Category Archives: Randy’s blog entries

Entries by Randy Mayeux

Urban Engagement Book Club, Thursday, April 18, 12:30 pm, over Zoom – The Hidden Roots of White Supremacy by Robert P. Jones – And, here is my comprehensive handout

the-hidden-roots-of-white-supremacy-9781668009512_hr

You are invited – on Zoom, Thursday, April 18!

A special encouragement to attend the

Urban Engagement Book Club

Thursday, April 18, over Zoom, 12:30 pm

Please join us. All details below.

————

Download today’s handout by clicking here.

—————-

If you have an open lunch time window Thursday, April 18, 12:30 pm (CST), I am presenting my synopsis of:

The Hidden Roots of White Supremacy: and the Path to a Shared American Future by Robert P. Jones

This is a book that explains just how we have buried the crucial history of how the white European arrivals to the new world could explain how they viewed the native peoples, and the arriving Africans, to have no claim over the land; nor have the rights that the “Discoverers” had. It is a chilling account…

From my handout: The doctrine of Manifest Destiny along with the Doctrine of Discovery have fed the notion of white supremacy – the notion of superiority – and must be acknowledged, and fully condemned and abandoned.  

I encourage you to download my comprehensive handout, print it out, and follow along.

Come join us on Zoom.

Urban Engagement Book Club
Thursday, April 18– 12:30 pm (CST)

Synopsis presented by Randy Mayeux
We conclude shortly after 1:30.
(This event is free).

And, here is the Zoom link to join our gathering:

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

To join us on Zoom today, at 12:30:

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87533966938?pwd=ZTZyNjlEQ0xlZzJROTlFeWxRdm9BQT09

Meeting ID: 875 3396 6938

Passcode: 862561

———————

Here is the more complete Zoom info.

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Urban Engagement Book Club

Time: April 18, 2024 12:30 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87533966938?pwd=ZTZyNjlEQ0xlZzJROTlFeWxRdm9BQT09

Meeting ID: 875 3396 6938

Passcode: 862561

One tap mobile

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Dial by your location

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Meeting ID: 875 3396 6938

Passcode: 862561

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kdlE4Wb3WF

The New York Times has published its April, 2024 list of best-selling business books – Yes, Atomic Habits is at #1…again!

The New York Times has published its April, 2024 list of best-selling business books – Yes, Atomic Habits is at #1…again! Atomic Habits

This morning, I presented my synopsis of Atomic Habits by James Clear to leaders in a growing, mid-size city in North Texas.  I’ve lost count of how many times I have presented this synopsis.  But each time I present it, I kick myself again for not developing fully the good habits I need to develop, and not ending the bad habits I should end.  I am grateful for the reminders I hear as I present this book to each new audience.  This is such a practical, life-shaping book.  So, it is not a surprise that it is yet again at #1 on the New York Times list of best-selling business books.  It has held this spot so many times since it was published.

Of the ten books on this month’s list, I have presented synopses of six of them at our monthly pubic event, the First Friday Book SynopsisAtomic Habits, Supercommunicators, The Creative Act, Slow Productivity, Hidden Potential, and Elon Musk. 

And, this week, I am presenting my synopsis of Hidden Potential to leaders of city governments, and then I am presenting my synopsis of Elon Musk at a conference of city government leaders on South Padre Island – just across the way from where SpaceX launches its big rockets.  That will be fun.

Of the six I have presented, every one of them is worth your money and time.  These are very good books to read, and learn from.

I do want to make this observation:  this month’s list has no books by women authors .  This monthly list frequently has very few women authors.  I wish more books by women were included.Elon musk, Isaacson

Here is The New York Times April, 2024 list of best-selling business books:

#1 – Atomic Habits by James Clear

#2 – Supercommunicators by Charles Duhigg

#3 – The Creative Act by Rick Rubin with Neil Strauss

#4 – Slow Productivity by Cal Newport

#5 – Elevate and Dominate by Deion Sander with Don Yeager

#5 – Worthy by Jamie Kern Lima

#7 – I Will Teach You to Be Rich, Second Edition by Ramit Sethi

#8 – Hidden Potential by Adam Grant

#9 – Elon Musk by Walter Isaacson

#10 – Holy Grail of Investing by Tony Robbinm with Christopher Zook

There is more to mindset than just…mindset. And, there is so much to AI that we don’t yet know – two good books for the May 3 First Friday Book Synopsis

“My synopses are almost like getting your whole team to read a book together, which enables your own conversation on how to implement the key lessons from the book. Lifelong learning in real time.” – Randy Mayeux

FFBS, May, 2024 

Book Lovers & Lifelong Learners, Join us for two good books: for the May 3, 2024 First Friday Book Synopsis: Friday, May 3, 2024

TWO COMPREHENSIVE BOOK SYNOPSES – FOR THE LIFELONG LEARNER IN ALL OF US!

Come to learn; AND make some great connections!

IN OUR 27th Year! — Over 624 books presented – and counting!

WHAT:  The First Friday Book Synopsis

WHEN:  May 3, 7:00 am (presentations begin at 7:25 am)

WHERE:  The Park City Club, Dallas AND streaming live on Zoom

Park City Club, 5956 Sherry Lane, Suite 1700, Dallas, TX 75225

Click here to register for the in-person gathering at the wonderful Park City Club in Dallas.

AND…ZOOM Info:

 Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83280208373?pwd=QWppaTFFNUI4ZU5VRU8wQjRVdDRqZz09

Meeting ID: 832 8020 8373

Passcode: 445289

——

Every month since April 1998, we have presented synopses of two good business books at the First Friday Book Synopsis, in Dallas.  Now a hybrid event (both in-person at the Park City Cluband on Zoom), it is a true learning event.

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The two books selected for May 3 are:

Co-Intelligence: Living and Working with AI  by Ethan Mollick

and

Cultures of Growth: How the New Science of Mindset Can Transform Individuals, Teams, and Organizations by Mary C. Murphy (Author), Carol Dweck (Foreword)

Come join us!

May 3, 2024 – Park City Club (and Zoom) — 7:00 am Central Time — (program begins at 7:25 am)

At the First Friday Book Synopsis, we make each month’s session a genuine learning event.  You learn from the best business books, and then it is up to you to put into practice the things you learn.

Click here to register for the in-person session.  (Zoom info is below).

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In our 27th YEAR of the First Friday Book Synopsis

Randy Mayeux provides thorough synopses of the content of useful, best-selling business books. He provides a comprehensive, multi-page synopsis handout, that concludes with his own lessons and takeaways from each book he presents.

“I love good books; and I read books
And share their core concepts
To help people become more literate
And know what to work on
To do a better job
To build a better company
And, ultimately, to build a better life.”
Randy Mayeux
——————-

May 3, 2024 – Park City Club; and on Zoom 

What to expect:

Two fast-paced synopsis presentations.

For each synopsis , we prepare a comprehensive and thorough multi-page synopsis handout.

For In-person participants, you will be given copies of the two synopsis handouts.  For those attending remotely, you will receive a synopsis handout to download for each of the two books, delivered the day before the event, via e-mail (and, available on this blog).

YOU DO NOT HAVE TO READ THE BOOKS IN ADVANCE! – No pre-reading of the books required!

If you are like many, you do not have time to read all of the books you would like to read. The First Friday Book Synopsis is designed for you.

Our synopses are comprehensive, thorough, and they will give you plenty of the key content from each book. You will learn, and be able to ponder the ideas in a useful way. And, even if you have read the book, my synopsis will help you remember more of what you read.

I hope you can join us.

For in-person participants: click here to register for in-person attendance.

For remote participants:
The cost of this remote meeting is “free.”
But, if you would like to contribute to participate, Randy would welcome you to send $12-$15 directly to him through PayPal. Click here for a direct link to “donate” through PayPal.

For remote participants, here is the Zoom info.  The Zoom meeting requires no registration.

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

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Visit our web site where you can purchase past synopses, with audio recordings + synopsis handouts, at: 15minutebusinessbooks.com

For our most recent synopses, click here.

Purchase past synopses bundled in categories, each with audio recordings and synopsis handouts, at our other site; academyoflifelonglearning.com.

Download the two Synopses Handouts for the Friday, April 5, 2024 First Friday Book Synopsis (over Zoom) — Slow Productivity by Cal Newport & Burn Book by Kara Swisher

{Note:  you can also still register to attend in-person for the April 5 First Friday Book Synopsis, at the wonderful Park City Club, by clicking here}.

“My synopses are almost like getting your whole team to read a book together, which enables your own conversation on how to implement the key lessons from the book. Lifelong learning in real time.” – Randy Mayeux

FFBS, April, 2024 

Our 26th Anniversary — Beginning our 27th Year!

You are invited
First Friday Book Synopsis,
Friday, April 5, 2024, 7:25 am (Central Time), on Zoom.
I hope you can join us!

Meeting On Zoom

Click on image to download synopsis handouts

Click on image to download synopsis handouts

Around 100 people (in our combined in-person and Zoom participants) have been joining us for our First Friday Book Synopsis gatherings. We have had participants from all over the country. Please share this word far and wide — all are welcome!

This Friday, April 5, 2024, 7:25 am – Zoom 

The two books for tomorrow are both worth your time!

Slow Productivity: The Lost Art of Accomplishment without Burnout by Cal Newport, is a book that describes the challenges facing knowledge workers. What actually is your work? How will you decide if you are productive? How can you guard your time to work on what is important, and then accomplish what you need to accomplish…without burnout? This is a book to help you survive, and thrive, in this crazy-busy era. (Newport’s earlier book, Deep Work, is one of my favorites. I have put my synopsis handout of that book in the Box folder, as a bonus read for you).

Burn Book: A Tech Love Story by Kara Swisher is a peak inside the memories of one of the two premiere chroniclers of Silicon Valley and the technological age. It is a wonderful read, and I think you will find my synopsis enlightening, and challenging.

Note: The first presentation will begin around 7:25-7:30 am.

I intend to keep this Zoom gathering free. But, your voluntary participation would be appreciated.  If you would like to contribute to participate, Randy would welcome you to send $12-$15 directly to him through PayPal. Click here for a direct link to “donate” through PayPal.

PRINTING TIP: I strongly encourage all to print out the two handouts. If you will begin printing on page 2, you will still have the full handout, and save the ink that you would use on the front/cover sheet. 

Where:  On Zoom

When: This Friday, April 5 — presentations begin at 7:25-7:30 am (Central Time)
The presentations will conclude around 8:35 am
Speaker: Randy Mayeux will deliver both synopsis presentations.

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83280208373?pwd=QWppaTFFNUI4ZU5VRU8wQjRVdDRqZz09

Meeting ID: 832 8020 8373

Passcode: 445289

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Click on image to download synopsis handouts

Click on image to download synopsis handouts

We are all set for Friday’s Remote First Friday Book Synopsis.

#1 — Download, and print both synopses handouts by clicking here. If you have ever attended our event, you know that I am handout intensive. You really will be able to follow along better with physical copies of the handouts in front of you. So, if you have a printer, please print the handouts.

#2 — Come on in for conversation whenever you can. I have enabled the “enable join before host” button. You will arrive in the waiting room, and be let in quickly. So, you can come in, and talk to folks.

#3 — Here is the info, with the link to join the gathering:

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting

Topic: First Friday Book Synopsis, 2022
Time:  April 5, 2023 07:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83280208373?pwd=QWppaTFFNUI4ZU5VRU8wQjRVdDRqZz09

Meeting ID: 832 8020 8373

Passcode: 445289

—–

Reminder: The cost of this remote meeting is “free.”

But, if you would like to contribute to participate, Randy would welcome you to send $12-$15 directly to him through PayPal. Click here for a direct link to “donate” through PayPal.

(Note: you can also send money through Zelle, at Randy’s e-mail address). — (Randy’s e-mail address for PayPal, and Zelle, is ).

Please help spread the word far and wide; help make this a success.

————————–

You might want to read this post. It has a printable one-sheet reminder on how to make the most of your remote learning experience.

Remote Learning 101 – Read this before attending your learning session.

 ——————

Here is more complete Zoom info:

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: First Friday Book Synopsis, 2024

Time: April 5, 2024 07:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83280208373?pwd=QWppaTFFNUI4ZU5VRU8wQjRVdDRqZz09

Meeting ID: 832 8020 8373

Passcode: 445289

One tap mobile

+13462487799,,83280208373#,,,,*445289# US (Houston)

+16694449171,,83280208373#,,,,*445289# US

Dial by your location

  • +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
  • +1 669 444 9171 US
  • +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
  • +1 719 359 4580 US
  • +1 253 205 0468 US
  • +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
  • +1 305 224 1968 US
  • +1 309 205 3325 US
  • +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
  • +1 360 209 5623 US
  • +1 386 347 5053 US
  • +1 507 473 4847 US
  • +1 564 217 2000 US
  • +1 646 931 3860 US
  • +1 689 278 1000 US
  • +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)
  • +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)

Meeting ID: 832 8020 8373

Passcode: 445289

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kBa7nTumc

Shifting Sands: What if the Business Books Don’t Feel Like Answers Anymore?

Note: consider this a reflective piece on where things are at the moment… With a little diagnosis, and not much solution.

——————

“The wise man built his house upon the rock…” – Matthew 7

I had real trouble learning in graduate school.

Long ago, after earning two degrees in Theology, I entered a PhD program in Communication:  Rhetoric and Public Address.  The assignments were many; and many pages long.  Many, many pages long!

But, my problem was not the number of pages.  It was that I was utterly ignorant.  My education in Theology did very little good as I tackled the centuries worth of wisdom in Rhetoric.  I was lost; I was overwhelmed.  I was dispirited.

I asked one of my professors – a very smart, world-renowned academician in the field – to help me out.  I told him I was reading and simply not understanding.  He told me to simply keep reading.  He told me it took people new to the field about six months to begin to grasp the vocabulary, the mindset, the thought processes, required to understand the field.

And, you know what?  He was right.  I simply kept reading, and slowly, then more rapidly, I began to grasp and understand.  I became…conversant, and understanding.

In 1998, I launched a new career in reading, preparing, and presenting synopses of business books.  I have now read so, so many business books.  Leadership; strategy; teams; productivity; technology… the list of different aspects of business is a long one, and growing. And, I do feel like I have a pretty decent grasp of the field.

But something seems to be happening right now that I can’t quite explain.  I am feeling like I am floundering again.  It’s not that I don’t grasp.  It is something else; something I don’t yet understand.

Oh, sure, there have always been far more books than I could read and present. The number of business books published each year is massive.  So, this is not just an “I can’t keep up with all the books” issue.

But things feel different.  Things feel so…unsettled.

Here’s what Chris Anderson said, in his latest book Infectious Generosity:

We’re in a moment when people are really worried… Right now, our collective future seems dangerously fragile, given the ugliness of much of modern culture.

I think that people are writing books, trying to fit old solutions to never-seen-before problems.  I think people want the old solutions to still work (I’m talking pretty recent, but now-old, solutions).  I think I am reading some books – some good books – that I respond to this way:  “OK, I agree.  I like what the author is saying. But, I’m not sure it is going to make that much of a difference.”

I’ve read, and presented synopses of, books that talk about this unsettledness.  The Fourth Turning is Here by Neil Howe is one.  And Adrift by Scott Galloway.  And pieces of Slouching Towards Utopia by J. Bradford De Long is another.

Neil Howe wrote this:  Only when the next season arrives will we be able to grasp the full significance of what we are experiencing now.

I suspect that this is correct.

I will keep reading; and learning, and sharing what I learn.  But, I feel like our foundations are a little shaky; maybe a lot shaky.  A touch more sand, and a little less rock these days.

I hope we find a way forward!

Urban Engagement Book Club, Thursday, March 21, 12:30 pm, over Zoom – Infectious Generosity: The Ultimate Idea worth Spreading by Chris Anderson, Head of TED – And, here is my comprehensive handout

Infectious Generosity

 

—————–

• Note:  Have you marked your calendar for the rest of the year?  We meet for the Urban Engagement Book Club every third Thursday, over Zoom.  Put it in your calendar!

—–

You are invited – on Zoom, Thursday!

A special encouragement to attend 

the Urban Engagement Book Club

Thursday, March 21, over Zoom, 12:30 pm

Please join us. All details below.

————

Download today’s handout by clicking here.

—————-

If you have an open lunch time window Thursday, March 21, 12:30 pm (CST), I am presenting my synopsis of:

Infectious Generosity:  The Ultimate Idea worth Spreading by Chris Anderson, Head of TED .

If you have ever watched, and been helped by, or challenged by, a TED Talk, you know that TED is “Ideas worth spreading.” And, you know that you never have to pay to watch a TED video. Generosity at work.

This book will help you think about becoming more generous; with your money, with your time, with your heart, in every way…

I encourage you to download my comprehensive handout, print it out, and follow along.

Come join us on Zoom.

Urban Engagement Book Club
Thursday, March 21 – 12:30 pm (CST)

Synopsis presented by Randy Mayeux
We conclude shortly after 1:30.
(This event is free).

And, here is the Zoom link to join our gathering:

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

To join us on Zoom today, at 12:30:

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87533966938?pwd=ZTZyNjlEQ0xlZzJROTlFeWxRdm9BQT09

Meeting ID: 875 3396 6938

Passcode: 862561

———————

Here is the more complete Zoom info.

Randy Mayeux is inviting you to a scheduled Zoom meeting.

Topic: Urban Engagement Book Club

Time: March 21, 2024 12:30 PM Central Time (US and Canada)

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87533966938?pwd=ZTZyNjlEQ0xlZzJROTlFeWxRdm9BQT09

Meeting ID: 875 3396 6938

Passcode: 862561

One tap mobile

+13462487799,,87533966938#,,,,*862561# US (Houston)

+16694449171,,87533966938#,,,,*862561# US

Dial by your location

  • +1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
  • +1 669 444 9171 US
  • +1 669 900 6833 US (San Jose)
  • +1 719 359 4580 US
  • +1 253 205 0468 US
  • +1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
  • +1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
  • +1 305 224 1968 US
  • +1 309 205 3325 US
  • +1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
  • +1 360 209 5623 US
  • +1 386 347 5053 US
  • +1 507 473 4847 US
  • +1 564 217 2000 US
  • +1 646 931 3860 US
  • +1 689 278 1000 US
  • +1 929 205 6099 US (New York)

Meeting ID: 875 3396 6938

Passcode: 862561

Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kdlE4Wb3WF