Home Library Challenge

I woke up in search of a new challenge.  First, I created a small win by cleaning my apartment. A portion of my small library was dusty and unloved. I thought about including these books into my daily routine. That is why I set before me a HLC (Home Library Challenge). The rules of HLC are pretty simple. I have about 20 books in my apartment. I must read through each book and document one lesson learned. This is not a book report. This challenge is about personal development and a way to share “golden nuggets.” Coffee is in my stomach and I have another cup to my right. Let’s get it on!

The Effective Executive, Peter F. Tucker

Five Habits of the mind that you must acquire to be an effective executive: (1) be conscious of where your time goes, (2) focus on the results, not the work, (3) build on your strengths, (4) focus on a few major areas where superior performance will produce outstanding results, (5) make effective decisions.

The Art of Possibility, Rosamund S. Zander

Reconstructing our Past: How often do we stand convinced of the truth of our early memories, forgetting that they are but assessments by a child? We can replace the narratives that hold us back by inventing in wiser stories, free from childish fears, and in doing so, disperse long held stumbling blocks.

The Audacity of Hope, President Barack Obama

We must distribute the cost and benefits of globalization more fairly across the population.

Don’t Shoot the Dog, Karen Pryor

Ten laws of shaping: (1) set realistic milestones, (2) focus on one millstone at a time, (3) schedule the reinforcement for the current level of response, (4) relax old criteria before introducing a new, (5) stay ahead of your subjects or plan your shaping program, (6) stick to one shaper per behavior and do not change trainers midstream, (7) try another, if one behavior shaping procedure is not working, (8) don’t interrupt a training session gratuitously, (9) review the process with the subject if the behavior deteriorates, and (10) end each session on a high note.

Strength Based Leadership, Tom Rath and Barry Conchie

Followers have four basic needs: trust, compassion, stability, and hope.

The Mediation Process, Christopher W. Moore

The Mask-Mirage Analogy: Individuals conceal from themselves and others true representations of themselves and, in place of them, present a mask that expresses how they would like to perceive themselves or how they would like to have others perceive them.  When a person uses a mask, the image he or she holds of other disputants is often that of another mask or mirage. A mirage is an image based on the psychic need of the observer rather than on real and objective characteristics of the observer.

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, Marshall Goldsmith

20 Transactional Flaws performed by one person against another: (1) Winning too much, (2) adding too much value, (3) passing judgement, (4) making destructive comments, (5) starting with “no”, “but”, or “however,” (6) telling the world how smart you are, (7) speaking when angry, (8) Negativity, (9) withholding information, (10) failing to give proper recognition, (11) claiming credit that we do not deserve, (12) making excuses, (13) clinging to the past, (14) playing favorites, (15) refusing to express regret, (16) not listening, (17) failing to express gratitude, (18) punishing the messenger, (19) passing the buck, and (20) exalting our faults as virtues simply because they’re who we are.

Coaching for Leadership, Marshall Goldstein

A coach’s impact will be determined by their ability to transform organizational situations into realistic learning challenges which match the immediate need of the client.

The Personal MBA, Josh Kaufman

Gail’s Law, understanding systems: All complex systems that work evolved from a simpler system that worked.

Leading Change, John P. Kotter

Change is an eight stage process: (1) Esablish a sense of urgency, (2) creating a guiding coalition, (3) developing a vision and strategy, (4) communicate the change vision, (5) empower employees for broad based action, (6) generate short-term wins, (7) consolidate gains and sustain the urgency, (8) don’t stop until your change is anchored in the culture.

The Heart of Change, John P. Cotter

Highly successful organizations know how to overcome antibodies that reject anything new.


A recipe is nothing without the right chef. Every chef will make the same recipe differently. Likewise, in an organization, the outcome of a vibrant culture is based mostly on the chef. Leaders must remember that a successful culture is most about “who stirs the pot.”

The Wit and Wisdom of Mark Twain, Mark Twain

It is better to deserve honors and not have them than to have them and not deserve them.

Manners, Ralph Waldo Emerson

The gentleman is a man of truth, lord of his own actions, and expressing that lordship in his behavior, not in any manner dependent on either another person, or opinion, or possessions.

The Bible, Luke 23: 1-4

Then the entire council took Jesus to Pilate, the Roman governor. They began to state their case: “This man has been leading these people astray by telling them not to pay their taxes to the Roman government and by claiming he is the Messiah, a king.” So Pilate asked him, “Are you the king of the Jews?” Jesus replied, “You have said it.” Pilate turned to the leading priest and to the crowd and said, “I find nothing wrong with this man.”

Built to Last, Jim Collins

After WW2 ended and defense contracts dropped, Bill Hewlett and David Packard’s young company saw a 40 percent decline in business. They had to cut back. However, they took this as an opportunity to not only retain the best and brightest. But, also to recruit the best and the brightest needing work after many defense contracts fell by the weigh side.  They took this opportunity to build for the future by increase their in-house talent.

Inclusive Political Participation and Representation, IDEA

One of the major problems in women’s participation are the low respresntation numbers in parliamentary roles. According to the world bank, in South Asia (2011), women represented an average 15 percent of seats at the national level (Afganistan: 28 percent; Bangledesh: 18.5 percent; Bhutan: 8.5 percent; India; 10.7 percent in the 15th Lok Sabha; the Maldives: 7 percent; Nepal: 33 percent; Pakistan: 22 percent; and Sri Lanka: 6 percent)

Alternative Dispute Resolution “In a Nutshell”, Jacqueline M. Nolan-Haley

As stated in the Section 9 (a) of the Uniform Mediation Act approved by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws and the American Bar Association Section on Dispute Resolution in 2002, a mediator must disclose any conflict of interest which may impact their impartiality.

Verbal Advantage, Charles H. Elster

Adroit (uh-DROYT): Skillful, clever; specifically, showing skill in using one’s hands or using one’s brain. Adroit comes from Latin through the French droit, right, and meaning literally “to the right.” Historically, the English language has always favored the right hand as the better, more skillful hand. This may be unfair to Southpaws, but the fact is our language favors right-handed words. We do not say “out of right field” to mean crazy, weird, or unorthodox.

Ukraine Recovery and Peacebuilding Assessment (2015), EU/World Bank/ United Nations Ukraine

Initial estimates of recovery, reconstruction, and peacebuilding financing needs total some US$1.52 billion:

$1.26 billion for infrastructure and social services (184.2 health {101.6 Equipment for infrastructure repair}, 9.7 education, 329.4 social welfare {301.3 benefit to IDPs}, 78.9 energy, 558.2 transportation {477.0 for roads}, 40.1 water and sanitation, 30.0 environment, and 27.2 public buildings and housing)

$135.5 million for economic recovery (40.0 employment {30.0 increase-earning opportunity}, 33.0 productive capacities and livelihoods, 7.5 local economic planning, 30.0 private sector, and 25.0 financial services)

$126.8 million for social resilience, peacebuilding and community security (2.5 vulnerability assessment, 19.7 trust building, 11.4 cultural awareness, 5.8 support conflict-affected population, 8.1 promote access to justice, 6.6 provide legal assistance, 28.4 offer psychological services {expanding PTSD programs}, 23.9 restore community security, 20.4 DDR)

*These are the thoughts of Richard J. Roman and not those of the Peace Corps or its affiliates. 













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