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#VCjawn Book Club

We are excited to venture into a BIGGER, BOLDER, and BRAVER 2020 with the Venture Cafe PHL book club. The book of the month will correlate with the monthly theme. Join us the last Thursday* of every month from 6:00 to 7:30pm Hettie Stroebel, our VC Book Club Ambassador, will facilitate the book club discussion.  *Please note change to the last Thursday of each month. 

We continue with The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power by Shoshana Zuboff


Here’s our 2020 book club list:

January: The Infinite Game by Simon Sinek. In finite games, like football or chess, the players are known, the rules are fixed, and the endpoint is clear. The winners and losers are easily identified. In infinite games, like business or politics or life itself, the players come and go, the rules are changeable, and there is no defined endpoint. There are no winners or losers in an infinite game; there is only ahead and behind. — About the Book, Penguin Random House

“Because they are playing with an end point in mind, Carse tells us, finite-minded players do not like surprises and fear any kind of disruption. Things they cannot predict or cannot control could upset their plans and increase their chances of losing. The infinite-minded player, in contrast, expects surprises, even revels in them, and is prepared to be transformed by them. They embrace the freedom of play and are open to any possibility that keeps them in the game. Instead of looking for ways to react to what has already happened, they look for ways to do something new ” — The Infinite Game (p. 11)

February: Connected Strategy: Building Continuous Customer Relationships for Competitive Advantage by Nicolaj Siggelkow and Christian Terwiesch. Business Models for Transforming Customer Relationships. What if there were a way to turn occasional, sporadic transactions with customers into long-term, continuous relationships–while simultaneously driving dramatic improvements in operational efficiency? What if you could break your existing trade-offs between superior customer experience and low cost? This is the promise of a connected strategy. New forms of connectivity–involving frequent, low-friction, customized interactions–mean that companies can now anticipate customer needs as they arise, or even before. — About the Book, Harvard Business Review

“Moving away from episodic interactions toward a connected relationship turns a theme park into a magical experience, transforms a book publisher into a creator of learning journeys, and revamps a hospital system into a proactive care organization. Such deeply connected relationships create more loyalty and higher profits. Connected strategies don’t just happen; they need to be carefully designed” (1). 

March : The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power by Shoshana Zuboff. In this masterwork of original thinking and research, Shoshana Zuboff provides startling insights into the phenomenon that she has named surveillance capitalism. The stakes could not be higher: a global architecture of behavior modification threatens human nature in the twenty-first century just as industrial capitalism disfigured the natural world in the twentieth. — About the Book, Public Affairs

“The stakes could not be higher: a global architecture of behavior modification threatens human nature in the twenty-first century just as industrial capitalism disfigured the natural world in the nineteenth and twentieth.” 

April (currently reading): White Fragility: Why It’s Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo with a special guest facilitation by Aurora Archer and Kelly Croce Sorg. In this “vital, necessary, and beautiful book” (Michael Eric Dyson), antiracist educator Robin DiAngelo deftly illuminates the phenomenon of white fragility and “allows us to understand racism as a practice not restricted to ‘bad people’” (Claudia Rankine). Referring to the defensive moves that white people make when challenged racially, white fragility is characterized by emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and by behaviors including argumentation and silence. — About the Book, Beacon Press

May: Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know by Malcolm Gladwell

June: Disrupt Yourself, With a New Introduction: Master Relentless Change and Speed Up Your Learning Curve by Whitney Johnson

July: The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace-Wells

August: The Body: A Guide for Occupants by Bill Bryson

September: A Human Algorithm: How Artificial Intelligence Is Redefining Who We Are by Flynn Coleman

October: The Business of Changing the World: How Billionaires, Tech Disrupters, and Social Entrepreneurs Are Transforming the Global Aid Industry by Raj Kumar

November: Humanocracy: Creating Organizations as Amazing as the People Inside Them by Gary Hamel

December: Seeing Around Corners: How to Spot Inflection Points in Business Before They Happen by Rita McGrath