top of page

KNOW CAN DO! - Book review

1 October 2014

Dr. Moria Levy

The book "KNOW CAN DO!" by Ken Blanchard, Paul Jamier, and Zeke Rohe in 2007 unexpectedly captured my attention as I browsed the shelves of a well-known bookstore. This book is a concise guide to achieving success, particularly in knowledge. While many of us read, undergo training, and attend lectures, it often feels like we need more and more to translate what we've learned into action.


The authors, through an engaging narrative, reveal a three-step method for effectively applying knowledge:

  1. Concentrate on the essentials and reinforce them through repetition.

  2. Approach your learning with a positive mindset.

  3. Establish a systematic monitoring process to ensure practical implementation.


Concentrate on the essentials and reinforce them through repetition.

Our challenge is the relentless inundation of information. The proposed solution is simple: focus on mastering a more limited range of subjects and continuously adapt. This process entails an annual guide where the same fundamental concepts are revisited with minor adjustments and additions. Through this repeated exposure to the same knowledge, we can gradually internalize it.


According to the authors, once individuals have mastered the knowledge they've encountered repeatedly, performing their tasks without requiring conscious effort becomes easier. Consequently, they can free their minds to engage in creative thinking, as their mental capacities are unburdened.


Approach your learning with a positive mindset.

The second message pertains to our approach to listening. All too often, our ability to genuinely absorb what we're trying to learn is hindered by internal resistance. This resistance can stem from various fears, such as the belief that the subject isn't relevant, is too complex, or is unappealing. As a result, it's expected that we encounter difficulties when attempting to internalize and apply this knowledge.


Though the authors don't explicitly state it, the essence of this concept resonates with the spirit behind President Obama's slogan - "YES, I CAN." Listening with a positive attitude involves setting aside preconceptions, approaching the material with a sincere desire to comprehend it, and considering how it can be put into practice. The combination of repeated exposure and a positive listening mindset is crucial. Even if defense mechanisms are present during initial learning, they gradually diminish with repeated exposure, making transitioning from rejection to assimilation easier.


Establish a systematic monitoring process to ensure practical implementation.

In the grand scheme of things, merely acquiring knowledge correctly falls short. Achieving lasting behavioral change requires stability, discipline, and responsibility. An insightful quote in the book succinctly captures this idea: "Training is not a recipe for perfection. Perfect training is a recipe for perfection." Systematic follow-up bridges the initial stages of practice and repetitive training, emphasizing the need for positive feedback.


Positive support and feedback are instrumental in sustaining perseverance and, consequently, in the success of the learning process. As one progresses, the responsibility for understanding and fulfillment gradually shifts to the learner. Ultimately, the authors suggest investing ten times more in follow-up than in the training itself is worthwhile.


Are there groundbreaking innovations here? Perhaps not. However, this approach strongly emphasizes three key elements from a long list of factors we're all familiar with. Is this particular combination the recipe for success? The answer likely rests in one's willingness to try and discover it for oneself.


bottom of page