Book recommendations for business leaders: 8/10/17

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Stephen King says that if you want to be a writer, there are two things you must do: read a lot and write a lot. This is about the “read a lot” part. I include reading lists and book reviews that will help you do business more effectively and write better for business.

In this post, I point you to reviews of The Captain Class, Mastering Civility: A Manifesto for the Workplace, Psyched Up: How the Science of Mental Preparation Can Help You Succeed, : Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are, and Stop Guessing.

From Michael McKinney: What Sets Apart the Greatest Teams of All-Time?

“SAM WALKER revisits the popular idea of leadership. In The Captain Class, Walker describes what makes an elite captain by analyzing the leadership of sixteen of the most dominate teams in history. What he found is that each team had the same type of captain—a singular leader with an unconventional skill set that drove the team to achieve sustained, historic greatness.”

From Wharton: Why We Need to Kick Incivility Out of the Office

“When left unchecked, not only does rampant incivility make our days more tense, it also leads to a loss of focus, a loss of productivity, a deliberate slacking off among disgruntled employees, and even serious health problems. Christine Porath, an associate professor of management at Georgetown University, has been studying the problem and looking for ways we can begin to alleviate it. Porath joined the Knowledge@Wharton Show on Sirius XM channel 111 to talk about her new book, Mastering Civility: A Manifesto for the Workplace.”

From the Harvard Business Review: Mental Preparation Secrets of Top Athletes, Entertainers, and Surgeons

“Dan McGinn, senior editor at Harvard Business Review, talks about what businesspeople can learn from how top performers and athletes prepare for their big moments. A big sales meeting, presentation, or interview can be pivotal to success in business. The same goes for pep talks that motivate employees. McGinn talks about both the research and practical applications of mental preparation and motivation. He’s the author of the book, Psyched Up: How the Science of Mental Preparation Can Help You Succeed. His article, ‘The Science of Pep Talks,’ is in the July-August 2017 issue of Harvard Business Review.”

From Kevin Eikenberry: Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are

“This is a book about social science, that could not have been written 20 years ago. Why? Because Google wasn’t born until September 4, 1998. And Facebook wasn’t born until February of 2004. Why does that matter? Because data scientist Seth Stephens-Davidowitz uses date from sources like Google and Facebook to understand things in ways that we couldn’t understand before.”

From Harvey Schachter: Use step-by-step analysis to find the roots of your problem

“In solving problems, we tend to fall back on experience. We might brainstorm. We might seek out consultants or advisers – sometimes many of them – or we might rely on intuition. But Nat Greene, a consultant who tackles challenging technical problems around the world, says that all amounts to guesswork. We are essentially going with hunches rather than hard-nosed research that digs into the root causes. And while our guesswork gambits can work with the simple and familiar problems we often face, they will fail when applied to complex problems.”

Reading recommendations are a regular feature of this blog. Want more recommendations about what to read? Check out my Three Star Leadership blog and Michael McKinney’s LeadingBlog.

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