Mark Graban's leanblog.org - Lean Healthcare, Lean Hospitals, Healthcare Kaizen, Lean Thinking, Lean Manufacturing, Toyota Production System

My Stack of Books: Raw Material and WIP

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I love books. I'd also love to have more time to read books, or finish books. People often ask me what I'm reading. Here's what I'm trying to read or am wanting to read:

“WIP” — started, but haven't finished (doesn't mean I don't like the book)

  • Getting the Right Things Done
  • Leadership for Smooth Patient Flow
  • Managing the Professional Services Firm
  • Errors, Medicine, and the Law
  • The Health Care Value Chain
  • The Baptist Health Care Journey to Excellence

“Raw Material” — books that are sitting here, but haven't started (in order I'd like to start them):

Ah, the waste of overproduction. My head tells me it is waste to buy books faster than I can read them, but I can't help it.

We're all busy and don't have enough time, especially with so many good lean books coming out on the market. Maybe we need a lean book summary service, along the lines of those business book summary clubs?

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What are you reading, or waiting to read? What's in your book inventory that hasn't been converted to “finished goods”??

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A note on the Strategos book. There's an endorsement quote from me on the back, I did look at an electronic preview copy, so I've sort of read it, I guess.

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Mark Graban is an internationally-recognized consultant, author, and speaker who has worked in healthcare, manufacturing, and startups. He is author of the Shingo Award-winning books Lean Hospitals and Healthcare Kaizen, as well as The Executive Guide to Healthcare Kaizen. His most recent book is an anthology titled Practicing Lean that benefits the Louise H. Batz Patient Safety Foundation, where Mark is a board member. Mark is also the VP of Improvement & Innovation Services for the technology company KaiNexus.

5 Comments
  1. David Carlton says

    Your backlog is pretty good, as far as reading backlogs go. Anyways, what helped me reduce mine was signing up for Amazon Prime: that way, I knew I could get pretty much any book within two days (often one day), so there was no longer any excuse for having more than one book lying around that I hadn’t started.

    Well worth the $75/year, or whatever it costs: push lean out to your suppliers.

  2. Kevin says

    My backlog is similar, but I also get a stack of books each week from publishers for review and possible inclusion on Superfactory… many of which have absolutely nothing to do with manufacturing or leadership. My wife gets incredibly annoyed at all the stacks, so I end up taking them into the office and giving most of them away. I always wanted a nice library with overstuffed chairs surrounded by tall racks of books, but not with this wife!

    I second the vote for Amazon Prime. I’ve made back that $75 very quickly.

  3. Mark Graban says

    Good point on keeping the raw material at Amazon’s warehouse. I’m a “Prime” member and it certainly does pay for itself (not just books, but other items).

  4. Linda Fayerweather, Editor says

    Oh books. My weakness. In my previous career I was a librarian – WIP – some that are unread really just become “reference books” and this week I was able to help someone out with a book they needed, I had and now they are my client.

    I’ve had great luck with half.com even before they were an eBay company and often think I’m renting books – buy them cheap; sell them back or give them away.

    Rule of Thumb: Two shelves must be book free if I want to buy new material – Sorting and Sweeping are big deals in my office. Oh, yes, the ceiling is 13 ft high and one wall is all book shelves – I guess I never really left the library.

    Linda Fayerweather

  5. Mike L says

    W.I.P.:

    “Profit Beyond Measure”
    “Toyota Product Development System”
    “Toyota Way Field Guide”

    Raw Materials:

    “Relevance Lost”
    “Relevance Regained”
    “Purple Cow” (marketing book)
    “Unleashing the Ideavirus” (marketing book)

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