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Monday, January 6, 2014

Team Tips - 17 {A word with you}

At first I didn't see this post as a "Team Tip". But of course learning is important for any team, and that's what I'm getting at here.

Here's my Best Business Books list.

  • “Best” because I learned something important, and thought the author(s) explained it well.
  • “Business” because I recommend these books to business associates for help with concerns in the workplace; however, they really apply to humans doing anything, anywhere.
  • “Books” because most of them are books (they are all “learnings” but “learnings” doesn't have alliteration with “best” and “business”).
I was tempted to list them in some order of importance. But that is clearly in the eye of the beholder, so what you find useful isn't necessarily what I enjoyed.

Nonetheless, the critical few are “The Art of Possibility”, “Closing the Me-You Gap”, “7 Habits”, and “Software for Your Head”. And that's a reasonable order for increasing degree of difficulty, and volume and richness of concepts.

What is fun to do is to look for the similarities in fundamentals expressed in each - our essential stardust.

If you don't expect to read them all, I've added some of the concepts that were important to me from each to help you choose.

Please let me know of any you would add to this list.

Abrashoff - It's Your Ship

  • how do you promote individual initiative and responsibility on a US Navy ship that is capable of starting World War 3?
Ackoff - Systems Thinking (YouTube)
  • look for any of the lectures by Dr. Russel Ackoff on YouTube to understand the fundamentals of looking at entities as systems to avoid attempting to sub-optimize the various parts, and missing the interactions as the critical element
Collins - Good to Great
  • insights from comparing very successful companies to their mediocre counterparts, determining the leadership, thought, and action that made a difference
Covey - 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
  • what does it mean to truly be effective; i.e. work on the right things at the right time, and understand all of the roles in our lives and what is important for each?
Goldsmith - What got you here won't get you there
  • from one of the foremost business coaches the insight that all the things that have made us successful so far aren't enough to guarantee our rise to the next level, and in fact might get in our way
Gray* - Creating Time
  • how to use the Core Protocols from McCarthy Technologies to find more time than we thought we had for any endeavour
Gray* - Closing the Me-You Gap
  • how to use the Core Protocols from McCarthy Technologies to build trust with others
Kahneman - Thinking, Fast and Slow
  • explains the two systems of how we think - system 1 is fast, intuitive, and emotional, system 2 is slower, more deliberative, and more logical; however, both can lead us astray due to evolutionary forces, and poor understanding of their operation
McCarthy & McCarthy - Software for Your Head
  • starting from the typical human faults we encounter in the software industry, this book reveals the anti-patterns and provides the positive alternative patterns (Core Protocols) that let us interact optimally with others in any endeavour to fully realize our potential
Ries - The Lean Startup
  • applying the total quality management principles from the Toyota Production System (and similar sources) to any business startup, we are shown in solid detail how to proceed systematically with any venture in any situation where high uncertainty exists
Stone, Patton, Heen - Difficult Conversations
  • how to frame the conversation with someone about a very difficult topic in order to reach a successful conclusion (at least to the conversation)
Zander & Zander - The Art of Possibility
  • “It's all invented” - in other words, the systems we deal with every day aren't the final or necessarily the best answer, allowing us to find new possibilities at every turn in all we do
Again: please let me know of any you would add to this list.

[* Vickie Gray is my sweetheart and partner in all things]

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