Time is flying by and I can’t believe that we are already in February which always seems to be the case at the start of a new year.  While I never get to read quite as much as I like, I always enjoy recommendations from friends and colleagues, so I thought I’d share some of my top business and personal growth book recommendations to anyone looking for a good read. In fact, whenever someone asks for a recommendation, I have this list handy to share. Here are my top picks:

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel Pink

In Drive, Pink attests that the key to fulfillment at work, at school, and at home is the profoundly human need to coordinate our own lives, to learn and make new things, and to improve ourselves and the world around us. This book uncovers the mismatch between how science knows and what business treats how that influences each part of life.

Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness by Richard Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein 

Nudge is about decisions, the way in which we create them and how we can improve them. Drawing on many years of examination in the fields of behavioral science and economics, authors Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein offers another viewpoint on the mistakes we make and shows us how reasonable “choice architecture” can effectively “nudge” people toward the best decision.

Outliers: The Story of Success, Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference, and Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell

Gladwell has produced several best-selling books and these are three that I couldn’t put down. 

In Outliers, Gladwell takes us on a journey through the world of “Outliers” – the best and the brightest, the most famous, and the most successful. He asks the question: What makes high-achievers different? 

In Blink, Gladwell revolutionizes the way we understand the world within. Blink is a book about how we think without thinking, about choices that seem to be made in an instant, in the blink of an eye, that actually aren’t as simple as they seem. Blink reveals that great decision makers aren’t those who process the most information or spend the most time deliberating, but those who have perfected the art of “thin-slicing”, filtering the very few factors that matter from an overwhelming number of variables. 

The Tipping Point is when a thought, pattern, or social conduct crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire. It’s similar to a single sick person who can start an epidemic or the popularity of one TikTok becoming a viral trend. In this book, Gladwell explores the tipping point phenomenon and how it can change the way people think about selling products and developing ideas.

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely

From drinking coffee to exercising, from purchasing a vehicle to romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. In this book, Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. Our behaviors are not random or senseless. In fact, they’re the opposite – we’re predictably irrational. 

Literally anything by Michael Lewis

No, that isn’t a book title. ​​It just so happens that I’ve enjoyed every book I’ve read by him. Michael Lewis is an American author and financial journalist, writing mostly on business, finance, and economics. He is known for his nonfiction work, particularly his coverage of financial crises and behavioral finance. You can find his full books here.

I plan to do some of my own reading as well in 2022. In fact, I’m in the middle of Think Again by Adam Grant which is good so far and finishing up The Premonition by Michael Lewis on audio book. 

Here’s what’s next on my list:

  • The Extended Mind: The Power of Thinking Outside the Brain by Annie Murphy Paul
    The Extended Mind outlines the research behind this exciting new vision of human ability, exploring the findings of neuroscientists, cognitive scientists, psychologists, and examining the practices of educators, managers, and leaders who are already reaping the benefits of thinking outside the brain.
  • Four Thousand Weeks: Time Management for Mortals by Oliver Burkeman
    Time is our biggest worry: There is too little of it. Olivier Burkeman, acclaimed Guardian writer, offers a lively, entertaining philosophical guide to time and time management, setting aside superficial efficiency solutions in favor of reckoning with and finding joy in the finitude of human life.
  • The Anthropocene Reviewed: Essays on a Human-Centered Planet by John Green
    The Anthropocene is the current geologic age, in which humans have profoundly reshaped the planet and its biodiversity. In this remarkable symphony of essays adapted and expanded from his groundbreaking podcast, best-selling author John Green reviews different facets of the human-centered planet on a five-star scale.

I hope I inspired you to pick up a good book. If you have any book recommendations, feel free to shoot me a message on LinkedIn. I’m always looking to add to my reading list.