Think Again by Adam Grant
#Leadership#Organizational Culture

Big Picture:
Adam Grant is increasingly gaining traction in the world of work-place psychology. For this specific book, Grant digs into how and why we hold onto deeply held beliefs/opinions, even when they are no longer serving us. Grant addresses several meaty topics, including the cognitive science of “unlearning”, the leadership benefits of humility, embracing imperfection and being wrong, why disagreeable colleagues can be a tremendous asset to our teams, and the power of motivational interviewing in our personal and professional lives.

How to use it:
The content is especially relevant for leaders and organizations that are on the precipice of change and evolution. Leaders can use chapters of this book as pre-work for brainstorming sessions. The content has the potential to prime your team members to “think again” about their opinion and/or position and how they show up for charged conversations. For example, Chapter 7 Vaccine Whisperers and Mild-Mannered Interrogators is an excellent pre-read for a team meeting that will require deep listening skills to move toward resolution.

Essentialism by Greg McKeown
#Organizational Culture#Personal Development

Big Picture:
I picked this book up from a Brooklyn stoop (New Yorkers often set up small libraries on their stoops for the give & take of myriad of urban resources!). My friend mocked me for picking up a discarded book on essentialism, suggesting that it would only add to a growing collection of un-essential reads. I think her mockery was mis-placed!

Here are the Core Ideas:

  • Find the Essential Intent: do one thing, and do it well.
  • Make one decision that makes 100 more decisions for you (the daily clothes uniform is a classic example, but this concept is applicable in so many aspects of leadership and decision making.)
  • Prioritize our time based on our essential intent (the one thing that we want to do well). It’s not that we don’t have time. Rather, it’s how we prioritize the time we do have.

How to use it:
This book is pure genius for anyone that is struggling to find enough hours in the day. McKeown boils our time down to priorities and reminds us of the simple fact: “If you don’t prioritize your life, someone else will.” I suggest this book for leaders and leadership teams that currently believe everything is important, and therefore struggle to prioritize anything with essential intent. The content is a great mindset primer for re-evaluating time and task management strategies.

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