Book Brief: Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton, and Sheila Heen

conversations black and white

Difficult Conversations: How to Discuss What Matters Most by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton, and Sheila Heen 2000, Penguin Books The Idea The hardest conversations are typically the most important ones (and the easiest to screw up). Thankfully, three smart souls from the Harvard Negotiation project have hooked us up with this gem, a book that helps us navigate the challenging meta-conversations that underlie any hairy discussion and become better communicators. […]

Find a Hole and Fill It: What Marxist Literary Criticism Taught Me About Community Building

wizard of oz

As an English major, you take a lot of classes about the text of famous literature. And often, the very first class you take is Literary Criticism. It’s a class makes you look at the books you’ve read in different ways. You may, for example, find that The Little Mermaid is more about patriarchy than singing crabs, Frankenstein is Freudian, and The Wizard Of Oz is actually far more political than […]

Book Brief: Rework by Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson


The Idea Modern business is overcomplicated: here’s how to keep it simple for maximum efficiency and effectiveness. Recommended For Entrepreneurs, managers, project & team leaders, anyone dreaming up a startup concept The Pros More like a blog than a conventional book, short chapters are to the point and distill big ideas into actionable advice. The Cons The non-tech crowd might overlook this book, but those working in traditional businesses can definitely […]

We Are in a Wonder Woman Moment

wonder woman

My 2-year old daughter plays on the beach in a tiny red, white and blue swimsuit, her chest emblazoned with a winged yellow “W” that needs no explanation. Unlike Dora the Explorer and Ariel the Mermaid, cutesy characters popular with the toddler set, Wonder Woman is a full-grown Amazon, created in 1941 by William Moulton Marston to serve as “psychological propaganda for the new type of woman who should rule […]

Book Brief: The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results By Gary Keller with Jay Papasan

The One Thing

The Idea Multi-tasking doesn’t make you more productive. To become more effective, you need to narrow your focus and do less. This book urges you to pause before you start a new project and ask yourself—“What’s the ONE Thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?”   Recommended For Multi-taskers who, despite their round-the-clock work schedules, can’t seem to achieve their goals. […]