How to transform and lead in the Age of Creativity, Innovation and Sustainability
By Faisal Hoque with Drake Baer
Available through Amazon in paperback and Kindle editions. You can find it at other fine online and offline book sellers, as well.
Everything Connects is an intelligent, philosophical view of how organizations can foster creativity and innovation through creating environments where these two processes thrive. Examples and in the book draw from the lives of entrepreneurs, case studies of large organizations, and at least one famous historical figure. The theory that evolves as you read the book comes from research and interviews and is informed by as wide-ranging concepts as meditation and organizational theory.
Although primarily aimed at companies and organizations that employ groups of people to create products and services, many of the ideas and advice can be applied to the solo-entrepreneur in developing a more solid small business and foster one’s own creativity and innovative thought.
What I liked about it:
The author obviously drew from a wide variety of source material to develop the theory of this book, thus exemplifying his own recommendations. I loved that he brought in mindfulness meditation (thank you for being the “7th mention” that caused me to finally look into this form or meditation!) and a wide variety of examples from Leonardo da Vinci to Jeff Bezos to Proctor and Gamble.
Each chapter ended with a section of “take aways,” thus summarizing what the chapter was about and providing repetition that helped set the concepts in my mind.
This book was thoughtfully developed and made me pause to ponder on many occasions. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the book:
- “…understanding our interior life leads to understanding the life we wish to sculpt in the world…”
- “…life is a process of ongoing transformation spurred by the interlinked qualities of curiosity, purpose, and courage.”
- “As entrepreneurs, we are on a journey of doing authentic work.”
- “To be authentic, you must be ‘awake,’ which means you have the ability to understand who you are, what you want to be, and how you want to fit in the world.”
- “Opportunity and risk are two sides of the same coin. We have to learn to love both.”
- “The takeaway: If you’re working in a closet somewhere…it doesn’t matter how great your work is.”
- “…leadership…is a way of owning the impact that you or your organization is going to have on the world.”
What I didn’t like about it:
Although it wasn’t a challenge for me, I find that the vocabulary/writing level employed in this book makes it hard for me to endorse this book with full vigor. I know that there are many readers out there who will be so challenged by some of the words chosen, as well as the sentence structure, that they may give up on the book and put it down. I find that sad because the information is so valuable.
That said, this may have been strategically done because the target market for this book more than likely is well educated and won’t find it challenging. However, I am a proponent of communicating effectively and using big words because you can rather than because they are the right word to use in the context, I believe, defeats the purpose.
Although I found the content of this book valuable, I believe that it is not for everyone. The language employed was above an average reading level and could leave some readers heading for the dictionary just to understand what’s being said. The writing style reminded me of many of the texts I had to read when attending graduate school. The writing style is intelligent and intellectual and I believe that a more approachable writing style would serve many readers better.
That said, I took more notes while reading this than I normally do and uncovered a plethora of takeaways, which I’ll most likely share later on in this blog.
NOTE: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. If you’ve read past book reviews, you’ll know that I don’t pull my punches when I believe they are warranted. I also try to provide balanced information so you can make your own decision to read or not read the book, even if you disagree with my opinion.