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  • #16
    These are terrific...thanks. My original plan was to read just one book a month...I may need to increase that a bit!

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    • #17
      Originally posted by artsinaction View Post
      I LOVED this book all three times I read it. He's on my list of people I wish I'd had the privilege of working with... it's a fairly short list.

      You have excellent taste.

      Dena
      Why, thank you! And I agree - I would have loved to work with him. I was working at Polaroid, in a group of "change agents," and I really found myself envying Hallmark for having someone like him!!

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      • #18
        A few years old now, but I really enjoyed Small Giants: Companies That Choose to be Great Instead of Big by Bo Burlingham. Definitely highly recommended.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by H@ns View Post
          Not linked to GTD but valuable on different levels:
          "Antifragile, Things that gain from disorder" from Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Black Swan)
          Thanks, I'll have to read that!

          I liked "A Perfect Mess: The Hidden Benefits of Disorder - How Crammed Closets, Cluttered Offices, and on-the-Fly Planning Make the World a Better Place" by Eric Abrahamson. He comes up with all sorts of examples where a certain amount of disorder is actually preferable to order: for example, what's the first thing you do when you pick up a deck of cards that are all in order? You shuffle them, because they're more useful in a random order. He admits that order is also useful; he's just pointing out that in many situations, the optimal amount of order or disorder is something other than perfect order.

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          • #20
            Not to hi-jack this thread, but does any know of any other business books written similarly to "The Goal" or "The 5 dysfunctions of a Team" ? Case studies written like a novel.

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            • #21
              Originally posted by John Forrister View Post
              Someone I passed in the park had "Antifragile," and I almost stopped to ask what it was about. Intriguing title. H@ns and vicve, please let us know what you think.
              Definitely will, John!

              Additionally, I posted a recent blog post with my "If-I-Could-Only-Read/Reread-Three-Books-This-Year" list. Of course, GTD was #1! I've read all of David's books but only once and have heard so many state how beneficial it is to reread them. Definitely something I plan to do for the coming year!

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              • #22
                Does he give any logical example?

                Originally posted by cwoodgold View Post
                He comes up with all sorts of examples where a certain amount of disorder is actually preferable to order: for example, what's the first thing you do when you pick up a deck of cards that are all in order? You shuffle them, because they're more useful in a random order. He admits that order is also useful; he's just pointing out that in many situations, the optimal amount of order or disorder is something other than perfect order.
                I don't agree with his statements that you quote and I think that "deck of cards" example is demagogic. I can give you many similar examples - you put trash in the trashcan in a random order, you use tennis balls in a random order etc. but it does not prove anything. Does he give any logical example?

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                • #23
                  How will you measure your life - Clayton Christensen
                  Nudge
                  Succeed - Heidi Grant Halvorson
                  Mindset - Carol Dweck
                  Steve Jobs - Walter Isaacson
                  No shortcuts to the top - Ed Viesturs
                  Endurance - Alfred Lansing
                  Predictably Irrational - Dan Aierly
                  To sell is human - Dan Pink

                  Enjoy ; )

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by TesTeq View Post
                    I can give you many similar examples - you put trash in the trashcan in a random order, you use tennis balls in a random order etc. but it does not prove anything.
                    I put trash in a random order because it takes less effort -- not because a randomly-ordered trash container is actually better than an ordered one. Randomly-ordered trash could be better because you'd be unlikely to end up with one light-weight trash bag and one heavy back-breaking one, or because small objects might often go inside large ones and take up less space; or ordered trash could be better because similar objects might stack and take up less space. Some stuff gets recycled or composted, requiring some sorting.

                    Does he give any logical example?
                    He gives both types of examples: where it's not worth the effort to impose perfect order, or where a degree of randomness is actually preferable to perfect order and sometimes worth spending effort to obtain, as with the deck of cards.

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                    • #25
                      I cannot accept this "perfect mess" concept.

                      Originally posted by cwoodgold View Post
                      He gives both types of examples: where it's not worth the effort to impose perfect order, or where a degree of randomness is actually preferable to perfect order and sometimes worth spending effort to obtain, as with the deck of cards.
                      I am really sorry but I cannot accept this "perfect mess" concept and I consider this idea to be a ridiculous marketing trick to sell a book with a controversial title.

                      You once again gave the same "deck of cards" example which - in my opinion - proves nothing. Randomness is the element of many games. It gives us fun of unpredictability in games. And that is all. Do we need such unpredictability in our projects? Do we need it when we are looking for our car keys or socks?

                      I've read first paragraphs of the book available from amazon.com. The authors describe an example of two magazine stores on Broadway in Manhattan - messy and tidy. The messy one wins and it is meant to be a "proof" that messiness can be good. I think that authors know nothing about running a business and about a complicated nature of factors that determine if you win or lose.

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by TesTeq View Post
                        I've read first paragraphs of the book available from amazon.com. The authors describe an example of two magazine stores on Broadway in Manhattan - messy and tidy.
                        Those paragraphs are part of the Google Book preview; here's a link to it for anyone interested.
                        http://books.google.ca/books?id=GWjf...ed=0CEMQ6AEwAg
                        This magazine store example is one of the ones where (apparently) order is beneficial, but the cost of maintaining that much order is greater than the benefits gained from it.

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                        • #27
                          Originally posted by H@ns View Post
                          Not linked to GTD but valuable on different levels:
                          "Antifragile, Things that gain from disorder" from Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Black Swan)
                          Actually, I think "Antifragile" is linked to GTD. The whole point of GTD is to keep your personal system from being fragile - from crashing when it is subjected to the various inputs that hit it.

                          Taleb's point is that some things are fragile, and some the opposite of fragile, which he calls "antifragile". The human body can be fragile but in some cases - such as exercise causing damage which results in muscle growth, or a vaccine of some kind introducing a small amount of disease designed to force the body to react and strengthen its defenses against that disease - it is antifragile.

                          I don't know that GTD would make your system antifragile - that it would grow stronger as it handles various inputs, but it is certainly designed to make it robust - something that will not break no matter how hard it is hit.

                          Though I doubt I'm good enough at GTD to really say. Maybe a personal management system using GTD does get stronger as it is tested. I'm certainly getting better at handling things that hit me without having a meltdown...

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                          • #28
                            Well, two quickies come to mind:

                            One is self-serving--I have a book called Higher Process that's about evaluatin self-help and productivity advice via paychological research. GTD is featured in several chapters. (http://www.amazon.com/Higher-Process...dp/B007Z739BS/).

                            I also started the year reading Susan Cain's QUIET. Very good book on introversion with implications for business, work style, education, productivity, etc. (http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/0307352145/)

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                            • #29
                              The Millionaire Next Door by Thomas J. Tanley is one of the best one I read and I would definitely recommend it to you.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by MarkDillon View Post
                                As I prepare for 2013 I want a list of management, self help, business books to read over the year. Do you have a recent favorite?
                                order from chaos is a great self management book, I've been trying out the Air Traffic Control system and it's fantastic. It is a built in Weekly Review and project management system which works.

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