Thursday, April 28, 2011

Book notes: Love & Respect

Love and RespectLove and Respect by Emerson Eggerichs

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The main contribution of this book is to recognize that the Bible doesn’t only have Ephesians 5.25; it also has Eph. 5.33 and 1 Peter 3.1-2. The ideal marriage is one in which all these verses are known and practiced. Men need respect; women need love. When a man enjoys the respect of his wife, she will enjoy the love of her husband. And vice versa. I believe that much of the happiness of our marriage is due to my wife reading and putting into practice the truths in this book early in our marriage; as I read through it, I was checking off all the things she is doing right!

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Book notes: Understanding Variation

Understanding Variation: The Key to Managing Chaos (2nd Edition)Understanding Variation: The Key to Managing Chaos by Donald J. Wheeler

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I never thought a book on statistics would be exciting, but this one was! It helps that it’s full of stories, stories of the misuse of statistics in management, highlighting the “numerical naiveté” surrounding us (vi). Businesses are managed today off the typical monthly management report; Wheeler shows the irrelevance of such reports for making sound managerial decisions. Graphing the data in control charts present much more meaningful information, and allow one to distinguish between the variation inherent within the process and data that legitimately signal that the process has changed.

The author’s principles are simple and his examples from real life are convincing. He shares more than one horror story of managers being rewarded for the changes they implemented when sound data analysis later revealed that their “improvements” were nothing of the sort.

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Book notes: What is Lean Six Sigma?

What is Lean Six SigmaWhat is Lean Six Sigma by Michael L. George

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is a simple introduction to Lean Six Sigma, an improvement method or engine for eliminating waste in business processes and improving quality (iv).

Lean Six Sigma starts with focusing on the customer and delighting them via speed and quality. The way to achieve this is by improving processes, the environment for doing it in is one of teamwork, and the foundation for it all is data and fact based (as opposed to experience and opinion). 

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Saturday, April 23, 2011

Book notes: A Place of Healing

A Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and God's SovereigntyA Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and God's Sovereignty by Joni Eareckson Tada

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Joni wrote this book out of excruciating pain. It will be especially valuable to those who are also suffering. I won't say more except to mention an wonderful illustration (pp. 96-8) of God’s sovereignty, and wondrous grace in times of trouble.

A while ago Joni and hubby Ken observed 38th anniversary of the day she broke her neck in diving accident. They had crab cakes, because, were it not for  a “feisty Chesapeake Bay blue crab” that bit Joni’s sister’s toe, her sister Kathy would not have found Joni lying helpless face-down in water, praying that Kathy would see her and rescue her.

God gave Joni a gift after that anniversary dinner. They were reading from John 5.2-6 when she discovered that Jesus thought that 38 years of paralysis was a long time! She especially appreciated that in light of the fact that 1 Peter 5.10 makes it sound like a “little while.”

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Memorizing Scripture

Two posts recently from DesiringGod:

Memorizing Scripture: Why and How

Memorizing Scripture for Praying Scripture

I have found the approach that Piper links to very effective.