Best Books of the Year 2011

It has been a spectacular year for books about mistakes and learning from them. Here’s the list of must-haves:

1. Brilliant Mistakes, Paul Schoemaker. Five years after publishing a terrific HBR article on the subject, Schoemaker celebrates mistakes as, in Joyce’s words, “portals of discovery,” a way of navigating through a largely unpredictable world.

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Measuring Our Way to Future Success (video)

The following is a video of my presentation Measuring our way to future success at the Digital Marketing in 1 day conference in Bussum, the Netherlands.

Thanks to for filming it all on his Flip camera and uploading it to

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Measuring Our Way to Future Success

Are our blinders keeping us from seeing new opportunities, and / or following our customers as they move on online? How are we measuring online activities, and is this limiting our perspective.

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On Anxiety

This weekend I spent a bit of time with Andrew Zuckerman's work and (courtesy of Maria Popova) listened to this talk he gave at this year's 99% conference which contains a series of fantastic insights into his view on the creative process, wonderfully illustrated by soundbites from his work, most notably the Wisdom and Music projects.

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Six Themes from the World Business Forum

What a day! The World Business Forum featured phenomenal speakers and drew over 4,000 attendees from 60+ countries. I’m so honored to have been invited to attend as a guest blogger.

I tweeted the best bits from today as they rolled off the speakers’ tongues and will be doing the same tomorrow morning (follow me: deniseleeyohn) but here are six of my main takeaways so far:

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In Future Metric of Success May Be if 10000 People Read It

I like the concept of this - ie: metrics adjusting to reflect new realities. Plus it's nice to have an eg that is not so advertising centric. I suspect this is all a *long* way off happening though. :-)


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The Tyranny Of 'The Plan'

"In the highly turbulent, quickly reforming environment of the new economy, the competitive advantage goes to the nimble and malleable, the flexible and quick. Speed and agility trump size and experience. Fast to find the new is only one half the equation; fast to let go is the other important half." Kevin Kelly

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Cashing in on Concerts

In recent weeks, both the New York Times and Bloomberg Businessweek ran stories on the booming music concert business.  

The Times piece, A Front-Row Seat, to Go? Rock Fans Pay for Perks relayed the success of VIP packages which give concert goers special perks like face time with the artists at thousands of dollars a head. 

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Going for the Gold

I’ve finally made it through all of the hours of Olympics coverage which I DVR’d because I had been unable to watch most of the Games live. Since I already knew the result of many of the competitions, I was interested in watching mostly for the profiles of the athletes and stories behind and nuances of their achievements. I gleaned a few insights that seem to have relevance for companies who are competing in the game of business.

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Whose Voice Do You Hear? Gender Issues and Success

Growing up, I loved to debate. With anyone. My debating tone used to drive my mother batty because she thought I was yelling at her. Exasperated, I would often bark back that I was simply debating. Over the years, I realized that my debating tone is one of such confidence that people believe me to be stating facts, not opinions. My mother interpreted it as yelling; my classmates interpreted it as arrogance. I also began to realize that it was the same tone as that of my male peers. I never apologized for my opinions, never deflated them with "I may be wrong but I think..." I asserted. Confidently. And loudly.

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