Ten books that can help your ca­reer

What you take away from read­ing is only as good as what you prac­tise later

The Hamilton Spectator - - CAREERS - DIANE STAFFORD

Sum­mer­time “best book” lists usu­ally fo­cus on easy, beachy reads — thrillers and bodice rip­pers that tem­po­rar­ily en­gage you but are easily for­got­ten. Here’s a list of ca­reer-minded books that should stay with you.

First a caveat: No book of­fers a sure menu for suc­cess. What you take away from read­ing is only as good as what you prac­tice once you get out of the deck chair.

That said, here’s a to­tally ar­guable se­lec­tion of ca­reer ad­vice books that might be of use. First on the list, two old-but-gold stan­dard rec­om­men­da­tions:

“How to Win Friends and In­flu­ence Peo­ple” by Dale Carnegie: This is all about be­ing nice to peo­ple, but not so nice that you’re a door­mat. It pre­scribes a non-Machi­avel­lian — or at least sub­tle — way to get along and yet get re­sults you want with­out mak­ing peo­ple hate you.

“Seven Habits of Highly Ef­fec­tive Peo­ple” by Stephen Covey: Busi­ness stu­dents the world over can re­cite the habits. If you don’t know “sharpen the saw,” it might be time to open the Covey tool box.

Now on to more re­cent pub­li­ca­tions. Here are three books that might be of value to peo­ple who haven’t fig­ured out ex­actly what they want to do with their work lives, or for peo­ple who worry that they’re not good at any one thing:

“Body of Work: Finding the Thread That Ties Your Story To­gether” by Pamela Slim, “Refuse to Choose: Use All of Your In­ter­ests, Pas­sions and Hob­bies to Cre­ate the Life and Ca­reer of Your Dreams” by Bar­bara Sher and “I Could Do Any­thing If I Only Knew What It Was,” also by Sher.

If you’re in­ter­ested in a lit­tle in­tro­spec­tion as well as in­sight into why the smartest per­son in the room doesn’t nec­es­sar­ily get ahead but the for­mer class pres­i­dent does, be sure to read an­other near-oldie but goody by Daniel Gole­man, “Emo­tional In­tel­li­gence: Why It Can Mat­ter More Than IQ.”

Au­thor Keith Fer­razzi of­fers prac­ti­cal tips in the same vein in his “Never Eat Alone And Other Se­crets to Suc­cess, One Re­la­tion­ship at a Time.” The ad­vice goes be­yond cul­ti­vat­ing lunch bud­dies at work — don’t fail to at­tend the cock­tail party at­tached to a work con­ven­tion.

If you think you hate your job be­cause you didn’t get a raise or you’re wait­ing for a dif­fer­ent mo­ti­va­tional car­rot, check out “Drive: The Sur­pris­ing Truth About What Mo­ti­vates Us.” Au­thor Daniel Pink ar­gues that the se­cret to work sat­is­fac­tion (not to men­tion strong per­for­mance) is self-di­rected.

But don’t ig­nore the fact that pleas­ing your­self is only part of the suc­cess equa­tion. The other part is pleas­ing oth­ers. Es­pe­cially in team en­vi­ron­ments, you have to get along. You have to help oth­ers look good too. Try “Give & Take: Why Help­ing Oth­ers Drives Our Suc­cess” by Adam Grant.

And for the en­tre­pre­neur­ial-minded, there’s plenty of praise for “The Art of the Start” by Guy Kawasaki. While it’s tar­geted more to high-tech star­tups, there’s uni­ver­sal ad­vice about un­der­stand­ing the mar­ket and your (po­ten­tial) cus­tomers.


Au­thor Daniel Pink ar­gues that the se­cret to work sat­is­fac­tion is self-di­rected.


Guy Kawasaki, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Garage.com, wrote “Art of the Start.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.