ML35 – The New Science of Peak Performance with Author Dr. Anders Ericsson

Dr. K. Anders Ericsson is the co-author of Peak: Secrets From the New Science of Expertise. He is a Conradi Eminent Scholar and Professor of Psychology at Florida State University. He received his Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Stockholm, Sweden and completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Carnegie Mellon. He has worked with a Nobel Prize winner and written extensively on performance and increasing ability. Additionally, he is a Fellow of the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences and a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Engineering Sciences.

Anders Ericsson


Episode Summary: The New Science of Peak Performance with Author Dr. Anders Ericsson

  • I am interested in how “I” can do things better
  • What happens when someone changes their performance?
  • Novice à expert? What changed?
  • Started with cognitive memorizing tasks
  • Random digit record: currently around 500
  • What role do genes play in expertise development?
    • At high levels of expertise, we don’t see any correlation between natural ability (genes) and expert performance
    • With training, you are building something that allows you to perform at higher levels
  • Once you reach the level of automation, improvement declines or ceases
  • Doing something for decades doesn’t lead people to improve
  • Gifted children start an activity very good, but they reach a point where they need to build skill structures and they start to struggle because they find it much less rewarding
  • Naïve practice- engaging in the activity
  • Purposeful practice- follow a commitment to improve with immediate feedback
  • Deliberate practice- coach or teacher
  • Have a teacher that can guide you allows you to reach levels you couldn’t without it
  • Coaches help you with pacing- so you don’t burnout or fatigue
  • The goal of deliberate practice is not to reach potential but to expand and grow it
  • The foundation of the house determines how many stories you can add
  • We limit our own potential
  • Pushup record: consecutive 8000. Pushups in 24 hours: 20,000
  • Malcom Gladwell- Outliers and the 10,000-hour rule
    • Gladwell got it wrong- 10,000 hours (alone) does not an expert make
    • There is nothing magic about 10,000 hours
    • He was right that exception achievement is not created instantaneously
  • Intentional and deliberate
  • If you are going to put in a lot of time you want to choose something you are interested in
  • You can’t improve everything at once

Listen to the Audio

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Additional Items Mentioned

Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise by Anders Ericsson & Robert Pool

Malcom Gladwell – Outliers: The Story of Success

The Google

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Podcaster | Speaker | Leadership Mentor

Jake Carlson is a popular speaker, accountability partner, and host of the Modern Leadership podcast. Jake built his business while traveling with his family around the world. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn. Read more about him here.