10 Brilliant Business Books of 2017 (Inc. Magazine)
Fifty Inventions That Shaped the Modern Economy by
Call Number: (Weldon Stacks) T15.H343 2017
Publication Date: 2017-08-29
A lively history seen through the fifty inventions that shaped it most profoundly, by the bestselling author of The Undercover Economist and Messy. Who thought up paper money? What was the secret element that made the Gutenberg printing press possible? And what is the connection between The Da Vinci Code and the collapse of Lehman Brothers? Fifty Inventions That Shaped the Modern Economy paints an epic picture of change in an intimate way by telling the stories of the tools, people, and ideas that had far-reaching consequences for all of us. From the plough to artificial intelligence, from Gillette's disposable razor to IKEA's Billy bookcase, bestselling author and Financial Times columnist Tim Harford recounts each invention's own curious, surprising, and memorable story. Invention by invention, Harford reflects on how we got here and where we might go next. He lays bare often unexpected connections: how the bar code undermined family corner stores, and why the gramophone widened inequality. In the process, he introduces characters who developed some of these inventions, profited from them, and were ruined by them, as he traces the principles that helped explain their transformative effects. The result is a wise and witty book of history, economics, and biography.
Hit Makers by
Call Number: (King's Stacks) HC79.C6T49 2017
Publication Date: 2017-02-07
"This book picks up where The Tipping Point left off." -- Adam Grant, Wharton professor and New York Times bestselling author of ORIGINALS and GIVE AND TAKE Nothing "goes viral." If you think a popular movie, song, or app came out of nowhere to become a word-of-mouth success in today's crowded media environment, you're missing the real story. Each blockbuster has a secret history--of power, influence, dark broadcasters, and passionate cults that turn some new products into cultural phenomena. Even the most brilliant ideas wither in obscurity if they fail to connect with the right network, and the consumers that matter most aren't the early adopters, but rather their friends, followers, and imitators -- the audience of your audience. In his groundbreaking investigation, Atlantic senior editor Derek Thompson uncovers the hidden psychology of why we like what we like and reveals the economics of cultural markets that invisibly shape our lives. Shattering the sentimental myths of hit-making that dominate pop culture and business, Thompson shows quality is insufficient for success, nobody has "good taste," and some of the most popular products in history were one bad break away from utter failure. It may be a new world, but there are some enduring truths to what audiences and consumers want. People love a familiar surprise: a product that is bold, yet sneakily recognizable. Every business, every artist, every person looking to promote themselves and their work wants to know what makes some works so successful while others disappear. Hit Makers is a magical mystery tour through the last century of pop culture blockbusters and the most valuable currency of the twenty-first century--people's attention.
If You`re in a Dogfight, Become a Cat! by
Call Number: (King's Stacks) HD30.28.S54 2017
Publication Date: 2017-01-10
In If You're in a Dogfight, Become a Cat, Leonard Sherman draws on four decades of experience in management consulting, venture capital, and teaching business strategy at Columbia Business School to share practical advice on two of the most vexing issues facing business executives: why is it so hard to achieve long-term profitable growth, and what can companies do to break away from the pack? Sherman takes the reader on a provocative journey through the building blocks of business strategy by challenging conventional wisdom on a number of questions that will redefine management best practices: * What should be the overarching purpose of your business?* Do you really know what your strategy is?* Is there such a thing as a bad industry?* Where do great ideas come from and how do I find them?* What makes products meaningfully different?* What makes and breaks great brands?* How and when should I disrupt my own company?* What are the imperatives to achieving long-term profitable growth? Filled with dozens of illustrative examples of inspiring successes and dispiriting falls from grace, this book provides deep insights on how to become the cat in a dogfight, whether you are a CEO, mid-level manager, aspiring business school student, or curious observer interested in achieving sustained profitable growth.
Call Number: HM851.A437 2017
Publication Date: 2017-03-07
In this revolutionary book, Adam Alter, a professor of psychology and marketing at NYU, tracks the rise of behavioral addiction, and explains why so many of today's products are irresistible. Though these miraculous products melt the miles that separate people across the globe, their extraordinary and sometimes damaging magnetism is no accident. The companies that design these products tweak them over time until they become almost impossible to resist. By reverse engineering behavioral addiction, Alter explains how we can harness addictive products for the good--to improve how we communicate with each other, spend and save our money, and set boundaries between work and play--and how we can mitigate their most damaging effects on our well-being, and the health and happiness of our children.
Call Number: (Weldon Stacks) HC108.J36G65 2017
Publication Date: 2017-04-18
Janesville joins a growing family of books about the evisceration of the working class in the United States. What sets it apart is the sophistication of its storytelling and analysis." --The New York Times A Washington Post reporter's intimate account of the fallout from the closing of a General Motors' assembly plant in Janesville, Wisconsin--Paul Ryan's hometown--and a larger story of the hollowing of the American middle class. This is the story of what happens to an industrial town in the American heartland when its factory stills--but it's not the familiar tale. Most observers record the immediate shock of vanished jobs, but few stay around long enough to notice what happens next, when a community with a can-do spirit tries to pick itself up. Pulitzer Prize winner Amy Goldstein has spent years immersed in Janesville, Wisconsin where the nation's oldest operating General Motors plant shut down in the midst of the Great Recession, two days before Christmas of 2008. Now, with intelligence, sympathy, and insight into what connects and divides people in an era of economic upheaval, she makes one of America's biggest political issues human. Her reporting takes the reader deep into the lives of autoworkers, educators, bankers, politicians, and job re-trainers to show why it's so hard in the twenty-first century to recreate a healthy, prosperous working class. For this is not just a Janesville story or a Midwestern story. It's an American story.
The Power of Moments by
Call Number: (Brescia Stacks) B105.E9H43 2017
Publication Date: 2017-10-03
While human lives are endlessly variable, our most memorable positive moments are dominated by four elements: elevation, insight, pride, and connection. If we embrace these elements, we can conjure more moments that matter. What if a teacher could design a lesson that he knew his students would remember twenty years later? What if a manager knew how to create an experience that would delight customers? What if you had a better sense of how to create memories that matter for your children? This book delves into some fascinating mysteries of experience: Why we tend to remember the best or worst moment of an experience, as well as the last moment, and forget the rest. Why "we feel most comfortable when things are certain, but we feel most alive when they're not." And why our most cherished memories are clustered into a brief period during our youth. Readers discover how brief experiences can change lives, such as the experiment in which two strangers meet in a room, and forty-five minutes later, they leave as best friends. (What happens in that time?) Or the tale of the world's youngest female billionaire, who credits her resilience to something her father asked the family at the dinner table. (What was that simple question?) Many of the defining moments in our lives are the result of accident or luck--but why would we leave our most meaningful, memorable moments to chance when we can create them? The Power of Moments shows us how to be the author of richer experiences.
Call Number: HD6060.5.U5P37 2017
Publication Date: 2017-09-19
In 2015, Ellen K. Pao sued a powerhouse Silicon Valley venture capital firm, calling out workplace discrimination and retaliation against women and other underrepresented groups. Her suit rocked the tech world--and exposed its toxic culture and its homogeneity. Her message overcame negative PR attacks that took aim at her professional conduct and her personal life, and she won widespread public support--Time hailed her as "the face of change." Though Pao lost her suit, she revolutionized the conversation at tech offices, in the media, and around the world. In Reset, she tells her full story for the first time. The daughter of immigrants, Pao was taught that through hard work she could achieve her dreams. She earned multiple Ivy League degrees, worked at top startups, and in 2005 was recruited by Kleiner Perkins, arguably the world's leading venture capital firm at the time. In many ways, she did everything right, and yet she and other women and people of color were excluded from success--cut out of decisive meetings and email discussions, uninvited to CEO dinners and lavish networking trips, and had their work undercut or appropriated by male executives. It was time for a system reset. After Kleiner, Pao became CEO of reddit, where she took forceful action to change the status quo for the company and its product. She banned revenge porn and unauthorized nude photos--an action other large media sites later followed--and shut down parts of reddit over online harassment. She and seven other women tech leaders formed Project Include, an award-winning nonprofit for accelerating diversity and inclusion in tech. In her book, Pao shines a light on troubling issues that plague today's workplace and lays out practical, inspiring, and achievable goals for a better future. Ellen K. Pao's Reset is a rallying cry--the story of a whistleblower who aims to empower everyone struggling to be heard, in Silicon Valley and beyond.
Call Number: (On order) H61.27.W47 2017
Publication Date: 2017-05-16
Visionary physicist Geoffrey West is a pioneer in the field of complexity science, the science of emergent systems and networks. Fascinated by aging and mortality, West applied the rigor of a physicist to the biological question of why we live as long as we do and no longer. The result was astonishing, and changed science: West found that despite the riotous diversity in mammals, they are all, to a large degree, scaled versions of each other. If you know the size of a mammal, you can use scaling laws to learn everything from how much food it eats per day, what its heart-rate is, how long it will take to mature, its lifespan, and so on. Furthermore, the efficiency of the mammal's circulatory systems scales up precisely based on weight: if you compare a mouse, a human and an elephant on a logarithmic graph, you find with every doubling of average weight, a species gets 25% more efficient--and lives 25% longer. Fundamentally, he has proven, the issue has to do with the fractal geometry of the networks that supply energy and remove waste from the organism's body. West's work has been game-changing for biologists, but then he made the even bolder move of exploring his work's applicability. Cities, too, are constellations of networks and laws of scalability relate with eerie precision to them. Recently, West has applied his revolutionary work to the business world. This investigation has led to powerful insights into why some companies thrive while others fail. The implications of these discoveries are far-reaching, and are just beginning to be explored. Scale is a thrilling scientific adventure story about the elemental natural laws that bind us together in simple but profound ways. Through the brilliant mind of Geoffrey West, we can envision how cities, companies and biological life alike are dancing to the same simple, powerful tune.
The Startup Way by
Call Number: HB615.R54 2017
Publication Date: 2017-10-17
Entrepreneur and bestselling author of The Lean Startup, Eric Ries reveals how entrepreneurial principles can be used by businesses of all kinds, ranging from established companies to early-stage startups, to grow revenues, drive innovation, and transform themselves into truly modern organizations, poised to take advantage of the enormous opportunities of the twenty-first century. In The Lean Startup, Eric Ries laid out the practices of successful startups - building a minimal viable product, customer-focused and scientific testing based on a build-measure-learn method of continuous innovation, and deciding whether to persevere or pivot. In The Startup Way, he turns his attention to an entirely new group of organizations: established enterprises like iconic multinationals GE and Toyota, tech titans like Amazon and Facebook, and the next generation of Silicon Valley upstarts like Airbnb and Twilio. Drawing on his experiences over the past five years working with these organizations, as well as nonprofits, NGOs, and governments, Ries lays out a system of entrepreneurial management that leads organizations of all sizes and from every industry to sustainable growth and long-term impact. Filled with in-the-field stories, insights, and tools, The Startup Way is an essential road map for any organization navigating the uncertain waters of the century ahead.
Wild Ride by
Call Number: (On order) HE5620.R53L37 2017
Publication Date: 2017-05-23
Before Travis Kalanick became famous as the public face of Uber, he was a scrappy, rough-edged, loose-lipped entrepreneur. And even after taking Uber from the germ of an idea to a $69 billion global transportation behemoth, he still describes his company as a start-up. Like other Silicon Valley icons such as Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, he's always focused on the next disruptive innovation and the next world to conquer. Both Uber and Kalanick have acquired a reputation for being combative, relentless, and iron-fisted against competitors. They've inspired both admiration and loathing as they've flouted government regulators, thrown the taxi industry into a tailspin, and stirred controversy over possible exploitation of drivers. They've even reshaped the deeply ingrained consumer behavior of not accepting a ride from a stranger--against the childhood warnings from everyone's parents. Wild Ride is the first truly inside look at Uber's global empire. Veteran journalist Adam Lashinsky, the bestselling author of Inside Apple, traces the origins of Kalanick's massive ambitions in his humble roots, and he explores Uber's murky beginnings and the wild ride of its rapid growth and expansion into different industries. Lashinsky draws on exclusive, in-depth interviews with Kalanick and many other sources who share new details about Uber's internal and external power struggles. He also examines its doomed venture into China and the furtive fight between Kalanick and his competitors at Google, Tesla, Lyft, and GM over self-driving cars. Lashinsky even got behind the wheel as an Uber driver himself to learn what it's really like. Uber has made headlines thanks to its eye-popping valuations and swift expansion around the world. But this book is the first account of how Uber really became the giant it is today, and how it plans to conquer the future.
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