7 books to read in 2020

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From taking control of the direction of your career to learning about simple life hacks and getting the best out of everyday, here are some reading ideas.

Brag! The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn Without Blowing It, Peggy Klaus

Brag! is a whip smart tool kit–one that tampers with our beliefs about humility by defining bragging as an act of authenticity. Peggy Klaus advises that working hard isn’t enough to keep your professional star rising: Self-promotion is recognized as one of the most important attributes for getting ahead.

If you seek to take charge of your career, then this book is for you. Learning how to self-promote inoffensively is crucial to success in business and many other situations. All too often people are told to keep their heads down, do a good job, and you will be noticed, but Peggy Klaus offers better alternatives.

Bragging rights and responsibilities are surveyed in a variety of situations: the co-worker who takes credit, techno-bragging online, performance reviews, job interviews and working a room. Klaus peppers her points with examples from her coaching sessions and seminars, sample dialogues and self-assessments.

Marketing Warfare, Al Ries, Jack Trout 

One of the best books written for understanding marketing positioning and strategy today. One of the easiest and most enjoyable reads for executives, business strategists, startup founders, and others who don’t spend their whole working day in marketing.

According to Trout and Ries, there are only four basic ways to conduct a marketing war (strategies): Defend, Attack, Flank Attack, and Guerilla Campaign.

Step One in a marketing war is to determine your company’s current position. This dictates the one and only appropriate marketing strategy.

Each market can have only one leader, or dominant company. The only appropriate marketing strategy for the Leader is Defense. The number two company in a given market is compelled to the marketing strategy of Attack. This means either fending off attacks from rivals occupying lesser positions, or taking on the Market Leader.

The Messy Middle, Scott Belsky

The internet is full of start-up success stories; every day stories emerge of a new company with the potential for a billion-dollar valuation and plans for global domination. 

But what can we really learn from these stories? How many of these start-ups are genuinely successful in the long term? When nine out of ten start-ups end in spectacular burnout, how can we ensure our own success story?  

The Messy Middle will give you all the insights you need to build and optimise your team, improve your product and develop your own capacity to lead.

Building on seven years of meticulous research with entrepreneurs, small agencies, start-ups and billion-dollar companies, Scott Belsky offers indispensable lessons on how to endure and thrive in the long term.

Love Does, Bob Goff

As a college student Bob Goff spent 16 days in the Pacific Ocean with five guys and a crate of canned meat. As a father he took his kids on a world tour to eat ice cream with heads of state. He made friends in Uganda, and they liked him so much he became the Ugandan consul. He pursued his wife for three years before she agreed to date him. His grades weren’t good enough to get into law school, so he sat on a bench outside the Dean’s office for seven days until they finally let him enroll. 

What follows are paradigm shifts, musings, and stories from one of the world’s most delightfully engaging and winsome people. What fuels his impact? Love. But it’s not the kind of love that stops at thoughts and feelings. Bob’s love takes action. Bob believes Love Does.

When Love Does, life gets interesting. Each day turns into a hilarious, whimsical, meaningful chance that makes faith simple and real. Each chapter is a story that forms a book, a life. And this is one life you don’t want to miss.

Light and fun, unique and profound, the lessons drawn from Bob’s life and attitude just might inspire you to be secretly incredible, too.

Never Split the Difference: Negotiating As If Your Life Depended On It, Chris Voss

A former international hostage negotiator for the FBI offers a new, field-tested approach to high-stakes negotiations—whether in the boardroom or at home.

When Chris Voss joined the FBI, his career as a hostage negotiator brought him face-to-face with a range of criminals, including bank robbers and terrorists. Reaching the pinnacle of his profession, he became the FBI’s lead international kidnapping negotiator. 

Never Split the Difference takes you inside the world of high-stakes negotiations and into Voss’s head, revealing the skills that helped him and his colleagues succeed where it mattered most: saving lives. In this practical guide, he shares the nine effective principles—counterintuitive tactics and strategies—you too can use to become more persuasive in both your professional and personal life.

Life is a series of negotiations you should be prepared for: buying a car, negotiating a salary, buying a home, renegotiating rent, deliberating with your partner. Taking emotional intelligence and intuition to the next level, Never Split the Difference gives you the competitive edge in any discussion.

Smart Couples Finish Rich, David Bach

David Bach has helped millions of people around the world take action to live and finish rich. He is one of the most popular and prolific financial authors.

Through his book, Smart Couples Finish Rich, you’ll discover the latest techniques to live a life as a couple, where your values align and your money decisions become easier.

Whether newlyweds, a couple planning for retirement or already retired, this timeless classic provides couples with easy-to-use tools that cover everything from personal finance management to detailed investment advice to long term care. Together you’ll learn why couples who plan their finances together, stay together!

The Compound Effect, Darren Hardy

The Compound Effect contains the essence of what every super achiever needs to know, practice, and master to obtain extraordinary success.

The main premise of this book is the idea that slow and steady wins the race. It is very helpful the way Darren reminds us that even ridiculously small changes can, if applied consistently, produce huge effects over time.

He also reminds us of the power in taking responsibility for our own actions, and that if we want to “manage” something, we must first “measure” it.

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