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Our founders' favorite reads

Inside Pendulum

Our Founders' Favorite Reads

See what books shaped the way our founders think and lead.


We admit it: we're nerds at heart. That's why it should come as no surprise that our founders Colleen Cutcliffe, James Bullard, and John Eid are voracious readers with diverse tastes in books. We asked each of them to share their favorite picks that have deeply impacted them either personally or professionally. 
 
See all the full picks below and be sure to add them to your library!
 
 
Colleen Cutcliffe, Pendulum Co-Founder and CEO

Siblings Without Rivalry

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Siblings Without Rivalry
"This book was recommended to me by one of my first managers, Kevin Chapman, as a great book for managing teams. When I looked it up, I was confused because it's a book about how to keep your children from fighting with each other. I had to double check with him that it was the right book! After reading it, though, I have recommended it to other managers and leaders. 
 
The entire premise is that you want your children to each be as independently successful as possible without needing your approval or disapproval. You also need them to be able to resolve conflict without you needing to be the one to always step in and dictate what direction things should go in. These 2 skills are fundamental principles that actually also apply to building great teams where each individual is growing and able to effectively collaborate and problem solve with other members of the team."


The Mind-Gut Connection

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The Mind Gut Connection
"This is written by Dr. Emeran Mayer, a professor at UCLA and a pioneer in microbiome science. In this book, he describes the fascinating relationship between our gut and our minds and how things like obesity, food cravings, depression and upset stomachs are actually all tied together through the microbiome. It's a must read for anyone just interested in exploring the world of the microbiome!"
 

 

James Bullard, Pendulum Co-Founder and CTO

Statistical Models

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Statistical Models: Theory And Practice
"In graduate school, I used this book in an applied statistics course taught by the author. This book is still my go-to for methods like the bootstrap, generalized linear models and simultaneous equations in applied problems. Although there are other texts that do an acceptable job at covering the same statistical concepts, what makes this book special is the writing. Freedman demonstrates how to explain a statistical concept in plain active english that is both rigorous and concise and serves as a model for us all to aspire." 

 

Journey to the Ants

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Journey to the Ants: A Story of Scientific Exploration
"This is the kind of book that you will have to occasionally put down in order to tell someone what you just read so that you can watch their look of astonishment as they appreciate how complex ant behavior is."

 

John Eid, Pendulum Co-Founder and COO 

Consilience

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Consilience
 "I read this one while in graduate school and it made a big impression on me regarding how all forms of human knowledge are connected. To quote, 'The love of complexity without reductionism makes art; the love of complexity with reductionism makes science'. Additionally, within any given field of knowledge there are levels which can be traversed in one direction by increasing reductionism and in the opposite direction by increasing synthesis. He advises that to excel at a discipline that exists on one level you need to have a strong familiarity with the more reduced level below as well as the more synthesized level above -- great advice."

 

Freakonomics

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Freakonomics
 "The use of detailed analysis of real world data to uncover unexpected patterns in odd places -- like cheating in sumo wrestling. The real world is often messy and therefore to find the approach that potentially can control for the numerous confounders is often very difficult. Whether or not Levitt was perfectly successful in all circumstances is something that is up for debate, but I nonetheless found it eye-opening that you could even attempt to tease apart effects in this fashion by taking advantage of asymmetries in the data."


On Being The Right Size (Essay)
 "I know this isn't a book but I have to include it because this one blew my mind when I first read it! It is a whirlwind discussion that points out that the sizes of species and basic physical principles are inextricably tied together. It is a beautiful example in which the most fundamental phenomena are used to understand broad swaths of seemingly unconnected observations. The elegance of parsimony in explaining the world around you is something that always strikes a chord for me."

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