AB Thinks  →  7th July 2017

10 Books for the Beach

The summer holidays are a great time to finally read those books piling up on your bedside table or lingering on your Amazon wish list. Here’s our top 10 recommended reads:

The Better Angels of Our Nature, Steven Pinker

This is the book Bill Gates says every college graduate should read. This 700-page work of non-fiction isn’t exactly a quick read, Gates admits, but “it is the most inspiring book I have ever read.” Find out why here.

Made to Stick, Chip Heath and Dan Heath

Why do some stories travel far and wide, while others die a sudden, silent death? This book helps communicators tell a better story.

One Big Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results, Gary Keller and Jay Papasan

This small but insightful book is about the power of prioritisation and focus. We love the way the authors have annotated the book for us – highlighting key sections in red and underling their best lines in pencil.

Tools of Titans, Tim Ferriss

This magnum opus is subtitled ‘The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers’. This is a distillation of the very best bits from the Tim Ferriss Show – where highly successful people share how they found heath, happiness and success.

Start With Why, Simon Sinek

Sinek sees himself as building a movement to make more people feel truly inspired by their work and leaders. This book is about identifying not what you do, but your rationale for doing it. It applies equally well to people and organisations.

All Marketers Are Liars, Seth Godin

Godin is such a prolific writer on all aspects of communications we struggled to pick one title. His website describes this as his “most important book about the art of marketing”. It opens with the line “either you are going to tell stories that spread, or you will become irrelevant”.

Give and Take: Why Helping Others Drives Our Success, Adam Grant

We once used the line ‘knowledge is power’ to describe why certain individuals, often mid-ranking managers, thought it was in their best interests to keep important information to themselves. Grant makes a convincing argument for why the most successful people make everyone around them smarter.

Humble Inquiry: The Gentle Art of Asking Instead of Telling, Edgar Schein

This book was a significant influence on . Schein puts forward a deceptively simple concept – leaders should do more asking and less telling. Not only will they learn more, they are more likely to avoid a major catastrophe.

The Cluetrain Manifesto, Levine, Locke, Searls and Weinberger

If you work in communication – especially internal communication – we commend this book to you. Marvel in the fact it is nearly 20 years old and enjoy a bold, egalitarian view of how the internet could have (and still may) change the world. Here’s why our MD, Katie Macaulay, loves it so much.

From Cascade To Conversation: Unlocking the Collective Wisdom of Your Workforce, Katie Macaulay

This book challenges organisations to rethink how they communicate with their employees. It argues organisations have lost control of the message – if they ever had it. People everywhere have found their voice. We no longer passively receive the message: we share and shape it together. Broadcasting to employees is therefore becoming dangerously archaic in our digital age.