by Edited by Carol Zarrow

Ideas to Inspire CIOs

Jan 01, 20033 mins

The Deviant’s Advantage: How Fringe Ideas Create Mass Markets

By Ryan Mathews and Watts Wacker

Crown Business, 2002, $25.95

As if they sensed the book’s title might pose a problem, futurists and consultants Ryan Mathews and Watts Wacker waste no time assuring readers that they’re using the word deviant in its purest form: something or someone away from the norm.

Deviance, they say, is the ultimate source of growth and innovation. So how do mainstream companies go deviant? By hiring people who will tell management when it’s time to let go of old and tired ideas (and whom management will presumably thank instead of firing). This book is a wild ride and well worth the initial wince at the title.

What’s Next? Exploring the New Terrain for Business

By Eamonn Kelly and Peter Leyden

Perseus Publishing, 2002, $26

The global business network rejects the notion that one theory fits all when the topic is the future. Coauthors Kelly and Leyden (the GBN’s president and knowledge developer, respectively) map the future’s new terrain into four thematic areas and examine individual aspects of those themes in chapters populated with ideas from 50 artists, scholars, scientists and writers. The effect is remarkably like a live symposium and a solid demonstration of the GBN’s mantra that “none of us is as smart as all of us.”

A Passion for Ideas: How Innovators Create the New and Shape Our World

By Heinrich von Pierer and Bolko von Oetinger, eds.

Purdue University Press, 2002, $24.95

How is “the new” discovered? ask the editors of A Passion for Ideas, a collection of essays by or interviews with 26 innovators in the fields of art, music, business and science. These creative minds expound on how they “do creativity.” Readers may doubt the subjects’ calm assurances that creativity is possible, even easy. The book’s central challenge, however, is persuasive and undeniable: All organizations have to come out for an encore or become irrelevant.

The Greatest Minds and Ideas of All Time

By Will Durant

Simon & Schuster, 2002, $20

Historian and philosopher Will Durant was frequently asked for his opinion on the best, the greatest or the highest, and answered in a series of essays that originally appeared as magazine articles and lectures and have now been compiled into The Greatest Minds and Ideas of All Time.

Numerous books have exhumed historical figures and propped them up as exemplars of modern corporate virtues. Thankfully, this lively little book is not one of those. Reading it is to experience Durant’s great mind having fun. Readers will have fun too with this pure play of ideas.

CIO Best-Seller List

Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done

by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan

Crown Publishing Group, 2002

Primal Leadership: Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence

By Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis and Annie McKee

Harvard Business School Press, 2002

Fish! A Remarkable Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results

by Stephen C. Lundin, Harry Paul and John Christensen

Hyperion, 2000


By Rudolph W. Giuliani

Miramax Books, 2002

Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t

By Jim Collins

HarperCollins Publishers, 2001

Source: October 2002 data, compiled by Powell’s Books, Portland, Ore.