What We’re Reading from the Oct. 15, 2011, Issue of CIO Magazine

Books and blogs about innovation and leadership success

The Social Organization 

How to Use Social Media to Tap the Collective Genius of Your Customers and Employees

By Anthony J. Bradley and Mark P. McDonald

Book Social media, with all its popularity, is still trying to find a solid place in the enterprise. The main obstacle is finding a way to measure results and ensure productivity. This book cites over 400 organizations that have seen results from using social media and provides a step-by-step strategy that can be applied to companies of all types. Harvard Business Review Press, $35

America the Vulnerable 

Inside the New Threat Matrix of Digital Espionage, Crime and Warfare

By Joel Brenner

Book Author Joel Brenner, who worked for several years with the federal cybersecurity program, gives us an inside look at how the government is dealing with the threat of cyberattack. He reveals risks Americans may not think about, such as emerging spy groups that are using sophisticated tactics. Brenner confidently states that the U.S. government doesn’t have the power to stop cyberattacks such as putting counterfeit computer chips on planes or using flash drives to download battle plans from Iraq. Penguin Press, $27.95

The Anywhere Leader

How to Lead and Succeed in Any Business Environment

By Mike Thompson

Book  The economic crisis and its far-reaching side effects have put business leaders to the test. Author Mike Thompson, CEO of organizational development company SVI, says anyone in business should be able to rise above uncertainty and disruption. Thompson delves into a number of case studies, including Toms shoes and Johnson aanndd Johnson, that demonstrate qualities that “anywhere” leaders possess­—qualities such as uniting employees using enlightening initiatives and culture. Wiley, $24.95

The Guild CIO

By Stephen Gillett

Blog  The CIO of Starbucks shares his personal experiences as a World of Warcraft gamer and relates professional tales from his job. In a recent post, he wrote an ode to Steve Jobs, reflecting on his lifelong love of Apple products, and musing that as a CIO, he’s now one of those that Jobs “called an ‘orifice’ to the end users of an organization.” He goes on, “I was not offended; I know we can be a hard lot to work with as we have to care about things that are not as cool as the consumer elements of great ­technology.” theguildcio.blogspot.com

Best Practices Are Stupid

40 Ways to Out-Innovate the Competition

By Stephen M. Shapiro

Book  This unconventional guide provides strategies for fostering innovation. Shapiro, formerly of Accenture, says most leaders inadvertently suffocate creativity by following tired formulas. His suggestions? Hiring people you don’t like, not asking for ideas, and going above and beyond thinking outside the box. Doing the unexpected is the key to bright ideas, he says. Each chapter concludes with statements like, “When the pace of change outside your organization is greater than the pace of change within, you will be eaten.” Portfolio Penguin, $22.95

Follow Editorial Assistant Lauren Brousell on Twitter: @lbrousell.

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