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How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big

Kind of the Story of My Life
Narrated by: Patrick Lawlor
Length: 8 hrs and 48 mins
5 out of 5 stars (26 ratings)

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Summary

Blasting clichéd career advice, the contrarian pundit and creator of Dilbert recounts the humorous ups and downs of his career, revealing the outsized role of luck in our lives and how best to play the system.

Scott Adams has likely failed at more things than anyone you’ve ever met or anyone you’ve even heard of. So how did he go from hapless office worker and serial failure to the creator of Dilbert, one of the world’s most famous syndicated comic strips, in just a few years? In How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big, Adams shares the game plan he’s followed since he was a teen: invite failure in, embrace it, then pick its pocket.

No career guide can offer advice that works for everyone. As Adams explains, your best bet is to study the ways of others who made it big and try to glean some tricks and strategies that make sense for you. Adams pulls back the covers on his own unusual life and shares how he turned one failure after another - including his corporate career, his inventions, his investments, and his two restaurants - into something good and lasting. There’s a lot to learn from his personal story, and a lot of entertainment along the way. Adams discovered some unlikely truths that helped to propel him forward. For instance:

  • Goals are for losers. Systems are for winners.
  • "Passion" is bull. What you need is personal energy.
  • A combination of mediocre skills can make you surprisingly valuable.
  • You can manage your odds in a way that makes you look lucky to others.

Adams hopes you can laugh at his failures while discovering some unique and helpful ideas on your own path to personal victory. As he writes: "This is a story of one person’s unlikely success within the context of scores of embarrassing failures. Was my eventual success primarily a result of talent, luck, hard work, or an accidental just-right balance of each? All I know for sure is that I pursued a conscious strategy of managing my opportunities in a way that would make it easier for luck to find me."

©2013 Scott Adams (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Critic reviews

"Adams has a funny, refreshingly considered set of ideas about how to find success - and what that success will look like when one gets there." (Kirkus Reviews)

"Scott Adams has drawn nearly 9,000 Dilbert cartoons since the strip began, in 1989, and his cynical take on management ideas, the effectiveness of bosses, and cubicle life has affected the worldview of millions. But he built his successful career mainly through trial and error - a whole lot of error, to be exact." (Harvard Business Review)

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Excellent

A brilliant book that is well written, practical and engaging. Well worth the listen, even more than once.

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Definitely worth listening to/reading

Brilliantly written, isn’t pretentious and offers a simplified perspective on life.
Increase your odds of winning by listening/reading this book.

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  • Brandon Parker
  • 02-12-19

Crunchy Tips You Can Use Today

I love books that suggest specific tips and tactics. this book changed my routine. I'm closer to certified gangster after reading it.

3 people found this helpful

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  • David Schwartz
  • 19-12-19

Inspiring

Best book I’ve read in a long time. Will definitely use lessons from this book to better my daily life. Love the message that failure is an opportunity to learn from not to fear.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Aaron
  • 25-11-19

Worth your time

The ideas are simple and the writing is straight to the point. There's a 0% chance you will learn nothing from this book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Zevi g
  • 22-11-19

Great book

Great tools for life. Excellent humor! Good advice. Superb book. Would read again, and I’m glad someone recommended me this book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 21-12-19

Are you ready to change your mind?

loved the book. funny, informative and thoughtful. filled with helpful insights into human behavior.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-12-19

Great 📙

Yes loved it, Narration on point. Felt one with the writer. Working to create a system.

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  • vishal
  • 27-11-19

Educational!

Liked the failure lessons, and perspective on how to overcome your failures. I am going start applying the lessons.