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The reading room - books on business, management, productivity and so forth...

post #1 of 61
Thread Starter 
Thought I would start a thread on this seeking recommendations, thoughts and reviews of various books on management, personal productivity and so on. A few things I have been through recently/currently working through. I really enjoyed the Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. It is a bit self-helpy in places, but on the whole, I like the principle centred approach and the logical way in which it orders its steps. Went through it (audiobook, I cheated) a month or so back, and on the whole, was impressed, and am still pondering it, and working out how it fits into my life. I regard this as an endorsement of it...I didn't just read it and forget it. I was less than impressed with the McKinsey Way. I think he had 3-4 chapters of worthwhile material, pretty stringent constraints on disclosure, and about 200 pages to fill. So...we got 150 pages of filler - including a chapter on what to pack when you travel (thank you McKinsey Alum, without you, I would never have thought to bring a toothbrush). Would have loved better insights in to the consultancy and the consultants than this book delivered. Didn't bother with the sequel. One Minute Manager I thought was a cute little read - was about 45 minutes cover to cover, and that was time well spent on a couple of really basic things that are easy to forget otherwise. In the same vain, I liked The Present for the same reason. A quick, easy read, with some good solid advice - albeit occasionally a little preachy - that is otherwise easy to overlook in the daily kerfuffle. I stumbled across the MBA for Dummies book in a discount bin at HK airport a while back and read that. I have long pondered whether I should do an MBA, so really read this as kind of an expanded course syllabus rather than a text in its own right. In the end, I thought it was well written, clear and concise, and covered a lot of ground for a book of its size, but in so doing, provided only a very cursory nod to the fields it was covering. This is a natural trade off of course, but even viewing it as an expanded syllabus, I learned very little that my undergrad didn't already cover, and didn't see much in there that made me think "Damn, I have to do my Masters"...but I am still open to it under the right circumstances. I read Getting To Yes as an undergrad text book, but like most things undergrad, I lacked the perspective and context for it to really resonate with my own experiences. So, that is my current audiobook of choice for when I am cruising around on my motorbike here. Good, solid negotiating tips. Some of which have been challenged with the passing of time, but essentially it remains pretty sound. OK guys, turn it over now...books you are reading, have read, are about to read, thoughts on my reviews above, books you would like to read...go!
post #2 of 61
Seven Habits of Highly Effective People will be my next read as it came in the shipment of books I just ordered. I liked the One Minute Manager as it took a very basic common sense approach that is still lost in the workplace. Just read Carnegie's book How To Win Friends and Influence People. I really like his approach and the examples he uses. A very easy read and makes a ton of sense. I'd definitely put this one at the top of my recommendations list. Also just finished Trump and Kiyosaki's Why We Want You To Be Rich. Recommended but as you'll see in a minute, I have really enjoyed Kiyosaki for years and have gained an interest in Trump and like his straightforwardness. Somewhat related to business, Hazlitt's Economics in One Lesson is probably the single book I'd recommend if I had to pick out just one book as recommended reading to anyone. Current books ordered and on the upcoming reading list: Covey's Seven Habits of Highly Effective People Hill's Think and Grow Rich Schwatrz's The Magic of Thinking Big 4 of the latest books by Kiyosaki (If you can't tell I've been a fan of his simplistic yet intelligent way of teaching for years now) Also the required textbooks for my business classes.
post #3 of 61
Very good idea Matt. I will give you a rather unconventional one "Leaving Microsoft to Change the World". It is a story about a Microsoft executive who quits to advance a cause. The book is not tree-huggy and is in fact a hard core management book despite being an enjoyable read. I was thoroughly disappointed in 7 habits, as well as the 8th one.
post #4 of 61
I liked How to Win Friends as well. It's a lot of common sense things, but he reinforces the concepts well. My most recent read was Bettger's How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling and I liked it. I have The Lords of Strategy queued up next on my bookshelf. I've read a lot of books on the history of the computer industry and two of my favorites were Infinite Loop (about Apple) and The Man Behind the Microchip (about Bob Noyce and Intel). I could never get behind the books that Trump types write. Perhaps it's some philosophical opposition because I don't much care for the author them self or something with the actual content of those books. Their tone always struck me as condescending.
post #5 of 61
PEAK
Good to Great
post #6 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by ibleedwhite View Post
PEAK
Good to Great

+1 for From Good to Great. Built to Last is a very interesting read as well. Another +1 to HtWFaIP. The 4-Hour Work Week wasn't bad. There's definitely a subset of people who need something like it, and for everyone else it's still got several interesting ideas.
post #7 of 61
I quite enjoyed The No Asshole Rule.
post #8 of 61
James Caan's autobiography (the name escapes me and my bookshelf is upstairs) Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion (I found out a year after I read it its part of the MBA curriculum at the school I am currently attending; I guarantee it is there for a good reason) Felix Dennis's How to Get Rich Currently reading Napeoleon Hill's Think and Grow Rich, like it so far I'll post a couple more when I go back upstairs.
post #9 of 61
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dtk_King View Post
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion (I found out a year after I read it its part of the MBA curriculum at the school I am currently attending; I guarantee it is there for a good reason)
I haven't read this, how did you find it?
post #10 of 61
I like 7 habits very much, maybe I need to re-read it.

most of what I read is very esoteric - dealing with a very specific part of the sales process, or international payments or things like that.
post #11 of 61
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt View Post
I read Getting To Yes as an undergrad text book, but like most things undergrad, I lacked the perspective and context for it to really resonate with my own experiences. So, that is my current audiobook of choice for when I am cruising around on my motorbike here. Good, solid negotiating tips. Some of which have been challenged with the passing of time, but essentially it remains pretty sound.
I'm about one motorbike ride away from finishing this...highly recommended. It's old, but it hasn't really dated - its principles still hold true. Recommended. If any one wants it audiostylee, let me know.
Quote:
Originally Posted by dtk_King View Post
Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion (I found out a year after I read it its part of the MBA curriculum at the school I am currently attending; I guarantee it is there for a good reason)
Even though you risked My Eternal Wrathâ„¢ by not answering my question about it, I think I will go a-huntin' for this to be my next audio commuter. edit - hey interesting...I found a video of Cialidini presenting this...I think I'll watch that first before looking further.
post #12 of 61
Seriously? This thread is highly disappointing...
post #13 of 61
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flambeur View Post
Seriously? This thread is highly disappointing...
Show us what you got there, big timer. Actually...I teach seminars based on Getting to Yes and Cialdini's stuff. A nice summary book that contains content of both is "Bargaining for Advantage". I also enjoyed "Negotiation Genius" which I read recently. They both contain some good practical advice for negotiation and communication.
post #14 of 61
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flambeur View Post
Seriously? This thread is highly disappointing...
thank you for that welcome contribution to our reading lists and collective intellect.
post #15 of 61
I would really like to improve my mathmatical abilities. It's the one area I am not super confident in, so I recently ordered "Math for the Millions". (don't judge the source) I heard Noam Chomsky mention the book as something his family members used in the 50s as a resource for people/workers without formal education to learn mathmatical concepts.

The reviews on Amazon were pretty good, so I will report back on how it was.

I also enjoyed:

48 laws of Power

How to Win Friends and Influence People
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