Book Lists

10 Books for Your Summer Reading List As Recommended by the Boston Globe

Beach reading

Planning on doing some summer reading? Throw one of these books into your beach tote at the suggestion of the experts at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. These reads are meant to help you get ahead in your career, better manage teams, sharpen your leadership skills, or just learn something new. (Via the Boston Globe)

Image via Flickr/Randy Robertson

The Art of Choosing

1The Art of Choosing by Sheena Iyengar

This book looks at how we make choices and how that shapes our lives. One of her findings is that too much choice is demotivating. Sometimes we prefer limited choice. (Amna Kirmani, professor of marketing)

The Clash of the Cultures: Investment vs. Speculation

2The Clash of the Cultures: Investment vs. Speculation by John C. Bogle & Arthur Levitt Jr.

Jack Bogle, retired chief executive of Vanguard Group, discusses the “want to” reason for taking risks. His book lambastes publicly traded financial firms that have performed poorly because of risk-taking. Bogle believes many of these companies had speculative rather than investment mind-sets, emphasized short-term vs. long-term profitability, and traded frequently without regard to the costs vs. benefits of the trades. (Susan White, teaching fellow in finance)

The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance — What Women Should Know

3The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance — What Women Should Know by Katty Kay & Claire Shipman

Kay and Shipman use neuroscience to examine and discuss research on the roots of confidence in our brains. In a practical, reader-friendly style, they provide examples of women leaders from all types of industries (e.g., politics, sports, military, arts) to show how confidence impacts leadership and success. (Joyce E.A. Russell, Smith School vice dean)

Think Like a Freak

4Think Like a Freak by Steven D. Levitt & Stephen J. Dubner

This book is on my summer reading list because it demonstrates how to approach problem solving in a completely different way. It can be eye-opening to see how attitude and perception affect decision-making. (Alex Triantis, Smith School dean)

Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness

5Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness by Richard Thaler & Cass Sunstein

Thaler and Sunstein draw from the results of behavioral experiments to show how to nudge individuals to make better decisions. These nudges are produced by what the authors call “choice architecture,” and can be used to help people better investments, save more for retirement and follow a more healthful diet, among others. This is a timely and smart book for anyone interested in behavioral science, business, and public policy. (Rebecca Ratner, professor of marketing)

Uncontrolled: The Surprising Payoff of Trial-and-Error for Business, Politics and Society

6Uncontrolled: The Surprising Payoff of Trial-and-Error for Business, Politics and Society by Jim Manzi

Manzi explains how we can use quantitative evidence for better business decision making. No competent leader can ignore this trend. (Brent Goldfarb, associate professor of management)

Capital in the Twenty-First Century

7Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty

This best-seller addresses income and wealth inequality, one of the most important economic issues of our time. Piketty draws on data across countries and over time in making the case that income inequality is a natural outcome in market economies. The book has engendered a great deal of attention and controversy, unusual for a serious economic treatise, but illustrating the importance of inequality. (Curt Grimm, chair of Economics and Strategy)

Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All

8Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All by Tom Kelley & David Kelley

IDEO founder David Kelley and his brother and partner in IDEO, Tom Kelley, have written a compelling book that shows that creativity is not magic — it is a skill that can be developed. In an inspiring narrative, the authors demonstrate that everyone has the potential to be creative and provide incredibly useful insights that will give us the break out of our ruts. (Mark Wellman, teaching fellow)

The Necessity of Strangers: The Intriguing Truth About Insight, Innovation and Success

9The Necessity of Strangers: The Intriguing Truth About Insight, Innovation and Success by Alan Gregerman

This is a thought-provoking book that will challenge the way you think about innovation and collaboration. Gregerman provides compelling examples, engaging stories, and practical guidance regarding how strangers can help us be more creative and achieve greater collaboration. (Kathryn Bartol, professor of management)

#GirlBoss

10#GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso

Amoruso, founder of Nasty Gal, tells the story of how she grew her vintage clothing business on eBay to a $100 million fashion e-retailer with 350 employees that ships to 60 countries around the world. Amoruso is refreshingly candid about her ups and downs along the way and remarkably thrifty for a fashionista. (One chapter is titled ‘‘Money looks better in the bank than on your feet.”) (Rebecca Winner, executive director, marketing communications)

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