Praise

The critical difference between ‘good-enough’ and exemplary is not talent or desire. It’s practice. Deliberate practice. That’s why Practice Perfect is such an immensely important book. It’s the first to provide evidence-based rules, rich examples, and detailed techniques on how to design and conduct practice routines. If you want to improve your own—or someone else’s—performance, you’ve got to read this book. The authors have given everyone a great gift in Practice Perfect. They’ve handed over the key that unlocks excellence. Take that key and use it. Now.

—Jim Kouzes, co-author of the bestselling, The Leadership Challenge, and Dean’s Executive Fellow of Leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

Doug Lemov has done it again. In Practice Perfect, one of America’s best teachers widens his focus to help all of us move ever closer to mastery. If you are interested in getting better at anything (or helping someone else get better), then this book, with its excellent collection of techniques and tools, should be your field guide.

—Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind

A timely, winning and approachable proposition! The pursuit of improvement through the development of a disciplined approach to practice is an essential element to success in all your pursuits.

—Douglas R. Conant, former president, CEO, and director of Campbell Soup Company; New York Times Best Selling Author of TouchPoints; ASTD 2012 Champion of Workplace Learning and Performance

There are no shortcuts to success, whether it be in education, sports, or business. The authors of Practice Perfect provide a clear-cut, common-sense blueprint for what we all need to know to create practice habits that ensure permanent, sustainable results. I especially hope all aspiring teachers read this book. Transforming our public schools isn’t going to be easy, but it can be done through hard work and the right kind of practice—the kind taught explicitly in this book.

—Michael D. Eisner, former chairman and CEO, Walt Disney Co.; founder, The Tornante Company; co-founder, The Eisner Foundation

Practice Perfect will provide a recipe for organizations that are committed to their people—to helping them grow and get better in simple but powerful—and perhaps overlooked ways. Practice Perfect will create the conditions I believe necessary to equip schools, school leaders, and teachers with the tools essential for student success.

—Jean-Claude Brizard, CEO, Chicago Public Schools

Just like Teach Like a Champion, Practice Perfect is a treasure trove full of perfectly polished, just the right size “gems.” I couldn’t read it fast enough. I wanted to quickly pick up each of the ideas the three authors crafted and figure out how to bring the practices into my own work. Building on the work of the Heath brothers, Atul Gawande, Daniel Coyle, Marcus Buckingham, Daniel Willingham, and others, the authors take a classic problem—the gap between knowing what to do and actually doing it—and provide 42 wise and practical ‘rules’ to close that gap. Each rule is grounded in a story and related in a familiar tone making it a fast and fun, and often even funny read. Each of the rules is a concrete, actionable means to help ourselves and those we are coaching or managing to do the very thing it is we want to do but have not figured out how to do yet.

—Heather Kirkpatrick, vice president of Education, Aspire Public Schools

“Practice Perfect sets a new bar for how to practice and will be a resource that I will return to time and again.  The way that I will lead practice won’t only be better on Monday, but every day.

—Brent Maddin, Ed.D., provost, Relay Graduate School of Education

It’s become conventional wisdom that the path to excellence—no matter whether you’re a surgeon looking to hone your craft or a teacher looking for help with classroom management—is paved with hours and hours of practice. In this book the authors provide practical guidance, grounded in 42 concrete and actionable ‘rules,’ for how anyone can use carefully selected, but relatively simple tasks to ensure these hours of practice lead to excellence.

—Kathleen Porter-Magee, Bernard Lee Schwartz Policy Fellow; senior director, High Quality Standards Initiative, Thomas B. Fordham Institute