McKinsey's 'most read' of 2011

The lull between Christmas and New Year is an excellent time to carry out some work-focused housekeeping duties.  I took the opportunity to spend a few hours reviewing my RSS feeds as well as many additional subscriptions to e-newsletters, daily updates, and press releases.  I took the time to consider which resources had provided real insight and impact in 2011.One subscription that really did ‘keep on giving' in 2011 was McKinsey Quarterly.  The latest quarterly update features links to the most popular articles of 2011.  Appearing in the top 10 list, and first published in January 2011, this article on recovering from information overload was discussed in this blog in February.  The popularity of the article suggests that there are many opportunities for information professionals to provide guidance to colleagues on managing information flows.Some other key themes emerge in the top ten articles, pointing the way to what is exercising those leading teams and organisations.Creativity - information overload is identified as something that can stifle creativity - but what can spark it?  In Sparking creativity in teams the authors review the latest research and present four techniques to improve creativity, including the use of analogies and creating constraints.  In Seven steps to better brainstorming the authors recommend the asking of better questions, as well as ensuring that the right people are ecouraged to to participate in the process.Strategy - in Remapping your strategic mindset, the author describes how executives can benefit from better mental (‘rooted') maps to help them identify opportunities and threats.  In The perils of bad strategy UCLA's Richard Rumelt summarises the differences between ‘good' and ‘bad' strategies and helps readers identify examples of both, while Have you tested your strategy lately provides 10 tests to help executives ensure their strategies are ‘roadworthy'.All of the top ten articles are well worth reading and McKinsey Quarterly remains on my ‘must read' list for 2012.  Other subscriptions were not so lucky, but that's another story!