Scrummer Reading List 2016
We asked some of our team members to share their top picks for summer* reading. The list is full of inspirational gems. If you read one, let us know what you think.
We'd also like to hear from you! In the comments section, please tell us what you've read recently that you would recommend.
*For our friends in the southern hemisphere, think of this as our way of trying to brighten up your winter months.
Sean Hafferty, Account Director & Trainer, recommends:
What were the talents that allowed certain inventors and entrepreneurs to turn their visionary ideas into disruptive realities? What led to their creative leaps? Why did some succeed and others fail? The Innovators is a masterly saga of collaborative genius destined to be the standard history of the digital revolution—and an indispensable guide to how innovation really happens. Isaacson begins the adventure with Ada Lovelace, Lord Byron’s daughter, who pioneered computer programming in the 1840s. He explores the fascinating personalities that created our current digital revolution.
"This Is Lean - Resolving the Efficiency Paradox" by Niklas Modig and Par Ahlstrom
This is Lean proves the phrase "creating more value by working less" to be a realistic and logical way to run your business. How? By introducing the efficiency paradox - a brand new way of looking at efficiency. The authors, Professor Åhlström and researcher Niklas Modig at Stockholm School of Economics, presents what is referred to as the most concise, wise, easy-to-grasp and fun-to-read book on Lean.
"The Spirit of Kaizen: Creating Lasting Excellence One Small Step at a Time" by Robert Maurer
Filled with practical tips and ready-to-use tools for managers, innovators, and entrepreneurs, The Spirit of Kaizen is the essential handbook for a changing world. You’ll learn how to think outside the suggestion box, remove mental blindfolds, manage stress with one-minute exercises, and handle rising health-care costs. You’ll discover the “small step” secrets for dealing with all kinds of people, from tough bosses and listless workers to stubborn clients and fussy customers.
Joe Justice, Vice President of Hardware, recommends:
"The Wise Leader" by Ikujiro Nonaka and Hirotaka Takeuchi
This article appears online and in the May 2011 issue of the Harvard Business Review.
Executive Summary from HBR: In an era of increasing discontinuity, wise leadership has nearly vanished. Many leaders find it difficult to reinvent their corporations rapidly enough to cope with new technologies, demographic shifts, and consumption trends. They can’t develop truly global organizations that operate effortlessly across borders. And they find it tough to ensure that their people adhere to values and ethics. The authors assert that leaders must acquire practical wisdom, or what Aristotle called phronesis: experiential knowledge that enables people to make ethically sound judgments.
"Wisdom, management and organization" by Ikujiro Nonaka, Robert Chia, Robin Holt, and Vesa Peltokorpi
This article appeared in a special edition of Management Learning, September 2014 vol. 45 no. 4 365-376.
Citizen Sigmund, Scrum Master, Trainer & Coach, recommends:
Marketing management is racing to keep pace with the technological advances that are disrupting how customers connect and interact with brands. Instead of planning and producing a few big campaigns, marketers today must design and operate an explosion of continuous marketing touchpoints that evolve as quickly as their organization can manage. Marketing's speed, adaptability, and ability to balance innovation and scalability in this highly fluid, digital environment have become key factors in a company's competitiveness.
Patrick Roach, Product Owner, Trainer & Coach recommends:
"Hidden Order: How Adaptations Builds Complexity" by John Holland
This work explains how scientists who study the field of complexity are convinced that certain constant processes are at work in all kinds of unrelated complex systems. The author also illustrates the relevance of scientific debate to the layman.
Joel Riddle, Transformational Advisor, Trainer & Coach recommends:
Creativity, Inc. is a book for managers who want to lead their employees to new heights, a manual for anyone who strives for originality, and the first-ever, all-access trip into the nerve center of Pixar Animation—into the meetings, postmortems, and “Braintrust” sessions where some of the most successful films in history are made. It is, at heart, a book about how to build a creative culture—but it is also, as Pixar co-founder and president Ed Catmull writes, “an expression of the ideas that I believe make the best in us possible.”
Rather than wasting time creating elaborate business plans, The Lean Startup offers entrepreneurs - in companies of all sizes - a way to test their vision continuously, to adapt and adjust before it’s too late. Ries provides a scientific approach to creating and managing successful startups in a age when companies need to innovate more than ever.
"Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX, and the Quest for a Fantastic Future" by Ashlee Vance
In this lively, investigative account, veteran technology journalist Ashlee Vance offers an unprecedented look into the remarkable life and times of Silicon Valley's most audacious businessman. Written with exclusive access to Musk, his family, and his friends, the book traces his journey from his difficult upbringing in South Africa to his ascent to the pinnacle of the global business world. Vance spent more than fifty hours in conversation with Musk and inter- viewed close to three hundred people to tell the tumultuous stories of Musk's world-changing companies and to paint a portrait of a complex man who has renewed American industry and sparked new levels of innovation--all while making plenty of enemies along the way.
Avi Schneier, Scrum Master, Trainer & Coach recommends:
"Lean from the Trenches: Managing Large-Scale Projects with Kanban" by Henrik Kniberg
You know the Agile and Lean development buzzwords, you've read the books. But when systems need a serious overhaul, you need to see how it works in real life, with real situations and people. Lean from the Trenches is all about actual practice. Every key point is illustrated with a photo or diagram, and anecdotes bring you inside the project as you discover why and how one organization modernized its workplace in record time.