A couple of years ago I wrote about business books that impressed me and which are worth reading.
I decided it was time to propose a new list.
There exists a well-known habit of Homo sapiens to perceive the entire environment through its own prism and ordinary categories. Why can’t we say the same about the life of a business as an organization? They are born, they grow, thrive and die.
I am very late in getting acquainted with Ichak Adizes’ ideas, but better late than ever. Managing Corporate Lifecycles is great writing for anyone who has ever thought of creating a business, who manages one, or even had one in the past. Even more charming is the feeling once you recognize Lithuanian and foreign companies that have fallen into the “founder’s trap” or got tired and … died.
The book is not solely an allegory or a metaphor – it is also a textbook with specific management tips and principles.
Are you dreaming of owning a business? The first thing you need to do is to create it. The most common classical businesses that increase competition for existing ones are copying their business models, trying to create competitive advantages and strategic partnerships. Such businesses may seem rather boring and rare of them change the world. In the meantime, we wish to surprise everyone and create something new.
However, start-ups are risky businesses. They start with a bang and die quietly. If you want to increase your chances, read a work of Steve Blank, where you will find great thoughts and tips on how to at least increase your chances of working in the start-up market.
When presenting this book, it is necessary to mention the author Ray Dalio, the founder and owner of Bridgewater Associates, the largest limited-risk fund management company. If we were to believe in a legend, he decided to write this book after the rumours were spread that the company’s internal culture is at least strange and too open. The published book did not only manage the crisis but also strengthen the company’s reputation.
The book consists of three parts: the life story begins, which, according to all canons of dramaturgy, has a downfall and bankruptcy, then it goes forward towards the principles of Dalio, which he follows in his life. The book ends with the principles that business should follow. To sum up: speak clearly, try to understand the world and causal relationships as much as possible, rather than satisfy with the illusions. Be honest and open to yourself and others.
In the book of Jordan B. Peterson, you can sometimes discover similarities to the principles of Dalio. Apparently, in the world of social networks, global networking and fake news, opposing ideas are becoming stronger, which encourage to focus on yourself and not live in a world of illusions.
There is much written about this book and its author. Simply take it and read it.
Negotiation is a part of everyday business. This book by Chris Voss, in my opinion, is special. Firstly, the author is not simply a business or negotiation guru, he is a former FBI negotiator with terrorists and hijackers.
Secondly, the ideas in the book are different from the ones you find in the usual negotiating books: creating an advantage, pushing the opponent, and ensuring victory. Voss says that the first thing to do is to establish a relationship with an opponent, win his/her trust and … agree with him/her.
A book on trust and how to build it is not something very new. At least I did not find it that way. However, the later parts on technology trends, especially the cryptocurrency world and the Chinese Big Brother project, are very helpful to understand where the world is moving and what challenges the society and states face.
Author Viktor E. Frankl survived concentration camp and wrote this book in just a few days. It is the main piece of the founder of the so-called “Third Viennese Schools of Psychotherapy” and the author of the psychotherapeutic method – logotherapy.
Why should it be read by communicators? Because it is about meaning, the significance of a human’s life. Without meaning, communication is only a set of irritants that do not create long-term value. When there is no meaning, there is no story.