What We’re Reading: September 2020

What We’re Reading: September 2020

Sep 18, 2020

by: Darrie Burrage

During this time of uncertainty, we are finding resources that inspire and enlighten us. The themes include the value of vulnerability, perspectives on systems and norms in America, the importance of talking and listening to one another, and especially listening to others who have different backgrounds, ideas and experiences from our own. Here is our collection:


Getting Naked: A Business Fable About Shedding The Three Fears That Sabotage Client Loyalty

Patrick Lencioni

“Naked consulting” is a concept that explores the value of being vulnerable with clients, being completely open and honest with no sense of pretense or cover and how being completely transparent and vulnerable with clients builds unprecedented levels of trust and loyalty in these business partnerships.


Ted Talk: Dare to Disagree

Margaret Heffernan

In this talk, Heffernan expounds on her belief that good disagreement is key to progress and illustrates how the benefit of allowing people to deeply disagree propels relationships, scientific endeavor and businesses.


Dare to Lead

Brene Brown

In this book, Brown helps us to step up to brave leadership. According to Brown, when we dare to lead, we don’t pretend to have the right answers; we stay curious and ask the right questions. We don’t see power as finite and hoard it; we know that power becomes infinite when we share it with others. We don’t avoid difficult conversations and situations; we lean into vulnerability when it’s necessary to do good work. 


Turning to One Another

Margaret Wheatley

Wheatley believes we can change the world if we start talking to one another again. She proposes that people band together with their colleagues and friends to create the solutions for real social change, both locally and globally.


A Leader’s Legacy

James Kouzes and Barry Posner

Kouzes and Posner examine the critical questions all leaders must ask themselves in order to leave a lasting impact. Through powerful essays on Significance, Relationships, Aspirations, and Courage, the authors consider thorny and often ambiguous issues, including why leaders need loving critics, why leaders can’t take trust for granted, why failure is always an option, and ultimately, how the legacy you leave is the life you lead. 


Conversation Factory

Daniel Stillman

On his site, The Conversation Factory, Stillman explores the application of design thinking to conversations. His book, Good Talk provides a step-by-step framework on how to effect change in your personal and professional conversations, while his site offers workshops and resources on facilitation, listening, and leading conversations that matter. 


Ted Talk: The danger of a single story

Chimamanda Adichie

Novelist Chimamanda Adichie tells the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice — and warns that if we hear only a single story about another person or country, we risk a critical misunderstanding.


Caste: Origins of our Discontent

Isabel Wilkerson

Wilkerson gives us a masterful portrait of an unseen phenomenon in America as she explores, through deeply researched narrative, stories about how America today and throughout its history, has been shaped by a hidden caste system, a rigid hierarchy of human rankings where some have power, and others do not. She dives into the notion that this system goes beyond race, class, and other factors to influence people’s lives, behavior and the nation’s fate. 


The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters

Priya Parker

In The Art of Gathering, Parker argues that our gatherings rely too much on routine and conventions. Parker sets forth a human-centered approach to gathering that will help everyone create meaningful, memorable experiences, large and small, for work and for play. Drawing on her expertise as a facilitator of high-powered gatherings around the world, Parker takes us inside events of all kinds to show what works, what doesn’t, and why.


On Immunity

Eula Biss

Biss addresses our fear of the government, the medical establishment, and what may be in our children’s air, food, mattresses, medicines, and vaccines. Reflecting on her own experience as a new mother, she suggests that we cannot immunize our children, or ourselves, against the world. Through her narrative, she investigates our need to inoculate ourselves against ignorance and fear mongering


How to be an Antiracist

Ibram Kendi

In How to Be an Antiracist, Kendi takes readers through a widening circle of antiracist ideas, from the most basic concepts to visionary possibilities that helps us see all forms of racism clearly, understand their poisonous consequences, and work to oppose them in our systems and in ourselves. 


Check out all the books we’re reading here!