The Checklist Manifesto - Atul Gawande

Add another one to the anecdotal self-help genre. Mr. Gawande, Boston-based surgeon, New Yorker staff writer and and an author of excellent anecdotal medical books Complications and Better this time writes about how making checklists and then following them will make us would reduce complications and make us perform better in our everyday lives.

Mr. Gawande's style is casual and simple to follow.  His message is even more mundane than that, unfortunately. I am afraid we lost a really good writer. Mr. Gawande's insights into medical science humanized the world of medicine for a lot of readers. One ended that book feeling empowered in some sense. It was as if a world that you had only heard about was revealed to you. However, this book is more populist than anything. It is certainly going to sell more copies but it doesn't do much to what you already know about the world. There certainly are some anecdotes that are interesting and entertaining but they came into the author's world after the idea of the book and not before.

While it is certainly a very readable book, the question is whether one should read it at all. I mean do you really want justification for the existence of checklists? Extolling virtues of checklists is akin to singing praises of exercise and healthy diet. We all know it. We just cannot do it.