My shelfie… Emily Hutchinson

Emily Hutchinson, Associate Editor for Books, and Director of EJH Consulting, kicks off a new series.

Nancy Kline: Time to Think
I first read this book 10 years ago, as I was training to be a coach, and remember immediately connecting with it. Then it gathered dust on my shelf until I spent three days with Nancy Kline on her Thinking Partnership course. This has blown my mind, as the simplicity of what the book contains belies the truth and power of her approach. I’m now reading more of her work and know that this is going to have a big impact on the way that I work. Allowing people the time to think in the presence of full attention is a wonderful thing.

Alex Haslam, Michael J. Platow, and Steve Reicher: The New Psychology of Leadership
There is an abundance of books around leadership, and thankfully the more current approaches recognise that a leader is not a leader without a follower, and hence what is important is the social dynamic between the two. This book is a robust analysis of social psychological reasons why a leader’s membership and representation of a group are the crucial elements in their being effective. This approach allows for diversity of both leaders and followers and provides a focus for development efforts around relationships and authenticity.

Norman Dodge:The Brain That Changes Itself
Back in my undergrad psychology course I was fascinated by perception and how the brain processes stimuli. This is a beautifully written summary of the history of discoveries about neuroplasticity, written in a very applied way by using multiple case studies of individuals who have made amazing recoveries. We frequently underestimate the brilliance of biology,
and this book has highlighted that to me.

Mark Williams & Danny Penman: Mindfulness: A Practical Guide to Finding Peace in a Frantic World
I could have chosen any of a number of excellent books about Mindfulness. Busyness is becoming a bigger and bigger problem in life, and finding ways to get a bit of headspace consequently becomes more important. Mindfulness is something that helps me, personally, and the research supporting its benefits from psychological and physical health to being able to perform optimally is ever growing.

Marcus Buckingham:Now Discover Your Strengths
Allowing and supporting individuals to focus on what they find energising and naturally motivating seems such an obvious concept, until you realise how rarely it truly happens within organisations. Buckingham is a great storyteller and simply describes the concept of working with strengths.

Tim Harford: Adapt
A behavioural economist examines the need for organisations to be adaptive to the changes in their environment in order to survive and thrive. The analogy reminds me of the need to be constantly scanning the environment, experimenting with new and different ideas and approaches.

Daniel Pink: Drive
Turns conventional views of motivation within organisations on their head. The fact that monetary reward can de-motivate can release organisations to be more creative about how they engage their people and also encourages them to treat people as individuals rather than homogeneous beings who will all follow a certain carrot.

Photo: Jon Sutton. 

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