Here are three quirky books PMOs and Project Managers may want to read for Christmas (and maybe offer to their colleagues). I read them several times during 2018 and learned very useful knowledge.

Skin In The Game, by Nassim N. Taleb, has been one of my preferred book this year. After The Black Swan and Antifragile (among my 2017 top-12), I enjoyed discovering Skin in the Game and its examples ranging from Hammurabi to Seneca, Antaeus the Giant to Donald Trump. “Nassim Nicholas Taleb shows how the willingness to accept one’s own risks is an essential attribute of heroes, saints, and flourishing people in all walks of life”.

I discovered Barabasi’s Network Science years ago. The Formula helped me understand why “too often, accomplishment does not equal success. We did the work but didn’t get the promotion; we played hard but weren’t recognized; we had the idea but didn’t get the credit”. Recognizing this striking disconnect, Barabasi, along with a team of some of the most advanced data-crunching systems on the planet, dedicated themselves to uncovering that ever-elusive link between performance and success.

Gut Feelings, The Intelligence Of The Unconscious, is a wonderful eye-opener for whoever still relies mainly on reason for decision-making. Reflection and reason are overrated, according to renowned psychologist Gerd Gigerenzer. Much better qualified to help us make decisions is the cognitive, emotional, and social repertoire we call intuition. This book comforted me in my conviction that intuition and simple rules of thumb often work better than more complex systems.

Remember George R.R. Martin’s quote from The Game of Thrones:

A mind needs books like a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge. That is why I read so much.

So, I enjoyed several other books this year that you may like as well. Among these books are: Hooked, How To Build Habit-Forming Products, by Nir Eyal, The Dao Of Capital, Austrian Investing in a Distorted World, by M. Spitznagel, The Standard For Portfolio Management, by the Project Management Institute, Qu’est-ce qu’un chef? by General Pierre de Villiers, The Complete Essays, by Michel de Montaigne, On The Happy Life, by Seneca, and… The High-Impact PMO, the book I published initially in Oct. 2017, that is now in its 3d edition, and that generated so many wonderful conversations with its readers.

Enjoy!

Philippe

The image on top of this post is from Pixabay. The quote is from Roald Dahl. Roald Dahl (1916 – 1990) was a British novelist, short story writer, poet, and screenwriter. His books have sold more than 250 million copies worldwide. His books champion the kindhearted and feature an underlying warm sentiment. Dahl’s works for children include James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Matilda among many others.