I’m a compulsive list maker. I make lists for everything, and anything. In-fact I am fast approaching the point where I might need a list to keep track of all my lists (not kidding). Which is to say that, at-least as far as I am concerned, Mr. Gawande was preaching to the choir with this one.
Nonetheless, it was still a pretty interesting read. For one, it’s always gratifying to find out scientific backing for your natural inclinations. It almost makes you feel like you are in Santa’s nice list for doing absolutely nothing.
But more importantly, Atul Gawande (much like Malcolm Gladwell) has the ability to share relatively dull content (not that lists are dull to me, I personally find them quite fascinating) in a way that is engaging, and thought provoking, while also managing to challenge the status quo, without ever being condescending.
And that is exactly what he did in this book as well. Mr. Gawande, in his trademark style, judiciously used facts, research, and anecdotal evidence, to prove his point on the relevance and importance of using checklists. I especially loved all the examples he chose to emphasize how critical checklists can be across any field, be it medicine, construction or even aviation.
Now I have to admit that I could have lived without the blow-by-blow description of the complicated surgeries, as they made me more than a little queasy. But then I can’t really complain about that, because well he is a doctor, and it is natural to draw examples from his field of work.
Anyway, towards the end, there is a section where he shares his thoughts on what one must watch out for, to ensure that lists stay important & relevant, and don’t end up being counter-productive. This was especially interesting to me, as like I mentioned earlier, I have the tendency to go overboard with them, and so this gave me some food for thought.
All in All
Whether you love your lists or cannot be bothered with them, I feel like this book has something for everyone. Especially for the ones in the latter category, I think this will give some much needed insight on how list making when done right, can be more than an odd quirk. In-fact, as Mr. Gawande details in the many examples that he shares, effective checklists not only improve efficiency, but also have the ability to save time, money, and even lives.
You can get this book here – The Checklist Manifesto.
That’s all from my end, folks. I would love to hear from you. Have you read this book? How did you find it? If you haven’t read it yet, and are looking to read books on productivity, you have to check this one out.
Also, these days I have been reading a lot of non-fiction books on certain topics, and so of-course I’ll be reviewing them on the blog in the coming months. However, I was thinking that instead of doing standalone book reviews, I’d bunch them together, based on topic.
For instance, the first post in this series, which will come out around the 15th of Jan, will feature 3 books on productivity. So this way, if you are interested to read books on a particular topic, you will get a chance to compare & contrast a few options.
Let me know what you think of this kind of post (as opposed to standalone book reviews – especially when it comes to non-fiction), and if you have recommendations of topics that you would like me to read and review books on.
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