July 2015 Bookshelf

Here are the books I read in July and my personal viewpoints on who would benefit from reading them. To see previous lists, click here.

By Jonathan Fields

Uncertainty – The first few chapters were remarkable, but the middle parts of the book felt dull in spots. It felt more like a required stab at a self-help book rather than diving into the topic of uncertainty more. Overall it was a decent read, but I found myself wanting more research and higher level discussion rather than programed steps. This is likely a personal preference only.

By Steven D. Levitt, Stephen J. Dubner

Think Like a Freak – The book was very similar to the podcasts and the other books they have put out. It is an economist take on decision-making and social issues. I found it an enjoyable and entertaining read. If you like the podcast or any of their other work, you'll enjoy this book.

By Randy Komisar

The Monk & The Riddle – This was another parable book that was quite interesting. It wasn’t as good as The Go-Giver, but it still had some relevant information. It focused on creating companies because you want to do something meaningful, not because it could be profitable.

By Joshua Wolf Shenk

Powers of Two – Absolutely loved this book. It talked about the importance of pairs as it relates to creativity, innovation, and life. Would highly recommend to entrepreneurs and creative people.

June 2015 Bookshelf

Here are the books I read in June and my personal viewpoints on who would benefit from reading them. To see previous lists, click here.

By Bob Burg, John David Mann

Go Giver – This is one of the best reads of the year. It is an absolutely amazing book. I have to put it in the same category as my all-time favorite book, The Ultimate Gift. I am a huge fan of business fables like this. They have a unique way of communicating concepts in ways that are easy to understand and motivate you towards action.

By Ron Chernow

The House of Morgan – If you enjoy very in depth biographies, this is a good book for you. To me, it felt like it went too in depth for my tastes. It was a good book, but it is very long. I enjoyed the early chapter, but the middle part of the book seems to drag on and on.

By Peter Thiel, Blake Masters

Zero to One – True innovation means going from nothing to something, otherwise known as zero to one. Most people focus on taking something that exists and making it better. There is a different mindset that takes something that doesn’t exist yet and creates value from it. That is true innovation. I really enjoyed this book. It made me think in new ways.

By Jon Ronson

So You've Been Publicly Shamed – This is the first, and probably the only book available on this topic. I was through fascinated with the psychology and process through which the topic of shaming was discussed. I learned a lot from it and would highly recommend.

January 2015 Bookshelf

I'm sure you've heard it said that leaders are readers. I believe this to be true and actively engage in the habit of reading. Each month, I will provide a summary of the books I've read and which ones I think you would find engaging.

By Ron Chernow

Rockefeller did more for this country and the way we conduct business than almost any other person in history. He was an instrumental person in sparking large scale philanthropy. He founded The University of Chicago and provided the basic framework for today’s trusts and foundations. Yet, he was remarkably stingy with his money and kept meticulous records of every penny spent. Some speculate he acted this way to try and make up for the misdeeds of his father who was a swindler and did not have a good reputation. This book is intriguing, but it is a long read. I suggest listening to it on Audible.

By Richard Rumelt

For the business minded, this is one of the best books about business I have ever read. I would highly recommend it to others. It walks through steps and stages of strategy development. This is a reference guide to use for decades to come.


By Savio Chan, Michael Zakkour

In March, I will be in Beijing for 2 weeks. I picked up this book as a way to introduce myself to the culture and business climate. What I appreciated about the book was it's connection with Chinese history and the current environment. If you are traveling to China or have an interest in learning more about the largest economy in the world, this is a good book to read. 

By Peter Sims

Change rarely happens all at once. It is usually a combination of small steps over time that lead to large change. This is true in business formation and in our personal habits. This book does a good job of breaking down how breakthroughs happen. If you are a fan of The Lean Startup, this is a good book that takes some of those ideas further.

By Joseph E. Stiglitz

The world we live in today is a result of decades of actions to alter our economic, political, and social structure. The result of those actions has created an ever-widening divide between those with resources and true opportunity and those who lack the ability to climb up the ladder of society. If you want a better understanding of how we got to where we are today and what the future looks like because of it, pick up this book.

By Duncan J. Watts

We've all heard about our connectedness to Kevin Bacon. This book examines the underlying networks that lead to our connected society. It is more of an academic read, but if you are into that sort of thing, you will enjoy it.