Never stop gathering useful information.
A regular reading/listening habit is a practical strategy when you’d value a good basis for evaluating your job and preparing for positive career moves.
Accidental Career provides short articles and interviews to build a foundation for your career development. We encourage you to widen that foundation with selected books that will give you an informed perspective on the world of business and employment.
Classics: Some books qualify as classics – important to read even though they were written years ago. Books that accurately describe important growth principles include: Think and Grow Rich by Napolean Hill, How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie, and The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey. These books address timeless issues of personal character and relationship building – as vital today as when they were first published. They cover important concepts that you can use to be more successful in professional interactions.
Copyright: Classics may not, however, provide up-to-date information on current technology, organizational innovation, and industry trends. When you pick up a book that looks interesting, check the copyright date. If it’s more than two years ago, do your leaf-through with the question, “Has this information changed in the past 24 months? If my boss uses these techniques or practices with me, will I feel positively guided into the future, or handicapped because my thinking has moved beyond this outdated information?”
Discuss: When you read a book, talk over your conclusions with a learning partner. Ideas need the sandpaper of discussion to help your mind smooth out rough edges. Setting up such discussions elevates your perceived value and leadership potential in your organization.
Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman
The ‘IQ’ view of human intelligence is too narrow, ignoring abilities that make a big difference in how well we do in life. Emotional intelligence includes: 1. Self-awareness; 2. Impulse control; 3. Persistence; 4. Zeal; 5. Self-motivation; 6. Empathy; and 7. Social deftness.
EntreLeadership by Dave Ramsey
Ideas and principles for middle managers and emerging leaders.
(The) Fifth Discipline by Peter M. Senge
We expect employees and managers to keep getting smarter – why not expect that of the whole organization? Core disciplines for building a Learning Organization: 1. Personal mastery; 2. Mental models; 3. Shared vision; and 4. Team Learning.
Four Secrets to Liking Your Work by Edward G. Muzio, Deborah J. Fisher PhD, Erv Thomas PE
Buried in nine solution-seeking chapters are the four secrets 1-Observe behavior. 2-Master motivation. 3-Harmonize tasks. 4-Get the right skills.
Good To Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t by Jim Collins
Characteristics of companies that leap to greatness 1-Leadership does what’s best for the company. 2-Finding the right people. 3-Confronting difficult truths. 4-Lighting your passion. 5-Being the best. 6-Finding the money. 7-Culture of discipline. 8-Using technology. 9-Incorporating many small initiatives.
It’s Okay to Manage Your Boss by Bruce Tulgan
Essential ingredients for building a successful relationship with your supervisor 1-Clear and reasonable expectations. 2-Skills, tools, and resources to accomplish those expectations. 3-Honest feedback and course corrections. 4-Recognition and rewards for performance.
Kiss Theory Goodbye by Bob Prosen
Attributes of highly-profitable companies 1-Superior leadership. 2-Sales effectiveness. 3-Operational excellence. 4-Financial management. 5-Customer loyalty.
Lead, Sell, or Get Out of the Way by Ron Karr
Traits of great sellers 1-Clear vision. 2-Position selves powerfully in minds of customers. 3-Build alliances. 4-Ask powerful questions. 5-Create value propositions. 6-Communicate well and persuasively. 7-Embrace accountability and responsibility.
(The) Mouth Trap by Gary Seigel PhD
Develop ways to 1-Repair mistakes. 2-Say it right the first time. 3-Navigate around difficult people. 4-Apply verbal strategies to emails.
Running the Gauntlet by Jeffrey Hayzlett with Jim Eber
An argument against ‘business as usual,’ this is about making strategic changes for growth and survival in the competitive world. It is written for business owners – if you don’t own your business, then read it to position yourself to make an impact with the person who does.
Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Steven R. Covey PhD
Dr. Covey studied effective workers and found them to share these habits 1-Be proactive. 2-Begin with the end in mind. 3-First things first. 4-Think win-win. 5-Seek first to understand, then to be understood. 6-Synergize. 7-Sharpen the saw. In The Eighth Habit he added 8-Leave a legacy.
Stairway to Success by Nido R. Qubein
Identify and develop your areas of talent. Success is a matter of 1-Decision-making. 2-Commitment. 3-Planning. 4-Preparation. 5-Execution. 6-Recommitment.
Trust and Betrayal in the Workplace by Dennis S. Reina PhD and Michelle L. Reina, PhD
Trust makes organizations work. 1-Power when trust exists. 2-Problems when trust fails. 3-Pain when trust is lost. 4-Steps to rebuild trust, engage people, and encourage collaboration.
You Don’t Need a Title To Be a Leader by Mark Sanborn
Qualities that genuine leaders share 1-Acting with purpose. 2-Caring about and listening to others. 3-Looking for ways to encourage contributions and development of others. 4-Creating a legacy of accomplishment and contribution.