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More on Lean vs Non-Lean Reading

As part of my personal reflection and quest for learning I decided to sign up for a business Book Club offered through the local university.  The ‘club’ would meet once a month and discuss books chosen by local business leaders as a way to share among the business community.  Unfortunately, not enough people signed up to fill this session, so I’m a little bummed out.  For me, I was hoping to use the ‘club’ as a way to stretch my mind a bit on the type of books I seek out.  Unlike Matt’s break from Lean books, I am more looking for new things to balance the Lean material.

Let me explain my thinking…

I recently took an inventory on the last 20 or so books I have read.  Every book I read was either directly a “Lean” book or a book that ended up dovetailing with some aspect of Lean.  This reflection really frightened me.  My worry is that I am stuck in a groove where I’m not really seeking material to stretch my thinking, but more to repeat what I already think in different ways.  My book selection seems to be part of an ongoing confirmation bias where what I am reading echoes what I already think.

I guess there are two ways to look at this.  The first is that I am picking from too shallow of a pool of books and keep ending up with more of the same.  The second is that there is a common thread among the stories of the people and companies that also flows through Lean thinking.  I guess you could say I want to run an experiment where I am using the first way as my hypothesis and trying to prove or disprove it.

Here’s where I could use some help.  I’m looking for recommendations of non-fiction books that aren’t related to Lean.  Preferably ones that you would recommend that seem to be an opposite or counterpoint to Lean.  I’ve heard a saying that the most interesting books in the library are the ones that haven’t been read yet.  The unknown provides a blank canvas that could teach us anything or nothing at all.  I am hoping one of you can provide some inspiration to me or a fellow reader to grow.

Thanks and happy reading.

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