Reading Vs Learning: 3 Key Concepts to Extract Better Learning From Non-Fiction Books

  • Dec 08, 2019
We have found 3 basic concepts to extract better learning from business books, here we will explain it step by step. We hope you enjoy it!

1- Fiction books are for fun, nonfiction books are for learning (and for fun too!).

Unlike fiction books, written primarily to entertain, have fun, or hang out, nonfiction books and especially business books have been written for a different target: to inform or learn something new. 

A common mistake for fiction readers who also love to read nonfiction books is to try to digest the content quickly, "enjoyably" and without making much effort to remember what they have learned. 

Because this is new information (most of the time) we must approach business books as if the author were a teacher and us students who take regular notes about new learning. 

With fiction books, you don't need to remember lessons learned to apply in your personal or professional life. However, with non-fiction books, you could leap in your career just by finding, reading and learning about one of the best-selling marketing books of the year, for example about Hacking Growth

Studying, remembering and applying the knowledge acquired in that marketing book could give you a competitive advantage over your co-workers, or your competitors!

Conclusion: Take nonfiction books as your effective learning guides! Business books are perhaps one of the most "economical" ways to learn new skills!

2- Books have entered the era of quantity vs. quality

Non-fiction books have entered a new era, the era of podcasts and summaries! We're all too busy all the time to read that new best-selling book of the year or to extract valuable information from it. 

However, perhaps we are missing important lessons because of the desire to finish the book quickly and move on to the next top 10 bestselling books of the year. 

Understandably, we all learn in different ways: some of us like to sit down to read, others like to listen to an audiobook in the car on the way to work or home, and others prefer to read the summary of the book. 

The most important thing is to make the effort to understand in detail the learning that the author wants to transmit to us and to benefit the quality over the number of books read per year.

Possibly if we benefit from quantity over quality, perhaps we will quickly forget what we have learned, we will not put it into practice and we will not advance as much as we would like in our personal or professional environment. 

Let's look at the following graph:


This graph shows us a clear tendency to forget what we learn since if the source of learning is through reading we will only remember 10% of the learning! 

It is an overwhelming graph, but we can draw several conclusions and analysis from it. We can appreciate that using several senses: sight and listening we increase up to 50% retention of new information or learning.

Conclusion: try to remember your learning by mixing reading with other sources of visual and auditory information. In the case of books, look for videos or audios related to the book that allows you to understand other points of view in this regard.

3- Non-fiction books are like courses dictated by the author. 

Now imagine the following scenario: 
  1. You read a nonfiction book about marketing written by a famous author
  2. Now imagine that the author is at the same time your teacher, and he creates a course for you in which he can challenge you with questions and activities about the book, and at the same time he reviews the key concepts with audio and video
  3. Finally, because you took the time to "study" the book and go out into the real world to practice or apply this knowledge, you will surely end up remembering up to 80% of the knowledge acquired. 

These intermediate steps are something that you should look for and do on your own, in our site you can take a course about a business book but you should keep in mind that you should do your part and with it get the best out of what you learned in the book.

Conclusion: Take non-fiction books as courses, where the author is your teacher and look for platforms that help you improve your retention, not platforms that encourage you to read more books.

Happy learning!

Daniel Morales

Daniel Morales

Content Creator at

Daniel Morales is a Content Creator at Bookcademy.


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