August 30, 2010
News & Opinion: How Made to Stick was Made to Stick: What Ideas Survived and What Died
The subtitle was a little unruly, but the ideas spiral-bound up in that plastic cover were concise, well-written, and right on.
We liked it so much that we also saved the galley when it came through (also rare) which reflects the first major change to the book. It's title was tightened up and, subtly yet dramatically, improved to Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Don't. But you'll notice the galley uses Post-it® notes on the cover, which if anything are known for their lack of adhesive strength—not exactly the ideal product to demonstrate something that was made to stick. Maybe this was never meant to be the final cover, as most of the text on the various Post-it® notes describes the publicity, promotion and advertising that will be done in the lead-up to the book's release, but using Post-it® notes to demonstrate stickiness is still a rather baffling decision.
All which led to the final product. You can't tell from the picture, but that duct tape on the cover feels as if Duct tape were actually stuck to the cover, which brought a quick smile of appreciation to all of us as we passed it around the office. We ended up naming Made to Stick the first 800-CEO-READ Business Book of the Year* in 2007. Would it have won with a different title and lesser cover? We certainly judge books by the quality of the writing and strength of the ideas presented first and foremost, but you can't argue that the title change and final cover certainly improved the presentation of the book and made it more likely to succeed. It just goes to show you, sticky ideas sometimes take some time to fully develop.
*We're now accepting entries for The 2010 800-CEO-READ Business Book Awards.
About Dylan Schleicher
Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.