Book Lists

The Top 15 Business Books To Look Out For in Q3

There are a lot of great books coming out this quarter, and I’m looking forward to reading each one. I scoured the “coming soon” section of a few major retailers, picked 15 notable releases, and listed them below. I’m especially excited for three: Walter Isaacson’s The Innovators, Steven Pinker’s The Sense of Style, and How Google Works, by the former CEO and current Executive Chairman of Google, Eric Schmidt.

Image via Flickr/katerha

The Intel Trinity: How Robert Noyce, Gordon Moore, and Andy Grove Built the World’s Most Important Company

1The Intel Trinity: How Robert Noyce, Gordon Moore, and Andy Grove Built the World’s Most Important Company by Michael S. Malone

(July 15) "The Intel Trinity is the first full history of Intel Corporation—the essential company of the digital age— told through the lives of the three most important figures in the company’s history: Robert Noyce, Gordon Moore, and Andy Grove."

Driving Honda: Inside the World’s Most Innovative Car Company

2Driving Honda: Inside the World’s Most Innovative Car Company by Jeffrey Rothfeder

(July 31) "According to Jeffrey Rothfeder, what truly distinguishes Honda from its competitors, especially archrival Toyota, is a deep commitment to a set of unorthodox management tenets. The Honda Way, as insiders call it, is notable for decentralization over corporate control, simplicity over complexity, experimentation over Six Sigma–driven efficiency, and unyielding cynicism toward the status quo and whatever is assumed to be the truth."

The Power of Noticing: What Leaders See

3The Power of Noticing: What Leaders See by Max Bazerman

(August 5) Bazerman is a Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School and a leading thinker in business psychology. In "The Power of Noticing" Bazerman discusses how leaders can make better decisions by focusing on important information in the world.

The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload

4The Organized Mind: Thinking Straight in the Age of Information Overload by Daniel J. Levitin

(August 19) Levitin is a cognitive psychologist known for his bestseller "This is Your Brain on Music." His new book draws on the latest brain science to explain how we can avoid cognitive overload.

Economics: The User’s Guide

5Economics: The User’s Guide by Ha-Joon Chang

(August 26) Chang is a heterodox economic thinker overflowing with provocative ideas. "Writing with irreverent wit, a deep knowledge of history, and a disregard for conventional economic pieties, Chang offers insights that will never be found in the textbooks."

Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success

6Smartcuts: How Hackers, Innovators, and Icons Accelerate Success by Shane Snow

(September 9) According to Adam Grant, "this book by journalist and tech entrepreneur Shane Snow promises to uncover unconventional patterns among rapidly successful businesses and people, from innovators and hackers to daredevils and revolutionaries."

The small BIG: Small Changes That Spark Big Influence

7The small BIG: Small Changes That Spark Big Influence by Steve J. Martin, Noah Goldstein, & Robert Cialdini

(September 9) Cialdini is the author of the international bestseller "Influece: The Psychology of Persuasion." He teams up with Noah Goldstein and Steve J. Martin--legendary researchers from the world of persuasion science--to explain how small changes can have a big impact.

The Virgin Way: Everything I Know About Leadership

8The Virgin Way: Everything I Know About Leadership by Richard Branson

(September 9) "This unique perspective comes from a man who dropped out of school at sixteen, suffers from dyslexia, and has never worked for anyone but himself. He may be famous for thinking outside the box—an expression he despises—but Branson asserts that 'you’ll never have to think outside the box if you refuse to let anyone build one around you.'"

Valuing Life: Humanizing the Regulatory State

9Valuing Life: Humanizing the Regulatory State by Cass Sunstein

(September 13) For anyone interested in public policy and the role of regulation. Sunstein draws from his experience as the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs under President Obama to argue that "we can humanize regulation—and save lives in the process."

Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future

10Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future by Peter Thiel & Blake Masters

(September 16) For the startup crowd. Thiel is a legendary entrepreneur and venture capitalist who co-founded PayPal. He was also an early investor in Facebook. "The single most powerful pattern Thiel has noticed is that successful people find value in unexpected places, and they do this by thinking about business from first principles instead of formulas."

How Google Works

11How Google Works by Eric Schmidt & Jonathan Rosenberg

(September 23) Schmidt is the Executive Chairman of Google and its former CEO. Rosenberg is the former SVP of Products at Google. "The authors explain how technology has shifted the balance of power from companies to consumers, and that the only way to succeed in this ever-changing landscape is to create superior products and attract a new breed of multifaceted employees whom Eric and Jonathan dub 'smart creatives.'"

The Innovator’s Hypothesis: How Cheap Experiments Are Worth More than Good Ideas

12The Innovator’s Hypothesis: How Cheap Experiments Are Worth More than Good Ideas by Michael Schrage

(September 26) "What is the best way for a company to innovate? That's exactly the wrong question. The better question: How can organizations get the maximum possible value from their innovation investments? Advice recommending "innovation vacations" and the luxury of failure may be wonderful for organizations with time to spend and money to waste. But this book addresses the innovation priorities of companies that live in the real world of limits. They want fast, frugal, and high impact innovations. They don't just seek superior innovation, they want superior innovators."

The Sense of Style: A Thinking’s Person Guide to Writing in the 21st Century

13The Sense of Style: A Thinking’s Person Guide to Writing in the 21st Century by Steven Pinker

(September 30) Not exactly a business book but relevant for anyone in business. Pinker is a Harvard psychologist with a focus on language. This book is a slight departure for Pinker, who usually writes enticing and provocative popular psychology books. Here, he draws on cognitive science to explain why writing is so hard, and how anyone can write more effectively. Think Strunk & White for the 21st century.

The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution

14The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution by Walter Isaacson

(October 7) Short biographies of the innovators who created the computer and the Internet: Ada Lovelace, Vannevar Bush, Alan Turing, John von Neumann, J.C.R. Licklider, Doug Engelbart, Robert Noyce, Bill Gates, Steve Wozniak, Steve Jobs, Tim Berners-Lee, and Larry Page. One of the most anticipated books of 2014.

Winners Dream:  Journey from Corner Store to Corner Office

15Winners Dream: Journey from Corner Store to Corner Office by Bill McDermott

(October 7) Inspiring narrative. McDermott grew up in working-class Long Island, paid for grad school, and sold copiers door-to-door for Xerox, where he became the company's youngest-ever corporate officer. Today, McDermott is the CEO of SAP.

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