Ultralearning: Master Hard Skills, Outsmart the Competition, and Accelerate Your Career – Scott Young
- I’ve been in Higher Ed for over 15 yrs, and served in assessment, faculty and staff development, and curriculum design roles. Now, I am involved in accreditation in HE and K12. I am attuned to and interested in learning more about learning. I didn’t think I would get much out of the book, but ended up listening to it twice, and reading it for notes, and buying a copy. I also have brought it to the high school I’m consulting with now.First, I listened to the book- which I believe was more impactful than reading/skimming it. The words land differently. It makes a huge difference to hear the stories and the rationales – and to process them that way. So if it’s your first time, try Libby and give it a read for free.Second, this book presents a precise framework that is lacking in formal education, just as much as people’s lives. For me, this book challenged my way of thinking about how we need to approach the student learning experience, which could involve more self education and well designed personal projects. The life changing stories in this book are evidence that self-made and executed learning experiences are intensely impactful.Oh and yes, I now have a framework for my own learning!!I highly recommend the listen if you are someone who equally enjoys thinking more about learning.
Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It – Chris Voss
- I took Chris Voss’ masterclass and just loved it. These negotiation techniques are for people in any business and in any important discussion in their life. I was on the edge of my seat with the hostage stories, too- such a unique vantage point of what going on behind these scenes. You’ll learn about labeling, mirroring, and saying no without saying no.
An excellent book!!
Why We Can’t Wait – Martin Luther King Jr.
- I once read A Letter from Birmingham Jail in school, but it was an experience that could have been greatly enhanced by the context of Why We Can’t Wait. I am, of course, forever changed, but deeply grateful for a greater understanding of MLK. Never have I heard of him described as a stoic strategist, yet those qualities are now what I believe made him, his leadership, and his cause so successful. Besides discernment and strategic thinking, he possessed a unique ability to articulate sadness, unfairness, and hate, while knowing where to focus energy. This will certainly be the first of many MLK books I read in my lifetime.
Taste: My Life through Food – Stanley Tucci
- This book was like Sunday sauce night and all the courses that come along with it. It is a must read and I devoured it in a week. In particular, it was incredibly enjoyable in its audio version- with Stanley Tucci narrating his own stories.I loved the way Stanley wove family and friend stories through encounters with food. I’m a vegan, but even my mouth was watering with his detailed descriptions of meat, and equally horrified by the unknown. I felt I was there tasting every bite.I loved starting the book with the conversation with his mother, and ending with the same conversation with his son. I admired his expression of love for his wives and their own cooking adventures. And the actuality of eating on set in America would make me choose foreign films too :)I didn’t know about Stanley’s oral cancer- such a cruel version to have for someone who loves food so much! I learned more about what those with cancer go through in his equally detailed descriptions.What did I do to celebrate the completion of this book? Make pasta of course!
Ten Steps to Nanette – Hannah Gadsby
- Gender, sexual preference, abuse, autism, ADHD, art history, and the comedy world… Hannah Gadsby took me on a journey this year that I will forever be changed by. I am left in awe of the way in which Gadsby detailed her childhood, family relationships, and early friendships… and how they shaped her. Although there are many points I couldn’t relate to (outside of a love for art history), Gadsby’s articulation of living with autism and ADHD in such vivid detail left me with a much clearer understanding than I’ve ever had before of the inner workings of some minds. And while the stories of realizing she was gay in an intensely conservative system while having suffered multiple accounts of abuse had me heartbroken, knowing her self discovery gives me relief. Layered into a memoir about personal life is a unique account of finding and breaking a profession. It cannot be easy getting onstage to make people cry when they have arrived thinking you will make them laugh.Gadsby not only details her life with great detail and humor, she provides a history lesson along the way. There was very little I knew about Tasmania (if I even knew it really existed at all outside of cartoons) and about the Australian mainland. I am enlightened by the lessons on living with autism, being gay in a conservative culture, bodily shame post-sexual abuse, and the standup scene.This was the book I was most hooked on this year. I borrowed it after seeing Gadsby on Colbert. I listened to the audio version and wouldn’t recommend doing it any other way. Gadsby’s intentional pauses, inflections, and impressions are everything!! I think I borrowed the book from the library 15 times in order to finish it as I listened to a little bit everyday. It was well worth the wait every time. I can’t recommend this book enough.
Talking to Strangers – Malcolm Gladwell
- Still struck. Gladwell manages to piece together seemingly unrelated horrific, tragic, questionable, and confusing events to find a common thread among them. While I don’t disagree with a common thread, I am still pondering the last chapter and what it all really means. What do we take away? What do I take away? It’s a similar feeling at the end of all Gladwell books. I’m glad to have known and pondered these different events in our recent history, and to have gained some skills for the critical thinking needed to get through future events.
Long Life Learning – Michelle Weise
- THE great summary of the intersection and future of education and work, and the ecosystem needed to tie them together.
- Weise has applied her years of apprenticeship with the late Clayton Christensen and as a formidable asset for higher education and industries to this massive summary and guidebook for what exists now and what our future needs from the education and industry collaboration. At the heart of this book are the voices of the workforce that have become louder throughout The Great Resignation. Many Americans are lost on the broken journey full of dead ends and barriers that should lead them to jobs that fit their interests, experience, and abilities. Layered on top of the first hand job seeker stories of frustration, is a thesaurus of projects, data, ambitious entrepreneurs, and technologies hoping to solve this complex puzzle. I highly recommend this book for anyone researching or interested in the intersection of higher education, industry, and job seekers.
The 4 Disciplines of Execution: Achieving Your Wildly Important Goals – Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, Jim Huling
- As someone who has managed strategic planning for a large organization, I know first hand that systematizing execution is something many organizations struggle with. The principles in this book are easy and straightforward to follow. They aren’t rocket science, and yet so many organizations struggle to follow-through on goals before they move on to the next one. Though it’s interesting to hear the organizational examples in the book, I only wish there were more or different scenarios from different industries. I’m in Higher Ed, and feel like this industry really needs the book!
- A year later, this book has become my most cited framework while discussing planning in the workplace and while consulting.
The Five Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask about Your Organization: An Inspiring Tool for Organizations and the People Who Lead Them – Peter Drucker
- This quick read is one of Peter Drucker’s most referenced frameworks. Like some of my accreditation discussions last week, this book is all about company self-assessment. It’s a method for assessing what you are doing, why you are doing it, and what you must do to improve an organization’s performance. The five essential questions include:
1. What is our mission?
2. Who is our customer?
3. What does our customer value?
4. What are our results?
5. What is our plan?
This framework forces organizations to focus on their mission and narrow their activities to meet their mission and what the customer ACTUALLY needs. This might include identifying what NOT to do, as well.Things to remember: “Planning is not an event. It is a continuous process of strengthening what works and abandoning what does not, of making risk-taking decisions with the greatest knowledge of their potential effect, of setting objectives, appraising performance and results through systematic feedback, and making ongoing adjustments as conditions change.” (p. 4)
The Power – Naomi Alderman
- In THE POWER, the world is a recognizable place: there’s a rich Nigerian boy who lounges around the family pool; a foster kid whose religious parents hide their true nature; an ambitious American politician; a tough London girl from a tricky family. But then a vital new force takes root and flourishes, causing their lives to converge with devastating effect. Teenage girls now have immense physical power–they can cause agonizing pain and even death. And, with this small twist of nature, the world drastically resets.
- I will forever be changed by the detailed cautionary storytelling in this book. The book posits, ‘what if women had more power in the world’? We like to think that the world would be a more peaceful and considerate place. The storylines in this book make me think otherwise.
- The only way to read this book is the audiobook version – an extremely talented voice actress embodied all characters and accents to perfection.
The Obstacle is the Way shows us how to turn obstacles into opportunities, but it also creates a framework for acting like a strategist:
1. Start from the middle ground. Sometimes winning the war isn't glamourous. It might be a long ro...
I once read A Letter from Birmingham Jail in school, but it was an experience that could have been greatly enhanced by the context of Why We Can’t Wait. I am, of course, forever changed, but deeply grateful for a greater understanding of...
The Five Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask about Your Organization: An Inspiring Tool for Organizations and the People Who Lead Them
This quick read is one of Peter Drucker's most referenced frameworks. Like some of my accreditation discussions last week, this book is all about company self-assessment. It's a method for assessing what you are doing, why you are doing ...
Gender, sexual preference, abuse, autism, ADHD, art history, and the comedy world… Hannah Gadsby took me on a journey this year that I will forever be changed by. I am left in awe of the way in which Gadsby detailed her childhood, family...