Tim Challies recently reviewed Atul Gawande’s The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right over at 10 Million Words.
It’s interesting to note the subtitle: “how to get things right.” It’s important to be Getting Things Done, and it’s also important to be getting things done right.
Gawande’s book mostly looks at the field of medicine, but the point he makes shows the usefulness of checklists in all areas. Checklists do not necessarily stem from an attempt to get everything buttoned up for its own sake and don’t have to have the effect of stifling action. They can increase true effectiveness — and be pretty cool and interesting.
Here’s Challies’ first paragraph:
I’ve heard Atul Gawande referred to as “The Malcolm Gladwell of Doctors.” I suppose others have noticed what it took me all of two chapters to realize about this book–that there are clear similarities in writing style, in form, even in substance between Gawande and Gladwell. Gawande crafts his arguments much the way Gladwell does and uses references in much the same way. Overall it makes for enjoyable reading. Like Gladwell, he makes information interesting that, by rights, ought to be boring.
The review is relatively short, and it’s definitely worth reading the whole thing.
(Also, here’s a post I did on checklists and Gawande a few months ago.)