Are you looking for the perfect beach read? Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas that Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries might not be a steamy romance, but it’s just the read you need if you’re in the middle of a creative block and looking to embrace new ideas. Loonshot is defined by Bahcall as “a widely dismissed idea whose champions are often written off as crazy.” The premise of the book therefore becomes the way to take these off-the-wall ideas and translate them into transformative products and/or services.
Published in March 2019, Safi Bahcall has a real hit on his hands. As both a physicist and entrepreneur, Bahcall offers a unique perspective on group behavior. Renowned authors in the field like Malcolm Gladwell and Dan Pink are calling the book “One of the two most groundbreaking nonfiction books of the season.” It’s also been named as one of the top books on a slew of other lists, including:
- Wallstreet Journal Bestseller
- Washington Post’s “10 Leadership Books to Watch for in 2019”
- com’s “10 Business Books you Need to Read in 2019”
- Business Insider’s “14 Books Everyone Will be Reading in 2019”
If the hype surrounding Loonshots isn’t enough to sway you, perhaps Bahcall’s interesting take on the science of phase transitions will. Phase transitions have been used to understand a multitude of things, from human behavior to the patterns of birds. How do criminals behave? Why do people vote the way they do? How do brains work? Why do ecosystems collapse? Most importantly, phase transitions are used to study how ideas spread. Bahcall uses phase transitions to explain why businesses will wholeheartedly embrace a new idea, then quickly reject them. Bahcall argues that, just like temperature controls the transition from flowing water to ice, structure within the business controls these transitions. The book therefore notes the importance of small, strategic organizational changes versus culture.
Bahcall uses a wide array of examples to support his ideas. Examples range from how fires spread in forest fires to how terrorists are found online. He also cites stories of kings and famous leaders known for their genius thinking. These stories act as insight into how crazy ideas have been supported by empires and businesses and succeeded in the past, and how understanding that behavior can help you succeed too.
If you’re looking to change the world with a crazy, transformative idea, pick up your copy of Loonshots today!