readings

2012

The Innovator's DNA: Mastering the Five Skills of Disruptive Innovators by Jeff Dyer, Hal Gregersen, Clayton M. Christensen - the authors build on what we know about disruptive innovation to show how individuals can develop the skills necessary to move progressively from idea to impact. Identified behaviors of the world's best innovators outline five discovery skills that distinguish innovative entrepreneurs and executives from ordinary managers: Associating, Questioning, Observing, Networking, and Experimenting. A self-assessment for rating your own innovator's DNA is included.

Fierce Conversations: Achieving Success in Work and in Life One Conversation at a Time
by Susan Scott - In this Wall Street Journal best seller (January 2004), the master teacher of positive change through powerful communication, wants her readers to succeed. To do that, she explains, one must transform everyday conversations employing effective ways to get the message across. The guide includes exercises and tools to take you step by step through the Seven Princicples of Fierce Conversations.

Designing for Growth: A Design Thinking Toolkit for Managers
by Jeanne Liedtka and Tim Ogilvie - Educates readers in one of the hottest trends in business: "design thinking" or the ability to turn abstract ideas into practical applications for maximal business growth. Liedtka and Ogilvie cover the mind-set, techniques, and vocabulary of design thinking, unpack the mysterious connection between design and growth, and teach managers in a straightforward way how to exploit design's exciting potential.

TimeBanks™ TimeBanks USA was founded in 1995 and its central office is located in Washington, DC. The mission of TimeBanks is to nurture and expand a movement that promotes equality and build caring community economies through the inclusive exchange of time and talent. They are working with TimeBanks leaders across the US and internationally to strengthen and rebuild communitiy, and use TimeBanks to achieve wide-ranging goals such as social justice, bridges between diverse communities, and local ecological sustainability.

The Next Convergence: The Future of Economic Growth in a Multispeed Worlds
by Michael Spence - A Washington Post Notable Nonfiction Book for 2011. With the British Industrial Revolution, part of the world's population started to experience extraordinary economic growth--leading to enormous gaps in wealth and living standards between the industrialized West and the rest of the world. This pattern of divergence reversed after Wold War II, and now we are midway through a century of high and accelerating growth in the development world and a new convergence with the advanced countries--a trend that is set to reshape the world.

Civilizing the Economy by Marvin T. Brown - "My goal here is not to think outside the box, but to change the box we think in." When a handful of people thrive while whole industries implode and millions suffer, it is clear that something is wrong with our economy. Brown proposes a new framework for the global economy that reframes its purpose as the making of provisions instead of the accumulation of property. This bold new vision establishes the civic sphere as the platform for organizing an inclusive economy and a way to move toward a more just and sustainable world. (Reference: Catalyst: Strategic Design Review)

Drive: The Suprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink - Most of us believe that the best way to motivate ourselves and others is with external rewards like money--the carrot-and-stick approach. That's a mistake, Daniel H. Pink says in this provocative and persuasive new book. The secret to high performance and satisfaction--at work, at school, and at home--is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.

You Tube - How To Motivate at Work

Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation by Steve Berlin Johnson - Pairs the insight of his bestselling Everything Bad Is Good for You and the dazzling erudition ofThe Ghost Map and The Invention of Air to address an urgent and universal question: What sparks the flash of brilliance? How does groundbreaking innovation happen? Answering in his infectious, culturally omnivorous style, using his fluency in fields from neurobiology to popular culture, Johnson provides the complete, exciting, and encouraging story of how we generate the ideas that push our careers, our lives, our society, and our culture forward.

The Age of Wonder: How the Romantic Generation Discovered the Beauty and Terror of Science

Thinking Fast & Slow Book Review one of the best books of 2011 A Globe and Mail Best Books of 2011 Title The Economist's one of the best nonfiction books of 2011 Winner of the 2011 Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Current Interest. Daniel Kahneman, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his seminal work in psychology that challenged the rational model of judgment and decision making, has profound and widely regarded impact on many fields--including economics, medicine, and politics--but until now, has never brought together his many years of research and thinking in one book.

2011

When the Boomers Bail: A Community Economic Survival Guide by Mark Lautman - As the industrialized world recovers from the great recession, we face an even graver economic threat. A structural shortage of qualified workers is creating a zero-sum labor market that is forcing communities to steal talent from each other in order to survive and grow. The cause of this impending economic disaster: a baby boom generation who didn't have enough kids to replace themselves, and an education system that has failed to properly prepare students for the new demands of today's market. Add to that 78 million soon-to-be-retired Baby Boomers who will go from high-earning producers to resource-sapping dependents, and the situation worsens.

Plastiki: Across the Pacific on Plastic: An Adventure to Save Our Oceans by David de Rothschild - The Plastiki Expedition - Explorer, global green leader, and eco-TV host David de Rothschild recounts the extraordinary journey of the Plastiki, an innovative and mostly untested sixty-foot catamaran that floats on 12,500 reclaimed plastic bottles. It was a voyage that took de Rothschild and a five-person crew 10,000 miles from the U.S. to Australia, sailing through rarely traveled, dangerous waters, risking their lives to call attention to our fragile oceans. Their exploration included urgent study of ocean pollution, island nations threatened by rising seas, damaged coral reefs, and the acidifying ocean itselfand their discoveries are a call to action. Packed with exciting narrative, images, maps, journal entries, plans, and sketches, this is the only firsthand account of what may be the most important adventure of our time.

Concept of the Corporation by Peter F. Drucker -  Drucker looks at the General Motors managerial organiation from within during the closing years of World War II. He tries to understand what makes the company work so effectively, what are its core principles, and how they contribute to its successes. The themes his volume addresses go far beyond the business corporation, into a consideration of the dynamics of the so-called corporate state itself.

Massive Change, co-authored by Bruce Mau with Jennifer Leonard and the Institute without Boundaries, and published internationally by Phaidon Press, New York and London, Massive Change is an exploration of our new design potential - a celebration of our global capacities and a cautious look at our limitations.

Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things - William McDonough, recognized by Time Magazine, 1999, as "Hero for the Planet," and Michael Braungart, German Chemist, argue that the conflict between industry and the environment is not an indictment of commerce but an outgrowth of purely opportunistic design. The design of products and manufacturing systems growing out of the Industrial Revolution reflected the spirit of the day-and yielded a host of unintended yet tragic consequences.

Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches Fail by Paul Polak - Based on his 25 years of experience, Polak explodes what he calls the "Three Great Poverty Eradication Myths": that we can donate people out of poverty, that national economic growth will end poverty, and that Big Business, operating as it does now, will end poverty. Polak shows that programs based on these ideas have utterly failed--in fact, in sub-Saharan Africa poverty rates have actually gone up. These failed top-down efforts contrast sharply with the grassroots approach Polak and IDE have championed: helping the dollar-a-day poor earn more money through their own efforts. Amazingly enough, unexploited market opportunities do exist for the desperately poor. Polak describes how he and others have identified these opportunities and have developed innovative, low-cost tools that have helped in lifting 17 million people out of poverty.

Mid-Course Correction: Toward a Sustainable Enterprise: The Interface Model by Ray Anderson - the personal story of Ray Anderson's realization that businesses need to embrace principles of sustainability, and of his efforts, often frustrating, to apply these principles within a billion dollar corporation that is still measured by the standard scorecards of the business world. While the path has proved to have many curves, Interface is demonstrating that the principles of sustainability and financial success can co-exist within a business, and can lead to a new prosperity that includes human dividends as well. 

DIY U: Edupunks, Edupreneurs, and the Coming Transformation of Higher Education by Anya Kamenetz - The roots of the words "university" and "college" both mean community. In the age of constant connectedness and social media, it's time for the monolithic, millennium-old, ivy-covered walls to undergo a phase change into something much lighter, more permeable, and fluid. The future lies in personal learning networks and paths, learning that blends experiential and digital approaches, and free and open-source educational models. Increasingly, you will decide what, when, where, and with whom you want to learn, and you will learn by doing. The university is the cathedral of modernity and rationality, and with our whole civilization in crisis, we are poised on the brink of Reformation.

"Lifestyle and Mental Health" by Roger Walsh, American Psychological Assocation - Read Abstract from APA PsycNET, American Psychologist, Vol 66(7), October 2011, 579-592.

Top 6 Sites that Inspire and Educate - from: My Life Scoop, May 16, 2011. By Alice Yoo (from The Modern Met). TED: technology, entertainment and design. Started in 1984, TED brings together the most brilliant minds to teach us about issues that matter; Brain Pickings: with over 63K Twitter followers, the site wants to make ideas not only accessible but relevant and challenge you to see patterns, to discover how pieces of life's puzzle surprisingly fit together at times; PFSK: a must-read for anyone who wants to be on the cusp of new trends and emerging ideas. With an editorial staff that spans the globe, PSFK brings you interesting stories from broad viewpoints. Visit PSFK daily to see what creative professionals are currently talking about; Kottke: started 1998, Kottke is a site that not only brings together interesting ideas in science, technology and art, among other subjects, it also summarizes that information in a personal way that makes it applicable to the reader. Smart and insightful; Information Is Beautiful: a blog that takes information--facts, data, ideas--and turns it into well-designed charts, graphs and data visualizations. Relevant to not just designers but anyone who appreciates statistics and facts, this site will not only keep you entertained, it will educate you on the world we live in; The 99 Percent: recently won the 15 Annual Webby Awards for best Cultural blog. Behance's think tank, The 99 Percent focuses on what happens after inspiration. The website is filled with inspiring interviews, action-oriented tips, and tried and true best practices. They also have an annual conference that's designed to help you turn your ideas into a reality.

ERE article features Sodexo Employment Referral Program Dr John Sullivan, a professor at San Francisco State University and a Global Recruitment industry leader, elected to include and feature Sodexo's ERP "Star Finder" an ERE article, “The Complete List of Employment Referral Program Best Practices (Part 1 of 2)”, August 15, 2011. ERE is one of the top associations and venues in the recruitment industry. Sodexo is an AMI corporate member and responsible for their Employee Referral Program (ERP) Sodexo USA.

The Innovation Issue: Think Quarterly by Google sent by AMI member, Matt Feaver, Campbell Company of Canada. This issue, Q3, 2011, is dedicated to Innovation. Thank you, Matt!

Reality Is Broken: Why Games Make Us Better And How They Can Change the World by Jane McGonigal, Director of Game Research and Design. Drawing on her experience designing games, as well as her research at IFTF, Jane uncovers how game designers have hit on core truths about what makes people happy, and how to apply these truths to the real world to make it more immersive and engaging.

New York Times bestseller, It’s Not Just Who You Know by Tommy Spaulding shows how each one of us can use the power of “netgiving” — of helping others — to expand our worlds and achieve our goals, and make a difference in our jobs, our careers, and our communities.

Fierce Conversations: Achieving Success at Work & in Life, One Conversation at a Time by Susan Scott introduces the insight that "Our careers, companies and relationships succeed or fail, gradually then suddenly—one conversation at a time." This is revolutionizing how organizations get things done. The goal of Susan’s book is to ensure the success of any team or division within an organization working towards a common objective.

Chasing the Rabbit by Steven Spear focuses on a group of organizations that face a particularly challenging predicament. They are in industries that are brutally competitive--everyone chasing the same customers, with similar products, sourcing from the same suppliers, and subject to the same regulation--but, somehow they escape what should be a tooth and nail, dog eat dog experience and race ahead as without rivals. The examples abound--Toyota in autos, Southwest in commercial aviation, and a host of less well known but equally remarkable instances.

The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande. "Gawande is a gorgeous writer and storyteller, and the aims of this book are ambitious. Gawande thinks that the modern world requires us to revisit what we mean by expertise: that experts need help, and that progress depends on experts having the humility to concede that they need help." --Malcolm Gladwell

Connected: The Surprising Power of Our Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives by Nicholas Christakis. Dr. Christakis' lab is currently focused on the relationship between social networks and health. People are inter-connected, and so their health is inter-connected. He is Professor of Medical Sociology in the Department of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School; Professor of Medicine in the Department of Medicine at Harvard Medical School; and Professor of Sociology in the Department of Sociology in the Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences. He is the Master of Pforzheimer House in Harvard College.

In a new book published by Productivity Press, noted author and journalist Charles Kenney presents Transforming Health Care: Virginia Mason Medical Center’s Pursuit of the Perfect Patient Experience. Kenney’s new book recounts the compelling story of how leaders at the 336-bed Seattle academic medical center took a hospital organization with pressing financial and operational challenges, and followed a unique path, embracing principles absorbed from the Toyota Corporation and translated them into healthcare-specific concepts and results.

Our health care system is in critical condition. Each year, fewer Americans can afford it, fewer businesses can provide it, and fewer government programs can promise it for future generations. We need a cure, and we need it now. Harvard Business School’s Clayton M. Christensen—whose bestselling The Innovator’s Dilemma revolutionized the business world—presents The Innovator’s Prescription, a comprehensive analysis of the strategies that will improve health care and make it affordable. Christensen applies the principles of disruptive innovation to the broken health care system with two pioneers in the field—Dr. Jerome Grossman and Dr. Jason Hwang. Together, they examine a range of symptoms and offer proven solutions. This is real innovation at work: an eye-opening manifesto that’s sure to spark international debate—and much-needed change for a healthier future.

Systems Thinking: Managing Chaos and Complexity: A Platform for Designing Business Architecture by Jamshid Gharajedaghi. Managing Partner & CEO of INTERACT, Mr. Gharajedaghi is one of the original contributors to the development of the third generation of systems thinking, where iterative, interactive design forms the core of Systems Methodology. He was formerly Adjunct Professor of Systems Sciences and the Director of the Busch Center at The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania (1979-1986). He began his career with IBM's World Trade Corporation where he served as a Senior Systems Engineer (1963-1969). He left IBM to become CEO of the Industrial Management Institute (1969-1979).

The Power of Pull: How Small Moves, Smartly Made, Can Set Big Things in Motion by John Hagel III, John Seely Brown, and Lang Davison. Pull is in the air. Everyone knows and loves Google. We pull movies and news items on demand. But this is just the surface of a more profound movement that is reshaping the world around us. The growing stress we all feel in our professional lives is not just a reflection of the current economic downturn. It reflects the mounting pressure we feel when we start to realize that our traditional ways of living and working are increasingly broken.

2010

From the forthcoming book, The Nature and Dynamics of Leadership for Transformation, edited by Carol Pearson and to be published by Jossey-Bass, 2011, a chapter written by John J. Cimino, Jr. and Robert B. Denhardt, "Music, Leadership and the Inner Work of Art," references AMI Founder and Chairman of the Board, Stan Gryskiewicz, and the impact of music with Positive Turbulence. 
Check out Fast Company's Co.Design, where business and design collide. Every day this website showcases the people, products and projects that are roiling the design world. AMI heard Peter Coughlan, Partner and Transformation Practice Leader at IDEO, present at the AMI Spring 2008 meeting in San Diego. 
Read IDEO's Axioms for Starting Disruptive New Businesses article (Co.Design August 24, 2010) - the first piece in Co.Design's PATTERNS series by IDEO.

Bank of America and Visa to Test Smartphone-as-Credit-Card System - As AMI member, Jerry Paulison from Sodexo said, "No surprise to us as we had an early glimpse into what Bank of America would be doing months ago via AMI." Bank of America is partnering with Visa for the pilot program, which will run from September until the beginning of January in New York. (Fast Company article August 20, 2010) Reference the "Meetings" link for upcoming biannual AMI meeting dates.

The Creativity Crisis - For the first time, research shows that American creativity is declining. What went wrong--and how can we fix it? (Newsweek, July 20, 2010).

The Most Important Leadership Quality for CEOs - Read, "For CEOs, creativity is now the most important leadership quality for success in business, outweighing even integrity and global thinking, according to a new study in IBM. (Fast Company article May 18, 2010)

Most Creative People in Business 2010 - "This year's 100 Most Creative People offers our own, idiosyncratic perspective on business. The selections reflect he breadth of news ideas and new pursuits at play in our business landscape. From interface designer Yugo Nakamura to HBO Documentary Films president Sheila Nevins to futurist Ray Kurzweil, we can attest that creativity is alive and well in 2010." (Fast Company article May 2010)

MITs Mind-Bending Media Lab Article May 6 2010 - Read about the "range of new research products" MIT's Media Lab expansion hosts. AMI Fall 2010 meeting takes place in Cambridge, MA, and includes an afternoon of "Innovation Journey" at this site.

Socialbranding.org is an online community for professionals in the social change field including public health, students, activists, and education. The site provides a forum to discuss new and promising practices in different social change fields, while focusing on behavior change through culture.
New York Times Book Review Article: "Renewing An Old Idea: Common Good" by Dwight Garner, March 16, 2010 - Ill Fares the Land by Tony Judt Link to Article

The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century by George Friedman

Clever: Leading Your Smartest, Most Creative People by Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones

2009

Glow Cap-"Peer Pressure and Other Pitches." Wall Street Journal link to article
"Is Your Innovation Really Unnovation?" Harvard Business Publishing link to article
"The World in 2025" by European Commission Research Area by Geoff Powter link to article
The 9/11 Report: A Graphic Adaptation by Harm De Blij
What Is Your Dangerous Idea?: Today's Leading Thinkers on the Unthinkable by Karl E. Weick and Kathleen M. Sutcliffe
Reading List from AMI Member, Mark Johnson, Executive Director at The Fellowship of Reconciliation: Field Notes on Democracy: Listening to Grasshoppers by Barbara Ehrenreich
In Praise of Doubt: How to Have Convictions Without Becoming a Fanatic
The Seven Storey Mountain by Sari Nusseibeh and Anthony David
Building a Culture of Peace: Baptist Peace Fellowship of North America, the First Seventy Years by Richard Powers
Recent books with strong impact by Chris Hedges
Saving Paradise: How Christianity Traded Love of This World for Crucifixion and Empire

2008 and prior  

Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool's Guide to Surviving with Grace by Gordon MacKenzie
Grabbing Lightning: Building a Capability for Breakthrough Innovation by G. Colarelli O'Connor
The Soul of Money: Transforming Your Relationship with Money and Life by Lynne Twist
Leading from Within: Poetry That Sustains the Courage to Lead by Sam M. Intrator
Acts of Faith by Ebo Patel
Born Digital by John Palfrey and Urs Gasser
The Power of Unreasonable People by John Elkington and Pamela Hartigan
Interactive Faith: The Essential Interreligious Community-Building Handbook by Bud Heckman, Rori Picker Neiss, and Dirk Ficca
Inspirational Leadership: Henry V and the Muse of Fire - Timeless Insights from Shakespeare's Greatest Leader by Richard Olivier
The China Study: The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-Term Health by T. Colin Campbell (Author), Thomas M. Campbell
Last Child in the Woods by Richard Louv
Revolutionary Wealth by Alvin Toffler &amp Heidi Toffler
The Sling and the Stone: On War in the 21st Century by Thomas X. Hammes
Delivering Profitable Value: A Revolutionary Framework to Accelerate Growth, Generate Wealth, and Rediscover the Heart of Business by Michael J. Lanning
Snow Crash (SFBC 50th Anniversary Collection) by Neal Stephenson (novel about VR)
Crossing the Chasm by Geoffrey A. Moore
Living the Creative Life: Ideas and Inspiration from Working Artists by Rice Freeman-Zachery
The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More by Chris Anderson
Dealing with Darwin by Geoffrey A Moore
The Endurance: Shackleton's Legendary Antarctic Expedition by Caroline Alexander (many other authors to review).