great idea, useful concept, didn't need to be a book and needed a different VO artist.

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Great book, but annoying performance

I wish someone had the Radical Candor to tell Kim that she shouldn’t narrate her own book. But otherwise, it’s great for people aspiring to be top managers.

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Makes Management Fun Again!

I've been a manager now for around 3 years. It was exciting when I first started but as time went on, it felt slow and boring. I started considering side stepping to a non-management role until this book was recommended to me.

Radical Candor has a strong perspective on how much influence you can have as a manager. How you support your direct reports to be at their best and how you can make yourself be at your best.

Great read and a lot of learnings to take away. Thanks Kim! 😁

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How to be a kickass boss

The author is refreshingly honest about her own mistakes, failures and eventual successes at Apple and Google that led her to write this manual to being a kick-ass boss that can’t fail to inspire brilliant work from their teams.

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true wisdom

this is possibly the most useful advice book on communication I have read in some time. something I have always practiced and now I understand better why it works so well

1 person found this helpful

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Horrible narration

Very difficult to listen to, no flow or rhythm, Very disappointing, not the usual Audible standards.

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Lends perspective

As a devops engineer this one really lends perspective as to how other parts of a business think and act and the reasons why they think like that.

It also gives good insights into conflict resolution indirectly by actually specifying what you want and being direct about it rather than hiding it.

Would recommend reading if your a software engineer or work in IT

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  • Fausto Cepeda
  • 25-10-19

Interesting but not amazing

Normally when I hear a very good book, I keep registering bookmarks. To hear later all the bookmark (clips) later and hear again an idea. Not the case with this book. Many ideas are like evident, many more work maybe in places like Google or Apple (where she worked), not in a government environment for example where you don't have the flexibility of this companies. So I don't remember a single idea that I would like to implement with my team (I am in charge of 10 people), or something that I would think is a good idea to try. So, it an "ok" book and maybe you can implement ideas in your place and you have the flexibility to do it. For me, after hearing it, and if I had the chance, I would prefer not to have read it.

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  • Javier Gonel
  • 19-06-18

Very Interesting. A bit too long

Amazing business book on how to be a manager. Management 101 you could say. It talks about the basics and core practices of being a good manager.

My only grief is that it felt too long compared to other books. Perhaps it was how stories were mixed with theory that it felt longer than it was.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Jasson
  • 16-06-19

Helpful Framework, Poor Narration

The framework presented in Radical Candor is useful to keep conversations genuine and on track.

While the author wrote a helpful book, she should not have narrated it. A skilled narrator would have made this book much more enjoyable.

2 people found this helpful

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  • AndersR
  • 13-05-19

It has good concepts. Other books tell it better

It was a good book. Boils down the concepts and gives you a walk around the topics all great managers should know about. A recommended read. For me, for example, managertools.,Com book covered about the same but in more easy to implement ways.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mauro Locarnini
  • 27-08-18

A practical guide to create high performing healthy work cultures

really like this book as it focuses on helping people grow through good feedback in all directions. Implementing a radical candor culture will help you achieve a psychologically safe work environment which according to the Aristotle project at google is the single common feature of highly effective teams. It is filled with easy to relate stories which are not simple anecdotal entertainment but illustrate perfectly well the operating principles. It also makes a good use of many simple techniques developed throughout the Silicon Valley putting them together in an excellently orchestrates fashion.

When reading the book I found for the first time an external support to my pledges against the hype on identifying high potentials in organizations and instead understanding the phenomenon as growth trajectories. It still has a slight bias towards younger people which I believe is not always true. Some people need to gain experience in many fields until they can put all these experiences together and move into a steep growth trajectory.

I highly recommend this book specially to Managers and HR professionals that struggle to find their way into creating highly performing cultures.

The only minus would be the pitch of the narrator that can be at times a bit annoying.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 21-06-18

Great read!

This book helps you to better communicate with people even if you're not a manager. The rules described here should be used both in professional and private life at they will help you to dramatically increase relations with others.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Martynas
  • 29-10-19

Naked truth about management and what we miss

Great read, reminding us us all that management of people is not a privilege, but a hard work with preparation, concision connections and humble outcome.
Very easy to listen as many examples are provided, genuine mistakes discussed.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 27-07-19

The best book ever

I loved this book, I recommend it to every manager. I guarantee that you find at least one interesting thing you should change in your managerial style.

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  • Ingibjörg Reynisdóttir
  • 06-01-19

Useful guidelines

It was so good I bought the hard copy to look better into recommened guidelines in the book

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  • Caitlin Hilditch
  • 19-12-18

Lots of sensible advice...

Lots of sensible advice. Good to read a book that re-enforces the real benefits of being a caring, "human" boss.