This is a book that I’ve been meaning for years to read. I was inspired to pick it up and start (again) after completing an iteration of a webinar I do on leadership lessons based on Ernest Shackleton and his Endurance expedition. Like the Shackleton story, Island of the Lost did not disappoint on either the adventure or the leadership lessons.
The story is set in the South Atlantic, near New Zealand, specifically on the Auckland Island group. In 1864, not one but two groups were shipwrecked on the main island.
Anything You Want (book Review)
I think whenever someone starts a business – whether it’s to make and sell something, provide a service, or create an empire – there’s a blend of not knowing anything about what to do and wanting to learn about the tools and principles that might work, but also having some sense of what you DON’T want to do or be. For me, I want to know about the tools and principles, but chafe at the notion that there are things I’m “supposed to” do in order to do it correctly. Correctly for who? No one knows my business and what I want it to be better than me, so how could anyone already have the formula that is best for me and my business?
Listen Up, Leaders
As leaders, we have to pay attention to each of our team members and learn to hear what they’re saying – even (or perhaps especially) when they are not saying much. If we’re doing a good job of supporting and engaging on an ongoing basis, we’ll get to know our team members’ communication styles and hear about what’s going on for them – at work, at home, in their lives – and can incorporate this into our work with them. When someone who is usually enthusiastic starts to be listless or quiet, we are responsible for exploring that with them.
Pivoting my priorities
Every few years, I write about my annual goal and priority setting process, incorporating new learnings as appropriate and adapting to the ever-changing path of my own work-job-career and life. For 2022, I’m coming to my goals and priorities from a new perspective, and with a pivot in my work-job-career that has led to a pivot in my priorities. I’m taking a similar approach as before, but now with a whole new direction, and so a new list of priorities.
This book was a gift from a good friend and colleague, arising from a discussion last year wherein I'd said that I did not especially enjoy Manson's previous book as it didn't flow well (that book, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, was essentially a compendium of his blog posts and so was disjointed such that it didn't seem to be about anything). My friend enjoyed this one and so gave it to me for Christmas.
The overall premise of the book is this: while hope is an essential motivator for humans, in the modern (i.e. first) world, it is almost impossible to hope for things to get better as they are already so f*cking good.
Who is Robyn?
My career as a research project manager is rewarding, dynamic, challenging, and fun. I'm looking forward to sharing my knowledge and experience in communication, organization, and common sense approaches in research management and leadership, and to enabling others to learn and grow in this exciting career.