Business Books to Watch in October
October 02, 2017
These are 20 books that we'll have 800-CEO-READ's collective eyes on in the month of October.
In order of their release dates, these are 20 books we'll be diving deeper into in the month of October.
Real Impact: The New Economics of Social Change by Morgan Simon, Nation Books
Impact investment—the support of social and environmental projects with a financial return—has become a hot topic on the global stage; poised to eclipse traditional aid by ten times in the next decade. But the field is at a tipping point: Will impact investment empower millions of people worldwide, or will it replicate the same mistakes that have plagued both aid and finance?
Morgan Simon is an investment professional who works at the nexus of social finance and social justice. In Real Impact, she teaches us how to get it right, leveraging the world's resources to truly transform the economy. Over the past seventeen years, Simon has influenced over $150 billion from endowments, families, and foundations. In Real Impact, Simon shares her experience as both investor and activist to offer clear strategies for investors, community leaders, and entrepreneurs alike. Real Impact is essential reading for anyone seeking real change in the world.
Forged in Crisis: The Power of Courageous Leadership in Turbulent Times by Nancy Koehn, Scribner
An enthralling historical narrative filled with critical leadership insights that will be of interest to a wide range of readers—including those in government, business, education, and the arts—Forged in Crisis, by celebrated Harvard Business School historian Nancy Koehn, spotlights five masters of crisis: polar explorer Ernest Shackleton; President Abraham Lincoln; legendary abolitionist Frederick Douglass; Nazi-resisting clergyman Dietrich Bonhoeffer; and environmental crusader Rachel Carson.
What do such disparate figures have in common? Why do their extraordinary stories continue to amaze and inspire? In delivering the answers to those questions, Nancy Koehn offers a remarkable template by which to judge those in our own time to whom the public has given its trust.
She begins each of the book’s five sections by showing her protagonist on the precipice of a great crisis: Shackleton marooned on an Antarctic ice floe; Lincoln on the verge of seeing the Union collapse; escaped slave Douglass facing possible capture; Bonhoeffer agonizing over how to counter absolute evil with faith; Carson racing against the cancer ravaging her in a bid to save the planet. The narrative then reaches back to each person’s childhood and shows the individual growing—step by step—into the person he or she will ultimately become. Significantly, as we follow each leader’s against-all-odds journey, we begin to glean an essential truth: leaders are not born but made. In a book dense with epiphanies, the most galvanizing one may be that the power to lead courageously resides in each of us.
Both a repository of great insight and an exceptionally rendered human drama, Forged in Crisis stands as a towering achievement.
Entrepreneurial You: Monetize Your Expertise, Create Multiple Income Streams, and Thrive by Dorie Clark, Harvard Business Review Press
What does it take to create the career you want?
It's no secret that the world of work has changed, and we're shifting toward an ever more entrepreneurial, self-reliant, work-from-wherever-you-are economy. That can be a liberating force, and many professionals dream of becoming independent, whether by starting their own businesses, becoming consultants or freelancers, or developing a sideline.
But there's a major obstacle professionals face when they contemplate taking the leap: how to actually make money doing what they love. You may have incredible talent and novel ideas, but figuring out how to get started, building your reputation in a new realm, developing multiple revenue streams, and bringing in a steady flow of new clients can be a daunting prospect.
Dorie Clark, a successful entrepreneur and author, has done it all. And in Entrepreneurial You she provides a blueprint for professional independence, with insights and advice on building your brand, monetizing your expertise, and extending your reach and impact online. In short, engaging chapters she outlines the necessary elements and concrete tactics for entrepreneurial success. She shares the stories of entrepreneurs of all kinds—from consultants and coaches to podcasters, bloggers, and online marketers—who have generated six- and seven-figure incomes.
In the new freelance, independent, work-from-wherever-you-are economy, millions of professionals of all stripes are looking for ways to increase their impact, make more money, diversify their revenue streams, and shape their careers as they see fit. This book provides a blueprint for doing just that. This book will be your hands-on guide to building a portfolio of revenue streams, both traditional and online, so that you can liberate yourself financially and shape your own career destiny.
Common-Sense Business: Principles for Profitable Leadership by Theodore Roosevelt Malloch, with Whitney MacMillan, Skyhorse Publishing
“Has the potential to transform how all companies are run … Nothing could be more valuable!” —Mark Drewell, CEO, Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative (GRLI)
From two of the world’s most successful business leaders comes Common-Sense Business—an accessible, actionable guide to better leadership, increased profits, and a more sustainable economic model predicated on prudence and socially conscious business.
Common sense and prudence have long been among the guiding tenets of society, but in today’s economy they have been completely abandoned in the interest of blindly maximizing profits. Common-Sense Business shows that this current economic model is both detrimental and unsustainable, and that we must transform the global economy along the lines of common sense toward the common good. Ted Malloch, a thought leader and policy influencer in global economic strategy, and Whitney MacMillan, the former chairman and CEO of the world’s largest private corporation, draw on recent research, history’s greatest minds, and their own successes to explain that ethically driven business is both a moral and financial necessity.
Inspired by Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, this work explains to readers in all walks of life that ethically driven business will lead to better long-term profits, larger customer bases and more positive customer relations, and a holistically improved business. This book is a must-read for business owners, entrepreneurs, students, and businessmen and women in all sectors of the economy.
Shortfall: Family Secrets, Financial Collapse, and a Hidden History of American Banking by Alice Echols, The New Press
The rollicking true story of a 1930s version of Bernie Madoff—and the building and loan crash he helped precipitate—in a wonderful work of narrative nonfiction by the Gustavus Myers book award winner.
Shortfall opens with a surprise discovery in an attic—boxes filled with letters and documents hidden for more than seventy years—and launches into a fast-paced story that uncovers the dark secrets in Echols’s family—an upside-down version of the building and loan story at the center of Frank Capra’s 1946 movie, It’s a Wonderful Life. In a narrative filled with colorful characters and profound insights into the American past, Shortfall is also the essential backstory to more recent financial crises, from the savings and loan debacle of the 1980s and 1990s to the subprime collapse of 2008.
Shortfall chronicles the collapse of the building and loan industry during the Great Depression—a story told in microcosm through the firestorm that erupted in one hard-hit American city during the early 1930s. Over a six-month period in 1932, all four of the building and loan associations in Colorado Springs, Colorado, crashed in an awful domino-like fashion, leaving some of the town’s citizens destitute. The largest of these associations was owned by author Alice Echols’s grandfather, Walter Davis, who absconded with millions of dollars in a case that riveted the national media. This book tells the dramatic story of his rise and shocking fall.
The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact by Chip Heath & Dan Heath, Simon & Schuster
The New York Times bestselling authors of Switch and Made to Stick explore why certain brief experiences can jolt us and elevate us and change us—and how we can learn to create such extraordinary moments in our life and work.
While human lives are endlessly variable, our most memorable positive moments are dominated by four elements: elevation, insight, pride, and connection. If we embrace these elements, we can conjure more moments that matter. What if a teacher could design a lesson that he knew his students would remember twenty years later? What if a manager knew how to create an experience that would delight customers? What if you had a better sense of how to create memories that matter for your children?
This book delves into some fascinating mysteries of experience: Why we tend to remember the best or worst moment of an experience, as well as the last moment, and forget the rest. Why “we feel most comfortable when things are certain, but we feel most alive when they’re not.” And why our most cherished memories are clustered into a brief period during our youth.
Readers discover how brief experiences can change lives, such as the experiment in which two strangers meet in a room, and forty-five minutes later, they leave as best friends. (What happens in that time?) Or the tale of the world’s youngest female billionaire, who credits her resilience to something her father asked the family at the dinner table. (What was that simple question?)
Many of the defining moments in our lives are the result of accident or luck—but why would we leave our most meaningful, memorable moments to chance when we can create them? The Power of Moments shows us how to be the author of richer experiences.
The Four: The Hidden DNA of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google by Scott Galloway, Portfolio
The acclaimed NYU business professor’s tour de force on the true nature of technology’s titans, and what happens next in their struggle to dominate our lives.
Apple, Amazon, Google, and Facebook are in an unprecedented race towards a $1 trillion valuation—and whoever gets there first will exert untold influence over our economy, public policy, and consumer behavior. How did these four become so successful? How high can they continue to rise? Does any other company stand a chance of competing?
To these questions and more, acclaimed NYU Stern School of Business professor Scott Galloway brings bracing answers. In his highly provocative first book, he pulls back the curtain on exactly how Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google built their massive empires. While the media spins tales about superior products and designs, and the power of technological innovation, Galloway exposes the truth about these “Four Horsemen”:
None of these four are first movers technologically; they’ve either copied, stolen, or acquired their ideas.
Each company uses evolutionary psychology to appeal to our basest instincts: Amazon, our need to hunt and gather; Apple, our need to procreate; Facebook, our need for love; and Google, our need for a God.
These companies are uniquely successful at leveraging competitive advantage built by digital and then protected by analog moats, from an empire of retail stores (Apple) to the world’s most efficient physical distribution network (Amazon.)
Through analysis that’s both rigorous and entertaining, Galloway outlines the path for the next trillion-dollar company (the Fifth Horseman) and points to which companies are in the running. (Uber, sure; less obvious, Microsoft and Starbucks.) As with Peter Thiel’s Zero to One, readers will come away with fresh, game -changing insights about what it takes to win in today’’s economy.
The Digital Helix: Transforming Your Organization's DNA to Thrive in the Digital Age by Michael Gale & Chris Aarons, Greenleaf Book Group
Thrive in the Digital Age.
Digital transformations are everywhere: business to business, business to consumer, and even government to citizens. Digital transformation promises a bridge to a digital future, where organizations can thrive with more fluid business models and processes. Less than 20% of organizations are getting digital transformations right, but these digitally transformed organizations can deliver twice as fast as other organizations, cut OPEX by over 30%, and have seen a near-immediate doubling in brand value. The power to act faster and do it better than before sits at the heart of truly digitally transformed organizations.
In The Digital Helix, authors Michael Gale and Chris Aarons explain the specifics of digitally transforming your organization— from the role of the digital-explorer leader in using information to empower the organization to move better and faster to shifts in sales, marketing, communications and leadership, product development, and service and support. The Digital Helix is a practical guide to bringing all the key functions together and includes guidance on developing a digital culture from the ground up—making it part of your company’s DNA—and the mindset tools needed to bring your organization into the digital-first age. Creating this digital-first DNA for your organization will allow you to not only embrace the digital age but thrive in it.
Leading from Within: Conscious Social Change and Mindfulness for Social Innovation by Gretchen Ki Steidle, The MIT Press
A roadmap for integrating mindfulness into every aspect of social change: how to lead transformation with compassion for the needs and perspectives of all people.
Gretchen Steidle knows first-hand the personal transformation that mindfulness practice can bring. But she doesn't believe that transformation stops at personal wellbeing. In Leading from Within, Steidle describes the ways that personal investment in self-awareness shapes leaders who are able to inspire change in others, build stronger relationships, and design innovative and more sustainable solutions. Steidle argues that both personal and societal transformation are essential for a just society, and with this book she offers a roadmap for integrating mindfulness into every aspect of social change. Conventional methods attempt to compel people to change through incentives or punitive measures. Conscious social change calls for leading with a deeper human understanding of change and compassion for the needs and perspectives of all stakeholders.
Steidle offers mindfulness practices for individuals and groups, presents the neuroscientific evidence for its benefits, and argues for its relevance to social change. She describes five capacities of conscious social change, devoting a chapter to each. She writes about her own experiences, including her work helping women to found their own grassroots social ventures in post-conflict Africa. She describes the success of a group of rural, uneducated women in Rwanda, for example, who now provide 9,000 villagers with clean water, ending the sexual exploitation of disabled women unable to collect water on their own. Steidle also draws from the work of change agents in the United States to showcase applications of conscious social change to timely issues like immigration, racism, policing, and urban violence. Through personal stories and practical guidance, Steidle delivers both the inspiration and tools of this innovative approach to social transformation.
Building a StoryBrand: Clarify Your Message So Customers Will Listen by Donald Miller, HarperCollins Leadership
New York Times bestselling author Donald Miller uses the seven universal elements of powerful stories to teach readers how to dramatically improve how they connect with customers and grow their businesses.
Donald Miller's StoryBrand process is a proven solution to the struggle business leaders face when talking about their businesses. This revolutionary method for connecting with customers provides readers with the ultimate competitive advantage, revealing the secret for helping their customers understand the compelling benefits of using their products, ideas, or services. Building a StoryBrand does this by teaching readers the seven universal story points all humans respond to; the real reason customers make purchases; how to simplify a brand message so people understand it; and how to create the most effective messaging for websites, brochures, and social media. Whether you are the marketing director of a multibillion dollar company, the owner of a small business, a politician running for office, or the lead singer of a rock band, Building a StoryBrand will forever transform the way you talk about who you are, what you do, and the unique value you bring to your customers.
WTF?: What's the Future and Why It's Up to Us by Tim O'Reilly, Harper Business
Silicon Valley’s leading intellectual and the founder of O’Reilly Media explores the upside and the potential downsides of our future—what he calls the "next economy."
Tim O’Reilly’s genius is to identify and explain emerging technologies with world shaking potential—the World Wide Web, Open Source Software, Web 2.0, Open Government data, the Maker Movement, Big Data. "The man who can really can make a whole industry happen," according to Executive Chairman of Google Eric Schmidt, O’Reilly has most recently focused on the future of work—AI, algorithms, and new approaches to business organization that will shape our lives. He has brought together an unlikely coalition of technologists, business leaders, labor advocates, and policy makers to wrestle with these issues. In WTF?, he shares the evolution of his intellectual development, applying his approach to a number of challenging issues we will face as citizens, employees, business leaders, and a nation.
What is the future when an increasing number of jobs can be performed by intelligent machines instead of people, or only done by people in partnership with those machines? What happens to our consumer based societies—to workers and to the companies that depend on their purchasing power? Is income inequality and unemployment an inevitable consequence of technological advancement, or are there paths to a better future? What will happen to business when technology-enabled networks and marketplaces are better at deploying talent than traditional companies? What’s the future of education when on-demand learning outperforms traditional institutions? Will the fundamental social safety nets of the developed world survive the transition, and if not, what will replace them?
The digital revolution has transformed the world of media, upending centuries-old companies and business models. Now, it is restructuring every business, every job, and every sector of society. Yet the biggest changes are still ahead. To survive, every industry and organization will have to transform itself in multiple ways. O’Reilly explores what the next economy will mean for the world and every aspect of our lives—and what we can do to shape it.
Ready, Fire, Aim: How I Turned a Hobby Into an Empire by Melissa Carbone, BenBella Books
Entrepreneur Melissa Carbone scares people for a living—and she does it so well, she has her market cornered.
Melissa Carbone's company, Ten Thirty One Productions, creates immersive horror experiences with life-like monsters and magic and other frights. More than 500,000 guests have attended her attractions and they show no sign of slowing down. But it wasn't always this way—an activist and lifelong horror fan, Melissa built her brand from the ground up, and in order to do that, she had to surmount her number-one obstacle: fear of failure.
Known for securing what was then the largest investment in the history of the show from Mark Cuban on ABC's Shark Tank in 2013, Melissa has conquered her fears and will never again allow them to keep her from success. Now she wakes up with messages from the likes of Live Nation, Legendary Pictures, and The White House in her inbox.
In Ready, Fire, Aim: How I Turned a Hobby Into an Empire, Carbone shares her philosophy of embracing all the shots that hit—and the ones that missed—that enabled her to turn her hobby into an empire. She will reveal the secrets, tips, and anecdotes that can help you turn your dreams for your career into your reality.
You will find inspiration to:
- Choose boldly: Choose to be in the top .1% of successful individuals—every day.
- Activate your ideas: Activation is where millionaires and billionaires are made—this is the key difference between the dreamers and those who have it all.
- Kill the fear of failure: Failure is the best way to prepare you for success.
Building your empire will require constant learning, reinvention, and growth. Ready, Fire, Aim is the story of entrepreneurship that pushes you to live with the audacity to take the first shot.
Entering StartUpLand: An Essential Guide to Finding the Right Job by Jeffrey Bussgang, Harvard Business Review Press
Many professionals aspire to work for startups. Executives from large companies view them as models to help them adapt to today's dynamic innovation economy, while freshly minted MBAs see magic in founding something new.
Yes, startups look magical, but they can also be chaotic and inaccessible. Many books are written for those who aspire to be founders, but a company only has one or two of those. What's needed is something that deconstructs the typical startup organization for the thousands of employees who join a fledgling company and do the day-to-day work required to grow it into something of value.
Entering StartUpLand is a practical, step-by-step guide that provides an insider's analysis of various startup roles and responsibilities--including product management, marketing, growth, and sales—to help you figure out if you want to join a startup and what to expect if you do. You'll gain insight into how successful startups operate and learn to assess which ones you might want to join—or emulate. Inside this book you'll find:
- A tour of typical startup roles to help you determine which one might be the best fit for you.
- Profiles of startup executives across many different functions who share their stories and describe their responsibilities.
- A methodology to identify and evaluate startups and position yourself to find the opportunity that's right for you.
Written by an experienced venture capitalist, entrepreneur, and Harvard Business School professor, Entering StartUpLand will guide you as you seek your ideal entry point into this popular, cutting-edge organizational paradigm.
Technically Wrong: Sexist Apps, Biased Algorithms, and Other Threats of Toxic Tech by Sara Wachter–Boettcher, W. W. Norton & Company
A revealing look at how tech industry bias and blind spots get baked into digital products—and harm us all.
Buying groceries, tracking our health, finding a date: whatever we want to do, odds are that we can now do it online. But few of us ask why all these digital products are designed the way they are. It’s time we change that. Many of the services we rely on are full of oversights, biases, and downright ethical nightmares: Chatbots that harass women. Signup forms that fail anyone who’s not straight. Social media sites that send peppy messages about dead relatives. Algorithms that put more black people behind bars.
Sara Wachter-Boettcher takes an unflinching look at the values, processes, and assumptions that lead to these and other problems. Technically Wrong demystifies the tech industry, leaving those of us on the other side of the screen better prepared to make informed choices about the services we use—and demand more from the companies behind them.
Bluefishing: The Art of Making Things Happen by Steve Sims, North Star Way
The man who created Bluefish, the internationally famous company that makes once in a lifetime events happen for the rich and famous reveals to the rest of us his trade secrets for making things happen.
Steve Sims’s day job is to make the impossible possible. With his help and expertise, his clients’ fantasies and wildest dreams come true. Getting married in the Vatican, being serenaded by Andrea Bocelli, and connecting with powerful business moguls like Elon Musk are just a few of the many projects he has worked on. He rarely reveals how he accomplishes the feats that make his clients so happy. But now for the first time, Steve shares his practical tips, techniques, and strategies to help readers break down any obstacle and turn their dreams into reality.
The core of his philosophy focuses on simple, yet effective ways to sharpen the mind and gain practical skills that can help you learn a new perspective and accomplish anything. Whether it’s climbing Mount Everest, launching a business, or applying for a dream job, you can make incredible things happen for yourself by applying his insightful advice such as:
- Ask Why Three Times
- Never be the First Call
- Don’t be Easy to Understand, be Impossible to Misunderstand
With colorful and enlightening stories of people driven to achieve the impossible, this book will inspire you to transform your life and aim for the unthinkable.
Entrepreneur and bestselling author of The Lean Startup, Eric Ries reveals how entrepreneurial principles can be used by businesses of all kinds, ranging from established companies to early-stage startups, to grow revenues, drive innovation, and transform themselves into truly modern organizations, poised to take advantage of the enormous opportunities of the twenty-first century.
In The Lean Startup, Eric Ries laid out the practices of successful startups—building a minimal viable product, customer-focused and scientific testing based on a build-measure-learn method of continuous innovation, and deciding whether to persevere or pivot. In The Startup Way, he turns his attention to an entirely new group of organizations: established enterprises like iconic multinationals GE and Toyota, tech titans like Amazon and Facebook, and the next generation of Silicon Valley upstarts like Airbnb and Twilio.
Drawing on his experiences over the past five years working with these organizations, as well as nonprofits, NGOs, and governments, Ries lays out a system of entrepreneurial management that leads organizations of all sizes and from every industry to sustainable growth and long-term impact. Filled with in-the-field stories, insights, and tools, The Startup Way is an essential road map for any organization navigating the uncertain waters of the century ahead.
Soonish: Ten Emerging Technologies That'll Improve and/or Ruin Everything by Kelly Weinersmith, Zach Weinersmith, Penguin Press
From the creators of the hugely popular web comic Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal, a hilariously illustrated investigation into the technologies of the near future, from deep space travel to 3D organ printing.
What will the world of tomorrow be like? How does progress happen? And why do we not have a lunar colony already? What is the hold-up?
In this smart and funny book, celebrated cartoonist Zach Weinersmith and top researcher Dr. Kelly Weindersmith give us a snapshot of what’s coming next—from robot swarms to nuclear fusion powered-toasters. By weaving their own research, interviews with the scientists who are making these advances happen, and Zach’s trademark comics, the Weinersmiths investigate why these technologies are needed, how they would work, and what is standing in their way.
New technologies are almost never the work of isolated geniuses with a neat idea. A given future technology may need any number of intermediate technologies to develop first, and many of these critical advances may appear to be irrelevant when they are first discovered. The journey to progress is full of strange detours and blind alleys that tell us so much about the human mind and the march of civilization.
To this end, Soonish investigates eleven different emerging fields, from programmable matter to augmented reality, from space elevators to robotic construction, to show us the amazing world we will have, you know, soonish.
This Is How We Rise: Reach Your Highest Potential, Empower Women, Lead Change in the World by Claudia Chan, Da Capo Lifelong Books
From an inspiring voice in the movement for gender equality, a practical guide to achieving success through a new kind of leadership—rooted in purpose and activism for social change.
We live in a time of unprecedented opportunity for women. Yet despite centuries of progress, true equality remains out of reach. What will it take to bring us to a tipping point?
To leadership expert and social entrepreneur Claudia Chan, the key is shifting to a "me for we" mindset, where individuals root their effort in a mission far bigger than personal success, and getting everyone—women and men—to work together for social change. By lifting others, we not only make the world better, but we can also discover our greatest meaning and achieve lasting fulfillment. In This Is How We Rise, Claudia encourages readers to join a new breed of leaders and become change makers for gender equality. Distilling wisdom and insights from her own personal and professional journey, she shares key lessons learned and offers a toolbox of thirteen foundational habits. Claudia shows how to define and develop your own purpose, vision, and pathway to becoming a thriving agent for good.
Whether you own your own business or are part of the corporate world, whether you're at the top of your field or are just starting out in your career, you have the power to lead change and achieve extraordinary success in all areas of your life. This Is How We Rise will show you how to unleash it.
The Kinfolk Entrepreneur: Ideas for Meaningful Work by Nathan Williams, Artisan
From the author of the widely popular Kinfolk Table and Kinfolk Home, this inspiring compilation offers a window into the rituals, wisdom, and motivations of 35 creative entrepreneurs from around the world.
In The Kinfolk Entrepreneur, author Nathan Williams introduces readers to 40 creative business owners around the globe, offering an inspiring, in-depth look behind the scenes of their lives and their companies. Pairing insightful interviews with striking images of these men and women and their workspaces, The Kinfolk Entrepreneur makes business personal. The book profiles both budding and experienced entrepreneurs across a broad range of industries (from fashion designers to hoteliers) in cities across the globe (from Copenhagen to Dubai). Readers will learn how today’s industry leaders handle both their successes and failures, achieve work-life balance, find motivation in the face of adversity, and so much more.
Power Up: How Smart Women Win in the New Economy by Magdalena Yesil, Seal Press
Pioneering Silicon Valley entrepreneur and investor Magdalena Yesil came to the United States in 1976 with two suitcases and $43, blind to the challenges she would face as a woman and immigrant in Silicon Valley. Today, she is best known as the first investor and a founding board member of Salesforce, the now-multibillion dollar company that ushered in the era of cloud-based computing.
In Power Up: How Smart Women Win in the New Economy, Yesil urges women to look beyond the alarming gender statistics of the workplace and feel confident entering tech or any field-but also prepared to deal with the challenges. She shares what she experienced as a woman in Silicon Valley with surprising candor and heart, relying not just on her insight but that of more than a dozen top women entrepreneurs to offer pragmatic takeaways on topics such as:
- Owning career choices while managing risk
- Getting credit for your work
- Managing sexual dynamics
- Recruiting allies in the movement toward a supportive workplace for everyone
Pragmatic, incisive, and full of highly actionable advice, Yesil prepares ambitious women to break glass ceilings and rise to the top in the New Silicon Valley-and beyond.