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Showing posts with the label Books & Movies

HBR's 10 Must Reads

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HBR Case Studies are one I read a lot during my MBA time, but lately, I miss reading HBR content. This past weekend, I bought “HBR's 10 Must Reads Boxed Set with Bonus Emotional Intelligence (7 Books)”. It’s basically a collection of articles on: HBR's 10 Must Reads on Leadership: Ways you can transform yourself from a good manager into an extraordinary leaderHBR's 10 Must Reads on Managing Yourself: The path to your own professional success starts with a critical look in the mirror and what you see there--your greatest strengths and deepest values--are the foundations you must build onHBR's 10 Must Reads on Strategy: Will help galvanize your organization's strategy development and executionHBR's 10 Must Reads on Change: 70% of all change initiatives fail, but the odds turn in your company's favor once you understand that change is a multi-stage process--not an event--and that persuasion is key to establishing a sense of urgency, winning support, and silenc…

Crucial Conversations

A co-worker, Vincent who is the VP of Product Mgmt at Covisint, and I were talking about 'conversations' and 'relationships' in the workplace, and he gifted me this great book 'Crucial Conversations' by Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan, Kerry Patterson, Al Switzler.
It included a sweet message that I adore: "CEO in 10 years or less. Go Honey! - Vincent"
He gave it to in while we were in Detroit, so I read a few chapters on my plane ride back to San Francisco, and then for a week or so I read a chapter on my train commute every day. I really enjoyed reading this book because it talks about simple techniques to improve day-to-day and important conversations we have in professional and personal setting.
Here is a great summary of all the principles, skills, and crucial questions:

Principle Skill Crucial Questions Start with the Hearth Focus on what you really want. Refuse the sucker's choice. What am I acting like I really want? What I really want? For…

How to Be Charismatic and Famous Women Icons

On my commute, I just finished a quick read: How to Be CharismaticIt's a free book available on nook, and it's only like 43 pages and a super simple read. I highly recommend it.  The book basically provides examples through some iconic women figures on a specific quality they had that made them charismatic. Here is the cliff notes: Marilyn Monroe: Shy to Fly. Don't let the past hold you back.Cleopatra: Ugly Charisma. Confidence.  It's not about you, it's about them. Conversation Skills.Joan of Arc - Power of Belief. Strong Sense of Mission. Have Boundaries and Rules. Person of Action.Evita Peron - Trust yourself. Surround Yourself by the Right People.Margret Thatcher - The Iron Lady of Charisma. Public Speaking. Ability to Articulate Vision. Even Charismatic People Need Inspiration.Helen of Troy and Queen Isabella - Feminine Charm. Power of Sex. Behind Every Good Man is a Great Woman.Aung San Suu Kyi: Determination.

The Power of Habit

Original Post 2/2/2015
I started reading ‘The Power of Habit’ book a while back, and am still in the process of reading it, but wanted to start reflecting on it. This books does a very deep dive in habits with three dimensions: Individuals, Organizations, and Societies.
Habits are very powerful, and without knowing, we are using habits to run our daily lives. They truly shape our lives, but we have the ability to change them by understanding how they work. A habit loop is an automatic pattern that seems to be based on well-reasoned logic Cure: the preceding action Routine: the habit Reward: the payoff The way to change a habit is to use the same cue and reward, but change the routine. The key to habits is steady small changes on an ongoing basis, which result in large lifetime goals and wins. The book gives many example of how developing, altering, and managing habits has helped heal numerous serious mental illnesses and have been used by corporations to drive consumer behavior.
After I s…

The Men Who Built America

This weekend, I was sick with Vertigo, so I literally stayed in bed from Thursday night to Sunday morning. It was good to just rest and not do anything, but watch Netflix and sleep. I got the opportunity to watch four episodes of ‘The Men Who Built America', and it was very intriguing to watch and learn so much. It's amazing how influential people's visions can be, and even more impressive is their ability to execute on that vision. This documentary focused on key men who built empires and strongly influenced the American history and economy, which included: John D. Rockefeller (Kerosene),Cornelius Vanderbilt (Railroads),Andrew Carnegie (Steel),Henry Ford (Automobile) andJP Morgan (Investment):

Here are some great quotes from the episodes:
“You talk about seeing around corners as an element of success. That’s what differentiates a good leader. Not many people have it. Not many people can predict that corner. That is a characteristic of great leaders.” – Jack Welch, Former CE…

Robin Williams Park Scene from Good Will Hunting

So if I asked you about art, you'd probably give me the skinny on every art book ever written. Michelangelo, you know a lot about him. Life's work, political aspirations, him and the Pope, sexual orientation, the whole works, right? But I'll bet you can't tell me what it smells like in the Sistine Chapel. You've never actually stood there and looked up at that beautiful ceiling. Seen that. If I ask you about women, you'd probably give me a syllabus about your personal favorites. You may have even been laid a few times. But you can't tell me what it feels like to wake up next to a woman and feel truly happy. You're a tough kid. And I'd ask you about war, you'd probably throw Shakespeare at me, right: 'Once more into the breach, dear friends.' But you've never been near one. You've never held your best friend's head in your lap, and watch him gasp his last breath looking to you for help. I'd ask you about love, you'd pr…

Al Pacino's Inch By Inch speech from Any Given Sunday

I don't know what to say really.  Three minutes to the biggest battle of our professional lives all comes down to today. Either we heal as a team or we are going to crumble. Inch by inch play by play till we're finished. We are in hell right now, gentlemen believe me and we can stay here and get the shit kicked out of us or we can fight our way back into the light. We can climb out of hell. One inch, at a time.
Now I can't do it for you. I'm too old. I look around and I see these young faces and I think I mean I made every wrong choice a middle age man could make. I uh....I pissed away all my money believe it or not. I chased off anyone who has ever loved me. And lately, I can't even stand the face I see in the mirror.
You know when you get old in life things get taken from you. That's, that's part of life. But, you only learn that when you start losing stuff. You find out that life is just a game of inches. So is football. Because in either game life or football…

Sylvester Stallone's Keep Moving Forward speech from Rocky Balboa

Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain't all sunshine and rainbows. It's a very mean and nasty place, and I don't care how tough you are, it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is gonna hit as hard as life. 
But it ain't about how hard you hit. It's about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward; how much you can take and keep moving forward. That's how winning is done! Now, if you know what you're worth, then go out and get what you're worth. 
But you gotta be willing to take the hits, and not pointing fingers saying you ain't where you wanna be because of him, or her, or anybody. Cowards do that and that ain't you. You're better than that! I'm always gonna love you, no matter what. No matter what happens. You're my son and you're my blood. You're the best thing in my life. 
But until you start believing in yourself, you ain't gonna have a l…

Emotional Equations by Chip Conley

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I bought and read this book a while back, but I ponder around it every once in a while. I really like the concept of emotions turned into logical equations to define them and help us understand the underlying reasons behind certain emotions. The author uses Emotional Equations to create insight and perspective as well as happiness and success.
Some highlights from Part 1 of the Book:
Chip Conley is a CEO of a company called Joie de Vivre (French for Joy of Life), boutique hotels in California. If you are going through hell, keep going (Winston Churchill) We all need to come to understand that we can use our seasons of darkness as means to find new reservoirs of strength -- strength we didn't know we had. We all want a fully functional heart and mind.  The most successful business leaders are often experts on emotions. Humanity's common currency, emotions, is how we connect, even when we have little else in common. Our emotions even preceded our ability to put them into words. The emot…

Sahir, Dhoom 3 (2013)

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I am God's man, who could dare to defy me ... the Sun of hopes, is out in all directions ... my intentions are solid, and there is courage in every step ... I have set forth today, to write my own destiny -- Sahir, Dhoom 3 (2013)

Bande hain hum uske, hum pe kiska zor ... umeedo ke suraj, nikle chaaron aurr ... iraade hai fauladi, himmati har kadam ... apne haatho kismat likhne, aaj chale hain hum

42 Rules of Product Management, Brian Lawley

I have worked on few product development projects before, but right now I am very involved in a hosting product development effort where I work, Internet Brands. Couple years ago, I bought this book on my nook called “42 Rules of Product Management” that I never read. Lately, I have picked up during my travels, and have been learning a lot from this book about product management. It didn’t interest me as much when I started reading it before, but it’s definitely a good read now -- there is a right time for everything.
42 Rules of Product Management Author: Brian Lawley
1: Rules are meant to be broken 2: Work on products that you are passionate about 3: Beware the ‘requirements death spiral’ 4: Think like entrepreneur 5: Learn to say ‘no’ to customers 6: Product management is inherently polictical 7: There is a fine line between knowing it all and know-it-all 8: Market research must be actionable 9: The two-week rule 10: Market needs, not individual requests 11: No surprises 12: Be data-drive…

Death by Meeting

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At Evolve, Andy read this great book called "Death by Meeting", and he had the senior staff read it, so we could deploy a similar model. He and I took lead on using this model to manage meetings at Evolve. It's a great book and provides a good structure for meetings within an organization. We even got to a point when we started calling our meetings DBM. I love the comparison of the meeting type to television.
Death by Meetings The daily check-in - a daily huddle to know activities and objectives of team members for the day. "News"
The weekly tactical meeting - consists of three parts: (1) a lightning round of weekly priorities; (2) a progress review to see status of pre-determined key metrics; and (3) the real-time agenda that comes out of information learned in the previous two parts of the meeting. "TV Show"
The monthly strategic meeting - significant time should be allocated to examining and planning the strategic future of the organization. Prior to t…

Sanjay Leela Bhansali - My Favorite Hindi Movie Director

Last night, I got home around 10 and decided to clean up a little bit and then put on a Hindi movie. I picked Goliyon Ki Raaslella Ram-Leela. I didn't look at the Director's name of the movie, but as I started watching it, I kept thinking that it was Directed by one of my favorite Directors. I watched a little bit, and fell asleep and continued watching it this morning. The whole time, I kept thinking that it was by my favorite Director, and kept thinking of all the other movies he has made, all which I love, and that there was so much resemblance to this movie. Finally, I looked it up, and of course this movie was Directed by him, Sanjay Leela Bhansali. He directed my all time favorite Hindi movie: Devdas.

The bottom line about his movies is: they never have a happy ending! His movies are realistic, and it's never a matter of everything worked out well in that story. The scenery in his movies is colorful, beautiful, and amazing. His story line is unpredictable, and emoti…

John Brennan, The Next Three Days (2010)

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Our Lives are defined by moments, 
especially the ones we never see coming.

-- John Brennan, The Next Three Days (2010)

Alex Hitchens, Hitch (2005)

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Never lie, steal, cheat, or drink. But if you must lie, lie in the arms of the one you love. If you must steal, steal away from bad company. If you must cheat, cheat death. And if you must drink, drink in the moments that take your breath away.

-- Alex Hitchens, Hitch (2005)

Margaret Thatcher, The Iron Lady (2011)

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"It used to be about trying to do something. Now it's about trying to be someone." 
-- Margaret Thatcher, The Iron Lady (2011)

Bane, The Dark Knight (2012)

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"Oh, you think darkness is your ally. But you merely adopted the dark; I was born in it, molded by it. I didn't see the light until I was already a man; by then it was nothing to me, but blinding!" 
-- Bane, The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

Benjamin Mee, We Bought a Zoo (2011)

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All you need is twenty seconds of insane courage and I promise you something great will come of it.
-- Benjamin Mee, We Bought a Zoo (2011)