Here Comes Everybody by Clay Shirky you must read. If you claim to be in marketing, advertising, media or just have a general interest in understanding how technology empowers people to connect and what it means for society – good and bad – in general you must read this book.
If you’ve ever been concerned about the phenomenon of echo chambers (couple more books in here that I’ll be reading right after this one to get different perspective – i.e. step out of the echo chamber – on roughly the same topic) and their effect on the work you’re involved with (that’s me), you must read this book. Late in the book, in a section called “It’s Not How Many People You Know, It’s How Many Kinds”, the following appears in relation to a company going through a transition in management and re-org:
“…a dense social network of people in the same department (and who were therefore likely to be personally connected to one another) seemed to create an echo chamber effect…new managers rejected ideas drawn from this pool with disproportionate frequency, often on the grounds that the ideas were too involved in the minutiae of that particular department and provided no strategic advantage…”
Again, back to the section title, it’s not how many you know, it’s how many kinds…
If you’re looking for a professional life-changing experience you should read this book. It did mine. I will say that I thought the first few chapters were slow and re-hashing things I already know or believe, but with Chapter 4 and onward, Shirky has really challenged my thinking.