Leadership and Management Book Podcast: First Quarter Favorites

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How many business books are published every year? A Forbes article says it’s 11,000. There are two problems with that number. First, it’s from 2014 and a lot has changed since then. And the writer doesn’t cite a source. He just says, “It’s estimated.”

If my research is correct, no one knows, but I think it’s safe to say, “a whole darned potful.” That makes finding good business books to read harder and harder.

The best business book recommendations come from savvy colleagues. So, every quarter, Art and I will assume the role of savvy colleagues. We’ll share the titles of the best books we read in the previous quarter and why we liked them. Here are our favorites from the first quarter of 2020.

Listen now:

Show Notes

Wally explains how he arrived at his first quarter choices for the show. “It was kind of a disappointing quarter for me.” (1:10)

Wally’s “Best of the Quarter” reads are: Robert Iger’s The Ride of a Lifetime: Lessons Learned from 15 Years as CEO of the Walt Disney Company, followed by Amy Jen Su’s The Leader You Want to Be (1:57)

Art shares his favorite management read from the first quarter: Brave New Work: Are You Ready to Reinvent Your Organization by Aaron Dignan (2:23)

Wally offers his views on The Ride of a Lifetime. “It was a fun read. It has excellent writing. There were a lot of great learning points. It was good all the way through.” (3:03)

Wally once again defends his practice of not reading books when they come out. Art describes it as a “weird habit.” (4:36)

Wally suggests Iger’s book is a great read for leaders and managers. (5:50)

A beer is wagered! (7:20)

Art shares his thoughts on Brave New Work and qualifies his review with, “I’m a management geek…I love this stuff.” (8:10)

We digress on one of our favorites, Gary Hamel (9:15)

The “F” discussion happens…where Wally and Art talk about the power of “frameworks” in business books (10:45)

Art suggests: Dignan’s framework and content make us think. This is a five-star book for me all day long (12:15)

Wally offers two additional books prompted by Art’s description of Brave New Work. He suggests Jason Fried’s It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work and Under New Management by David Burkus. (13:15)

Art highlights two important, recurring themes in Brave New Work: People Positive and Complexity Conscious (15:08)

Wally kicks off an interesting thread on why the notion of teams/teaming will change in our world, in part driven by the pandemic. Art piles on. (16:04)

Wally highlight his work with Rod Santomassimo on the book Teams Built to Dominate (focused on the commercial real estate market) (17:20)

We compare Wally’s view on the evolution of teams to General McChrystal’s book, Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World. (18:50)

Art suggests a subsequent show on teams and teaming. (20:17)

Wally speculates some more on the future of teams and Art references the late team researcher, J. Richard Hackman (21:40)

We bring this fun show to a close (23:30)

Note: All Amazon links for my recommendations are affiliate links. If you follow the links and purchase a book, I receive a tiny commission.

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