If you peek into my office, you’ll see a mixture of books lining my bookcase and on the edge of my desk. And, undoubtedly, if you look in at the right moment, you’ll catch me with one of them in my hand. While I have a habit of reading blogs and articles daily, sitting down with a good book is an important part of my professional self-care routine.
There are many books that have been influential for me through the years. Today, I want to give a nod to five of my all-time faves — plus a sneak peek of one of my newest favorite reads!
1. The Giving Tree
Strength comes from the trunk.
This children’s book by Shel Silverstein became vivid to me in college as we looked to the guiding principles of serving others for my sorority’s philanthropy, Service for Sight. It remained a staple in my home as a family favorite when my kids were young, but still has its place in my library as an adult. It now serves as a reminder to check the pulse of my attitude as a leader. How? The story tells a tale of how to lead by putting the needs of others in focus to accomplish the goal at hand. We should always be asking ourselves: What am I doing to make an impact?
2. StrengthsFinder 2.0
Let your strengths shine.
Before getting into this impactful book, readers can identify their strengths via a “strength finder” online quiz using a code in the book jacket. Then, author Tom Rath explains that if they key in on these strengths uncovered in the quiz, not only can they find success — but happiness as well. I like the sound of that! In my role at ttcInnovations, I’ve established a strength-based structure; we strive to allocate resources into roles where their strengths (and passions) align. There is typically a lot of focus on improving areas of weakness, and I admire Rath’s approach to play on one’s strengths. While you can’t disregard blind spots, I believe focusing on strengths will propel you to find the perfect fit.
3. How to Win Friends and Influence People
A smile goes a long way.
This one is a classic. If you haven’t read this gem, or it’s been a long time since you have, I encourage you to open this bestseller. Admittedly, you’ll find yourself wading through some outdated language at times — but it’s so worth it! Dale Carnegie’s book has been taking communication for business and personal relationships to the next level for decades. He has a common-sense approach that makes sense, and I think it’s a must-read!
4. Conscious Business
Value is created by acting with value.
Fred Kofman’s book is an excellent choice for anyone who doesn’t want to go into auto-pilot during their workday. He outlines seven elements to enable a conscious business life. This is one of my favorite selections, filled with actionable (and for me) breakthrough techniques to help achieve an intentional and purposeful business life. I often found myself pausing at some of his thought-provoking questions. Let me know what you think!
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5. On Emotional Intelligence
Mood over matter.
This collection of articles from Harvard Business Review is an easy-to-read book on an essential topic. In my opinion, Emotional Intelligence (EQ) is just as important in business and leadership as Intelligence Quotient (IQ). While I have several books on EQ and keep up with the latest information on the topic, I recommend this quick read to gain a better understanding of EQ in the workplace, as well as a guide for areas of strength and blind spots.
Download the first chapter of “A Manager’s Guide to Unleashing the Intrapreneur” here and begin to unleash your own intrapreneur.
6. A Manager’s Guide to Unleashing the Intrapreneur
In a follow-up to our CEO’s first self-published book, A Manager’s Guide to Unleashing the Intrapreneur is perfect for managers who wish to establish new business growth, influence a culture of innovation, and support the needs of the Millennial generation by inspiring intrapreneurship.