A LONG time ago, I met Jim McKelvey. At the time, he was blowing glass at Third Degree Glass Factory here in St. Louis. Jim helped me coordinate my wedding reception at the facility. Now he’s the author of “The Innovation Stack”.
He was quirky, smart and had the best dry sense of humor. Little did I know, the glass blowing was more of a side gig and he would quickly go on to invent Square with Jack Dorsey, also from St. Louis.
The story of how Square came to be is full of twists and turns and lessons to be learned thanks to the benefit of hindsight.
Jim wrote the book “The Innovation Stack” explaining the process from start to finish in enough detail that lets you feel like you’re living through it. That alone should be enough to intrigue you enough to give the book a read but if you need more, let me remind you that Jim writes this book with humor and perspective and it’s downright entertaining.
3 Takeaways From The Book:
- Find your own idea buddy. If breaking the mold is something you’re interested in doing, teaming up can lead to more productive outcomes than working alone. Find someone you can work with to identify and develop your ideas.
- Whatever is possible is permissible. No idea is too crazy if you’re willing to stick with it. Problems/Challenges lead to solutions that quite possibly lead to new problems. That cycle is typical and shouldn’t stop you from trying!
- Read between the lines and underneath them. This is more specific to how you should read the book. Usually footnotes are reserved for citing references or details of the text that don’t necessarily add to the read (in my opinion) but in this book, they are absolutely worth looking at.
Bottom line here: I’ve read a lot of “business” books and found myself dozing off after the intro. This book had me at “giant monster” and kept my attention all the way through. Don’t be discouraged by the name, it isn’t a tech-centric book. It’s for everyone!
The book is available on amazon. If you’re interested in checking it out you can buy it there, OR head over to Instagram and try to win your own autograph copy of the book and a copy of his fun comic all about banking!