This Book Club Action Plan provides a structure and recommendations for implementing a collaborative learning experience for an organization or project team.
What is a Book Club?:
Book clubs are a great way to build teamwork and culture through a shared study of concepts that can be applied in your work. Typically, a group will select a book based on a topic that is relevant to the team’s current work. A good selection will challenge the team’s thinking and push them to innovate and try new things as well as see their work in a new light.
Great choices for a first book club:
- Integrated Project Delivery – An Action Guide for Leaders (IPD specific guide)
- 5 Dysfunctions of a Team (team building and effective management principles)
- It's Your Ship (Servant Leadership)
- Getting the Right Things Done (leadership and execution)
- The Toyota Way (lean principles and concepts)
- there are many more great books, send us us an email with your favorites.
Book Club Set Up:
Books clubs work best with a group of 3 – 8 people. Select a book that focuses on a topic that is important for your group. The leader should break the book up into manageable chunks for the team to read. The leader sets a cadence of meetings for facilitated discussions. Ex: Break the book up by chapters and set up a 1 hour meeting at lunch every Wednesday for 6 weeks (if there are 6 chapters). Everyone does the same reading each week.
Meeting Set Up:
Each meeting should have a new facilitator. The facilitator can start the meeting by taking role and asking for people to share a summary of the chapter/chapters that were assigned over the previous week. The facilitator can share their thoughts as well but should focus on giving others a chance to speak and guiding the conversation through asking questions. Each meeting should end with a volunteer to facilitate the next session.
Sample Questions for the Book Club Facilitator:
What did you like about this week’s section?
What were some of the most interesting concepts?
Was there anything that you did not agree with?
Is there anything that surprised you?
How could these concepts be applied in our work environment?
What might it look like if we did that?
What outcomes do you think we might be able to create?
What are our next steps?
Completing your Book Club:
Complete the book group with a wrap up of the overall book and document next steps and key concepts to carry forward for the team. Create an implementation plan with commitments, responsible parties and due dates.