4 ways to send & receive far fewer emails (review of Cal Newport’s A World Without Email)

A world without email seems like an impossible, beautiful dream. But a world with far fewer emails? That’s doable and Cal Newport knows the way. The Georgetown University computer science professor has spent five years studying how email affects us at work. To no one’s surprise, it’s not a pretty picture. Research shows email makesContinue reading “4 ways to send & receive far fewer emails (review of Cal Newport’s A World Without Email)”

Serve up community in your post-pandemic lunch room (review of The Lonely Century)

Putting communal tables in your lunchroom may be your best post-pandemic recruitment and retention strategy. To fill those tables, encourage everyone to break for lunch. Discourage us introverts from always eating “al desko.”  Introduce dig-in potlucks and occasionally splurge on ordering in a meal. Keep smartphones out of the lunchroom so we look up, lookContinue reading “Serve up community in your post-pandemic lunch room (review of The Lonely Century)”

How to avoid a climate disaster (review)

My mom put gas in her car for the first time since November and she doesn’t drive a hybrid. The pandemic’s parked cars and planes the world over. Many of us have spent the past year working from home and we’ve gone nowhere beyond the grocery store. Yet it’s estimated that greenhouse gas emissions haveContinue reading “How to avoid a climate disaster (review)”

Stop sharing and cut to the chase (review of Joel Schwartzberg’s Get to the Point!)

Sharing is caring unless you’re sharing a few thoughts. And then it’s exhausting for us and a wasted opportunity for you. Buried in your thoughts may well be an idea that’ll make our world a better place.  But we’re not waiting around to hear about your big idea if you can’t cut to the chase.Continue reading “Stop sharing and cut to the chase (review of Joel Schwartzberg’s Get to the Point!)”

What’s luck got to do with it? Pretty much everything (review of Michael Sandel’s The Tyranny of Merit)

Three things have yet to happen as I hit the 28-year mark in my career. I’ve never been laid off, fired or had a daily commute beyond 20 minutes. What’s been the secret to my success? Dumb luck and good fortune. I’ve been blessed with patient bosses who’ve believed in second and third chances. I’veContinue reading “What’s luck got to do with it? Pretty much everything (review of Michael Sandel’s The Tyranny of Merit)”

Ditch the presentation & have a conversation (review of Eric Bergman’s One Bucket at a Time)

There’s only one good reason to bring us together for a meeting on Zoom or in a room. Walking us through PowerPoint decks isn’t it. “The only reason for bringing people together, whether in person or remotely, is to listen to someone share something of value,” says Eric Bergman, presentation skills coach and author ofContinue reading “Ditch the presentation & have a conversation (review of Eric Bergman’s One Bucket at a Time)”

Your male colleague says something sexist? It’s your two-second litmus test moment (review of Good Guys)

I failed the test but I’ll be ready for the next one. I was in a meeting with a manager who kept mentioning “his girls”. He wasn’t talking about his preteen daughters. He was referring to his colleagues around the boardroom table.   I shot the women a sympathetic look but didn’t call out the manager.Continue reading “Your male colleague says something sexist? It’s your two-second litmus test moment (review of Good Guys)”

The epic rise & spectacular fall of WeWork & Adam Neumann (review)

Today’s overworked, underpaid and unappreciated employee is tomorrow’s confidential source for a reporter. And disgruntled workers will happily talk as it all goes wrong for leaders lacking in hubris. In writing about the rise and fall of shared office renter WeWork, journalist Reeves Wiedeman did more than 200 interviews over 18 months with employees atContinue reading “The epic rise & spectacular fall of WeWork & Adam Neumann (review)”

Don’t answer the wrong question when you’re procrastinating (review of Who Not How)

I’ve been procrastinating since the start of the pandemic. It turns out that’s been a smart move. On the desk in my home office basement bunker is a notebook. Inside that notebook is nearly 30 years’ worth of hits, misses and lessons learned on leadership communications. I’ve cribbed notes from the hundreds of leadership booksContinue reading “Don’t answer the wrong question when you’re procrastinating (review of Who Not How)”

Quit your day job smartly & safely (review of How I Built This by Guy Raz)

Dreaming of being your own boss? Don’t quit your day job. At least not yet. Keep putting in your 40-hour work week and spend your free time being entrepreneurial. That steady paycheque will buy you a longer runway for getting your business off the ground. “Most of the successful entrepreneurs I’ve met left the comfortContinue reading “Quit your day job smartly & safely (review of How I Built This by Guy Raz)”