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February 6, 2018

New Releases: Business Books to Watch in February 2018

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 2:00 PM – Filed under: Big Ideas & New Perspectives, Current Events & Public Affairs, Innovation & Creativity, Leadership & Strategy, Management & Workplace Culture, Narrative & Biography, Personal Development & Human Behavior, Publishing Industry

In order of their release date, here are 20 books the collective eye of 800-CEO-READ will be looking at more closely this month.

That's What She Said: What Men Need to Know (and Women Need to Tell Them) About Working Together by Joanne Lipman, William Morrow 

Going beyond the message of Lean In and The Confidence Code, Gannett’s Chief Content Officer contends that to achieve parity in the office, women don’t have to change—men do—and in this inclusive and realistic handbook, offers solutions to help professionals solve gender gap issues and achieve parity at work.

Companies with more women in senior leadership perform better by virtually every financial measure, and women employees help boost creativity and can temper risky behavior—such as the financial gambles behind the 2008 economic collapse. Yet in the United States, ninety-five percent of Fortune 500 chief executives are men, and women hold only seventeen percent of seats on corporate boards. More men are reaching across the gender divide, genuinely trying to reinvent the culture and transform the way we work together. Despite these good intentions, fumbles, missteps, frustration, and misunderstanding continue to inflict real and lasting damage on women’s careers.

What can the Enron scandal teach us about the way men and women communicate professionally? How does brain circuitry help explain men’s fear of women’s emotions at work? Why did Kimberly Clark blindly have an all-male team of executives in charge of their Kotex tampon line? In That's What She Said, veteran media executive Joanne Lipman raises these intriguing questions and more to find workable solutions that individual managers, organizations, and policy makers can employ to make work more equitable and rewarding for all professionals.

Filled with illuminating anecdotes, data from the most recent relevant studies, and stories from Lipman’s own journey to the top of a male-dominated industry, That's What She Said is a book about success that persuasively shows why empowering women as true equals is an essential goal for us all—and offers a roadmap for getting there.

The Tyranny of Metrics by Jerry Z. Muller, Princeton University Press

How the obsession with quantifying human performance threatens our schools, medical care, businesses, and government.

Today, organizations of all kinds are ruled by the belief that the path to success is quantifying human performance, publicizing the results, and dividing up the rewards based on the numbers. But in our zeal to instill the evaluation process with scientific rigor, we've gone from measuring performance to fixating on measuring itself. The result is a tyranny of metrics that threatens the quality of our lives and most important institutions. In this timely and powerful book, Jerry Muller uncovers the damage our obsession with metrics is causing—and shows how we can begin to fix the problem.

Filled with examples from education, medicine, business and finance, government, the police and military, and philanthropy and foreign aid, this brief and accessible book explains why the seemingly irresistible pressure to quantify performance distorts and distracts, whether by encouraging "gaming the stats" or "teaching to the test." That's because what can and does get measured is not always worth measuring, may not be what we really want to know, and may draw effort away from the things we care about. Along the way, we learn why paying for measured performance doesn't work, why surgical scorecards may increase deaths, and much more. But metrics can be good when used as a complement to—rather than a replacement for—judgment based on personal experience, and Muller also gives examples of when metrics have been beneficial.

Complete with a checklist of when and how to use metrics, The Tyranny of Metrics is an essential corrective to a rarely questioned trend that increasingly affects us all.

Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don't Have All the Facts by Annie Duke, Portfolio

Poker champion turned business consultant Annie Duke teaches you how to get comfortable with uncertainty and make better decisions as a result.

In Super Bowl XLIX, Seahawks coach Pete Carroll made one of the most controversial calls in football history: With 26 seconds remaining, and trailing by four at the Patriots’ one-yard line, he called for a pass instead of a hand off to his star running back. The pass was intercepted and the Seahawks lost. Critics called it the dumbest play in history. But was the call really that bad? Or did Carroll actually make a great move that was ruined by bad luck?

Even the best decision doesn’t yield the best outcome every time. There’s always an element of luck that you can’t control, and there is always information that is hidden from view. So the key to long-term success (and avoiding worrying yourself to death) is to think in bets: How sure am I? What are the possible ways things could turn out? What decision has the highest odds of success? Did I land in the unlucky 10% on the strategy that works 90% of the time? Or is my success attributable to dumb luck rather than great decision making?

Annie Duke, a former World Series of Poker champion turned business consultant, draws on examples from business, sports, politics, and (of course) poker to share tools anyone can use to embrace uncertainty and make better decisions. For most people, it’s difficult to say “I’m not sure” in a world that values and, even, rewards the appearance of certainty. But professional poker players are comfortable with the fact that great decisions don’t always lead to great outcomes and bad decisions don’t always lead to bad outcomes.

By shifting your thinking from a need for certainty to a goal of accurately assessing what you know and what you don’t, you’ll be less vulnerable to reactive emotions, knee-jerk biases, and destructive habits in your decision making. You’ll become more confident, calm, compassionate and successful in the long run.

Iconic Advantage®: Don’t Chase the New, Innovate the Old by Soon Yu with Dave Birss, Post Hill Press

Don’t just chase the new—Innovate the old.

Modern business gurus all cry for the need to innovate, to disrupt, and to act like a startup. It’s hard to argue with that kind of thinking. It’s sexy and exciting. But it’s wrong.

Too many businesses become enamored by shiny new objects and end up overlooking the value locked away in their existing products. Maybe your business is one of them.

Iconic Advantage® is a different approach that allows companies to leverage what they already have to create lasting differentiation and deeper relationships with their customers. It generates disproportionate levels of profit and protects you against market fluctuations. Many of the world’s most successful brands have been using it for years.

Now, you can benefit from reaching iconic status, whether you’re a Fortune 500, local pizza parlor, or an aspiring Unicorn startup.

Strategy Beyond the Hockey Stick: People, Probabilities, and Big Moves to Beat the Odds by Chris Bradley, Martin Hirt, and Sven Smit, Wiley

Beat the odds with a bold strategy.

We’ve all seen hockey stick business plans before. A future where results sail confidently upward, but with a dip coinciding with next year’s budget.

CEOs usually rely on their experience and business smarts to figure out which of those hockey sticks are real, and which are fake. But all too often getting to a “yes,” competing for resources, and striving to claim credit, cloud the hard decisions. Another strategy framework? No thanks, we already have plenty of those, and they don’t fix the real problem: the social dynamics in your strategy room.

Mining the data from thousands of large companies, McKinsey Partners Chris Bradley, Martin Hirt, and Sven Smit open the windows of that room, and bring an “outside view.” They found three discrete groups of companies: the bottom quintile with massive economic losses; the long, flat, middle 60 percent with practically no economic profit; and the top 20 percent to whom all the value accrues.

Some companies do achieve real hockey stick performance: but just 1-in-12 jump from the middle tier to the top over a ten year period. This does not happen by magic—there is an empirically-backed science to improve your odds of success by capitalizing on your endowment, riding the right trends, and most importantly, making a few big moves.

To make these big moves happen, you’re going to have to break through inertia, gamesmanship, and risk aversion. You’re going to have to mitigate human biases and manage group dynamics. Eight practical shifts can help you do this, and unlock bigger, bolder, better strategies.

This is not another by-the-book approach to strategy. It’s not another trudge through frameworks or small-scale case studies promising a secret formula for success. It’s an irreverent, fact-driven, and humorous take on the real world of strategic decision making.

Brotopia: Breaking Up the Boys' Club of Silicon Valley by Emily Chang, Portfolio

Silicon Valley is a modern utopia where anyone can change the world. Unless you’re a woman.

For women in tech, Silicon Valley is not a fantasyland of unicorns, virtual reality rainbows, and 3D-printed lollipops, where millions of dollars grow on trees. It’s a “Brotopia,” where men hold all the cards and make all the rules. Vastly outnumbered, women face toxic workplaces rife with discrimination and sexual harassment, where investors take meetings in hot tubs and network at sex parties.

In this powerful exposé, Bloomberg TV journalist Emily Chang reveals how Silicon Valley got so sexist despite its utopian ideals, why bro culture endures despite decades of companies claiming the moral high ground (Don’t Be Evil! Connect the World!)—and how women are finally starting to speak out and fight back.

Drawing on her deep network of Silicon Valley insiders, Chang opens the boardroom doors of male-dominated venture capital firms like Kleiner Perkins, the subject of Ellen Pao’s high-profile gender discrimination lawsuit, and Sequoia, where a partner once famously said they “won’t lower their standards” just to hire women. Interviews with Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki, and former Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer—who got their start at Google, where just one in five engineers is a woman—reveal just how hard it is to crack the Silicon Ceiling. And Chang shows how women such as former Uber engineer Susan Fowler, entrepreneur Niniane Wang, and game developer Brianna Wu, have risked their careers and sometimes their lives to pave a way for other women.

Silicon Valley’s aggressive, misogynistic, work-at-all costs culture has shut women out of the greatest wealth creation in the history of the world. It’s time to break up the boys’ club. Emily Chang shows us how to fix this toxic culture—to bring down Brotopia, once and for all.

Big Potential: How Transforming the Pursuit of Success Raises Our Achievement, Happiness, andWell-Being by Shawn Achor, Currency

Bestselling author Shawn Achor shows how to unlock hidden sources of potential in ourselves and others.

In a world that thrives on competition and individual achievement, we are measuring and pursuing potential all wrong. By pursuing success in isolation—pushing others away as we push ourselves too hard—we are not just limiting our potential, we are becoming more stressed and disconnected than ever.

In his highly anticipated follow-up to The Happiness Advantage, Achor reveals a better approach. Drawing on his work in 50 countries, he shows that success and happiness are not competitive sports. Rather, they depend almost entirely on how well we connect with, relate to, and learn from each other.

Just as happiness is contagious, every dimension of human potential—performance, intelligence, creativity, leadership ability and health—is influenced by those around us. So when we help others become better, we reach new levels of potential, as well. Rather than fighting over scraps of the pie, we can expand the pie instead.

Small Potential is the limited success we can attain alone. Big Potential is what we can achieve together. Here, Achor offers five strategies—the SEEDS of Big Potential—for lifting the ceiling on what we can achieve while returning happiness and meaning to our lives.

The dramatic shifts in how we approach work today demand an equally dramatic shift in our approach to success. Big Potential offers a new path to thriving in the modern world.

Quirky: The Remarkable Story of the Traits, Foibles, and Genius of Breakthrough Innovators Who Changed the World by Melissa A Schilling, PublicAffairs

The science behind the traits and quirks that drive creative geniuses to make spectacular breakthroughs.

What really distinguishes the people who literally change the world—those creative geniuses who give us one breakthrough after another? What differentiates Marie Curie or Elon Musk from the merely creative, the many one-hit wonders among us?

Melissa Schilling, one of the world's leading experts on innovation, invites us into the lives of eight people—Albert Einstein, Benjamin Franklin, Elon Musk, Dean Kamen, Nikola Tesla, Marie Curie, Thomas Edison, and Steve Jobs—to identify the traits and experiences that drove them to make spectacular breakthroughs, over and over again. While all innovators possess incredible intellect, intellect alone, she shows, does not create a breakthrough innovator. It was their personal, social, and emotional quirkiness that enabled true genius to break through—not just once but again and again.

Nearly all of the innovators, for example, exhibited high levels of social detachment that enabled them to break with norms, an almost maniacal faith in their ability to overcome obstacles, and a passionate idealism that pushed them to work with intensity even in the face of criticism or failure. While these individual traits would be unlikely to work in isolation—being unconventional without having high levels of confidence, effort, and goal directedness might, for example, result in rebellious behavior that does not lead to meaningful outcomes—together they can fuel both the ability and drive to pursue what others deem impossible.

Schilling shares the science behind the convergence of traits that increases the likelihood of success. And, as Schilling also reveals, there is much to learn about nurturing breakthrough innovation in our own lives—in, for example, the way we run organizations, manage people, and even how we raise our children.

How to Turn Down a Billion Dollars: The Snapchat Story by Billy Gallagher, St. Martin's Press

The improbable and exhilarating story of the rise of Snapchat from a frat boy fantasy to a multi-billion dollar internet unicorn that has dramatically changed the way we communicate.

In 2013 Evan Spiegel, the brash CEO of the social network Snapchat, and his co-founder Bobby Murphy stunned the press when they walked away from a three-billion-dollar offer from Facebook: how could an app teenagers use to text dirty photos dream of a higher valuation? Was this hubris, or genius?

In How to Turn Down a Billion Dollars, tech journalist Billy Gallagher takes us inside the rise of one of Silicon Valley’s hottest start-ups. Snapchat began as a late-night dorm room revelation, the brainchild of Stanford English major Reggie Brown who was nursing regrets about photos he had sent. After an epic feud between best friends, Brown lost the company to Spiegel, who has gone on to make a name for himself as a visionary—if ruthless—CEO worth billions, linked to celebrities like Taylor Swift and his fiancée, Miranda Kerr.

A fellow Stanford undergrad and fraternity brother of the company’s founding trio, Gallagher has covered Snapchat from the start. He brings unique access to a company Bloomberg Business called “a cipher in the Silicon Valley technology community.” Gallagher offers insight into challenges Snapchat faces as it transitions from a playful app to one of the tech industry’s preeminent public companies. In the tradition of great business narratives, How to Turn Down a Billion Dollars offers the definitive account of a company whose goal is no less than to remake the future of entertainment.

Cringeworthy: A Theory of Awkwardness by Melissa Dahl, Portfolio

New York magazine’s “Science of Us” editor explains the compelling psychology of awkwardness, and asks: what if the moments that make us feel most awkward are actually valuable?

Have you ever said goodbye to someone, only to discover that you’re both walking in the same direction? Or had your next thought fly out of your brain in the middle of a presentation? Or accidentally liked an old photo on someone’s Instagram or Facebook, thus revealing yourself to be a creepy social media stalker?

Melissa Dahl, editor of New York magazine’s “Science of Us” website, has. After a lifetime of cringing, she became intrigued by awkwardness: a universal but underappreciated emotion. In this witty and compassionate book, Dahl explores the oddest, cringiest corners of our world. She chats with strangers on the busy New York City subway, goes on awkward friend dates using a “Tinder-for-friendship” app, takes improv comedy lessons, and even reads aloud from her (highly embarrassing!) middle school diary to a crowd of strangers.

After all of that, she realizes: Awkward moments are opportunities to test yourself. When everyone else is pretending to have it under control, you can be a little braver and grow a little bigger—while remaining true to your awkward self. And along the way, you might find that awkward moments unite us in our mutual human ridiculousness.

Lose the Resume, Land the Job by Gary Burnison, Wiley

Lose the resume and land that coveted job.

Gone are the days of polishing up your resume and sending it out at random. At every level today, you need to “lose the resume” in order to land the right job. In other words, you have to learn to tell a story about yourself that speaks to your competencies, purpose, passion, and values. Lose the Resume, Land the Job shares the new rules of engagement: How you must think, act, and present yourself so you can win.

Based on inner exploration drawn from the IP of the world's largest executive recruiting firm, the book gleans insights and stories (the good, the bad, and sometimes the ugly) from Korn Ferry recruiters across the globe who work with thousands of candidates each day. It helps you gain a deeper perspective on who you are, what you’re passionate about, the cultures in which you fit, the kind of bosses you should work for, and where you can bring the most value to organizations.

  • Includes assessments, questionnaires, and other tools
  • Candid advice for young professionals through middle managers
  • Offers trusted guidance from the same firm that has shown 8 million executives how to achieve their career goals, and that puts a professional in new job every three minutes
  • Helps you build a plan for the future so you can contribute more to the next employer

Getting a job and, more importantly, building a career has never been more complex. Lose the Resume, Land the Job helps you score the positions that align with your passion and match your attributes—and that will put you on a trajectory toward bigger and better things.

The Divide: Global Inequality from Conquest to Free Markets by Jason Hickel, W.W. Norton & Company

Global inequality doesn’t just exist; it has been created.

More than four billion people—some 60 percent of humanity—live in debilitating poverty, on less than $5 per day. The standard narrative tells us this crisis is a natural phenomenon, having to do with things like climate and geography and culture. It tells us that all we have to do is give a bit of aid here and there to help poor countries up the development ladder. It insists that if poor countries would only adopt the right institutions and economic policies, they could overcome their disadvantages and join the ranks of the rich world.

Anthropologist Jason Hickel argues that this story ignores the broader political forces at play. Global poverty—and the growing inequality between the rich countries of Europe and North America and the poor ones of Africa, Asia, and South America—has come about because the global economy has been designed over the course of five hundred years of conquest, colonialism, regime change, and globalization to favor the interests of the richest and most powerful nations. Global inequality is not natural or inevitable, and it is certainly not accidental. To close the divide, Hickel proposes dramatic action rooted in real justice: abolishing debt burdens in the global South, democratizing the institutions of global governance, and rolling out an international minimum wage, among many other vital steps. Only then will we have a chance at a world where all begin on more equal footing.

The Best Team Wins: The New Science of High Performance by Adrian Gostick & Chester Elton, Simon & Schuster

The New York Times bestselling authors of The Carrot Principle and All In deliver a breakthrough, groundbreaking guide for building today’s most collaborative teams—so any organization can operate at peak performance.

A massive shift is taking place in the business world. In today’s average company, up to eighty percent of employees’ days are now spent working in teams. And yet the teams most people find themselves in are nowhere near as effective as they could be. They’re often divided by tensions, if not outright dissension, and dysfunctional teams drain employees’ energy, enthusiasm, and creativity. Now Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton share the proven ways managers can build cohesive, productive teams, despite the distractions and challenges every business is facing.

In The Best Team Wins, Gostick and Elton studied more than 850,000 employee engagement surveys to develop their “Five Disciplines of Team Leaders,” explaining how to recognize and motivate different generations to enhance individual engagement; ways to promote healthy discord and spark innovation; and techniques to unify customer focus and build bridges across functions, cultures, and distance. They’ve shared these disciplines with their corporate clients and have now distilled their breakthrough findings into a succinct, engaging guide for business leaders everywhere. Gostick and Elton offer practical ways to address the real challenges today’s managers are facing, such as the rise of the Millennials, the increasing speed of change, the growing number of global and virtual teams, and the friction created by working cross-functionally.

This is a must-read for anyone looking to maximize performance at work, from two of the most successful corporate consultants of their generation, whom The New York Times called “creative and refreshing.”

TakingPoint: A Navy SEAL's 10 Fail Safe Principles for Leading Through Change by Brent Gleeson, Touchstone

Decorated Navy SEAL, successful businessman and world-renowned speaker Brent Gleeson shares his revolutionary approach to navigating and leading change in the workplace—with a foreword by #1 New York Times bestselling author Mark Owen.

Inspired by his time as a Navy SEAL and building award-winning organizations in the business world, Brent Gleeson has created a powerful roadmap for today’s existing and emerging business leaders and managers to improve their ability to successfully navigate organizational change. Over the past ten years since leaving the SEAL Teams, Gleeson has become a well-respected thought leader and expert in business transformation. He has spoken to and consulted with hundreds of organizations across the globe and inspired thousands of business leaders through his highly insightful philosophies on leadership, culture and building high-performance teams that achieve winning results.

In TakingPoint, Gleeson shares his ten-step program that he has implemented in his own companies and for his high-profile clients—giving leaders and managers actionable insights and a framework for successful execution. TakingPoint brilliantly captures the structures, behaviors, and mindsets required to build successful twenty-first century organizations. With a strong emphasis on communication, culture, engagement, accountability, trust, and resiliency, Gleeson’s methods have helped hundreds of companies around the world transform the way they think about change, and can help yours do the same.

Fair Shot: Rethinking Inequality and How We Earn by Chris Hughes, St. Martin's Press

Facebook co-founder Chris Hughes argues that the best way to fight income inequality is with a radically simple idea: a guaranteed income for working people, paid for by the one percent.

The first half of Chris Hughes’s life played like a movie reel right out of the “American Dream.” He grew up in a small town in North Carolina. His parents were people of modest means, but he was accepted into an elite boarding school and then Harvard, both on scholarship. There, he met Mark Zuckerberg and Dustin Moskovitz and became one of the co-founders of Facebook.

In telling his story, Hughes demonstrates the powerful role fortune and luck play in today’s economy. Through the rocket ship rise of Facebook, Hughes came to understand how a select few can become ultra-wealthy nearly overnight. He believes the same forces that made Facebook possible have made it harder for everyone else in America to make ends meet.

To help people who are struggling, Hughes proposes a simple, bold solution: a guaranteed income for working people, including unpaid caregivers and students, paid for by the one percent. The way Hughes sees it, a guaranteed income is the most powerful tool we have to combat poverty and stabilize America’s middle class. Money—cold hard cash with no strings attached—gives people freedom, dignity, and the ability to climb the economic ladder.

A guaranteed income for working people is the big idea that's missing in the national conversation. This book, grounded in Hughes’s personal experience, will start a frank conversation about how we earn in modern America, how we can combat income inequality, and ultimately, how we can give everyone a fair shot.

How We Work: Live Your Purpose, Reclaim Your Sanity, and Embrace the Daily Grind by Leah Weiss, PhD, HarperWave

A practical guide to bringing our whole selves to our professional work, based on the author’s overwhelmingly popular course at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.

In today’s workplace, the traditional boundaries between “work” and “personal” are neither realistic nor relevant. From millennials seeking employment in the sharing economy to Gen Xers telecommuting to Baby Boomers creating a meaningful second act, the line that separates who we are from the work we do is blurrier than ever.

The truth is, we don’t show up for our jobs as a portion of ourselves—by necessity, we bring both our hearts and our minds to everything we do. In How We Work, mindfulness expert and creator of the perennially-waitlisted Stanford Business School course “Leading with Mindfulness and Compassion,” Dr. Leah Weiss explains why this false dichotomy can be destructive to both our mental health and our professional success.

The bad news, says Weiss, is that nothing provides more opportunities for negative emotions—anxiety, anger, envy, fear, and paranoia, to name a few—than the dynamics of the workplace. But the good news is that these feelings matter. How we feel at and about work matters—to ourselves, to the quality of our work, and ultimately to the success of the organizations for which we work.

The path to productivity and success, says Weiss, is not to change jobs, to compartmentalize our feelings, or to create a false “professional” identity—but rather to listen to the wisdom our feelings offer. Using mindfulness techniques, we can learn how to attend to difficult feelings without becoming subsumed by them; we can develop an awareness of our bigger picture goals that orients us and allows us to see purpose in even the most menial tasks. In How We Work, Weiss offers a set of practical, evidence-based strategies for practicing mindfulness in the real world, showing readers not just how to to survive another day, but how to use ancient wisdom traditions to sharpen their abilities, enhance their leadership and interpersonal skills, and improve their satisfaction.

The Truth Machine: The Blockchain and the Future of Everything by Paul Vigna & Michael J. Casey, St. Martin's Press

From the authors of The Age of Cryptocurrency, the definitive work on the Internet’s Next Big Thing.

Big banks have grown bigger and more entrenched. Privacy exists only until the next hack. Credit card fraud is a fact of life. Many of the “legacy systems” once designed to make our lives easier and our economy more efficient are no longer up to the task. Yet there is a way past all this—a new kind of operating system with the potential to revolutionize vast swaths of our economy: the blockchain.

In The Truth Machine, Michael J. Casey and Paul Vigna demystify the blockchain and explain why it can restore personal control over our data, assets, and identities; grant billions of excluded people access to the global economy; and shift the balance of power to revive society’s faith in itself. They reveal the disruption it promises for industries including finance, tech, legal, and shipping.

Casey and Vigna expose the challenge of replacing trusted (and not-so-trusted) institutions on which we’ve relied for centuries with a radical model that bypasses them. The Truth Machine reveals the empowerment possible when self-interested middlemen give way to the transparency of the blockchain, while highlighting the job losses, assertion of special interests, and threat to social cohesion that will accompany this shift. With the same balanced perspective they brought to The Age of Cryptocurrency, Casey and Vigna show why we all must care about the path that blockchain technology takes—moving humanity forward, not backward.

Kill Bad Meetings: Cut 50% of Your Meetings to Transform Your Culture, Improve Collaboration, and Accelerate Decisions by Kevan Hall & Alan Hall, Nicholas Brealey Publishing

People are frustrated with too many boring, irrelevant, or badly run meetings.

Meetings are probably the largest unmanaged cost area in large organizations. Today meetings consume about 40% of working time for managers and professionals (our most senior and expensive people). Research shows that managerial and professional people on average spend two days per week in meetings.

For business, this is a huge cost.

Kill Bad Meetings will show you how to cut out the unnecessary meetings, topics and participants that make many meetings irrelevant. Unlike other books looking at improving the effectiveness of meetings, this book starts with cancelling meetings altogether.

Kill Bad Meetings will show you how to save yourself several hours of time a week-so you can move on to focus on improving the planning and running of the remaining 50% of meetings that actually do need to happen.

The Gig Is Up: Thrive in the Gig Economy, Where Old Jobs Are Obsolete and Freelancing Is the Future by Olga Mizrahi, Greenleaf Book Group

Win in a world of increasing choice by becoming the clear, unique fit.

The gig economy is made up of project-based, or on-demand services, that can be provided by anyone. The common denominator in the gig economy is technology, so our modern online-lives provide the perfect marketplace for the ever-diversifying opportunities in the gig economy. By some estimates, 2020 will see half of all workers involved in the gig economy. Are we ready for this seismic shift in our work lives?

Freelancers need to clearly answer “Why choose you?” so that they stand out in the new economy. Because all workers in the gig economy need to bluntly pose this question to themselves, The Gig Is Up is designed to answer this one key point head-on, giving readers innovative tools like Unique Value Proposition to confidently step up. The Gig Is Up offers the best boots-on-the-ground methods for success, by evolving the reader’s perspective and process. Many books on the gig economy focus on letting people live out their dreams, instead of looking at the realities of what it truly takes to win in a world of increasing choice. People need to understand how to compete and how to put the best version of themselves up front and center. The goal in competing today is to not only be chosen, but to move toward becoming the only choice, over and over again

Superconnector: Stop Networking and Start Building Business Relationships that Matter by Scott Gerber & Ryan Paugh, Da Capo Lifelong Books

Abandon the networking-for-networking's-sake mentality in favor of a more powerful and effective approach to creating and enhancing connections.

STOP NETWORKING. Seriously, stop doing it. Now. It is time to ditch the old networking-for networking's-sake mentality in favor of a more powerful and effective approach to creating and enhancing connections. In Superconnector, Scott Gerber and Ryan Paugh reveal a new category of professionals born out of the social media era: highly valuable community-builders who make things happen through their keen understanding and utilization of social capital. Superconnectors understand the power of relationship-building, problem-solve by connecting the dots at high levels, and purposefully cause different worlds and communities to interact with the intention of creating mutual value.

How can you become a Superconnector? Gerber and Paugh share instructive anecdotes from a who's who roster of high achievers, revealing how to systematically manage a professional community and maximize its value. Of utmost importance is practicing Habitual Generosity, acting on the knowledge that your greatest returns come when you least expect them, and that by putting others' needs first the good karma will flow back to you tenfold. Gerber and Paugh also explore winning strategies such as The Art of Selectivity, a well-honed ability to define which relationships matter most for you and decide how you will maintain them over time. Full of helpful advice on how to communicate with anyone about anything, Google-proof your reputation, and much more, Superconnector is a must-read for those seeking personal and business success.


 

About Dylan Schleicher


Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books, and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.