I’ve long held the belief that you can learn more about a person from the books they read, the videos they watch and the podcasts they listen to, than you can from asking them to “tell me about yourself.” With that in mind, these are my inputs for growing knowledge, fostering creative ideas and challenging my current conclusions.
I love audiobooks and mention them first in this list because they are my main source of long-form knowledge. Here are a few of my all-time favorite books starting with a classic pep-talk from Seth Godin, littered with uncommon nuggets of knowledge.
Seeing both sides of any situation is invaluable for mutual understanding, negotiating and relationship building. I stumbled across this duo of books from Reid Hoffman and company at a rather serendipitous time and can’t recommend these two books enough, for anyone looking for work and/or hiring talent.
- Start-up of You – Reid Hoffman – Reid Hoffman, Ben Casnocha
- The Alliance: Managing Talent in the Networked Age –Reid Hoffman, Ben Casnocha, Chris Yeh
The exponential series (unofficial name) is a collection of books by Peter H. Diamandis of X-prize, Human Longevity Inc., Singularity University and a many more ventures.
- Exponential Organizations: Why new organizations are ten times better, faster, and cheaper than yours (and what to do about it)
- Bold: How to Go Big, Make Bank, and Better the World
- Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think
Deep Work by Cal Newport has some great insights into single-tasking and the importance of deep thought for critical and creative thinking. A short blurb of mine in this vein on linkedin.com called The Lost Art of Single-Tasking.
I’m deeply inspired by those who dream big, dare greatly and possess the grit to endure the war of art. This book from Walter Isaacson is a great history of the people who created the computer and the Internet… and changed the world as we know it today.
Design Thinking is often the bridge between Lean/Agile and non-techy employees. These two books are a great introduction to Design Thinking.
We are taught to look for the WHY and ask WHAT… but we rarely consider WHEN as much as we should to optimize results. This book by Daniel H. Pink makes a strong case for reconsidering that approach.
Tools of Titans and the 30 Second series of books are a great example of written, micro-training and short form storytelling for the purpose of knowledge transfer.
- Tools of Titans – Tim Ferriss
- The entire 30 Second _________ series. Currently, I’m reading 30 Second Psychology
- Shots of Awe
- Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows
- Words Of Wisdom
- ART OF LIFE
- Be Inspired – Daily Motivation