RECENTLY WE’VE BEEN WORKING to give readers some ways they can develop a more effective RIVERS OF INFORMATION® A Rivers of Information, briefly, is a way to take a waterfall of content, distill it, and turn it into a fine beverage to enjoy. It’s about managing the information thrown at you so you can most efficiently and effectively learn.
During a four part series we’ve offered some of our staff’s favorite podcasts, newsletters, and online periodicals to strengthen our own Rivers. In the final post, we turn our attention to that classic medium, the one that Gutenberg helped to in vogue a half a millennia ago.
Have you heard the news: Books are back! Isn’t there something really comforting about stepping away from the smartphone, laptop, or television and just curling up with a good book? Or diving into an audiobook on a long car ride? Books offer something a blog post or even a podcast can’t always, and that’s a deep dive into a subject followed by a long swim.
With that in mind, below are some of Future Point of View staff’s recent reads.
Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow by Yuval Noah Harari – This is an excellent read about the future of humanity. While some of the ideas are not my cup of tea, others are very intriguing. Well worth the read.
The BioHacker’s Guide by Anthony DiClementi.
Hieroglyph: Stories and Visions for a Better Future by Neal Stephenson, Ed Finn, Charlie Jane Anders – This is a collection of short stories that explore future scenarios that are somewhat “near future” in scope. The concept is that we don’t really have a “moon-shot” approach to pushing for big things like we did several decades ago, and this book envisions a number projects that might be pursued on that scale.
Thank You for Being Late by Thomas Friedman – Another great read from the New York Times op-ed columnist. If you have any interest in technology, climate change, or globalization, you’ll love this book.
I also read The Inner Game of Tennis by Tim Gallwey recently. It’s a great read. Even if you don’t play tennis (I don’t), this book is worth looking up. The skills discussed are helpful in just about everything, from work to running (and tennis!).
Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
I’m reading The Art of the Pitch: Persuasion and Presentation Skills That Win Business by Peter Coughter
Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd – On a recent trip to South Carolina, we visited Magnolia Plantation in Charleston. While the history and craftsmanship in the ‘main’ house was stunning, my true fascination was in the slave quarters. What seems like years ago this horrific piece of our nation’s history could still be felt on the grounds, within the walls that they built and under the Live Oak trees that were the very ones their children climbed. I picked up this book in their gift shop. It is written about this period and specifically in the Low Country of the Carolinas. Fantastic read…I finished it before vacation was over!
I read as often as possible, preferably fiction. Often on my commute through audio. I read “youthful” books often also. I pretend I’m trying them out for my kids. My suggested reading includes:
The Circle by Dave Eggers – It’s a movie too.
The Giver by Lois Lowry – A classic really; also a movie.
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline – Soon to be a movie.
Partials Series by Dan Wells – It’s dystopian youth fiction.
Captain Underpants Series by Dav Pilkey – HIGHLY recommended by my 9 year old.
Underland Chronicles Series by Suzanne Collins – Seriously good read definitely meant for junior high age kids, but I enjoyed it way too much.
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood – After binging on The Handmaid’s Tale (the TV series) this summer, I decided to reread the novel. (I originally read it in high school). The themes and tone unfortunately hit a bit closer to home than they did ten years ago.
If you are at all interested in blockchain or Bitcoin, a great place to start is Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money by Nathaniel Popper. This book has done for cryptocurrency what Michael Lewis’ Moneyball did for on-base percentage. In a breathless narrative, full of fascinating stories and characters, it chronicles the rise of Bitcoin, which today remains rising like a phoenix (on Tuesday it hit an all-time high of $10,000).
Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides’s Trap? by Graham Allison has a pretty ominous title. Yet it is a absorbing look at world history when a ruling superpower is challenged by a rising superpower and the ensuing results in each case. It is an examination of what history could teach us about the future of America-China diplomacy.
The Go-Giver: A Little Story about a Powerful Business Idea by Bob Burg and John David Mann is a thought-provoking parable about the power of connection and generosity leading to opportunity.
We believe Rivers of Information is fundamental to leadership. We have developed a step-by-step process for building an effective rivers, and we regularly travel to organizations to teach teams how they can build a robust rivers to gain knowledge and advantage. Please reach out to us if we can help your team members and/or leadership develop their own rivers.