Friday 31 May 2019

Late night WIP

Lots of work on my workspace in recent days. While I'd love to show you what I'm working on now, I will have to wait until these models are formally released by Wyrd. All I can say for now is this: you're in for a treat with M3E plastics. Wyrd has upped their production standard yet again and the new minis are even better than those from M2E.

#12/2019 Factfulness

The book starts with a series of questions about global trends. It's easy yo get them wrong and what Rosling has proven is even more surprising. Apparently, a group of chimpanzees is more likely to get more correct replies than high profile members of elite organizations with worldwide reach. These questions reveal ten factors that impact our perception of the world. It turns out that more often than not, our perception of the world are wrong. This relates, among other issues, to how we see progress (the prevalent view that "things are getting worse"), how we are presented the news (focus on the negative, fear), and how we like to split the world into two (us/them, developed/developing countries). 
Rosling, using fact-based and logical reasoning, proves that our world is in much better shape than we think. Each of the initial questions is dissected and analyzed using different viewpoints and contrasted with diversified data. Seeing the world from the negative perspective, without taking relevant data and different viewpoints into account, causes us to lose focus and perspective. 
Very good read, this one should be an obligatory book on the reading list for high-school/college students as it encourages independent thinking and promotes fact-based approach to discussion.

#11/2019 Leadershift

I've  made a major change in my career quite recently, moving from administrative position in public sector, to begin from scratch in a private sector. I read somewhere a review of this book that stated it offered valuable insights into dynamically changing business reality. I thought it could give me some food for thought that would help me adapt better into new situation, and I was right.
John c. Maxwell goes through 11 changes that he's made to adapt his leadership to meet new circumstances. Among others these include a change from ladder climbing to ladder building - a concept I've adapted for a while using the socio-cultural framework and the concept of scaffolding.
Maxwell begins by making a clear distinction between management and leadership. The former is based on quantifiable, known facts, and is associated with stability. Leadership, on the other hand, means working effectively with many unknown factors. 
The author offers many interesting insights into how the proposed changes could be achieved. He strongly believed that leaders should create other leaders, and as such, they should not only blaze the trail, but also make sure that the path to follow is easily accessible. Being a transformational leader is seen as inspiring people to step out of their comfort zone, identifying what they see as obstacles, and helping them overcome those.
Some of the ideas in Maxwell's book are very innovative and challenge the traditional approach to being a leader. Other go through the fundamentals in a refreshing way. Definitely a good read, not only for leaders but for all interested in how work environment in modern business looks like.

#10/2019 Rethinking Positive Thinking: Inside the New Science of Motivation

I've never been a big fan of "positive thinking" as I think just hoping for the best and planning for it doesn't get one too far. Gabriele Oettigen presents vast research background to prove that this can actually be true. Focusing only on positive outcome can drain our energy and cause our performance to be lower. Instead, she proposed mental contrasting. It is a visualization technique that is strongly connected to one's expectation of success - the higher it is, the better the outcome. The technique is not that complex. It starts with thinking about/writing down positive effects of what you want to achieve. Following that, some time should be devoted to focusing on the most beneficial effects of achieving your goal. After that, attention should be paid to the biggest obstacles. And that's the gist of it, visualizing goals and obstacles, and contrasting them. 
Oettigen has also developed a tool that facilitates the whole process. It is called WOOP (Wish, Outcome, Obstacle, Plan). This is supposed to help redirect thoughts to the process of mental contrasting and make it more effective.
In general, I like these ideas and have subconsciously used these strategies before. What I'd do differently is (for example before attempting a challenging task/having a tough conversation), is that I'd try to imagine more challenges and try to predict my rely to potential problematic scenarios.

#9/2019 The Art of the Deal

I reached for this book as I wanted to read something that actually shows Trump in a positive light. What better way that something that he wrote himself?
I've never thought highly of him as a person/leader but his financial success is undeniable. I thought that "The Art of the Deal" might be a way to redeem, at least slightly, what I've read about him in "Fear, Trump in White House".
This one is basically his diary, an account of his daily work and thoughts on running large business. For the most part, he sticks to some main principles:
- be bold in your decision-making,
- family comes first (his children were just small kids at the time the book was written),
- value relationships with people you've got good history with.
 While I still don't feel much sympathy for the man, I have to admit that some of his characteristics like consistency in planning and acting as well as keeping firmly to your beliefs.

Sunday 19 May 2019

Marcus x3

Marcus the beastmaster. One of the most interesting characters in the world of Malifaux An educated man who combines deep knowledge with profound understanding of wilderness. Here in three versions.

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