Self-Renewal: The Individual and the Innovative Society by John W. Gardner
“This is the most exciting and significant book that I have read in years. The subject is the self-renewal of societies and of individuals—why do some atrophy and decay, while others remain innovative and creative? There is no more vital problem than this, especially for an era of constantly accelerating change such as the present.” (L. S. Stavrianos, Northwestern University – Chicago Daily News)
Trust: The Social Virtues and The Creation of Prosperity by Francis Fukuyama
In his bestselling The End of History and the Last Man, Francis Fukuyama argued that the end of the Cold War would also mean the beginning of a struggle for position in the rapidly emerging order of 21st-century capitalism. In Trust, a penetrating assessment of the emerging global economic order “after History,” he explains the social principles of economic life and tells us what we need to know to win the coming struggle for world dominance.
Challenging orthodoxies of both the left and right, Fukuyama examines a wide range of national cultures in order to divine the underlying principles that foster social and economic prosperity. Insisting that we cannot divorce economic life from cultural life, he contends that in an era when social capital may be as important as physical capital, only those societies with a high degree of social trust will be able to create the flexible, large-scale business organizations that are needed to compete in the new global economy.
Why Nonprofits Fail: Overcoming Founder’s Syndrome, Fundphobia and Other Obstacles to Success by Stephen R. Block
In Why Nonprofits Fail, Stephen Block explains that many well-intentioned leaders hold on to views of their nonprofit organizations that perpetuate problems rather than help fix them. According to Block, the first step to success is to challenge one’s own personal paradigms and ideas and be open to unique and alternative approaches to solving problems. This much-needed book helps nonprofits get back on track and offers advice about the seven most common stumbling blocks, including: founder’s syndrome, fundphobia, financial misfortune, Recruitment disorientation, cultural depression in nonprofit organizations, self-serving political performance and role confusion between the board and executive director.
Uncharitable: How Restraints on Nonprofits Undermine Their Potential (Civil Society: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives) by Dan Pallotta
Pallotta TeamWorks was the for-profit brainchild behind several campaigns to raise funds for breast cancer and AIDS research and awareness, creating several nationwide, marathonlike events that raised millions. But its founder came under attack for violating the sacred premises of charitable organizations: low profile, low budget, and little or no profit. Pallotta turns on its head the assumption that charity and capitalism should be forever divided.
Don’t charitable causes deserve the same kind of competitive forces that work to get results in the for-profit sector? Wouldn’t social causes be better served if charitable organizations were headed by the kind of bright, aggressive executives that work in the for-profit sector? Pallotta traces the history of nonprofit organizations to Puritan notions of charity and self-denial. He also offers a detailed case study of TeamWorks and other trends in the nonprofit sector that only tweak around the edges of a system that is sorely in need of change if it is to deliver on its mission to improve social inequities or cure diseases. A passionate, thought-provoking look at the nonprofit sector. –Vanessa Bush
Leadership and the New Science: Discovering Order in a Chaotic World by Margaret J. Wheatley
Leadership and the New Science launched a revolution by demonstrating that ideas drawn from quantum physics, chaos theory, and molecular biology could improve organizational performance. Margaret Wheatley called for free-flowing information, individual empowerment, relationship networks, and organizational change that evolves organically – ideas that have become commonplace. Now Wheatley’s updated classic, based on her experiences with these ideas in a diverse number of organizations on five continents, is available in paperback.