I have been so busy with my trip to Kenya and my schoolwork that I have not had a chance to report on any of my recent readings. Already this year I have read two outstanding books (and have read or listened to a total of 8 books since January 1).
The first book I would highly recommend is Seth Godin's latest, Tribes: We Need You To Lead Us. It was Seth's influence eight years ago that led me to start The Monday Memo and then to launch a blog in 2005. Seth has brilliant things to say of how to design a website and other Internet programs to build and maximize relationships with friends and customers. In Tribes, Godin "argues that lasting and substantive change
can be best effected by a tribe: a group of people connected to each
other, to a leader and to an idea. Smart innovators find or assemble a
movement of similarly-minded individuals and get the tribe excited by a
new product, service or message, often via the Internet (consider, for
example, the popularity of the Obama campaign, Facebook or Twitter)" (Publishers Weekly).
Then I followed up Godin's book with Malcolm Gladwell's latest, Outliers: The Story of Success. In this book, Gladwell seeks to de-mystify why some people succeed. For him, it is simply because they had access to unlimited gobs of preparation time, augmented by being in the right place at the right time. For example, Gladwell points out that Bill Gates, Microsoft founder, was probably the only person in the United States as a thirteen-year-old who had unlimited access to a computer. When Gates quit Harvard at 19 to start Microsoft, he didn't just have a good idea, he had a massive amount of programming experience that allowed him to develop his business idea.
I listened to both of these books, but then went out and bought Gladwell's book so I can access some of Gladwell's quotes and research. If you are looking for something good to read, either one of these books would be worth your while.