I am proud to say that I am continuing to follow my New Year’s resolution to read more books. I want to share an update on the best books that I read during the second quarter.
Drum roll, please. Here is my list of books for the 2019 second quarter:
Kris Dunn applies the 9-box grid assessment methodology to create personal profiles of the nine types of HR professionals you will find in the workplace. The book is smart, funny, and on target. I have been a longtime fan of Kris’ via his Fistful of Talent and HR Capitalist blogs. His book definitely did not disappoint.
The 9 Faces of HR is a tutorial in understanding people in your professional life – their strengths, weaknesses, ambitions, how to best work with them, and how to run for the hills when certain types appear. Throughout reading the book, I found my head nodding along with a slight smile at how smartly Kris captured all of the wonderful personalities in the wild world of work today.
I love to talk about HR Analytics, and there are no better experts out there today than Scott Mondore and Shane Douhitt of Strategic Management Decisions (SMD). What is so great about the work that Scott, Shane, and the other authors do is that they bring analytics to life. They demystify the perception that analytics is too difficult a cognitive task for non-analyst. Their book provides example after example on how they use data to arrive at decisions that may not have been readily apparent.
Do not shy away from this book thinking it will be a heavy read. Predicting Business Success is written in a welcoming, informative fashion that will make everyone an analyst.
I LOVED THIS BOOK. This is a loving tribute to Bill Campbell, a former college football coach and CEO who mentored and coached visionaries like Steve Jobs, Larry Page, Eric Schmidt, and a host of blue-chip Silicon Valley organizations. The title comes from a calculation that Eric Schmidt, the former CEO of Google, did on how Bill Campbell helped guide leaders who built companies with over a trillion dollars in market value.
Bill Campbell’s story and insights, which are shared throughout the book, are inspiring. He coached from a position of love, but he could deliver it in a tough way. For example, here are some of the unique ways that Bill would tell you that he loved you. Everyone he coached called these “Billisms”:
- “You should have that shirt cleaned and burned.”
- “You could not run a five-flat forty-yard dash off a cliff.”
- “You’ve got hands like feet.”
Do not let the tough-love sound bites mislead. The book shows how a coach, totally invested in the success of his coachee, can help them achieve greatness. Bill Campbell did this over and over with some of the business legends of our time.
By the way, he did all of his coaching at no charge. He had retired comfortably and only did coaching as his way to give back.
I have been writing a blog for years now (I commemorated it with my recent “Lessons Learned From Writing 400 Blogs.” Along the way in developing my craft as a writer, I heard about Ann Handley. Despite all of the wonderful things that I heard, I did not read her book Everybody Writes until May of this year. Ann’s book provides the inspiration and encouragement that everyone can write better.
Ann’s advice will help you move along the path to becoming a more effective communicator. It will challenge you to fine-tune your thinking and approach to writing so that your single focus is making your message clearly understood.
I originally started blogging because I wanted to get the business benefits of SEO and thought leadership. Along the way, I have grown to love writing and have started a lifelong quest on perfecting my craft. Ann’s book was helpful in rekindling the fires within me to be an effective communicator.
Ageism is a topic that I have been interested in for quite some time. Yes, I am in the demographic that is most impacted by ageism. I am also interested in the topic because I have an aversion to things that I deem unfair and unethical. The blatant age discrimination in the workplace today is wrong, and there are some strong voices that are speaking out against this. One voice is Ashton Applewhite, the author of This Chair Rocks: A Manifesto Against Ageism.
Ashton covers the full spectrum of ageism: its origin, how it affects one’s identity, its impact on the brain and body, sex, and the workplace. The book is not a pity party, and it definitely is not telling young people to get off your yard. It brings truth to the topic of aging gracefully and busts a lot of myths along the way.
Please let me know if there are any great books that you recommend. I thank you in advance.