The #MACoCon Book Club Rides Again, on “Think Again”

MACo’s “good government” Book Club talked through Adam Grant’s Think Again, and a variety of related topics, during its last renewal amidst the MACo Summer Conference.

At the MACo Summer Conference, county officials and other guests have stoked the fires of discussion around a book affecting public service and best practices as officials, employees, and colleagues. The selection for August was Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know by Adam M. Grant.

From the synopsis on the reader-driven website Good Reads:

Think Again is a book about the benefit of doubt, and about how we can get better at embracing the unknown and the joy of being wrong. Evidence has shown that creative geniuses are not attached to one identity, but constantly willing to rethink their stances and that leaders who admit they don’t know something and seek critical feedback lead more productive and innovative teams.

New evidence shows us that as a mindset and a skilllset, rethinking can be taught and Grant explains how to develop the necessary qualities to do it. Section 1 explores why we struggle to think again and how we can learn to do it as individuals, arguing that ‘grit’ alone can actually be counterproductive. Section 2 discusses how we can help others think again through learning about ‘argument literacy’. And the final section 3 looks at how schools, businesses and governments fall short in building cultures that encourage rethinking.

In the end, learning to rethink may be the secret skill to give you the edge in a world changing faster than ever.

Read more on Goodreads.

MACo’s Executive Director Michael Sanderson kicked off the discussion, noting “I know this won’t even fill up the ballroom… but I love having two or three dozen of us get together like this and really dig in.”

MACo is grateful for the ongoing support and sponsorship from JP Morgan, which has made possible the delivery of free advance copies. Their support for, and contributions to, each renewal of the Book Club has greatly advanced this multi-year conference offering. Douglas Krinsky from JP Morgan, a contributor toward the effort from the beginning, led the August discussion.

Want to be part of the process for selecting the next book for the MACo Good Government Book Club? Drop an email to Michael Sanderson, and make plans to attend the January 4-6, 2023 Winter Conference!


Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties