List Headline Image
Updated by Marc Binkley on Sep 13, 2014
 REPORT
Marc Binkley Marc Binkley
Owner
32 items   3 followers   0 votes   137 views

32 of the Best Business Books Ever

This list of books represents the theories, stories, frameworks, principles and ideals that shape my view of building high performance organizations.

Have you read any?

25 best from 2012:
http://bit.ly/1utrWf7

All the books I've read:
http://bit.ly/SBMBA

Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works

Winning CEO A.G. Lafley is now back at the helm of consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble. If you want to know the strategy he’ll use to restore P&G to its former dominance—read this book.

Playing to Win, a noted Wall Street Journal and Washington Post bestseller, outlines the strategic approach Lafley, in close partnership with strategic adviser Roger Martin, used to double P&G’s sales, quadruple its profits, and increase its market value by more than $100 billion when Lafley was first CEO (he led the company from 2000 to 2009). The book shows leaders in any type of organization how to guide everyday actions with larger strategic goals built around the clear, essential elements that determine business success—where to play and how to win.

Zag: The #1 Strategy of High-Performance Brands

In an age of me-too products and instant communications, keeping up with the competition is no longer a winning strategy. Today you have to out-position, out-maneuver, and out-design the competition. The new rule? When everybody zigs, zag. In his first book, THE BRAND GAP, Neumeier showed companies how to bridge the distance between business strategy and design. In ZAG, he illustrates the number-one strategy of high-performance brands—radical differentiation.

Damn Good Advice (For People With Talent!): How to Unleash Your Creative Potential by America's Master Communicator, ...

Damn Good Advice (For People With Talent!)is a look into the mind of one of America's most legendary creative thinkers, George Lois. Offering indispensle lessons, practical advice, facts, anecdotes and inspiration, this book is a timeless creative bible for all those looking to succeed in life, business and creativity. These are key lessons derived from the incomparle life of 'Master Communicator' George Lois, the original Mad Man of Madison Avenue. Written and compiled by the manThe Wall Street Journalcalled "prodigy, enfant terrible, founder of agencies, creator of legends," each step is borne from a passion to succeed and a disdain for the status quo.

The Sketchnote Handbook: The Illustrated Guide to Visual Note Taking

"Entertaining and memorable (just like sketchnotes), this fast-reading, fact-packed book by the godfather of sketchnoting provides everything you and your team need to know about the creative, mnemonic, and business benefits of this brilliant new method of note taking."

Good To Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap...And Others Don't

The Challenge
Built to Last, the defining management study of the nineties, showed how great companies triumph over time and how long-term sustained performance can be engineered into the DNA of an enterprise from the verybeginning.

But what about the company that is not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness?

The Study
For years, this question preyed on the mind of Jim Collins. Are there companies that defy gravity and convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? And if so, what are the universal distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great?

The Innovator's Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth

Clay Christensen (author of the award-winning Harvard Business Review article, “How Will You Measure Your Life?”) and Raynor not only reveal that innovation is more predictable than most managers have come to believe, they also provide helpful advice on the business decisions crucial to truly disruptive growth. Citing in-depth research and theories tested in hundreds of companies across many industries, the authors identify the processes that create successful innovation—and they show managers how to tailor their strategies to the changing circumstances of a dynamic world.

Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage

Most companies today have innovation envy. They yearn to come up with a game—changing innovation like Apple's iPod, or create an entirely new category like Facebook. Many make genuine efforts to be innovative—they spend on R&D, bring in creative designers, hire innovation consultants. But they get disappointing results.

Why? In The Design of Business, Roger Martin offers a compelling and provocative answer: we rely far too exclusively on analytical thinking, which merely refines current knowledge, producing small improvements to the status quo.

Different: Escaping the Competitive Herd

Now comes Youngme Moon’s Different, a book for “people who don’t read business books.” Actually, it’s more like a personal conversation with a friend who has thought deeply about how the world works … and who gets you to see that world in a completely new light.

If there is one strain of conventional wisdom pervading every company in every industry, it’s the absolute importance of “competing like crazy.” Youngme Moon’s message is simply “Get off this treadmill that’s taking you nowhere. Going tit for tat and adding features, augmentations, and gimmicks to beat the competition has the perverse result of making you like everyone else.” Different provides a highly original perspective on what it means to offer something that is meaningfully different—different in a manner that is both fundamental and comprehensive.

Why We Buy: The Science of Shopping--Updated and Revised for the Internet, the Global Consumer, and Beyond

Revolutionary retail guru Paco Underhill is back with a completely revised edition of his classic, witty bestselling book on our ever-evolving consumer culture—full of fresh observations and important lessons from the cutting edge of retail such as Internet behemoths Amazon and iTunes as well as the globalization of retail in the world’s emerging markets.strong text

Predictably Irrational Revised And Expanded Edition: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions is a 2008 book by Dan Ariely, in which he challenges readers' assumptions about making decisions based on rational thought. Ariely explains, "My goal, by the end of this book, is to help you fundamentally rethink what makes you and the people around you tick. I hope to lead you there by presenting a wide range of scientific experiments, findings, and anecdotes that are in many cases quite amusing. Once you see how systematic certain mistakes are--how we repeat them again and again--I think you will begin to learn how to avoid some of them".

The Connected Company

Customers are adopting disruptive technologies faster than your company can adapt. When your customers are delighted, they can amplify your message in ways that were never before possible. But when your company’s performance runs short of what you’ve promised, customers can seize control of your brand message, spreading their disappointment and frustration faster than you can keep up.

To keep pace with today’s connected customers, your company must become a connected company. That means deeply engaging with workers, partners, and customers, changing how work is done, how you measure success, and how performance is rewarded. It requires a new way of thinking about your company: less like a machine to be controlled, and more like a complex, dynamic system that can learn and adapt over time.

Connected companies have the advantage, because they learn and move faster than their competitors. While others work in isolation, they link into rich networks of possibility and expand their influence.

The Cluetrain Manifesto: 10th Anniversary Edition by Levine, Rick Anniversary edition (2009) Hardcover

Ten years after Cluetrain's original publication, too many companies still ignore the idea that markets are really made up of people. In our rapidly changing world, this book's message is more vital than ever. Companies may be wired for business, but they still struggle with how to talk to their customers like human beings.

Resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences

Reveals the underlying story form of all great presentations that will not only create impact, but will move people to action
Presentations are meant to inform, inspire, and persuade audiences. So why then do so many audiences leave feeling like they've wasted their time? All too often, presentations don't resonate with the audience and move them to transformative action.

Just as the author's first book helped presenters become visual communicators, Resonate helps you make a strong connection with your audience and lead them to purposeful action.

Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard

Why is it so hard to make lasting changes in our companies, in our communities, and in our own lives?

The primary obstacle is a conflict that's built into our brains, say Chip and Dan Heath, authors of the critically acclaimed bestseller Made to Stick. Psychologists have discovered that our minds are ruled by two different systems - the rational mind and the emotional mind - that compete for control. The rational mind wants a great beach body; the emotional mind wants that Oreo cookie. The rational mind wants to change something at work; the emotional mind loves the comfort of the existing routine. This tension can doom a change effort - but if it is overcome, change can come quickly.

In Switch, the Heaths show how everyday people - employees and managers, parents and nurses - have united both minds and, as a result, achieved dramatic results.

Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

Why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others? Why do some command greater loyalty?

In studying the leaders who've had the greatest influence in the world, Simon Sinek discovered that they all think, act, and communicate in the exact same way-and it's the complete opposite of what everyone else does. People like Martin Luther King Jr., Steve Jobs, and the Wright Brothers might have little in common, but they all started with why.

Drawing on a wide range of real-life stories, Sinek weaves together a clear vision of what it truly takes to lead and inspire.

Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook: How to Tell Your Story in a Noisy, Social World

New York Times bestselling author and social media expert Gary Vaynerchuk shares hard-won advice on how to connect with customers and beat the competition. A mash-up of the best elements of Crush It! and The Thank You Economy with a fresh spin, Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook is a blueprint to social media marketing strategies that really works.

Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter

A thought-provoking, accessible, and essential exploration of why some leaders (“Diminishers”) drain capability and intelligence from their teams, while others (“Multipliers”) amplify it to produce better results. Including a foreword by Stephen R. Covey, as well the five key disciplines that turn smart leaders into genius makers, Multipliers is a must-read for everyone from first-time managers to world leaders.

Metaskills: Five Talents for the Robotic Age

In a sweeping vision for the future of work, Neumeier shows that the massive problems of the 21st century are largely the consequence of a paradigm shift—a shuddering gear-change from the familiar Industrial Age to the unfamiliar “Robotic Age,” an era of increasing man-machine collaboration.

This change is creating the “Robot Curve,” an accelerating waterfall of obsolescence and opportunity that is currently reshuffling the fortunes of workers, companies, and national economies. It demonstrates how the cost and value of a unit of work go down as it moves from creative to skilled to rote, and, finally, to robotic. While the Robot Curve is dangerous to those with brittle or limited skills, it offers unlimited potential to those with metaskills—master skills that enable other skills.

The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

Most startups fail. But many of those failures are preventable. The Lean Startup is a new approach being adopted across the globe, changing the way companies are built and new products are launched.

Eric Ries defines a startup as an organization dedicated to creating something new under conditions of extreme uncertainty. This is just as true for one person in a garage or a group of seasoned professionals in a Fortune 500 boardroom. What they have in common is a mission to penetrate that fog of uncertainty to discover a successful path to a sustainable business.

The Lean Startup approach fosters companies that are both more capital efficient and that leverage human creativity more effectively. Inspired by lessons from lean manufacturing, it relies on “validated learning,” rapid scientific experimentation, as well as a number of counter-intuitive practices that shorten product development cycles, measure actual progress without resorting to vanity metrics, and learn what customers really want. It enables a company to shift directions with agility, altering plans inch by inch, minute by minute.

Eddie Obeng's Money Making Machine

This book is made up of TWO parts. A Novel which explains the THEORY and a Practical Workbook to help you APPLY it.

Purple Cow, New Edition: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable--Includes new bonus chapter

Cows, after you've seen one, or two, or ten, are boring. A Purple Cow, though...now that would be something. Purple Cow describes something phenomenal, something counterintuitive and exciting and flat out unbelievable. Every day, consumers come face to face with a lot of boring stuff-a lot of brown cows-but you can bet they won't forget a Purple Cow. And it's not a marketing function that you can slap on to your product or service. Purple Cow is inherent. It's built right in, or it's not there. Period.

In Purple Cow, Seth Godin urges you to put a Purple Cow into everything you build, and everything you do, to create something truly noticeable. It's a manifesto for marketers who want to help create products that are worth marketing in the first place.

Positioning: The Battle for Your Mind

The first book to deal with the problems of communicating to a skeptical, media-blitzed public, Positioning describes a revolutionary approach to creating a "position" in a prospective customer's mind-one that reflects a company's own strengths and weaknesses as well as those of its competitors.

What Matters Now: How to Win in a World of Relentless Change, Ferocious Competition, and Unstoppable Innovation

This is not a book about one thing. It's not a 250-page dissertation on leadership, teams or motivation. Instead, it's an agenda for building organizations that can flourish in a world of diminished hopes, relentless change and ferocious competition.

This is not a book about doing better. It's not a manual for people who want to tinker at the margins. Instead, it's an impassioned plea to reinvent management as we know it—to rethink the fundamental assumptions we have about capitalism, organizational life, and the meaning of work.

Maverick: The Success Story Behind the World's Most Unusual Workplace

Semler turned his family's business, the aging Semco corporation of Brazil, into the most revolutionary business success story of our time. By eliminating uneeded layers of management and allowing employees unprecedented democracy in the workplace, he created a company that challenged the old ways and blazed a path to success in an uncertain economy.

Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter

A thought-provoking, accessible, and essential exploration of why some leaders (“Diminishers”) drain capability and intelligence from their teams, while others (“Multipliers”) amplify it to produce better results. Including a foreword by Stephen R. Covey, as well the five key disciplines that turn smart leaders into genius makers, Multipliers is a must-read for everyone from first-time managers to world leaders.