There were many good business books in 2012. You could learn a lot on how to improve your organization or further your career. So I decided to provide you with couple of books that I thought were worth reading. Here comes the list.
1. Nine Minutes on Monday
By James Robbins
2. The Four Disciplines of Execution
By Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, and Jim Huling
FranklinCovey consultants report on the success they had with their
four-step process for managing the behavioural changes in staff that
allows change to occur. Focusing on the most vital aspect of the change
is crucial, along with creating a cadence of accountability so that the
change effort doesn’t get sidetracked by the whirlwind. That’s
highlighted by holding a single, un-cancellable weekly meeting, in which
everyone reports on how they fared in the past week on commitments they
made toward the change effort and what they will do next week.
3. Understanding Michael Porter
By Joan Magretta
(Harvard Business School Press)
Professor Michael Porter is the most widely cited strategy guru, but
his ideas are often misunderstood or only partially comprehended because
of their complexity. In this book, Ms. Magretta, who worked with him,
presents a surprisingly clear summary of his work, making matters such
as competitive advantage and “five forces” theory easier to understand
and apply properly.
4. How to be Exceptional
By John Zenger, Joseph Folkman, Robert Sherwin Jr. and Barbara Steel
consultants offer compelling evidence for focusing on your strengths
rather than weaknesses (except when the weakness can prove to be a fatal
flaw) and then explain how to work effectively on your strengths, a
course of action which is not necessarily obvious.
5. So Good They Can’t Ignore You
By Cal Newport
blogger and assistant professor of computing science at Georgetown
University, writing in the research-and-anecdote style of popular writer
Malcolm Gladwell, successfully challenges the myth that the key to
success is to follow your passion. Instead he offers four linked,
alternative rules, including becoming a craftsman so adept at what you
do that people can’t ignore you.
6. Talk, Inc.
By Boris Groysberg and Michael Slind
(Harvard Business Review Press)
authors, a Harvard professor and communications professional, studied
communications in modern organizations and found the top-down style has
been replaced by two-way conversations between leaders and the troops.
Even written communications, such as a CEO’s blog, can no longer be
impersonal and directive but instead must be personal and more
conversational. They also explain four elements that can help you be
effective with this new approach.
7. The Advantage
By Patrick Lencioni
masterful writer of business fables switches to a straight ahead,
non-fiction approach, bringing together his many practical ideas under
the rubric of making your organization smart and healthy. You probably
have heard some of his ideas before, but it’s refreshing to see them
stitched together in one intelligent leadership manual. I have read all
his books and found this a helpful summary, with additional ideas to
8. Who’s in the Room?
By Bob Frisch
Massachusetts-based consultant debunks the notion that top corporate
decisions are made by the senior executive team, and shows how it’s
usually a small “kitchen cabinet” team of advisers with the CEO who
thrash through the possibilities and come to key conclusions. He argues
that this is an effective system, and sets out some ideas for CEOs to
more profitably utilize their senior teams and other decision-making
9. The Primes
By Chris McGoff
quirky offering by a Washington, D.C., consultant sets out 46 practical
and provocative rules for effective management that don’t add up to a
leadership system but certainly get you thinking. It’s sweet reading,
with short chapters and powerful graphics making the ideas clear.
10. Hannibal and Me
By Andreas Kluth
extended essay by an Economist writer uses the story of Hannibal as a
leaping off point to explore the trajectory of our careers and life.
It’s an absorbing, well-written, insightful journey into the past that
makes today clearer.
Note: If you click on each book title it will take you to Harvey Schachter's review of that particular book whom I thank for the job he did.