Author Archives: randy

Smart Brevity & Sorry, Sorry, Sorry – two good and needed books to up your Communication Skills for the March 3, 2023 First Friday Book Synopsis

FFBS for 3,2023

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FOR THE LIFELONG LEARNER IN ALL OF US!

Come to learn; and make some great connections!

MAKE 2023 A YEAR OF LEARNING!

——

Can we learn to get to the point? Clearly? Quickly?

Since we have made mistakes, and will most certainly make some more, can we learn to genuinely, sincerely apologize?

Yes…and yes…Smart Brevity

The March First Friday Book Synopsis will provide insight for both of these issues.

March 3, 2023– Park City Club (and Zoom) 

The two books for the March 3 session are:

1. Smart Brevity: The Power of Saying More with Less by  Jim VandeHei, Mike Allen, Roy Schwartz

2. Sorry, Sorry, Sorry: The Case for Good Apologies  by  Marjorie Ingall, Susan McCarthy

At the First Friday Book Synopsis, we make each month’s session a genuine learning event.  You learn from the best business books, and then it is up to you to put into practice the things you learn.

For the March 3, 2023, session, I will present my synopses of these two useful books.  Click here to register for the in-person session.  (Zoom info is below).

For 25 years, we have presented synopses of business books at the First Friday Book Synopsis.  So many of these books that I have read and presented have shaped my thinking and helped me better understand business success…and failure.

Mark your calendar for March 3.  Attend in person, or on Zoom.  Here are all the details.

——————–Sorry, Sorry, Sorry

In our 25th YEAR of the First Friday Book Synopsis

Randy Mayeux provides thorough synopses of the content of useful, best-selling business books. He provides a comprehensive, multi-page synopsis handout, that concludes with his own lessons and takeaways from each book he presents.

“I love good books; and I read books
And share their core concepts
To help people become more literate
And know what to work on
To do a better job
To build a better company
And, ultimately, to build a better life.”
Randy Mayeux
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For 25 years, Randy has been presenting synopses of best-selling, useful, helpful business books.  Every month!  

What we know, we know because we have learned.
And, much of our learning begins with the thoughts we think, and the words we read and hear.

And, one good way to keep learning – some would argue the best way to keep learning – is to learn what is in the best books.

I hope you can join us to learn from two terrific and important books.

March 3, 2023 – Park City Club; and on Zoom 

What to expect:

Two fast-paced synopsis presentations.

For In-person participants, you will be given copies of the two synopsis handouts.  For those attending remotely, you will receive a synopsis handout to download for each of the two books, delivered the day before the event, via e-mail (and, available on this blog).

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO READ THE BOOKS IN ADVANCE! – No pre-reading of the books required!

If you are like many, you do not have time to read all of the books you would like to read. The First Friday Book Synopsis is designed for you.

Our synopses are comprehensive, thorough, and they will give you plenty of the key content from each book. You will learn, and be able to ponder the ideas in a useful way. And, even if you have read the book, my synopsis will help you remember more of what you read.

I hope you can join us.

For in-person participants: click here to register for in-person attendance.

For remote participants:
The cost of this remote meeting is “free.”
But, if you would like to contribute to participate, Randy would welcome you to send $12.00 directly to him through PayPal. Click here for a direct link to “donate” through PayPal.

For remote participants, here is the Zoom info.  The Zoom meeting requires no registration.

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: First Friday Book Synopsis, 2023
Time: March 3, 2023 07:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88546338687?pwd=NC9hRVhoaW8waUlnZGllU1UvOEJWZz09

Meeting ID: 885 4633 8687
Passcode: 208376

Here is the New York Times list of Best-selling business books for February, 2023 – Atomic Habits is again, and still, at #1

 The New York Times has just published their February, 2023 list of best-selling business books.  Of the ten books on this month’s list, we have presented seven at our monthly event, the First Friday Book Synopsis in Dallas, which will complete 25 full years of monthly gatherings in March.

Again…still…repeatedly…Atomic Habits is number one on this month’s list.  I have followed this list for years, and there has never been another book spend anywhere near as much time at the top spot as this book has. Atomic Habits

I have presented synopses of five of these books: Atomic Habits, Dare to Lead, The End of the World is Just the Beginning, Extreme Ownership, and Stolen Focus.

My former colleague, Karl Krayer, presented synopses of Grit, and Thinking, Fast and Slow.

All seven of these books are quite good; certainly worth your time.

Though I do not select all of the books from this list for my presentations at the First Friday Book Synopsis, I have presented many, many of the books that have been on this list through the years.

Here is the NY Times February, 2023 list of best-selling business books.  Click over to the New York Times site for links to reviews of a couple of the books.

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#1 — Atomic Habits by James Clear

#2 — The Creative Act by Rick Rubin with Neil Strauss

#3 – Dare to Lead by Brené Brown

#4 – Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

#5 – Financial Feminist by Tori Dunlap

#6 – The End of the World is Just the Beginning by Peter Zeihan

#7 – Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin

#8 – From Strength to Strength by Arthur C. Brooks

#9 – Grit by Angela Duckworth

#10 – Stolen Focus by Johann Hari

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Stolen FocusYou can purchase our synopses presentations from the buy synopses tab at the top of this page.  On that page, you can search by book title. And click here for our newest additions.

Each synopsis comes with my comprehensive, multi-page synopsis handout, plus the audio recording of my presentation delivered at the First Friday Book Synopsis in Dallas.

Download the two Synopses Handouts for the Friday, February 3, 2023 First Friday Book Synopsis (over Zoom) — When Women Lead by Julia Boorstin, and Building a Second Brain

{Note:  you can also still register to attend in-person for the February 3 First Friday Book Synopsis, at the wonderful Park City Club, by clicking here}.

Our books for February...

Our books for February…

In our 25th year!

You are invited
First Friday Book Synopsis,
Friday, February 3, 2023, 7:25 am (Central Time), on Zoom.
I hope you can join us!

Meeting On Zoom

Click on image to download handouts

Click on image to download handouts

Around 100 people (in our combined in-person and Zoom participants) have been joining us for our First Friday Book Synopsis gatherings. We have had participants from all over the country. Please share this word far and wide — all are welcome!

This Friday, February 3, 2023, 7:25 am – Zoom 

The two books for tomorrow are both worth your time! 

  1. Building a Second Brain: A Proven Method to Organize Your Digital Life and Unlock Your Creative Potential by Tiago Forte.

AND

  1. When Women Lead: What They Achieve, Why They Succeed, and How We Can Learn from Them by Julia Boorstin.

Both of these are worth your time!

Building a Second Brain provides an actionable plan to tackle the information overload we all face.

And When Women Lead is a terrific book, on women in business, and on leadership for all.

Note: The first presentation will begin around 7:25-7:30 am.

I intend to keep this free. But, your voluntary participation would be appreciated.  If you would like to contribute to participate, Randy would welcome you to send $12.00 directly to him through PayPal. Click here for a direct link to “donate” through PayPal.

PRINTING TIP: I strongly encourage all to print out the two handouts. If you will begin printing on page 2, you will still have the full handout, and save the ink that you would use on the front/cover sheet. 

This Friday, February 3, 2023 – Zoom

  1. Building a Second Brain: A Proven Method to Organize Your Digital Life and Unlock Your Creative Potential by Tiago Forte.

AND

  1. When Women Lead: What They Achieve, Why They Succeed, and How We Can Learn from Them by Julia Boorstin.

Where:  On Zoom

When: This Friday, February 3 — presentations begin at 7:25-7:30 am (Central Time)
The presentations will conclude around 8:35 am
Speaker: Randy Mayeux will deliver both synopsis presentations.

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88546338687?pwd=NC9hRVhoaW8waUlnZGllU1UvOEJWZz09

Meeting ID: 885 4633 8687

Passcode: 208376

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Click on image to download handouts

Click on image to download handouts

We are all set for Friday’s Remote First Friday Book Synopsis.

#1 — Download, and print both synopses handouts by clicking here.

If you have ever attended our event, you know that I am handout intensive. You really will be able to follow along better with physical copies of the handouts in front of you. So, if you have a printer, please print the handouts.

#2 — Come on in for conversation whenever you can. I have enabled the “enable join before host” button. You will arrive in the waiting room, and be let in quickly. So, you can come in, and talk to folks.

#3 — Here is the info, with the link to join the gathering:

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting

Topic: First Friday Book Synopsis, 2022
Time:  February 3, 2023 07:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88546338687?pwd=NC9hRVhoaW8waUlnZGllU1UvOEJWZz09

Meeting ID: 885 4633 8687

Passcode: 208376

—–

Reminder: The cost of this remote meeting is “free.”

But, if you would like to contribute to participate, Randy would welcome you to send $12.00 directly to him through PayPal. Click here for a direct link to “donate” through PayPal.

https://www.paypal.com/donate/?hosted_button_id=PFVH25LQL6XBE

(Note: you can also send money through Zelle, at Randy’s e-mail address).

(Randy’s e-mail address for PayPal, and Zelle, is ).

Please help spread the word far and wide; help make this a success.

————————–

You might want to read this post. It has a printable one-sheet reminder on how to make the most of your remote learning experience.

Remote Learning 101 – Read this before attending your learning session.

 ——————

Here is more complete Zoom info:

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: First Friday Book Synopsis, 2023

Time: Feb. 3, 2023 07:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/88546338687?pwd=NC9hRVhoaW8waUlnZGllU1UvOEJWZz09

Meeting ID: 885 4633 8687

Passcode: 208376

One tap mobile

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Dial by your location

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FOR THE LIFELONG LEARNER IN ALL OF US – Announcing The First Friday Book Synopsis Academy of Lifelong Learning

FOR THE LIFELONG LEARNER IN ALL OF US

Announcing:

The First Friday Book Synopsis 

Academy of Lifelong LearningAcademy-logo-02-2048x2048

Each track includes three book synopses, delivered digitally. 

Each synopsis comes with the audio recording of the synopsis presentation by Randy Mayeux, plus the multi-page, comprehensive synopsis handout.

To get the most from the synopses:

Sit with pen in hand, play the audio on your SmartPhone or computer, and in about 25 minutes, take a dive into each individual book synopsis.

You may then decide to read the book for yourself. But, even if you don’t, these synopses will give you plenty to think about, and put into practice.

You will learn!

Click here to view the bundles available: academyoflifelonglearning.com.

Nine bundles are available:

  • for your own development
  • to share with your team members
  • to help new employees, new team members, in their development

Each bundle comes with three book synopses. (Some bundles include a 4th bonus synopsis). These are my selections for the “best” books I have presented for these tracks.

  • Three bundles for Leaders:

  • The Leaders Track
  • For the Leadership Team: Track #1
  • For the Leadership Team: Track #2
  • Other Bundles:

    Click on image to visit the page:

    Click on image to visit the page:

  • The Personal Productivity Track
  • The Team Builders Track
  • The Customer Service Track
  • The Future Track
  • The Let’s Rethink Everything Track
  • The Challenge of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Track

Click here to see the books available in each bundle: academyoflifelonglearning.com.

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As always, you can purchase our synopses individually.  Click here for the most recent synopses made available.

Or, search by title on this page; or, you can purchase a subscription for all of our synopses by clicking here.

Maybe it is Time to…Think Again: Rethinking as a Way to Move Forward – (With appreciation to Adam grant, and Daniel Kahneman)

Last week, I spoke at the Garland Scottish Rite Club, at their service to install their officers for 2023.  My former colleague, Karl Krayer, was installed as their President for this year.Think Again

Karl asked me to speak on Rethinking as the Way to Move Forward.  I took some highlights from my synopsis handout for the book Think Again by Adam Grant, mixed in a little Daniel Kahneman, and Tyler Cowen via David Brooks, and created this handout.  It might be worth reading through.

So, here it is.

——————

Maybe it is Time to…Think Again: Rethinking as a Way to Move Forward

Presented by Randy Mayeux — For The Garland Scottish Rite Club — January,18, 2023

{There is so much we do not know… And we are all wrong about some things. Our inability or unwillingness to seek out ways we are wrong will keep us wrong. And that is a bad idea. Rethinking – thinking again – is the only path to getting more things right.}

• We laugh at people who still use Windows 95, yet we still cling to opinions that we formed in 1995. 

  • How many of us can even remember the last time we admitted being wrong and revised our opinions accordingly? 
  • A hallmark of wisdom is knowing when it’s time to abandon some of your most treasured tools—and some of the most cherished parts of your identity. 
  • If you’re a scientist by trade, rethinking is fundamental to your profession.
  • Being good at thinking can make you worse at rethinking.
  • “Arrogance is ignorance plus conviction.”
  • I found a Nobel Prize–winning scientist and two of the world’s top election forecasters. They aren’t just comfortable being wrong; they actually seem to be thrilled by it. …The goal is not to be wrong more often. It’s to recognize that we’re all wrong more often than we’d like to admit, and the more we deny it, the deeper the hole we dig for ourselves. 
  • As Bridgewater founder Ray Dalio told me, “If you don’t look back at yourself and think, ‘Wow, how stupid I was a year ago,’ then you must not have learned much in the last year.” 
  • When we’re trying to persuade people, we frequently take an adversarial approach. Instead of opening their minds, we effectively shut them down or rile them up. 
  • Intelligence is traditionally viewed as the ability to think and learn.
    Yet in a turbulent world, there’s another set of cognitive skills that might matter more: the ability to rethink and unlearn.
     
  • We should all be able to make a long list of areas where we’re ignorant. Mine include art, financial markets, fashion, chemistry, food, why British accents turn American in songs, and why it’s impossible to tickle yourself.
  • Preachers, Prosecutors, and Politicians: We go into preacher mode when our sacred beliefs are in jeopardy: we deliver sermons to protect and promote our ideals. We enter prosecutor mode when we recognize flaws in other people’s reasoning: we marshal arguments to prove them wrong and win our case. We shift into politician mode when we’re seeking to win over an audience: we campaign and lobby for the approval of our constituents. The risk is that we become so wrapped up in preaching that we’re right, prosecuting others who are wrong, and politicking for support that we don’t bother to rethink our own views.

Adam Grant:  Think Again, The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know

The economist Tyler Cowen suggests a thought experiment:

Take out a piece of paper. In one column, list all of the major problems this country faces—inequality, political polarization, social distrust, climate change, and so on. In another column, write seven words: “America has more talent than ever before.”

David Brooks:  Despite Everything You Think You Know, America Is on the Right Track (Yes, America is a wounded giant—but it always has been, and the case for optimism is surprisingly strong). – From The Atlantic, January 13, 2023

• Let’s think about thinking:

(From the synopsis handout of the book Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman; synopsis prepared by Dr. Karl Krayer):

System 1 vs. System 2 Thinking

System 1 operates automatically and quickly, with little or no effort and no sense of voluntary control. — System 1 does fast thinking.

System 2 allocates attention to the effortful mental activities that demand it, including complex computations. — System 2 is slow thinking, and is effortful. 

Randy Mayeux’s lessons and takeaways from Think Again by Adam Grant:

#1 – Aim for more self-awareness.
#2 – Aim for more humility.
#3 – Seek to discover your own blindness – your own blind spots.

#4 – Stop and think; and then, often, stop and rethink.
#5 – Ask, always, what am I doing to keep learning.
#6 – And, because things are speeding up and the world is changing more rapidly than ever before, we all must learn to rethink, and learn, (and unlearn), faster than ever.

——————

Click here to read my blog post on Think AgainThink Again by Adam Grant – Here are my six lessons and takeaways

And here is the handout in printable from.

Click pin image for full, printable view

Click pin image for full, printable view

My synopsis of Under the Skin: The Hidden Toll of Racism on American Lives and on the Health of Our Nation by Linda Villarosa  is Today, Thursday, January 19, 12:30 pm, over Zoom – Come Join Us – And, here is my synopsis handout

A special encouragement to attend today’s session, January 19, 2023, on Zoom.

Today’s book, Under the Skin: The Hidden Toll of Racism on American Lives and on the Health of Our Nation by Linda Villarosa .

Please join us. All details below.

————

Click on image to download synopsis handout.

Click on image to download synopsis handout.

If you have an open lunch time window Today, Thursday, January 19, 12:30 pm (CST), I am presenting my synopsis of:

Under the Skin: The Hidden Toll of Racism on American Lives and on the Health of Our Nation by Linda Villarosa .

Today, Thursday, January 19, 2023 at 12:30 (CST) for the Urban Engagement Book Club, sponsored by CitySquare, on Zoom.

I encourage you to download my synopsis handout, print it out, and follow along.

Come join us on Zoom.

Urban Engagement Book Club
Thursday, January 19, 2023 – 12:30 pm (CST)

Synopsis presented by Randy Mayeux
We conclude shortly after 1:30.
(This event is free).

Here is the complete lineup of books selected for 2022.  — We will have a lineup of books for at least the first half of 2023 soon.

And, here is the Zoom link to join our gathering. 

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83866241986?pwd=WGNyWklhWFYvdDE4QmZ5MUtIUjNWUT09

Meeting ID: 838 6624 1986

Passcode: 663247

Under the Skin—————-

Here is the more complete Zoom info.

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Urban Engagement Book Club, 2023

Time: Jan 19, 2023 12:30 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83866241986?pwd=WGNyWklhWFYvdDE4QmZ5MUtIUjNWUT09

Meeting ID: 838 6624 1986

Passcode: 663247

One tap mobile

+13462487799,,83866241986#,,,,*663247# US (Houston)

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Dial by your location

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    +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)

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Meeting ID: 838 6624 1986

Passcode: 663247

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