I was debating the pros and cons of various organizational structures with a colleague of mine who's a former Navy SEAL, and he was kind enough to gift me the book One Mission: How Leaders Build a Team of Teams written by Chris Fussell, with whom he worked on the Teams before.
Before reading this book, I always thought of "bureaucracy" as a bad word, but now I see why it exists and what important functions it serves. I also got a really good sense as to how to build a hybrid organization that aims to balance between periods of decentralization/agility/bottom-up with periods of stability/centralization/top-down.
I also really enjoyed hearing about how to implement O&I (Operations & Intelligence) Forums to get key stakeholders on the same page quickly using technology, and how to match the operating rhythm of a group with that of its environment/market. I aim to put in practice a lot of the major lessons from this book.
My major notes and takeaways are below.
My good friend Jimi recommended to me the book Scale: The Universal Laws of Life, Growth, and Death in Organisms, Cities, and Companies by Geoffrey West. I found it very interesting from a nerdy scientific standpoint.
I enjoyed the discussions of fractals and complexity theory. My biggest major takeaways were all related to the scaling effects of life and biology and self-similarity around different species. The company stuff was also interesting, but less compelling from my standpoint (or maybe I've just read more in that department before), and the area I found least interesting was the city stuff, but it was still well written and had good information.
I definitely recommend this to anyone interested in biology and science/math in general. Below are my main notes and takeaways from the book.
I heard about the book Getting the Love You Want by Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt from Tim Ferriss's podcast with Julie Rice, the co-founder of SoulCycle. On the podcast, she talked about the book as having helped her learn about "fostering a company culture and a family life ... that make conflict resolution go smoothly and constructively." Given that I'm interested in both good company culture and family life, I decided to check it out.
There were certainly parts that I wasn't into, like the sales-y references to all the commercial international "Imago" training workshops and the various religious undertones throughout. However, there were also many parts that made me think and consider how its lessons may apply to my life. One core message in the book is that one's upbringing as a child and unmet childhood needs carry over into one's selection of partner and one's conflict tendency (basically, your subconscious recreating the unresolved situations from childhood).
While that kind of thing may seem Freudian or annoying/strange in one way, I do see the validity of many of the ideas firsthand and in relationships I've thought about. Certainly its lessons around how to begin a productive adult dialogue with a partner, discuss behavior change, and discuss one's needs are very useful. The concept of "graduated change" was also a good framework.
Below are my full takeaways from the book.