The University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business is excited to announce some favorite books in the "10th Annual Top-10 Summer Reading List for Business Leaders" for 2013, as recommended by members of its faculty and staff.
by Michael Lewis, 2011
The Big Short by Michael Lewis recounts the story of America’s recent financial meltdown written from the perspective of a financial insider. “It’s entertaining and informative about the products and participants in the financial crisis,” says Mike Faulkender, associate professor of finance. “Financial markets and shadow banking have become rather convoluted but Lewis is able to provide an explanation of the industry while maintaining interest, even for those not in finance.”
by Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves, 2009
“As bestselling author and thought leader Patrick Lencioni noted in the opening pages, Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves ‘can drastically change the way you think about success.’ I concur and strongly encourage those seeking leadership positions to read this book,” says Jeff Kudisch, assistant dean of corporate relations and managing director of the Office of Career Services. “Emotional Intelligence (EQ) continues to receive increasing attention in the workplace, especially given evidence that executives who possess strong EQ skills seem to emerge as the best performers relative to their counterparts who rely heavily on their strong IQ. There are plenty of brilliant people who have never made it because they lack the social savvy needed to develop strong relationships, build trust and inspire others,” says Kudisch. “In addition to being an easy read, Emotional Intelligence 2.0 includes access to a free online assessment tool, the Emotional Intelligence Appraisal, which will help you create a baseline against gauging self-improvements.”
by Robert Skidelsky and Edward Skidelsky, 2012
“How Much is Enough by Robert Skidelsky and Edward Skidelsky is a very thought-provoking book by a British economist and philosopher, respectively,” says Curt Grimm, professor and Charles A. Taff Chair of Economics and Strategy. “They start with the prediction of Keynes in 1930 that in a hundred years productivity gains would allow us to meet our material needs by only working 15 hours per week. Keynes thought we would then use our expanded leisure time to enjoy the ‘Good Life.’ Indeed, productivity gains have increased as Keynes predicted, but our appetite for material wants has kept pace. The authors question whether we are too materialistic, and, going back to the ancient Greek philosophers, discuss in detail alternative views of what constitutes the ‘Good Life.’”
by Robert Cialdini, 2009
“Influence by Robert Cialdini is the classic reference on how to sell,” says Brent Goldfarb, associate professor of management and entrepreneurship. Cialdini organizes compliance techniques into six categories based on psychological principles that direct human behavior: reciprocation, consistency, social proof, liking, authority and scarcity. “Based on rigorous academic research, the book helps one understand why people say ‘yes’ and how to apply this information,” says Goldfarb.
by Sheryl Sandberg, 2013
“I think every business leader should read Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In,” says Elana Fine, managing director of the Dingman Center for Entrepreneurship. Sandberg is the chief operating officer of Facebook and is ranked on Fortune’s list of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business and as one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People in the World. “Women are changing the workplace and this is a must-read for professional women to feel confident and inspired to take their place at the table, but also for men to understand the positive impact. This is not the Feminine Mystique – this is a ‘how-to guide’ on improving workplace dynamics and capitalizing on the talented, educated women in the workforce. Women are a rising tide that will absolutely lift all ships,” says Fine.
by Weldon Long, 2013
“In The Power of Consistency, Weldon Long teaches his readers how to follow a four-step process to success by, among other things, learning how your life reflects your thoughts and the words you use during self-talk,” says Ken White, associate dean of MBA and MS programs. “Long says the thoughts and beliefs we consistently have determine our level of success. This is a good book especially for new graduates and younger executives. If you don't find the book interesting, you'll at least appreciate the author's incredible story of going from homelessness, alcoholism and prison to success in life and business.”
by Susan Cain, 2012
“Quiet by Susan Cain is not only addressed to introverts like me,” says Susan White, Distinguished Tyser Teaching Fellow of Finance, “but explains introverts to the two-thirds of the population that is extroverted. Cain explores the ‘extrovert ideal’ and gives examples of how society undervalues introverts. Introverts prefer listening to speaking. Introverts are also creative and innovative, but generally not good at self-promotion, and prefer working individually to working on a team. Cain explores the scientific research and provides stories about introversion and famous introverts – Dr. Seuss, Einstein, Proust and Chopin. Introverts and extroverts are compatible work partners – the extroverts just need to remember that introverts need ‘think’ time and time alone to recharge. The introverts need to remember that extroverts are recharged by interacting with others.”
by David Novak, 2012
“Taking People with You by David Novak, chairman and CEO of Yum! Brands is a well-written and very practical account that describes the program he has taught to thousands of managers around the world at Yum! Brands,” says Vice Dean Joyce E.A. Russell. “Novak offers a step-by-step guide to setting big goals, getting people to work together, achieving your goals, and celebrating your success. What I really like about this book is that anyone can read it and follow the exercises to improve their leadership impact. There are many great suggestions for actions to take to enhance your leadership skills and influence.”
by Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen, 2013
“In The New Digital Age, Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt and Google Director of Ideas Jared Cohen provide a comprehensive analysis on where they believe the world is going and what the implications are for individuals, governments and companies,” says Mark Wellman, Distinguished Tyser Teaching Fellow in management and organization. “With relevant cases and critical review, the authors discuss how the Internet will transform governments and corporations. The book is a must-read for any student who wants to understand the digital revolution.”
by Jaron Lanier, 2013
“Who Owns the Future? by Jaron Lanier provides a contrarian’s view of the benefits of technology, digitization, and ‘big data,’ which is both provocative and controversial,” says P.K. Kannan, Ralph J. Tyser Professor of Marketing Science. “Lanier’s main argument is that the riches derived from network connectivity, digitization and crowd-sourcing has benefited just a few major corporations (which he calls Siren Servers), concentrating wealth in the hands of a few, and decimating the middle-class over time. All of this may sound very socialistic, but the interesting ideas emerge when Lanier speculates how network technology can be leveraged to benefit all the network participants for their input. This is could mean customers getting payment for their online reviews, for their ‘Likes,’ their crowd-sourced ideas – all with the help of micro-payments. What implications this has for customer and citizen privacy and the market for information is a fascinating discourse. A must-read for all ‘big data’ fans!”