My Radical Candor Review is based on The Rubric.
I began reading Radical Candor by Kim Scott on 11/21/2019 and finished 11/27/2019.
Check out my Radical Candor Notes for my thoughts, including my favorite quotations, associations, and takeaways.
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I originally thought this book was going to be how to handle specific conversations in a radically candid way. I was either too swift or too daft in my original assessment to realize that it’s offering a total framework by which to practice management…
My revised assessment is that Radical Candor is a book about creating a culture of candor as a way to become a kickass boss, as the author calls it.
My notes on this book cover how I realized my mistake in the middle of reading, and you can see how the scores shifted once I knew what I was reading…
For the full review, scroll down… And if you’d like to join the discussion, you can find our Facebook group here.
Radical Candor by The Rubric
If you would like to see the full rubric, shoot me an email to email@example.com.
Radical Candor Review – Arguments
The argumentation offered in Radical Candor is unapologetically self-evident and anecdotal in nature.
Kim Scott makes no bones about what she’s presenting. It’s her stories from her time as a manager, primarily at Google, Apple, and from working with the CEO of Twitter.
And Radical Candor is the practical advice she’s derived from those stories.
There’s little investigation of her hypotheses presented outside of her personal experiences at these companies. And there’s little evidence presented of her having investigated alternative hypotheses during her time at these companies.
The biggest problem with her reasoning, however, is a huge unstated assumption – at least on first pass, I didn’t see it stated – which is that the “boss” reading the book will have the resources to implement the advice from the book.
Outside of that, the logic presented within the anecdotes was decent. And the logic that was meant to be self-evident mostly was.
By The Rubric, Radical Candor scored “Decent” on average for arguments.
Radical Candor Review – Practicality
Because of the unstated assumption above, Radical Candor took a hit in the practicality section of The Rubric simply because not all bosses have the resources necessary to implement the advice offered in the book.
Instead, those bosses who don’t have the time and budget to implement as the book prescribes are on their own for adapting the concepts, and to do their best.
If you want to implement Radical Candor as it is recommended in the book, you need to be a manager within a large organization. You cannot be wearing multiple hats, such as an owner/manager of a small company might be… There simply won’t be enough time, but more important, there won’t be enough flexibility on your team to embrace the concept fully.
If the assumption that you need to be a manager at a large organization had been made clear at the outset, this would not have been a problem. As the author provides detailed instructions for implementation.
Overall, the book contains a healthy balance of explanation and recommendations for those managers who are equipped to implement.
By The Rubric, Radical Candor scored “Decent” on average for practicality.
Radical Candor Review – Readability
Radical Candor was solidly written and edited for readability.
The ideas were presented in an organized fashion both overall and within the chapters.
And the presentation included enough visual cues to help the reader keep things organized in their mind, while not being so heavily dependent on visual cues as to make the audio of the book difficult.
By The Rubric, Radical Candor scored “Excellent” throughout on readability.
Radical Candor Review – Enjoyability
Radical Candor kept my attention most of the time.
The stories were interesting and valuable; the commentary between stayed on topic.
The how-to aspect gets a little tedious, but that’s to be expected.
By The Rubric, Radical Candor scored “Decent” on average for enjoyability.
Radical Candor Review – External Resources
This score is a little misleading, as the author didn’t refer to any external resources.
Which is why Radical Candor scored 100%.
Every little piece of value that the author meant to put in front of readers by selling the book is in the book.
By The Rubric, Ms. Scott has earned a Well Done! throughout the book for keeping the value in the book itself.
Radical Candor Review – Rhetoric
The author is truly promoting the ideas presented in this book, and nothing else.
The only rhetorical issue is the book is marketed to all managers when there will be issues implementing the book’s advice in small organizations.
Outside of that issue, though, the rhetoric was spot on.
The author hardly promotes herself or her work throughout the book, only making a few allusions to it in later chapters.
And there’s only one true call to action, at the very end, soliciting criticism for the book.
By The Rubic, Radical Candor is solid on rhetoric throughout, averaging a score of “Excellent.”
Radical Candor Review – In Total
Radical Candor is a valuable addition to a shelf meant for business books.
It is rooted squarely in the people management category, and it contributes a great deal to the conversation around how to develop healthy communication within an organization.
By The Rubric, Radical Candor scored between “Decent” and “Excellent” overall.
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