by Melissa Stewart
It’s summer and I’m about to head to the beach. This means I’m looking forward to doing some much anticipated and oh so relaxed beach reading! And speaking of reading, what better reason to crowdsource some amazing women than a summer reading list? So, that’s what I did. With a tweet-tweet here and a tweet-tweet there, I reached out to 12 women I admire and gathered their top picks for you.
The Pumpkin Plan by Mike Michalowicz
Each year Americans start one million new businesses, nearly 80 percent of which fail within the first five years. Under such pressure to stay alive—let alone grow—it’s easy for entrepreneurs to get caught up in a never-ending cycle of “sell it—do it, sell it—do it” that leaves them exhausted, frustrated, and unable to get ahead no matter how hard they try.
Brand Against the Machine by @johnmorgan
The machine blasts messages at the world and it does not care who you are or what you have to say or whether its message is relevant to you at all. The machine is a moron. You, however, are not. Which is why your brand needs to rage against the traditional forces of advertising. You must engage your audience and win their business by giving more and selling less. Yours must be a Brand Against the Machine.
Brand Against the Machine offers proven and actionable steps for companies and entrepreneurs to increase their visibility and credibility, and create an indispensable brand that consumers can relate to, creating lifelong customers. Discover the aspirational currency that makes your brand one that people want to be or want to be friends with. Learn how to be real with your audience and make strategic associations to establish credibility. Brand Against the Machine will help you stand out, get noticed, and be remembered.
Brand Against the Machine offers a blueprint for your brand framework, with step-by-step guidance.
Platform by @michaelhyatt
Your Idea INC by Sandy Abrams
Burt’s Bees . . . Crocs . . . MySpace . . .
Every time a new story about how some nobody from nowhere got rich producing some clever new product in his garage, you may think, ?Why can?t I do that?? Well, anyone can?the trick is to take those good ideas and build them into great products that can succeed in the marketplace. In this book, you will get the 12-step plan you need to make your new product or service a profitable reality. You will learn important skills for success, including how to:
- Refine their idea to attract a target audience
- Research the competition
- Find the right manufacturer
- Create appropriate brand messaging
- Build buzz online and beyond
- Work trade shows and conventions
Written by a woman with no formal business experience who turned her own idea into a million-dollar company, this book is the pragmatic yet inspiring guide every aspiring entrepreneur is looking for.
The Google Bomb by John W. Dozier Jr. & Sue Scheff
The Big Leap by Gay Hendricks
Remove the Last Obstacle to Ultimate Success.
In The Big Leap, New York Times bestselling author Gay Hendricks reveals a simple yet comprehensive program for overcoming our one barrier to happiness and fulfillment, providing a clear path for achieving our true potential and attaining not only financial success but also success in love and life.
Spiritual Solutions by Deepak Chopra
Life is full of challenges, both big and small. Spirituality is here to offer solutions.
Over the course of his career as physician, teacher, and bestselling author, Deepak Chopra has received thousands of questions from people facing every kind of challenge. They have asked how to lead more fulfilling lives, how to overcome relationship problems and personal obstacles. What’s the best way to deal with a passive-aggressive friend? Can a stagnant career be jump-started? In a world full of distractions and stress, how does one find time for meditation?
Hidden among all of these questions are answers waiting to be uncovered.
In this groundbreaking book, Chopra shows you how to expand your awareness, which is the key to the confusion and conflict we all face. “The secret is that the level of the problem is never the level of the solution,” he writes. By rising to the level of the solution in your own awareness, you can transform obstacles into opportunities. Chopra leads the reader to what he calls “the true self,” where peace, clarity, and wisdom serve as guides in times of crisis. For Chopra, spirituality is primarily about consciousness, not about religious dogma or relying on the conventional notion of God. “There is no greater power for success and personal growth than your own awareness.” With practical insight, Spiritual Solutions provides the tools and strategies to enable you to meet life’s challenges from within and to experience a sense of genuine fulfillment and purpose.
Turning Pro by Steven Pressfield
The follow-up to his bestseller The War of Art, Turning Pro navigates the passage from the amateur life to a professional practice. “You don’t need to take a course or buy a product. All you have to do is change your mind.” –Steven Pressfield
TURNING PRO IS FREE, BUT IT’S NOT EASY. When we turn pro, we give up a life that we may have become extremely comfortable with. We give up a self that we have come to identify with and to call our own.
TURNING PRO IS FREE, BUT IT DEMANDS SACRIFICE. The passage from amateur to professional is often achieved via an interior odyssey whose trials are survived only at great cost, emotionally, psychologically and spiritually. We pass through a membrane when we turn pro. It’s messy and it’s scary. We tread in blood when we turn pro.
WHAT WE GET WHEN WE TURN PRO. What we get when we turn pro is we find our power. We find our will and our voice and we find our self-respect. We become who we always were but had, until then, been afraid to embrace and live out.
Predictable Success by Les McKeown
Predictable Success is a business growth methodology developed by Les McKeown, the President & CEO of Predictable Success.
If you own, manage or work for any kind of organization, you have one goal above all else–success. And not just occasional, elusive or temporary success.
In short, you’re looking for Predictable Success. In this timely, no-nonsense guide, experienced business advisor Les McKeown takes you step-by-step through a startlingly simple, intuitive and universal process that shows you how to bring sustained, lasting, predictable success to your organization. Steeped in a street-smart, savvy insider’s deep understanding of exactly how business works in the real world, Predictable Success provides you with a precise road map to success, starting from wherever you are today.
Digital Wars by Charles Arthur
Which of Apple, Google and Microsoft had an office with a “drawer of broken dreams” —and what (real) objects lay inside it?
When did Microsoft have the chance to catch Google in making money from search —and who vetoed it?
Why did Google test 40 shades of blue on its users?
How long did outside developers wait before asking to write apps for Apple’s iPhone after Steve Jobs announced it?
Who said that Microsoft should have its own music player — and why did it fail?
Digital Wars starts in 1998, when the internet and computing business was about to be upended — by an antitrust case, a tiny startup and a former giant rebuilding itself. Arthur looks at what are now the three best-known tech companies and through the voices of former and current staff examines their different strategies to try to win the battle to control the exploding network connecting the world. Microsoft was a giant — soon to become the highest-valued company in the world, while Apple was a minnow and Google just a startup. By February 10 2012, Apple was worth more ($462bn) than both Microsoft ($258bn) and Google ($198bn) combined.
The chance had come from tumultuous battles between the three. To win their battles:
Apple used design, the vertical model of controlling the hardware and software and a relentless focus on the customer to the exclusion of others.
Microsoft depended on the high quality of its employees’ programming skills and its monopolies in software to try to move into new markets – such as search and music.
Google focused on being quick, efficient and using the power of data analysis – not human “taste” – to make decisions and get ahead of would-be rivals. With exclusive information from interviews with current and former employees of the three companies Arthur also addresses:
- What the inventors of the hard drive used in the iPod thought it would really be used for
- How Apple transformed the smartphone market
- Which of Android or Apple forced Microsoft to abandon Windows Mobile
- What happened to Microsoft’s tablet plans
The Charge by Brendon Burchard
On a dark and steamy Caribbean night, Brendon Burchard stood bleeding atop the crumpled hood of his wrecked car. That night he learned about mortality, discovering that at the end of our lives we will all ask, “Did I live? Did I love? Did I matter?”
Since that fateful night, Brendon has lived a fully charged life, and he’s helped millions of people around the globe transform their lives and feel more alive, engaged, and fulfilled.
Brendon observes that the emotional energy of the world has flatlined, and he sets out to fix it. People are stressed, restless, and wanting more out of life. Despite the fact that most people have what they “need” to be happy, they rarely feel the levels of excitement, engagement, or satisfaction they deserve. So what’s the solution?
In The Charge, Brendon argues that the only way to measurably improve the quality of your life is to learn how to activate the very 10 drives that make you most human. These drives are your desires for more control, competence, congruence, caring, connection, change, challenge, creative expression, contribution, and consciousness. These drives shape everything you think, feel, and do in life, so understanding and mastering them is critical to your success and happiness. Strategically activating these drives on a consistent basis is the fastest path to living a fully charged life.
Harnessing our human drives is not easy; if it were, we wouldn’t see so much restlessness in the world. That’s why Brendon has devised what he calls the true “activators” of human experience—a series of powerful yet simple actions you can take to radically increase your levels of energy, engagement, and fulfillment in all areas of your life.
What Brendon uncovers in The Charge will surprise and challenge you. It turns out that most of the ways we seek to meet our human drives are actually counterproductive. We all want more control, for example, but seeking to have more certainty in our daily lives or to control other people will actually decrease our levels of control (and happiness). We have a deep desire for change, too, but we often fail to make the right kinds of change that would make us feel more alive and in command of our lives.
In The Charge, Brendon helps us overcome these mistakes and illuminates the path for strategically and intelligently activating our 10 human drives so that we can have the one thing we all want: more life in our lives! Brendon Burchard is the founder of High Performance Academy and author of the #1 New York Times and #1 USA Today bestselling book The Millionaire Messenger. He is also the author of Life’s Golden Ticket and one of the top motivation and high performance trainers in the world. His famous training events and videos inspire millions of people to find their charge, share their voice, and make a greater difference.
The Three Big Questions for a Frantic Family by Patrick Lencioni
There’s No Such Thing as Business Ethics by John Maxwell
Screw It, Let’s Do It by Richard Branson
The global icon shares his secrets of success and exciting plans for the future.
Throughout my life I have achieved many remarkable things. In Screw It, Let’s Do It, I will share with you my ideas and the secrets of my success, but not simply because I hope they’ll help you achieve your individual goals.
Today we are increasingly aware of the effects of our actions on the environment, and I strongly believe that we each have a responsibility, as individuals and organisations, to do no harm. I will draw on Gaia Capitalism to explain why we need to take stock of how we may be damaging the environment, and why it is up to big companies like Virgin to lead the way in a more holistic approach to business.
In Screw It, Let’s Do It I’ll be looking forwards to the future. A lot has changed since I founded Virgin in 1968, and I’ll explain how I intend to take my business and my ideas to the next level and the new and exciting areas – such as launching Virgin Fuels – into which Virgin is currently moving.
But I have also brought together all the important lessons, good advice and inspirational adages that have helped me along the road to success.
Ironically, I have never been one to do things by the book, but I have been inspired and influenced by many remarkable people. I hope that you too might find a little inspiration between these pages.
The Go-Giver by @BobBurg
The Go-Giver tells the story of an ambitious young man named Joe who yearns for success. Joe is a true go-getter, though sometimes he feels as if the harder and faster he works, the further away his goals seem to be. And so one day, desperate to land a key sale at the end of a bad quarter, he seeks advice from the enigmatic Pindar, a legendary consultant referred to by his many devotees simply as the Chairman.
Over the next week, Pindar introduces Joe to a series of “go-givers:” a restaurateur, a CEO, a financial adviser, a real estate broker, and the “Connector,” who brought them all together. Pindar’s friends share with Joe the Five Laws of Stratospheric Success and teach him how to open himself up to the power of giving.
Joe learns that changing his focus from getting to giving—putting others’ interests first and continually adding value to their lives—ultimately leads to unexpected returns.
Imparted with wit and grace, The Go-Giver is a heartwarming and inspiring tale that brings new relevance to the old proverb “Give and you shall receive.”
The 1% Solution by @TomConnellan
Melissa Stewart is a serial entrepreneur who has had a “home office” since age 5. She is passionate about entrepreneurship, addicted to coffee and eternally optimistic. Her latest project http://sheownsit.com/ is a site committed to empowering women entrepreneurs by offering resources, support and inspiration. @melissaonline