Recommended Reading


The written word has the opportunity to touch your soul. So often we hear something amazing and it’s gone. Reading a book gives you the opportunity to pore over it. Meditate on it. Make it part of your heart and soul.

During our years of helping people grow we have been touched by so many great books. Here is a partial list of what has impacted us. Certainly this is not an exhaustive list. We welcome your recommendations.

  • Jeffrey Gitomer

    Jeffrey Gitomer, the sales guru and author of the bestselling The Sales Bible, has produced another gem of a book that addresses sales with a lively combination of humor and professionalism to help salespeople get their feet in many more doors. For those who are running into dead ends, stale leads, price objections, and unreturned phone calls, Gitomer has created The Little Red Book of Selling to show them how to get past the usual obstacles and sell their products and services with new zest and vigor.

    Filled with more than a dozen principles of sales greatness, as well as numerous lists and attack plans for dealing with difficult customers, The Little Red Book of Selling offers the answers to just about every sales question a salesperson could ask, and provides the firsthand experiences and positive enthusiasm to drive them home with vitality and optimism.

    Why Red?
    Gitomer explains that The Little Red Book of Selling has so much red ink in it and on it for a number of reasons. These include:

    • Red is the color of passion. Passion is the fulcrum point of selling. No passion, no sales.
    • Red is the color of love. If you don't love what you sell, go sell something else.
    • Red is the brightest color. You must be bright in order to convert selling to buying.
    • Red is the most visible color. You must be visible to your customers with a value message, not just a sales pitch.
    • Red is fire. If you're not on fire, you'll lose to someone who is.


    Bold Directives
    Overflowing with Gitomer's rapid pace and quick wit, The Little Red Book of Selling contains more than 18 ways to become a sales success, 20 ways to beat a sales slump, 8.5 resources to tap in a pinch, 14 ways to create a personal brand, and a plethora of other handy tabulations that can help any salesperson quickly get to the root of his or her problems. Thumb tabs on the sides of the book's pages and a ribbon page marker make the book a convenient reference guide to handling sales dilemmas, giving value, using creativity and humor, and reducing a customer's risk. Clever cartoons and page design make The Little Red Book of Selling's contents come alive with bold directives and professional advice.

    The emotional edge to Gitomer's work is appropriate for his subject matter due to the important role emotion plays in the sales process. According to Gitomer, "The sale is emotionally driven and emotionally decided. Then it is justified logically." Using colorful language to go along with his punchy lessons, Gitomer minces no words when telling salespeople what they should do to improve their sales numbers.


    http://www.amazon.com/Little-Red-Book-Selling-Principles/dp/1885167601
  • Robin Sharma

    For more than fifteen years, Robin Sharma has been quietly sharing with Fortune 500 companies and many of the super-rich a success formula that has made him one of the most sought-after leadership advisers in the world. Now, for the first time, Sharma makes his proprietary process available to you, so that you can get to your absolute best while helping your organization break through to a dramatically new level of winning in these wildly uncertain times.

    In The Leader Who Had No Title, you will learn:

    • How to work with and influence people like a superstar, regardless of your position

    • A method to recognize and then seize opportunities in times of deep change

    • The real secrets of intense innovation

    • An instant strategy to build a great team and become a "merchant of wow" with your customers

    • Hard-hitting tactics to become mentally strong and physically tough enough to lead your field

    • Real-world ways to defeat stress, build an unbeatable mind-set, unleash energy, and balance your personal life

    Regardless of what you do within your organization and the current circumstances of your life, the single most important fact is that you have the power to show leadership. Wherever you are in your career or life, you should always play to your peak abilities. This book shows you how to claim that staggering power, as well as transform your life—and the world around you—in the process.


    http://www.amazon.com/The-Leader-Who-Had-Title/dp/1439109133/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1386256019&sr=8-1&keywords=leader+who+had+no+title
  • Arbinger Institute

    Since its original publication in 2000, Leadership and Self-Deception has become a word-of-mouth phenomenon. Its sales continue to increase year after year, and the book’s popularity has gone global, with editions now available in over twenty languages.

    Through a story everyone can relate to about a man facing challenges on the job and in his family, the authors expose the fascinating ways that we can blind ourselves to our true motivations and unwittingly sabotage the effectiveness of our own efforts to achieve success and increase happiness.

    This new edition has been revised throughout to make the story even more compelling. And drawing on the extensive correspondence the authors have received over the years, they have added a section that outlines the many ways that readers have been using Leadership and Self-Deception to improve their lives and workplaces—areas such as team building, conflict resolution, and personal growth and development, to name a few.

    Read this extraordinary book and discover what millions already have learned—how to consistently tap into an innate ability that dramatically improves both your results and your relationships.


    http://www.amazon.com/Leadership-Self-Deception-Getting-out-Box/dp/1576759776/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1386255954&sr=8-1&keywords=leadership+and+self+deception
  • Sun Tzu

    Conflict is an inevitable part of life, according to this ancient Chinese classic of strategy, but everything necessary to deal with conflict wisely, honorably, victoriously, is already present within us. Compiled more than two thousand years ago by a mysterious warrior-philosopher Sun Tzu, The Art of War is still perhaps the most prestigious and influential book of strategy in the world, as eagerly studied in Asia by modern politicians and executives as it has been by military leaders since ancient times. As a study of the anatomy of organizations in conflict, The Art of War applies to competition and conflict in general, on every level from the interpersonal to the international. Its aim is invincibility, victory without battle, and unassailable strength through understanding the physics, politics, and psychology of conflict.


    http://www.amazon.com/Art-War-Sun-Tzu/dp/1590302257/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1381850772&sr=1-1&keywords=art+of+war+tzu+cleary
  • Mark R. McNeilly

    More than two millennia ago, the famous Chinese general Sun Tzu wrote the classic work on military strategy, The Art of War. Now, in a new edition of Sun Tzu and the Art of Business, Mark McNeilly shows how Sun Tzu's strategic principles can be applied to twenty-first century business. Here are two books in one: McNeilly's synthesis of Sun Tzu's ideas into six strategic principles for the business executive, plus the text of Samuel B. Griffith's popular translation of The Art of War. McNeilly explains how to gain market share without inciting competitive retaliation, how to attack competitors' weak points, and how to maximize market information for competitive advantage. He demonstrates the value of speed and preparation in throwing the competition off-balance, employing strategy to beat the competition, and the need for character in leaders. Lastly, McNeilly presents a practical method to put Sun Tzu's principles into practice. By using modern examples throughout the book from Google, Zappos, Amazon, Dyson, Aflac, Singapore Airlines, Best Buy, the NFL, Tata Motors, Starbucks, and many others, he illustrates how, by following the wisdom of history's most respected strategist, executives can avoid the pitfalls of management fads and achieve lasting competitive advantage.


    http://www.amazon.com/dp/0199782911/ref=rdr_ext_tmb
  • Stephen C. Lundin

    Here's another management parable that draws its lesson from an unlikely source--this time it's the fun-loving fishmongers at Seattle's Pike Place Market. In Fish! the heroine, Mary Jane Ramirez, recently widowed and mother of two, is asked to engineer a turnaround of her company's troubled operations department, a group that authors Stephen Lundin, Harry Paul, and John Christensen describe as a "toxic energy dump." Most reasonable heads would cut their losses and move on. Why bother with this bunch of losers? But the authors don't make it so easy for Mary Jane. Instead, she's left to sort out this mess with the help of head fishmonger Lonnie.


    http://www.amazon.com/Fish-Tales-Real-Life-Transform-Workplace/dp/0786868686
  • Larry S. Julian

    Will money or morality emerge victorious in the war zone of work skirmishes? Julian, with seasoned experience as a leadership management consultant for companies such as 3M, Honeywell, AT&T and General Mills, provides solid answers for this troubling dilemma. He discusses 10 key principles that he deems essential for transforming workplace problems into both spiritual and bottom-line success stories. Each chapter poses an issue (such as developing patience, cultivating leadership by example, yielding control, making tough decisions and maintaining right priorities) followed by a solution.


    http://www.amazon.com/God-Ceo-Following-Principles-Bottom-Line/dp/1580627641
  • Bob Buford

    According to Bob Burford, broaching midlife doesn't have to be a crisis. In fact, in Halftime, Burford insists that it is actually an opportunity to begin the better half of life. The first half is busy with "getting and gaining, earning and learning," doing what you can to survive, while clawing your way up the ladder of success. The second half of life should be about regaining control, calling your own shots, and enjoying "God's desire ... for you to serve him just by being who you are, by using what he gave you to work with." What lies between the two is "halftime." Buford argues that whether you are a millionaire, a manager, or a teacher, you will one day have to transition from the struggle for success to the quest for significance. Halftime, then, is a quiet time of deliberate decision-making, restructuring and passionate contemplation of your heart's deepest desires.


    http://www.amazon.com/Halftime-Bob-Buford/dp/0310215323
  • Jeffrey J. Fox

    Fox heads his own marketing consulting company, and he demonstrates here that he knows how to package an idea. While there is nothing especially original about a list of rules for getting ahead, Fox's guide is filled with 75 tips that are short, sweet, and to the point. Moreover, the ideas themselves are fresh. You have to admire the pluck of someone who suggests spending one day a month in the library and recommends sending handwritten notes. For each suggestion, Fox includes one or two pages of elaboration.


    http://www.amazon.com/How-Become-CEO-Rising-Organization/dp/0786864370
  • Tom Connellan

    Customer loyalty is one of the hallmarks of a successful enterprise, and no one engenders it better than Disney. Inside the Magic Kingdom examines how this global powerhouse is able to satisfy its frequent repeat customers and keep them coming back for more. Connellan, a management consultant, walks readers through some of the strategies and tactics Disney employs that other businesses can adopt to boost sales and customer retention.


    http://www.amazon.com/Inside-Magic-Kingdom-Disneys-Success/dp/1885167237
  • Rudolph W. Giuliani

    This highly anticipated book from New York's once controversial, former mayor opens with a gripping account of Giuliani's immediate reaction to the September 11 attacks, including a narrow escape from the original crisis command headquarters, and closes with the efforts to address the aftermath during his remaining four months in office. But, he argues, he did not suddenly become a great leader on September 11, and "had been doing [my] best to take on challenges my whole career." The bulk of the book draws on his experiences as a corporate lawyer and U.S. attorney and then as mayor.


    http://www.amazon.com/Leadership-Rudolph-W-Giuliani/dp/B000ESSSLG
  • Bruce Wilkinson

    Even well-versed Biblical scholars might be perplexed if asked about Jabez, a little-known man listed in 1 Chronicles, chapter 4. Yet his simple petition is the cornerstone of The Prayer of Jabez and has become a call to live a more "blessed life" for countless readers. The prayer is a simple one: "And Jabez called on the God of Israel saying, 'Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.' So God granted him what he requested."


    http://www.amazon.com/Prayer-Jabez-5th-Anniversary-Breakthrough/dp/1590524756
  • Laurie Beth Jones

    Jones has established something of a cottage industry by using Jesus and his teachings as models for creating successful ways of doing business in contemporary society. In this latest effort, she draws once again from Jesus' teachings to his disciples, asserting that he successfully taught people how to work in teams to accomplish their goals. Jesus, she writes, did not simply gather a group of rag-tag followers; he "excited them," "grounded them," "transformed them" and "released them." For example, Jones contends that Jesus taught his team the SQM method: simplify, quantify, multiply. This method allowed the disciples to get to the core of what they were called to do, to determine ways to measure the progress they made toward these goals and to ensure that each one had the ability to multiply the good of the team in every contact they made.


    http://www.amazon.com/Teach-Your-Team-Fish-Inspired/dp/1400053110
  • Stephen R. Covey

    Stephen Covey, an internationally respected leadership authority, realizes that true success encompasses a balance of personal and professional effectiveness, so this book is a manual for performing better in both arenas. His anecdotes are as frequently from family situations as from business challenges. Before you can adopt the seven habits, you'll need to accomplish what Covey calls a "paradigm shift"--a change in perception and interpretation of how the world works. Covey takes you through this change, which affects how you perceive and act regarding productivity, time management, positive thinking, developing your "proactive muscles" (acting with initiative rather than reacting), and much more.


    http://www.amazon.com/Habits-Highly-Effective-People/dp/0743269519
  • Matthew Kelly

    The business statistics are astounding: high percentages of detached, ready-to-exit employees; soon-to-occur vacancies among top executive and middle-manager ranks; and a growing chasm between employees and the organizations they work for. From Gallup to corporate human resources gurus, myriad solutions have been proposed. Yet Kelly, consultant and author (The Rhythm of Life, 1999; The Seven Levels of Intimacy, 2005, among others), proffers an idea that seems simple to implement. His philosophy is that organizations can only become best versions of themselves if their employees can realize that same opportunity. Center stage is the Dream Manager, an individual (or group) devoted to helping workers achieve personal life goals. His fictional parable plays out the story of Admiral Janitorial Services, a cleaning company plagued with extraordinarily high turnover. Presto digito! Within months of hiring a Dream Manager, employees stayed. Profits increased—and customers clamored for information. It is true that the pursuit of dreams "creates passion, energy, enthusiasm, and vitality." It is also true that, without solid proof, few businesses will explore this avenue.


    http://www.amazon.com/Dream-Manager-Matthew-Kelly/dp/B003XU7VZQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293040195&sr=1-1
  • Michael E. Gerber

    Michael Gerber's The E-Myth Revisited should be required reading for anyone thinking about starting a business or for those who have already taken that fateful step. The title refers to the author's belief that entrepreneurs--typically brimming with good but distracting ideas--make poor businesspeople. He establishes an incredibly organized and regimented plan, so that daily details are scripted, freeing the entrepreneur's mind to build the long-term success or failure of the business.


    http://www.amazon.com/E-Myth-Revisited-Small-Businesses-About/dp/0887307280
  • Jon Gordon

    The Energy Bus, an international best seller by Jon Gordon, takes readers on an enlightening and inspiring ride that reveals 10 secrets for approaching life and work with the kind of positive, forward thinking that leads to true accomplishment - at work and at home. Jon infuses this engaging story with keen insights as he provides a powerful roadmap to overcome adversity and bring out the best in yourself and your team. When you get on The Energy Bus you’ll enjoy the ride of your life!


    http://www.amazon.com/Energy-Bus-Rules-Fuel-Positive/dp/0470100281/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293040088&sr=1-1
  • Patrick M. Lencioni

    Once again, using an astutely written fictional tale to unambiguously but painlessly deliver some hard truths about critical business procedures, Patrick Lencioni targets group behavior in the final entry of his trilogy of corporate fables.

    And like those preceding it, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team is an entertaining, quick read filled with useful information that will prove easy to digest and implement. This time, Lencioni weaves his lessons around the story of a troubled Silicon Valley firm and its unexpected choice for a new CEO: an old-school manager who had retired from a traditional manufacturing company two years earlier at age 55. Showing exactly how existing personnel failed to function as a unit, and precisely how the new boss worked to reestablish that essential conduct.


    http://www.amazon.com/Five-Dysfunctions-Team-Leadership-Fable/dp/0787960756
  • Mark Sanborn

    In his powerful book The Fred Factor, motivational speaker Mark Sanborn recounts the true story of Fred, the mail carrier who passionately loves his job and who genuinely cares about the people he serves. Because of that, he is constantly going the extra mile handling the mail - and sometimes watching over the houses - of the people on his route, treating everyone he meets as a friend. Where others might see delivering mail as monotonous drudgery, Fred sees an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of those he serves.


    http://www.amazon.com/Fred-Factor-passion-ordinary-extraordinary/dp/0385513518
  • Andy Andrews

    When Mark and Dorry Chandler find an odd bronze object in a ditch in their Denver backyard, they begin to investigate its origin. Andrews develops the theme of the importance of making good choices, using the motif of four inscribed ancient bronze objects that together form a cup. Each fragment symbolizes choices that its historic owner made, influenced by the object. Using flashbacks, Andrews offers numerous short vignettes of the different historical figures who possessed each of the fragments, including Oskar Schindler, Alfred Vanderbilt, John Adams and George Washington Carver among others.


    http://www.amazon.com/Lost-Choice-Andy-Andrews/dp/0785261397
  • Thomas J. Stanley, William D. Danko

    In The Millionaire Next Door, read by Cotter Smith, Stanley (Marketing to the Affluent) and Danko (marketing, SUNY at Albany) summarize findings from their research into the key characteristics that explain how the elite club of millionaires have become "wealthy." Focusing on those with a net worth of at least $1 million, their surprising results reveal fundamental qualities of this group that are diametrically opposed to today's earn-and-consume culture, including living below their means, allocating funds efficiently in ways that build wealth, ignoring conspicuous consumption, being proficient in targeting marketing opportunities, and choosing the "right" occupation. It's evident that anyone can accumulate wealth, if they are disciplined enough, determined to persevere, and have the merest of luck.


    http://www.amazon.com/Millionaire-Next-Door-Thomas-Stanley/dp/0671015206
  • Gary Keller, et al

    Think Big. Aim High. Act Bold.

    The Millionaire Real Estate Agent shows you how to do all three so you can Live Large - professionally and personally. In this book, co-authors Gary Keller, Dave Jenks and Jay Papasan show you the secrets of achieving extraordinary success by using Big Models to realize your Big Dreams. The Millionaire Real Estate Agent provides you with a plan to transform your real estate sales job into a million-dollar business. The book explores the models you need to put in place and then shows you step by step how to implement them.


    http://www.amazon.com/Millionaire-Real-Estate-Agent-Money-Its/dp/0071444041
  • Robert Spector, Patrick D. McCarthy

    Nordstrom's has long had the reputation for outstanding customer service. This book, coauthored by one of Nordstrom's top sales associates, McCarthy, tells how Nordstrom's earned that reputation. The work combines case studies and personal narrative with some history of the store. Each chapter helps the reader see one or more aspects of what has made Nordstrom's so successful, for example, "The Nordstrom Culture: Setting Employees Free," "The Art of Selling: Retailing Is a Contact Sport," and "What's Inside: Creating an Inviting Place." Each chapter is followed by a one- to two-page summary of the important points.


    http://www.amazon.com/Nordstrom-Way-Americas-Customer-Service/dp/0471161608
  • Rick Warren

    The spiritual premise in The Purpose-Driven Life is that there are no accidents---God planned everything and everyone. Therefore, every human has a divine purpose, according to God's master plan. Like a twist on John F. Kennedy's famous inaugural address, this book could be summed up like this: "So my fellow Christians, ask not what God can do for your life plan, ask what your life can do for God's plan." Those who are looking for advice on finding one's calling through career choice, creative expression, or any form of self-discovery should go elsewhere. This is not about self-exploration; it is about purposeful devotion to a Christian God. The book is set up to be a 40-day immersion plan, recognizing that the Bible favors the number 40 as a "spiritually significant time," according to author Rick Warren.


    http://www.amazon.com/Purpose-Driven-Inspirio-Zondervan-Miniature-Editions/dp/0310806356
  • Andy Andrews Christian author and motivational speaker Andrews effectively combines self-help with fiction to catch readers' interest, sustaining momentum while simultaneously passing on instructions for positive thinking. With his can-do style, Andrews (Storms of Perfection; Tales from Sawyerton Springs) tells the allegorical tragedy of one David Ponder, whose woes begin when he loses his job, his confidence and essentially his drive for living. After a succession of losses, Ponder is rendered unconscious after a car accident, and is magically transported into seven key points in history. At each stopping point, he is met by historical figures such as Abraham Lincoln, Anne Frank, King Solomon, Harry Truman and Christopher Columbus, each of whom imparts one of the seven key decisions that Andrews asserts are essential for personal success.
    http://www.amazon.com/Travelers-Gift-Decisions-Determine-Personal/dp/0785273220
  • Napoleon Hill ...During our ten-year association, I learned the missing number to my combination for worldwide successful achievement. The Master Mind Principle: two or more persons working together in complete harmony toward a mutual goal or goals...Napoleon Hill's philosophy teaches you what you were never taught. Specifically: How to Recognize, Relate, Assimilate and Apply principles whereby you can achieve any goal whatsoever that doesn't violate Universal Law - the Law of God and the rights of your fellowman...
    http://www.amazon.com/Think-Grow-Rich-Napoleon-Hill/dp/1585424331
  • Spencer Johnson & Kenneth H. Blanchard Change can be a blessing or a curse, depending on your perspective. The message of Who Moved My Cheese? is that all can come to see it as a blessing, if they understand the nature of cheese and the role it plays in their lives. Who Moved My Cheese? is a parable that takes place in a maze. Four beings live in that maze: Sniff and Scurry are mice--nonanalytical and nonjudgmental, they just want cheese and are willing to do whatever it takes to get it. Hem and Haw are "littlepeople," mouse-size humans who have an entirely different relationship with cheese. It's not just sustenance to them; it's their self-image. Their lives and belief systems are built around the cheese they've found.
    http://www.amazon.com/Moved-Cheese-Amazing-Deal-Change/dp/0399144463
  • Norman Vincent Peale

    Author of the greatest inspirational bestseller of our time offers positive strategies for success in business and personal life. The remarkable self-help phenomenon, The Power of Positive Thinking, plus the successful The Positive Principle Today and Enthusiasm Makes the Difference show why Norman Vincent Peale has helped millions of readers transform their lives and find joy and fulfillment.

  • Simon Sinek

    Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty? In studying the leaders who’ve had the greatest influence in the world, Simon Sinek discovered

  • Daymond John

    When your back is up against the wall, your bank account is empty, and creativity and passion are the only resources you can afford, success is your only option.  Here you’ll learn how to tap into that Power of Broke to scrape, hustle, and dream your way to the top.

  • Matthew Syed

    Failure is a key component of any successful system, but only if the people at the controls understand what went wrong. In "Black Box Thinking," journalist Matthew Syed explores why some people try to ignore their mistakes and others confront them deliberately. Syed pushes people to adopt a growth mindset, as the psychologist Carol Dweck calls it, rather than a fixed mindset. "It advocates for changing attitudes towards failure, and understanding that the only way we learn is by trying things and altering our behavior based on the results," Branson writes on his blog.

  • Alastair Campbell

    Journalist and political aide Alastair Campbell takes an exhaustive look at the ingredients that make up a success story in "Winners: And How They Succeed."

    Some of the wealthiest and high-achieving people all rely on similar patterns of behavior to get the most out of their days, whether it's waking up and exercising at certain times of the day or finding time to check email.

     

    Like Reed's book, Branson says he reads a few chapters at a time to remind himself how far he's come and where he still has room to grow.

  • Chet Holmes

    Tiny quick read with a punchy point: Anything worth doing has a painfully-hard middle period, which is where most people quit. But knowing this in advance, ask yourself seriously if you really have the dedication to stick it through that hard time. If not, then don’t begin! Quit in advance! But if so, then expect that dark dip, and don’t quit when you’re in it. Read the whole book if this applies to you. There’s not a wasted page.

  • Ryan Holiday

    A succinct adrenaline-generating call to clear thinking and rational action. Many historical examples. Incredibly inspiring.

  • Carol Dweck

    Dweck explains why it’s not just our abilities and talent that bring us success—but whether we approach them with a fixed or growth mindset. She makes clear why praising intelligence and ability doesn’t foster self-esteem and lead to accomplishment but may actually jeopardize success.

  • Jocko Willink Author and Leif Babin

    Sent to the most violent battlefield in Iraq, Jocko Willink and Leif Babin’s SEAL task unit faced a seemingly impossible mission: help U.S. forces secure Ramadi, a city deemed “all but lost.”

  • Viktor Frankl

    Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering, but we can choose how to cope with it.

  • Tim Grover

    For more than two decades, legendary trainer Tim Grover has taken the greats—Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, and dozens more—and made them greater. Now, for the first time ever, he reveals what it takes to get those results, showing you how to be relentless and achieve whatever you desire.

  • Joshua Cooper Ramo

    When everything is connected, from digital and social relationships to financial and political ones, Joshua Cooper Ramo argues the only people who can be successful are those who master these complex networks. In "The Seventh Sense," Ramo looks at the ways billionaire moguls, tech influencers, political leaders, and military generals gain a keen sense of where to focus their attention. He figures out what they see that others don't.

     

    In past decades, when industries were siloed off from one another, success could mean mastering one field. But in a world built on systems, success has far different, and far more mysterious, requirements.

     

  • work by Cal Newport

    Notifications ding, beep, and buzz for our attention every minute. Author and professor Cal Newport knows this. He just doesn't think our work has to suffer as a result. In "Deep Work," Newport uses a collection of stories and research data to show that what will matter most in the coming decades — at least in terms of people's productivity — is the ability to focus.

     

    Newport calls this ability "deep work." The reader learns various strategies to avoid checking their phone every 30 seconds and instead cultivate a distraction-proof bubble in which they can work.

  • Cal Newport

    Shockingly smart thoughts about your career. A MUST-READ for anyone who is not loving their work, wanting to quit their job, and follow their passion, or not sure what to do next. I'm recommending this many times a week to people who email me with these kinds of questions. Best book I've ever read on the subject.

  • Steven Pressfield

    Have you experienced a vision of the person you might become, the work you could accomplish, the realized being you were meant to be? Are you a writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture? Then you know what “Resistance” is. This book is about that. Read it

     

  • William Irvine

    Almost too personal for me to give an objective review, because I found when reading it that the quirky philosophy I've been living my life by since 17 matches up exactly with a 2000-year-old philosophy called Stoicism. Mine was self-developed haphazardly, so it was fascinating to read the refined developed original. Really resonated.

  • Philip Zimbardo and John Boyd

    Profound idea that everyone has a primary time focus: either Future-focused, Present-focused, or Past-focused. Fascinating implications of each. Because I'm so future-focused, reading this book helped me understand people who are very present-focused. Also, great advice on shifting your focus when needed. I read it 7 years ago, but still think about it almost every day.

     

  • Ryan Holiday

    Forget yourself and focus on the work. Be humble and persistent. Value discipline and results, not passion and confidence. Be lesser, do more. This message is crucial, but the opposite of almost every other book. I wish everyone would read this. I need to re-read it each year. It's that important. It's easy to read this and say, “oh yeah I've got my ego under control”, but the problem is deeper than that.

  • Pema Chödrön

    Powerful thoughts on not running, distracting, or escaping, but sticking with something all the way through.

  • Josh Kaufman

    Wow. A masterpiece. This is now the one “START HERE” book I'll be recommending to everybody interested in business. An amazing overview of everything you need to know. Covers all the basics, minus buzz-words and fluff. Look at my notes for an example, but read the whole book. One of the most inspiring things I've read in years.

     

  • Steve Pavlina

    A surprisingly great broad and unflourished look at all different aspects of self-improvement. Really great insights from someone who's read them all.

     

  • Seth Godin

    Tiny quick read with a punchy point: Anything worth doing has a painfully-hard middle period, which is where most people quit. But knowing this in advance, ask yourself seriously if you really have the dedication to stick it through that hard time. If not, then don’t begin! Quit in advance! But if so, then expect that dark dip, and don’t quit when you’re in it. Read the whole book if this applies to you. There’s not a wasted page. 

     

  • Mark Stevens

    Stevens, a marketing consultant, promotes his theories by teaching readers how to get a positive return on their marketing investment. He offers strategies that include aligning marketing with a company's objectives, developing a clear statement of purpose, determining how to reach the broadest audience, and qualifying prospects. The author's tactics help readers describe their offerings, differentiate themselves from competitors, determine the best products to sell efficiently, capture leads and follow up on them, and structure steady growth plans. The author concludes with a step-by-step approach to analyzing a company's marketing efforts and then designing an action plan to make necessary improvements for reaching stated objectives. Branding.

  • Robert Fulghum

    Here Fulghum engages us with musings on life, death, love, pain, joy, sorrow, and the best chicken-fried steak in the continental U.S.A. The little seed in the Styrofoam cup offers a reminder about our own mortality and the delicate nature of life . . . a spider who catches (and loses) a full-grown woman in its web one fine morning teaches us about surviving catastrophe . . . the love story of Jean-Francois Pilatre and his hot air balloon reminds us to be brave and unafraid to “fly” . . . life lessons hidden in the laundry pile . . . magical qualities found in a box of crayons . . . hide-and-seek vs. sardines—and how these games relate to the nature of God. All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten is brimming with the very stuff of life and the significance found in the smallest details.

  • Mitch Albom

    Part melodrama and part parable, Mitch Albom's The Five People You Meet in Heaven weaves together three stories, all told about the same man: 83-year-old Eddie, the head maintenance person at Ruby Point Amusement Park. As the novel opens, readers are told that Eddie, unsuspecting, is only minutes away from death as he goes about his typical business at the park. Albom then traces Eddie's world through his tragic final moments, his funeral, and the ensuing days as friends clean out his apartment and adjust to life without him.

     

  • Andy Andrews

    When Mark and Dorry Chandler find an odd bronze object in a ditch in their Denver backyard, they begin to investigate its origin. Andrews develops the theme of the importance of making good choices, using the motif of four inscribed ancient bronze objects that together form a cup. Each fragment symbolizes choices that its historic owner made, influenced by the object. Using flashbacks, Andrews offers numerous short vignettes of the different historical figures who possessed each of the fragments, including Oskar Schindler, Alfred Vanderbilt, John Adams and George Washington Carver among others.

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