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ISBN 9780062183590 Published June 2012
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Posted Dec. 13, 2012 6:23 a.m. by 800-ceo-read
In - 800 CEO Read Blog
Over the course of this week, we have posted the shortlist selections in the General Business, Leadership, Management, Innovation & Creativity, Small Business & Entrepreneurship, Marketing & Sales, Personal Development, and Finance & Economics categories. Just one last category left: Personal Development.
Stay tuned, because on Monday, December 17th, we'll announce the category winners, and, on Wednesday, December 19th, we'll celebrate the overall winner of the 2012 800-CEO-READ Business Book Awards!
The selections for the Personal Development category are:
- Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brené Brown, Gotham Books
- Extreme Productivity: Boost Your Results, Reduce Your Hours by Robert C. Pozen, Harper
- The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone—Especially Ourselves by Dan Ariely, Harper
- So Good They Can’t Ignore You: Why Skills Trump Passion in the Quest for Work You Love by Cal Newport, Business Plus
- The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do to Get More of It by Kelly McGonigal, Avery
What can you do to be a better you? Maybe it's refining your strengths, or developing new skills, changing a bad habit, embracing a particular (and maybe peculiar) personality trait. Whatever your goal for yourself is, personal development books can help. And the five books on our Personal Development shortlist can help change your life. Kelly McGonigal's The Willpower Instinct reveals the science behind your impulses, your fears, and your tendency to procrastinate, and how you can use science to develop your willpower like a good workout helps develop your muscles. The benefit of that practice is an increased ability to reach the kind of Extreme Productivity that Robert Pozen details in his new book. Pozen's results-oriented premise is that most of us waste a considerable amount of time being unproductive, and we can actually work less by doing more. But personal development isn't all about "doing." Sometimes it's about "being," and Brene Brown's Daring Greatly challenges us to re-cast vulnerability as a welcome thing, to embrace the risk and the fear that comes along with it, and work through all those issues of shame, perfection, anxiety and cynicism that come up when we are courageous enough to face uncertainty. Perhaps vulnerability can prevent the kind of deceptive and defensive behavior Dan Ariely presents in his newest book, The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty. Ariely's books always help us better understand human nature, and by doing so, we can bring the better angels of our nature to work and to our businesses. And it's not surprising then that when we do bring our better selves to work, we begin to love the work we do. Cal Newport's So Good They Can't Ignore You posits that the usual advice of finding work you love by following your passion is off target, and that we're better off by following a craftsman mindset, focusing on the value we're producing, the skills we've developed, pursuing what we're good at.
Amazon's Best Books of the Year... So Far
Posted June 26, 2012 8:08 a.m. by dylan
In - 800 CEO Read Blog
Amazon has been putting out a mid-year list of the best books for the past few years now, and released this (mid) year's list yesterday. The books in the Business & Leadership category are:
- The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg, Random House
- The Tools: Transform Your Problems into Courage, Confidence, and Creativity by Phil Stutz & Barry Michels, Spiegel & Grau
- How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth & Karen Dillon, HarperBusiness
- The $100 Startup: Reinvent the Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future by Chris Guillebeau, Crown Business
- The Real Crash: America's Coming Bankruptcy—How to Save Yourself and Your Country by Peter D. Schiff, St. Martin's Press
- The Honest Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone—Especially Ourselves by Dan Ariely, Harper
- Private Empire: ExxonMobil and American Power by Steve Coll, The Penguin Press
- What Money Can't Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets by Michael J. Sandel
- Abundance: The Future Is Better Than You Think by Peter H. Diamandis & Steven Kotler, Free Press
- The Lost Bank: The Story of Washington Mutual-The Biggest Bank Failure in American History by Kirsten Grind, Simon & Schuster
The Nonfiction list is also full of titles business book fans might want to consider, including two that made the Business & Leadership list: The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg and Private Empire by Steve Coll, both of which made the Amazon editor's list of top 20 books overall.
The others on the Nonfiction list you may want to consider are Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking by Susan Cain (Crown), Bunch of Amateurs: A Search for the American Character by Jack Hitt (Crown), and The End of Money: Counterfeiters, Preachers, Techies, Dreamers—and the Coming Cashless Society by David Wolman (De Capo Press).
If you'd like to peruse Amazon's Best Books of the Year So Far in their entirety, head on over to the online empire's website.
Jack Covert Selects - The Honest Truth about Dishonesty
Posted June 14, 2012 4:04 a.m. by 800-ceo-read
If Dan Ariely’s new book is anything like his last two, it will sell like gangbusters and enlighten a lot of people on a matter of the mind we take for granted, or don’t even stop to consider. And the book, The Honest Truth about Dishonesty, comes at a time when we can use some pause and reflection.
The seemingly never ending series of corporate scandals and financial chicanery (Ariely begins the book by considering Enron) and the complete inability to clean it up or stop them from occurring, makes the question at the heart of the book, “is dishonesty largely restricted to a few bad apples, or is it a more common problem?” a very important one for both the business community.
Ariely, through both reasoning and research, rejects the long-accepted Simple Model of Rational Crime (SMORC), that “in weighing the costs versus the benefits, there was no place for considerations of right or wrong; it was simply about the comparison of possible positive and negative outcomes,” and the book’s central thesis replaces it with a more nuanced and human explanation of dishonesty:
[M]uch of our behavior is driven by two opposing motivations. On one hand, we want to view ourselves as honest, honorable people … (psychologists call this ego motivation). On the other hand, we want to benefit from cheating and get as much money as possible (this is the standard financial motivation). Clearly these two motivations are in conflict.
The Honest Truth about Dishonesty explores different territory than his previous books, Predictably Irrational and The Upside of Irrationality, but if you’ve read those previous works you’ll be pleased to know that it continues and moves forward the general arc of those studies.
Beyond exploring the topic of dishonesty, this book is fundamentally about rationality and irrationality. And although dishonesty is fascinating and important in its own right, it is also important to keep in mind that it is but a single component of our interesting and intricate human nature.
And he believes we can create an environment that fosters optimal behavior:
Once we more clearly understand the forces that really drive us, we discover that we are not helpless in the face of our human follies (dishonesty included), that we can restructure our environment, and that by doing so we can achieve better behaviors and outcomes.
To understand what keeps businesses honest and profitable, it is important to understand what keeps the people within them honest, and to put appropriate systems in place. It is not about becoming a nanny or absolving individuals of responsibility, but of simply understanding human nature, and putting the better angels of our nature to work within our organizations and societies.