June 27th 2016

Contrepreneurs. Diane Francis.

Float from Mardi Gras 2009 in New Orleans, lam...

Contrepreneurs. Diane Francis. 1988. ISBN 0771599153.  Yes this is an older book, but the names of some of these blatant crooks seem to still pop up from time to time. This is the book that launched Diane Francis career of exposing the dirty underbelly of stock markets, banking, corruption and money laundering that still finds a home on Canada with these white collar criminals , who still remain at large and untouched. .  She has since become the author who details where the money and power is located in just a few powerful hands.  I recommend this book on the  Canadian stock markets as these tricks still continue. albeit with different players.

June 20th 2016

Innovation Thinking Methods. Disciplines of Thought That Can Help You Rethink Industries and Unlock 10X Better Solutions. Osama A Hashmi.

Top of the Space needle in Seattle, WA Françai...

Innovation Thinking Methods. Disciplines of Thought That Can Help You Rethink Industries and Unlock 10X Better Solutions. Osama A Hashmi. 2016.  The author is quite experienced in this area ( Successful entrepreneur in Seattle WA).  He  has really thought this out and  does a good job of covering various ways to “think” innovatively.  I read this in just a few readings because it flows well.  His style allows you to experience and  then add  each method to your own library of tactics.  This should be required reading for product managers, entrepreneurs, and innovators in all areas. Would be a great book at the college level as well as in teacher education.

June 13th 2016

Clean Gut. The breakthrough plan for eliminating the root cause of disease and revolutionizing your health. Alejandro Junger . M.D.

Cover of "Clean: The Revolutionary Progra...

Clean Gut. The breakthrough plan for eliminating the root cause of disease and revolutionizing your health.  Alejandro Junger . M.D. 3013 ISBN 9780062075864.  The author won plaudits for his first book Clean and this is next one.  I have been reading quite a bit on this subject,  partially in looking at dietary methods to help reduce the insulin resistance symptoms of my pre-diabetes.  This book is very well aligned with Microbiome.  Popular writing these days is looking more at our gut and keeping it healthy.  Easy to read and very telling with its examples and depth of knowledge shown by these researchers/doctors. If you are interested in alternative to popping p ills etc, I suggest this is a good book to start with .

 

June 6th 2016

From Impossible to Inevitable. How Hypergrowth Companies Create Predictable Revenue. Aaron Ross and Jason Lumkin

From Impossible to Inevitable.  How Hypergrowth Companies Create Predictable Revenue. Aaron Ross and Jason Lumkin. 2016. ISBN  9781119166733.  Aaron is the author of Predictable Revenue, one of my favorite lead gen books. Together with his co author they have created the go to book for building your company. Its framed around a SaaS firm, but the approach has very broad application.  Aaron sent me a review copy and I liked it so much  that within five chapters I bought two copies for my salesmen sons.  I could not help but see myself in many of the pages with my career experiences. None of the material is wasted and it all builds from sales and lead gen so that every department has a share in growing the company.  His rules of thumb are quite accurate and well worth keeping in mind.  This is a book that comes form people that have done this and they pull no punches in telling it as it is.   This is a must buy book if you are serious about building your company ( and yourself)

May 30th 2016

Quantum Leaps. 100 Scientists who changed the World. Jon Balchin

Tim Berners-Lee

Quantum Leaps. 100 Scientists who changed the World. Jon Balchin.  2014 ISBN  9781782126935. A delightful English book that does a great job of linking innovative thinking from Pythagorus to Tim Berners-Lee through the centuries. The author does a good job in that he takes what could be confusing information and distills it into easily managed amounts of concise readable  information.  I enjoyed the chance to review my understanding of theoretical physics, plus I picked up more information on the life-science front.   Recommend this book to anyone who wants to add to his/her educated person background.   Quite fascinating read that holds your attention and for me added to the desire to learn more about some of these interesting characters.

May 24th 2016

Launch Tomorrow. From Product Idea to Launch in A Day. Luke Szyrmer

Figure 3: New Product Launch process-data model

Launch Tomorrow. From Product Idea to Launch in A Day. Luke Szyrmer. This concise and clearly written book is firmly in the Agile marketing camp.  If you  are looking for a book to get you started on effective landing pages this is a good one.  Yet it goes one better. The basic premise is that you want to create effective landing pages to test out product ideas where you do not have a product yet.   Brilliant. Test the prospects reaction before you blow the dollars on a product that is likely to fail.  Now this may not happen in every market , but the idea has great merit.  For years our firm has advocated testing the market to help you build what prospects need/want/will buy rather than having the product come first.   Very good book and I recommend if you are in product management/development/marketing you get it!

May 23rd 2016

The Reluctant Jesus. Duncan Whitehead.

Stained glass at St John the Baptist's Anglica...

The Reluctant Jesus. Duncan Whitehead. 2014.   What if The Messiah was actually here?  But God had not told him for 30 years who he was, what he was going to do and what was involved?  That is the core of this tongue in cheek, amusing story.   Clearly written and fun  to read, this is a good “summer’ escape book.   It should be taken as a bit of fun and not more.

May 16th 2016

It Doesn’t Take a Hero. The autobiography of General H. Norman Schwarzkopf. cw Peter Petre.

General Norman Schwarzkopf.

It Doesn’t Take a Hero. The autobiography of General H. Norman Schwarzkopf.  cw Peter Petre. 1992. ISBN 9780307764997.  Partially a book on Middle East  history ,  military strategy , geopolitics and a view into the mind of a singular leader.  It is compelling stuff to see how events in the authors life shaped him toward becoming the Commander in Chief of Desert Storm.  His personal details of home are often missing from sanitized autobiographies.  This book rings true. It is concise and too the point.  It also points to the ongoing ability of the US forces to get a job done when asked.  Good book for a cross country flight as it moves right along.

May 9th 2016

Finders & Keepers. How the world’s most powerful customer is changing everything. Rob Schlyecher.

Trader Joe's interior in Union Square in New Y...

Finders & Keepers. How the world’s most powerful customer is changing everything. Rob Schlyecher.2015. ISBN 9780994059307. The book is an application of work by Christopher Norton and the authors company Spring Advertising on the market vertical called the New Economic Order, or as the author calls it Finders. Finders are less than half the population, yet control 75% of the discretionary spending.  Keepers (bargain hunters, sit on their wallets and thus have a very small part of the spending).  If your product is too often all about the price ( Cars, real estate, commodities) then you are talking ot the Keepers. In other word, a race to the bottom.  Finders are foodies, love the artisan, look for out of the way shops,  love the authentic experience. Finders will often pay full retail as they respect the product value. Eg Lululemon, Subaru, iPhone, Trader Joe’s, Brew pubs, Vinyl records.  Keepers love WalMart. The premise is very easy to grasp, but the application can be difficult if your company is not Finder friendly or oriented.  Worthwhile book to read, and clearly written ( They must write good copy at Spring) . Every marketer should read this one., if only for the fascinating case studies.

May 2nd 2016

Thieves of State. Why corruption threatens global security. Sarah Chayes.

Seal of the C.I.A. - Central Intelligence Agen...

Thieves of State. Why corruption threatens global security. Sarah Chayes.2015. ISBN 9780393246537.  This is quite the book. It was suggested to me by David Mouton and I am glad he did.  The author details how various corrupt governments today ( Afghanistan, Egypt, Tunisia, Nigeria for eg)  have been seized by kleptocracies so that the national revenue flows into the hands of the ruling few. She also shows how the individual living in these places gets caught between the religious right and the corrupt administration to the point that uprising seems the only option. Especially galling is that the Western powers and NGOs seem to always align with the corrupt administration, so the West is seen as part of the problem.   She makes a very good case ( and worked in several of these countries on this) , the the West should be very concerned about dealing with corrupt administration/systems that are in all intents criminal in nature..  That is if thee West is interested in helping these populations have any alternatives to violence.  She has some pretty good dirt on the CIA and US State department as well.  Of course she also shows how the control of the US govt by Wall Street interest was not that short of being criminal.