The End of Average

The End of Average

How We Succeed in A World That Values Sameness

Book - 2015
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"The rising star and face of the new field "science of the individual" draws from the latest psychological and sociological research to show that success is found in individual strengths and weaknesses that don't fit along any average curve--a powerful manifesto for change in the ranks of Emotional Intelligence and The Power of Habit.Modern science has proven that people behave and learn in distinctive ways. And yet these individual patterns get lost in our institutions of opportunity--from education to the workforce--which remain rooted in the misguided belief that statistical averages are good enough to understand individuals and identify their unique talents. Standardized tests, grading systems, job applicant profiling, performance reviews--they invariably ignore our differences and ultimately fail at measuring our capacity for success.In this first popular book on the science of the individual, Todd Rose, a pioneer in the field draws on the latest research to show how, when we focus on individual findings rather than group findings or averages, we can rethink the world and everyone's potential in it. By understanding the three "principles of individuality"--the principle of the jagged profile, the principle of context, and the principle of pathways--we can avoid setting ourselves and those we are tasked with helping succeed (our children, students, employees) up for repeated failure and instead find the right path for success.The End of Average reminds us that we are not anything close to average--because the average is a statistical myth--and presents a new way of understanding and maximizing everyone's potential"-- Provided by publisher
Are you above average? Every day we are measured against the yardstick of averages, judged according to how closely we resemble it or how far we deviate from it. In The End of Average, Todd Rose shows that no one is average. Not you. Not your kids. Not your employees or students. This isn't hollow sloganeering- it's a mathematical fact with enormous practical consequences. Weaving science, history, and his experiences as a high school dropout, Rose brings to life the untold story of how we came to embrace the scientifically flawed idea that averages can be used to understand individuals and offers a powerful alternative: the three principles of individuality. The Jaggedness principle (talent is never one-dimensional), the context principle (traits are a myth), and the pathways principle (we all walk the road less traveled) help us understand our true uniqueness- that of others- and how to take full advantage of individuality to gain an edge in life.--jacket cover
Publisher: New York, NY : HarperOne, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, [2015]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780062358363
0062358367
Characteristics: 247 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm

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bwortman Apr 06, 2016

Todd Rose's book explores how Western cultures and social institutions became oriented around the idea of the average person and exposes the central flaw of this approach. Averages are based around the concept that each unit being averaged is roughly identical, whereas people are individual and unique. Rose explores how to recognize your own individuality and work within current systems to make them work for you. He also advocates for ways of altering business and educational institutions to orient around the individual rather than the average. A well-researched and fascinating non-fiction read, I found the historical sections most interesting. While Rose's arguments about altering education to an individual oriented system, I found myself a bit skeptical that such a massive, time- and money-intensive alteration is viable for the near future. An intriguing and recommended read.

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