Synopses & Reviews
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 everyones 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 up ourselves and those we are tasked with helping succeed (our children, students, employees) 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 everyones potential.
Are you above average? Is your child an A student? Is your employee an introvert or an extrovert? Every day we are measured against the yardstick of averages, judged according to how closely we come to it or how far we deviate from it.
The assumption that metrics comparing us to an average--like GPAs, personality test results, and performance review ratings--reveal something meaningful about our potential is so ingrained in our consciousness that we don't even question it. That assumption, says Harvard's Todd Rose, is spectacularly--and scientifically--wrong.
In The End of Average, Rose, a rising star in the new field of the science of the individual shows that no one is average. Not you. Not your kids. Not your employees. This isn't hollow sloganeering--it's a mathematical fact with enormous practical consequences. But while we know people learn and develop in distinctive ways, these unique patterns of behaviors are lost in our schools and businesses which have been designed around the mythical "average person." This average-size-fits-all model ignores our differences and fails at recognizing talent. It's time to change it.
Weaving science, history, and his personal experiences as a high school dropout, Rose offers a powerful alternative to understanding individuals through averages: the three principles of individuality. The jaggedness principle (talent is always jagged), the context principle (traits are a myth), and the pathways principle (we all walk the road less traveled) help us understand our true uniqueness--and that of others--and how to take full advantage of individuality to gain an edge in life.
Read this powerful manifesto in the ranks of Drive, Quiet, and Mindset--and you won't see averages or talent in the same way again.
, author of Truth, Beauty, and Goodness Reframed