Tuesday, August 24, 2010

A book called The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande is a
o page-turner
o all-nighter
o thought-provoking book
about the complexities and quantities of information that we deal with in our occupations and daily lives. We have access to more information, procedures, inventions, cures, but how do we store what we know and retrieve it when it is needed?

Gawande’s examples are incredibly intriguing from the

o origin of aviation checklists with the crash of the Boeing Corporation’s Model 299 (the B 17) on Oct. 30, 1935
o to construction schedules/checklists and submittal checklists of structural engineer and master builder Joe Salvia
o to how Walmart out organized FEMA and performed rescue efforts in New Orleans after Katrina
o to stopping central line infections in patients in ICU’s, one of 178 tasks an ICU team must coordinate and execute in a day, and much more.

This book is fascinating in the stories Gawande tells and in the possibilities with thinking through tasks and creating checklists to work by, particularly for those in professions where they will accept responsibility for others, often life and death responsibilities.

Be sure to read pages 182 –186 to see what characteristic we all have in common and which one we need to practice more often.

Fascinating stuff…you’ll think about this book for months after you finish reading it. You might even create your own checklist.