Sometimes blogging can take a back seat. The time I have for blogging is the same time I have for reading. I can only do one at time. Here is what I have been reading
Gotham – The History of the City of New York to 1898
Where Good Ideas Come From. The Natural History of Innovation
Empowered: Unleash Your Employees, Energize your Customers & Transform Your Business.
First, Gotham is epic. I began reading it ten years ago, never finished and with the release of the Kindle edition finally plowed through it. It is an academic masterpiece – well sourced, comprehensive and without an apparent agenda. Towards the 1870’s the City explodes in growth and the book has trouble keeping up. What is great about the book is that the themes of New York are there. The rowdiness, the love of money and the constant change have been a part of us for 400 years. Along with Robert Caro’s The Power Broker and Jane Jacobs Life and Death of American Cities, Gotham is a must read for all New Yorkers (real ones, you know who you are)
Where Good Ideas Come from is brisk, informative and scientific. I enjoy trying to find out how creatives create and desparately want to hone my own skills. Things like slow hunchs, the adjacent possible and coral reefs will never be the same for me. We all stand on the shoulders of each other. History and biology show being open, sharing and chance accidents are the best way forward.
Empowered focusus on the same themes as prior Forrester researched books – we live in a new age and you have to let workers work. Human assets are your most valuable source of ideas and action. Too many companies forget this. Unfortunately, Empowered feels stilted and many of the examples are dated and already well known use cases. If you want a primer on the new rules for connected workers its worth reading.
What are you reading?