Compiled by Josephine Gross, Ph.D.

Do you remember this clever piece of advice from the Jefferson Airplane song? We all know how crucial it is to expose ourselves to words, images and sounds that help us along towards where we want to go. In this new column, we will highlight personal and professional development tools—books, audiovisual programs, movies, podcasts or any other media—that have been circulating among networkers.

And while we’re being taught, why not also be moved and entertained? Do you have a must-see or must-hear recommendation? Simply email dormouse@networkingtimes.com.

BOOK
The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling Less of More
By Chris Anderson (2006)


The theory of the Long Tail is that our culture and economy is shifting away from a focus on a relatively small number of “hits” (mainstream products and markets) at the head of the demand curve and toward a huge number of niches in the tail.

According to Wired’s editor in chief Chris Anderson, hit-driven economics is a creation of an age without enough room to carry everything for everybody. Not enough shelf space for all the CDs, DVDs and games produced. Not enough screens to show all the available movies. Not enough channels to broadcast all the TV programs and not enough hours in the day to squeeze everything out through any of those sets of slots.

This was the world of scarcity. Now, with online distribution and retail, we are entering a world of abundance, which responds to an entirely different set of rules. For example, personal recommendations drive demand down the Long Tail. Any networkers out there?
MULTIMEDIA
PhotoReading
By Paul Scheele (2006)


This multimedia program (including 8 CDs, manual and workbook) represents a reading breakthrough. It is very different from speed-reading because it teaches you to use your whole mind while being in a very relaxed state, rather than rushing through the material in an effort to read faster.

If you’re like most people, you learned how to read line by line, one word at a time. With the increasing information we need to process on a daily basis, we’re under increasing pressure to do something different. PhotoReading helps by balancing effective learning techniques proven in university studies—including integrative learning, neurolinguistic programming and preconscious processing—allowing you to mentally “photograph” the page at the rate of 25,000 words a minute.

PhotoReading is an other-than-conscious, right-brain process. You learn how to rely not on the words that are on the page, but on what goes on in your head. It’s not about using your eyeballs really fast, it’s about learning how to make more efficient use of your whole brain. (See Paul Scheele’s article in this issue p. 56.)
BOOK
The Entrepreneur Next Door
By Bill Wagner (2006)


Personality matters in becoming a successful entrepreneur. Recent studies show that successful entrepreneurs share a number of common personality traits that are the predominant indicators of success, outweighing education, family ties, skill and experience. Personality itself can be defined through four pairs of interacting factors: dominant versus accepting, sociable versus analytical, relaxed versus driving, and compliant versus independent. These four pairs of factors function on continuums from high to low, so that we can measure how much of each factor every individual has.

Not everyone is cut out to organize, operate and assume the risk of a business venture. If you want to know if you have what it takes to be an entrepreneur (or if someone else does), Bill Wagner has developed two tests to figure out anyone’s entrepreneurial IQ.
DVD
Humanity Ascending. A New Way Through Together. Part 1: Our Story
By Barbara Marx Hubbard (2005)


This forty-minute DVD tells the story of the fourteen-billion-year evolution that we are all part of. Futurist and social innovator Barbara Marx-Hubbard spent over thirty years exploring what our cosmic history can teach us about our future. Unlike most futurists with their dire predictions, Barbara sees remarkable new social, spiritual and cultural possibilities beyond the forces that threaten to overwhelm us.

This is the first of a seven-DVD series called Humanity Ascending. Our Story shows evolution’s dramatic transitions and how every significant development occurred through a catastrophe that led to something entirely new.

In this series, Barbara creates a powerful vision for our future that is positive enough to draw us into it despite the opposing forces. The message is that every choice we make matters and no one can withdraw from this responsibility for our future.
DVD
Facing the Giants

By Alex Kendrick (2006)


This feature-length inspirational drama combines faith and football in the tale of high school coach Grant Taylor, who rises above failure to create a winning spirit on the field. Taylor faces a losing team, a failing marriage and the possibility of being fired. At the end of his rope, he puts his life in God’s hands and, in doing so, finds a stronger purpose and, ultimately, salvation.

Some call it the most uplifting movie they have ever seen. While the acting is not great, it tells a wonderful story and along the way imparts some important truths. The emphasis is on God, leadership, relationships and gratitude. This movie leaves you feeling good and realizing that we truly do make a difference in this world by honoring our highest values and being service-oriented. Watch it with your team, your family—or both.