Summer Reading List – Six Picks To Get You Thinking

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Summer is here (ok, based on the weather, it’s almost here). As things slow down and people shift into summer vacation mode, there are more than a handful of great business books to devour. Here is my summer reading list (in alphabetical order):

  • Brand New World – How Paupers, Pirates, and Oligarchs are Reshaping Business by Max Lenderman. Lenderman is back with his second business book. His first, Experience The Message, was excellent. I was privy to a galley copy of Brand New World and provided a testimonial for the back cover, but it was so rich that I plan on really diving into it again. Brand New World looks at branding in a globalized world and where the next hot brands might originate from.
  • Ignore Everybody – and 39 Other Keys to Creativity by Hugh MacLeod. MacLeod is best known in online circles as the guy who draws cartoons on the back of business cards and for his Blog, gapingvoid. Ignore Everybody is a peek inside the overly-creative mind of MacLeod, who seems to be on a tireless mission to follow his heart and inspiration… and he’s wondering why you aren’t doing the same.
  • Rules of Thumb – 52 Truths for Winning at Business Without Losing Your Self by Alan M. Webber. Chris Brogan ranted about this book (here: Rules of Thumb – Video Book Review) at around the same time it wound up on my desk. Webber was the co-founder of Fast Company and also ran Harvard Business Review. The book looks like it is packed solid with insights and info.
  • Trust Agents – Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust by Chris Brogan and Julien Smith. These are two of my favourite people in the world. Both of them are my co-hosts on Media Hacks and have years of experience building community and using online social networks to communicate and share. If someone was going to write a book about the value of trust and building relationships within the online channels, it had to be these guys. Although the book is not available yet, I already pre-ordered three copies (one for me and two for gifts). If you’re not building trust online, then what are you doing?
  • Who’s Got Your Back – The Breakthrough Program to Build Deep, Trusting Relationships That Create Success by Keith Ferrazzi. Every once in a while I still kick myself for not having written a book like Ferrazzi’s first, Never Eat Alone. This is his second book that looks at how to take your networking skills to a higher level by looking at what makes a real relationship count, and how to build a team of people that will not only surround you but who can add value to your life (and business).
  • The Whuffie Factor – Using the Power of Social Networks to Build Your Business by Tara Hunt. Hunt has a very popular Blog titled, HorsePigCow, and has built a big name in the online circles for herself. I’ve known Tara since long before then (plus, we share the same literary agent) and have been holding off on reading her debut until now. The Whuffie Factor looks at the value and opportunity in building true social capital through the online channels and how that is going to change business going forward.

What business books do you plan on ploughing through over the next few summer months?


  1. Sitting on my desk in the read position are “The Sticking Point Solution” by Jay Abraham and “But Wait . . . There’s More” by Remy Sterm.
    I’m sure I’ll read others too

  2. Reading list: Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Bradberry & Greaves, The Long Tail by Chris Anderson, Reality Check by Guy Kawasaki, The World is Flat by Friedman, twitterville by Shel Israel

  3. @Mitch – Now I see why we’re friends on Shelfari. I was fortunate enough to read a galley copy of Keith’s new book and really enjoyed it (though not quite as much as Never Eat Alone.)
    I’ve also ordered Ignore Everybody, Rules of Thumb and The Whuffie Factor. And you can bet I’ll be reading Trust Agents when it comes out as well.
    So I guess that just leaves me with Brand New World. Thanks for the suggestions (and making me trust your other books on Shelfari as well.)

  4. I’m also reading Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Bradberry and Greaves. Next I’ll read I Love Yous Are for White People by Lac Su.

  5. Hey Mitch,
    Bought the Whuffie Factor today from Indigo based on your recommendation. This can be used as a mini case study for power of social media. 🙂 And maybe you can get some commission from Tara.
    Also just came across The New Community Rules Marketing on the Social Web By Tamar Weinberg. Coming out in July… Worth the purchase?
    Other than that.. my summer reading lists contains mostly finance related books- Street Fighters by Kate Kelly. Really cool title! 🙂
    Have an awesome weekend!
    Alex “reading” Ikonn

  6. My summer reading always has at least one old book on it. Either something I’ve read before but want to go back to or something new to me but showing a few grey hairs.
    My old favourite this summer is, A Business and its Beliefs by Thomas J Watson Jr, 1963, often quoted, not least in Built to Last, and a lesson in how values based management is the heart of great. Love the simplicity of the style and message.
    New to me but still old, I’ll be ploughing through My Years at General Motors by Alfred P Sloan Jr, 1963, this one looks like it might be slow going but seems to be a play-by-play of the formative years of the once great GM.

  7. Nice list, Mitch. I wasn’t aware of a couple of these, so I’ll have to check them out. Here are a few on my list:
    Free- Chris Anderson
    Another book based on one of his Wired magazine article, this one focuses on all things free. I read the article and didn’t necesarily agree with everything, but I think Anderson has proven himself to be a very thoughtful guy and I’m interested in reading his more expansive thoughts.
    Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior – Rom Brafman
    I’m a big fan of behavioral economics books, and I’ve hear this one has some interesting insights.
    Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets – Nassim Nicholas Taleb
    I just started reading this one, and while Taleb’s writing style is pretty dense, there are some very interesting insights regarding the effect of randomness in life and how people tend to attribute great success or great failure to people who have really just been affected by random events.
    And of course, I’m eagerly awaiting the release of Six Pixels of Separation. 🙂

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