- Gebundene Ausgabe: 304 Seiten
- Verlag: Portfolio; Auflage: Expanded Edition. (31. Dezember 2009)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 1591843065
- ISBN-13: 978-1591843061
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 21,1 x 2,5 x 21 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3 Kundenrezensionen
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The Back of the Napkin (Expanded Edition): Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures (Englisch) Gebundene Ausgabe – 31. Dezember 2009
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BusinessWeek's best innovation book of the year
A Fast Company best business book of the year
The (London) Times business creativity book of the year
"A must read for younger generation managers."
"Roam shows that even the most analytical right-brainers can work better by thinking visually."
"[Roam] shows you how to create simple drawings...that are simple but effective tools in breaking down complex notions and letting you share an idea across cultures and levels of expertise with aplomb."
"As painful as it is for any writer to admit, a picture is worth a thousand words. That's why I learned so much from this book. With style and wit, Dan Roam has provided a smart, practical primer on the power of visual thinking."
-Daniel H. Pink, author of A Whole New Mind
"Inspiring! It teaches you a new way of thinking in a few hours-what more could you ask from a book?"
-Dan Heath, author of Made to Stick
"This book is a must read for managers and business leaders. Visual thinking frees your mind to solve problems in unique and effective ways."
-Temple Grandin, author of Thinking in Pictures
"If you observe the way people read or listen to things in the early 21st century, you realize that there aren't many of us left with a linear attention span. Visual information is much more interesting than verbal information. So if you want to make a point, do it with images, pictures or graphics...Dan Roam is the first visual consultant for the customer. And the message sticks."
-Roger Black, Media design leader, author of Websites That Work
"Simplicity. This is Dan Roam's message in The Back of the Napkin. We all dread business meetings with their mountains of documents and the endless bulleted power points. Roam cuts through all that to demonstrate how the use of simple drawings-executed while the audience watches-communicate infinitely better than those complex presentations. Is a picture truly worth a thousand words? Having told us how to communicate with pictures, Roam rounds out his message by explaining that 'We don't show insight-inspiring pictures because it saves a thousand words; we show it because it elicits the thousand words that make the greatest difference.' And that is communication that works."
-Bill Yenne, author of Guinness: The 250 Year Quest for the Perfect Pint
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
As the president of Digital Roam Inc., Dan Roam has helped leaders at Microsoft, Google, Wal-Mart, the Federal Reserve, Boeing, and the U.S. Senate solve complex problems through visual thinking. Dan and his whiteboard have appeared on CNN, MSNBC, ABC News, Fox News, and NPR. He lives in San Francisco.
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Dan Roam zeigt auf sehr anschauliche (natürlich) Weise, das man eigentlich nur genau schauen muß um die wichtigen Basics zu erkennen, die einen Gegenstand zB auszeichnen um ihn symbolhaft darzustellen und wie wirkungsvoll es sein kann, seine Ideen mit einigen Strichen darzustellen anstatt elaborierte Texte zu schreiben oder zu sprechen. Mir hat die Idee komplexe Ideen bildlich darzustellen, vielleicht sogar wirklich Probleme mit Bildern zu lösen ausgesprochen gut gefallen.
Wichtig ist sich eigene Symbole zu überlegen und dann wie bei allem eigentlich: üben, üben, üben.
Nach der Lektüre habe ich seither immer einen Block und einen Stift bei mir - und es nie bereut.
Eine klare Empfehlung für alle, welche ihr Potential der Vermittlung von Informationen besser ausnutzen wollen. Dieses Buch gibt einen Schnellstart in das Gebiet der Informationsvisualisierung ohne dabei in Details zu versinken. Es wird deutlich leichter auch komplexe Inhalte zu vermitteln, wenn man nur den Mut mitbringt der eigenen Kreativität zu vertrauen und weiß wo die eigenen Stärken dabei liegen. Die Meisterschaft kommt dann mit der Übung und wer einmal angefangen hat wird weitermachen und so automatisch besser. Für den Preis ein unschlagbares Angebot.
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The sequel, "Unfolding the Napkin" (which I also read) is better thought out, serves more as a method, and contains more visual examples - but it still rehashes pretty much the same material as the first book in order to make its point, so reading both books was redundant in my opinion.
I am a technical trainer and writer and have been teaching classes for more than 10 years now. For the last 7 years I've been using a pen tablet in my classes to draw diagrams on-the-fly while lecturing about different technology concepts. The attendees have given phenomenally positive feedback about this learning method.
Now, I find this book that not only validates the process I've been using but helps me take it to the next level. The author reveals the four steps to visual thinking and the six problem categories that we all face. He shows you how to do it with case studies and examples that are practical.
One thing that I think many will find helpful is the way the author quickly removes any fear of drawing you may have. He gives the testimony of many attendees that he has helped overcome this fear of drawing in front of others. Personally, my family plays Pictionary very regularly because I want my children to be comfortable with this process.
My favorite part was the Appendix: The Science of Visual Thinking. I found it very interesting as it presents scientific research as it relates to this simple process.
If you want a great new way to solve problems and a great way to communicate ideas, I think you'll find this book very useful.
Both books are hardcovers and much of the content (including, sadly, the Resources listed in the Appendix) is the same. However, there are a number of important differences between these editions:
At 8.2 x 8 x 1.3 inches, it is bigger than the first edition, which clocked in at 7.1 x 7.1 x 1 inches. While this does allow for the pictures to be bigger and slightly easier to see, it also means a larger, oddly-shaped book to carry around. This only matters if, like me, you like to schlepp your favorite books around and carry them on the bus.
PAGES & TEXT
Includes more pages at 304 pages, rather than the previous edition's 278, making it a mere 0.2 pounds heavier. 10 of those additional 26 pages are the new "Appendix A: The Ten (and a Half) Commandments of Visual Thinking." This is a very useful set of 11 rules of thumb to keep in mind when applying Roam's visual thinking technique. Most, if not all, of these rules are mentioned elsewhere in the book, so don't let this appendix be your only reason for purchasing the newest edition. In addition, these 11 rules are summarized nicely in a slideshow elsewhere on the internet ([...]/visual_think_map/the-10-12-commandments-of-visual-thinking-the-lost-chapter-from-the-back-of-the-napkin). Nonetheless, it is helpful to have them laid out, visually, in one place. Another 8 pages are the new Foreword, which explains Roam's experience of visually attempting to sell the idea for this book to the publishers at Penguin. While interesting and a good example, it is also not a reason to buy this edition.
COLOR & PICTURES
Instead of just black text/pictures, red is now used to highlight chapter headings and subheadings, as well as help readers distinguish between parts of Roam's originally-all-black illustrations and diagrams. This is astonishingly helpful - as it is much easier to understand his diagrams at first glance. Given the table on page 66 (identical to that on page 72 in the first edition), it is no surprise that a small change in color makes it easier for our eyes to distinguish among the parts of his diagrams. In addition, he has added some additional sketches in the book to better visually explain some of his concepts. I was particularly impressed by his improvements to chapters 4 and 5 on how to look better and see sharper. Both his pictures and his text in this section have been revised to provide more clarity for potentially-confusing sections that are partially dependent on communicating a few key brain science concepts. His diagrams illustrating the 6 ways of seeing/showing are also a bit clearer than in the first edition.
OUTLINE OF BOOK CONCEPTS
For an outline of the major concepts in the book, see my blog post ([...]/blog/review-back-of-the-napkin-solving-problems-and-selling-ideas-with-pictures-expanded-edition-2009) for more details.
This is a great book, extremely useful and thought provoking. The structuring of problem-solving into a six by five visual codex makes enormous sense; you can literally see the evolution of the thought processes and the development of the insights take shape through the pages. It is not the kind of book that you can dip into. There is a structure and that structure has to unfold and be assimilated by the reader before there can be any translation into action and effect. I think that there is no "quick fix" for someone who wants to animate or rejuvenate their presentations with a rapid read. The art of solving problems has to be developed through the acquisition of the skills protrayed in these pages. And that takes time and effort. And it also needs a sense of congruity between the visual sense of the author and that of the reader. Pictures can convey so much that words cannot evoke. But some pictures and representations succeed and others fail, otherwise there would be no evolution of art and expression.
Be wary of this book on face value. The editorial recommendations of the book do not necessarily reflect the content. Simply to say, as does one commentator, "So if you want to make a point, do it with images, pictures or graphics.", is true only to a point. It is not necessarily the case for all readers, all viewers and certainly not for all people who need to make a presentation. The person who gives the presentation with pictures that reflect their own representation of the topic without engaging the representation or ability of the audience will fail. The presentation must be expressive, not merely reflective.
But that aside, if after searching through this book you get a sense of affiliation with the ideas and concepts, then I have no doubt that you will gain enormously in quality of communication with your audiences. This book is a challenge that can lead to greater insight. But the dictum "caveat emptor" applies, as always. But also remember, books such as this always present the ideas as though they were tried and true. There is rarely evidence as to the efficacy of the methods in getting the message across, as against the satisfaction that an audience may gain. Roam does list references in an appendix to other works that are based on empirical evidence (for example Wainer's Graphic discovery and Tufte The Visual Display of Quantitative Information, 2nd edition, but there is nothing about his own evidence. A reading of this excellent book benefits from a parallel reading, and reality check, of Tufte's little monograph on the dangers of Powerpoint (The Cognitive Style of PowerPoint: Pitching Out Corrupts Within, Second Edition.
His suggestion to solve business problems with simple drawings could raise a few doubts. Drawings are not business solutions is the common wisdom. Conventional tools such as spreadsheets, deep mathematical analysis are the norm. The book more than adequately addresses the doubts and other questions about drawing pictures to accomplish business objectives.
He resolves denials like "I can't draw or I don't carry napkins in my pocket ". This is accomplished by demonstrating how we all have the ability to draw within the system he has developed. He first drew a successful proposal on the back of a napkin while eating breakfast on a train in England. In the book we are taught by leading us through the development of the complete solving/selling process.
The book is written in an easy to read conversational style and is laced with the type of drawings he proposes that are most useful in attacking the most intractable of problems. While reading the book one finds themselves thinking things like "I can do that" or "I need to remember the steps in the process so I can do them whenever I have a problem and a napkin"
We are introduced to a group of problems that have been solved using the system. In those solutions the drawings were not only on napkins but white boards or just sheets of paper. The reader begins to understand that the system is a cleverly developed method to cause one to think not only outside the box but with pictures rather than words.
He also takes care in pointing out that timing and following a sequence of steps is most important. Pictures are often said to be worth a thousand words. He gives examples that explain when one is selling the idea one has to be sure the audience is led to the conclusions that the team found while developing the solution. Just flashing a picture and saying "this is the solution" is not usually the most effective way to convince those you are trying to convince. The book takes us from puzzle (the problem) to plan (the selling of the solution) in simple and easy to follow steps.
In these days we are constantly faced with solving complex problems. The Back of the Napkin presents a thought process and method that can help solve those problems. Using the method will help sell the solution. It becomes an arsenal one wants in his tool kit. When you couple that arsenal with an enjoyable read there is little to lose and much to gain. Now where are those napkins?