As 2018 comes to a close, I am sharing a series of “My Favorite Things.” Last week, I shared my five favorite online courses and this week, I’m sharing my five favorite books for entrepreneurs.
This is a book I re-read every few years, and each time, I learn something new. The book helps readers master the art of networking by focusing on persuasion and how to make genuine connections. Much of my approach to networking was shaped by this book, so if you’ve enjoyed Networking for Introverts or The Master Networker, then this book will definitely appeal to you.
I’ve dedicated much of my career to demonstrating why introversion can often be an asset rather than a handicap, so this book was definitely preaching to the choir. But learning about the rise of what Cain calls “The Extrovert Ideal” was both fascinating and eye-opening. If you are concerned that your introversion could be hindering your success, read this book and you’ll soon feel differently.
There’s a reason I give this book to every intern, student, or new-hire that I work with. It is the most straightforward, effective, thoroughyet concise writing handbook on the market. If you feel like your copy isn’t packing the punch that you want it to, or that your email marketing could be more effective, THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE is the magic bullet you need.
I became an entrepreneur because I wanted to shape my own career, not because I had dreams of developing a workforce. Most of us begin work utilizing our skills, but we’re soon moved into roles where we’re managing other people, even though we’ve had no formal training. When you’re working for yourself, there isn’t anyone to teach you how to be a good boss or effectively lead a team. And that’s why every entrepreneur I know seems to be reading DARE TO LEAD. Brown’s approach to leadership is innovative, actionable, and most importantly human. While I don’t agree with all of her methods and tactics, her worldview and overall philosophy is an important one, one that I think we all could benefit from.
I love the study of habits–how they’re formed, how they can change, etc. So when James Clear came out with this book, I was quick to jump on it. His approach to habits–both creating them and breaking them–is so simple, that I found myself reading it and thinking, “Of course! Of course that’s how to do it.” Rather than focusing on something big like, “I’m going to go to the gym and work out 90 minutes every day!” he suggests re-framing to focus on the first two minutes of that habit. Using working out as an example, the habit to focus on isn’t working out 90 minutes every day, but putting on your workout clothes first thing in the morning or driving yourself to the gym every day. Once you’re there, you’ll work out, it’s getting you out the door that’s the huge hurdle. So for those of you with lofty New Year’s resolutions, I highly recommend reading this one before the end of the year.
I’d love to hear some of your favorite reads from 2018. Feel free to share them in the comments and don’t forget to subscribe to the newsletter so you receive next week’s installment of “My Favorite Things!”
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