Most Influential Books On My Thinking – John White

Welcome to Bonus Episode 08 of the Nerd Journey Podcast [@NerdJourney]! We’re John White (@vJourneyman) and Nick Korte (@NetworkNerd_), two Pre-Sales Technical Engineers who are hoping to bring you the IT career advice that we wish we’d been given earlier in our careers. In today’s episode we have the first of two bonus episodes about the books that shaped our thinking. This week, John talks about his book list.

Original Recording Date: 12-18-2019

Topics – Books that shaped our thinking

1:40 Future Plan – Page of Book Recommendations

  • We’re going to try to get a page of all the books which we or our guests have reccomended
  • The episode(s) they were mentioned on
  • Maybe the time codes?

3:24 Connections – James Burke

  • Thesis: Technological progress is about the combination of incremental advances from different industries. An unstated reaction against the Great Man theory of history
  • Human progress is incremental
  • What seems like giant leaps forward are often the collision and integration of many incremental advances
  • YouTube Video: Faith in Numbers – From the cam to the automated loom to the census to the computer
  • Nick points out that career progression can look like giant leaps forward which hide small incremental improvements over time
  • Connections on DVD

14:11 Outliers – Malcolm Gladwell

  • The Story of Success
  • The Matthew Effect (Matthew 25:29)
    • What looks like innate success can often times be attributed to early advantages which are maximized over time
  • The 10,000 Hour Rule
  • Ultimately, the myths we have about success should be questioned

25:19 The Talent Code – Daniel Coyle – Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How.

  • Based on same research that Gladwell used to discuss the 10,000 hour rule
  • Deep Practice
    • When you make a mistake during practice, identify it immediately
    • Fix it
  • Ignition
    • The fire that keeps us practicing
    • Birth order of fast runners hypothesis
    • Social effect – South Korean WPGA Tour
  • Master Coaching
    • 3rd party identification of mistakes
    • Keep the ignition fire burning
    • Communicate effectively using the communication style the student needs

31:24 Your Brain At Work – David Rock – Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long

  • Thinking takes blood sugar, so do tough knowledge work earlier
  • Prioritizing tasks is one of the most difficult things to do. Do it early.

33:56 Pragmatic Thinking and Learning – Andy Hunt – Refactor Your Wetware

  • The Story-Telling and Experiential modes of the brain are mutually exclusive
  • The brain keeps working on problems even in experiential mode
    • Insights in the shower
    • Insights while exercising

37:49 Thinking in Bets – Annie Duke – Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts

  • First mentioned on Episode 19 – Process over Outcomes and Dreaming in Bands
  • We make decisions we generally have imperfect information
  • Avoid black and white thinking and embrace the uncertainty
  • Get into the habit of assigning a percentage chance that you’re correct about assumptions (and perhaps why you’re think you’re right)
  • Record and re-visit this guesses to track how correct you are about any given assumption

44:16 The Tipping Point – Malcom Gladwell – How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

  • The reasons ideas spread
  • The Law of the Few
    • Connectors
      • Paul Revere vs William Dawe
    • Mavens
    • Salesmen
  • The Stickiness Factor
  • The Power of Context

48:36 John’s favorite and the most influential

Contact us if you need help on the journey.

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