Here are our top picks for the best leadership & business books for January 2016:
“As automation and outsourcing reshape the workplace, what new skill do we need? The ability to do deep work. Cal Newport’s exciting new book is an introduction and guide to the kind of intense concentration in a distraction-free environment that results in fast, powerful learning and performance. Think of it as calisthenics for your mind-and start your exercise program today.”―Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and To Sell Is Human
“DEEP WORK makes a compelling case for cultivating intense focus, and offers immediately actionable steps for infusing more of it into our lives.”―Adam M. Grant, author of Give and Take
“Cal Newport is a clear voice in a sea of noise, bringing science and passion in equal measure. We don’t need more clicks, more cats, and more emojis. We need brave work, work that happens when we refuse to avert our eyes.”―Seth Godin, author of What to Do When It’s Your Turn
“Cal Newport offers the most well-informed and astute collection of practical advice I have seen for reclaiming one’s mental powers.”―Matthew B. Crawford, author of The World Beyond Your Head
“Just when you think you already know this stuff, DEEP WORK hits you with surprisingly unique and useful insights. Rule #3 alone, with its discussion of the ‘Any-Benefit’ mind-set, is worth the price of this book.”―Derek Sivers, founder, Sivers.org
“Here lies a playbook for professionals of all stripes to achieve true differentiation in a crowded talent marketplace. Cal Newport’s latest shows why he is one of the most provocative thinkers on the future of work.”―Ben Casnocha, co-author of The Start-Up Of You
“In this strong self-help book, Newport declares that the habits of modern professionals-checking email at all hours, rushing from meeting to meeting, and valuing multitasking above all else-only stand in the way of truly valuable work.”―Publisher’s Weekly
The Right Kind of Crazy by A True Story of Teamwork, Leadership & High Stakes Innovation by Adam Steltzner & William Patrick
“Steltzner’s enthusiastic, passionately written memoir is an insider’s guide to engineering wizardry and a testament to the effectiveness of team-minded engagement, rational problem-solving, and the concept of ‘making ideas reality.’ A motivational journey for armchair astronauts and readers fascinated by the unlimited wingspan of human potential.” – Kirkus Reviews
“Steltzner is a genetic cross between Einstein and Elvis Costello who has mastered the art of managing complex tribes of humans. The Right Kind of Crazy is a fabulous—and ongoing—story.” —JUAN ENRIQUEZ, coauthor of Evolving Ourselves “Crazy ideas stay crazy until they become reality. The problem is, it takes a lot of people working together to turn crazy into amazing. Adam Steltzner should know—he did it. In this book he shows us that doing what others think is impossible takes more than grit and courage. It takes the ability to inspire people . . . It takes leadership.” —SIMON SINEK, optimist and author of Start with Why and Leaders Eat Last
“Adam Steltzner not only does great engineering, he also teaches it and he can lead a great engineering team such as the one that landed Curiosity on Mars. All that embedded in a gaudy personality and astute observer makes for a book that is as delightful as it is instructive.” —STEWART BRAND, president, The Long Now Foundation “How does a band of engineers get a 2,000 -pound robot to the surface of Mars? The Right Kind of Crazy is proof that with the right kind of leader, a team of determined dreamers can accomplish just about anything.” —BEN SILBERMANN, cofounder, Pinterest
“This book shares Adam’s journey from juvenile delinquent to landing on Mars. In its pages you will enter the mind of a fearless genius rocket scientist and discover the power of intuition, and how creativity and courage are as important as math. It is a must-read for scientists and artists alike.” —TOM SACHS, artist
You know you can do more with your career. And the future is going to demand more of you.
The problem is you are so busy keeping up with the day-to-day that you can’t prepare for tomorrow. Stretch: How to Future Proof Yourself for Tomorrow’s Workplace gives you the confidence and knowledge you need to achieve your goals in an ever-changing world. Karie Willyerd and Barbara Mistick—established experts and the collective winners of dozens of awards in the field of personal development and learning—offer evidence-based guidance on obtaining the skills you will need to thrive in tomorrow’s workplace. Built on solid, global research and dozens of personal interviews with people who have achieved new and inspiring goals, Stretch offers advice, valuable insights, anecdotes, and recommendations to make achieving your goals practical and within reach.
As a leader, changing your mind has always been perceived as a weakness. Not anymore. In a world that’s changing faster than ever, successful leaders realize that a genuine willingness to change their own minds is the ultimate competitive advantage.
Drawing on evidence from social science, history, politics, and more, business consultant Al Pittampalli reveals why confidence, consistency, and conviction, are increasingly becoming liabilities—while humility, inconsistency, and radical open-mindedness are powerful leadership assets.
In Persuadable, you’ll learn how Ray Dalio became the most successful hedge fund manager in the world by strategically curbing confidence. How Alan Mullaly saved Ford Motor Company, not by staying the course, but by continually changing course. How one Nobel Prize-winning scientist discovered the cause of ulcers by bravely doubting his own entrenched beliefs. You’ll learn how Billy Graham’s change of heart helped propel the civil rights movement, and how a young NFL linebacker’s radical new position may prove to alter the world of professional football as we know it.
Pittampalli doesn’t just explain why you should be persuadable. Distilling cutting edge research from cognitive and social psychology, he shows you precisely how. Rife with actionable advice, Persuadable is an invaluable guide for today’s data-driven, results-oriented leader.
Inspired by Peter Drucker’s groundbreaking book The Effective Executive, Laura Stack details precisely how 21st-century leaders and managers can obtain profitable, productive results by managing the intersection of two critical values: effectiveness and efficiency.
Effectiveness, Stack says, is identifying and achieving the best objectives for your organization—doing the right things. Efficiency is accomplishing them with the least amount of time, effort, and cost—doing things right. If you’re not clear on both, you’re wasting your time. As Drucker put it, “There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.” Stack’s 3T Leadership offers twelve practices that will enable executives to be effective and efficient, grouped into three areas where leaders spend their time: Strategic Thinking, Teamwork, and Tactics. With her expert advice, you’ll get scores of new ideas on how you, your team, and your organization can boost productivity.