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Book synthesis

10 books for the summer (and for thinking things over)

Here’s our selection of good reads for this summer. It’s highly subjective since it suits our own tastes… as well as some of your expectations. Little has changed since last summer: you’re still worn out, and you still don’t have enough spare brain time… But chin up: you decide your own priorities, and whether to stick or twist!
So, here are some wonderful ideas for a great summer.
Happy reading!

Books selected by Florence Meyer, executive coach, expert in change management and author.

Chief Bullshit Officer 2.0

(Diateino 2023)

Léonce is back with a bang – he’s the idle manager who chillaxes between pointless meetings, vacuous projects and a never-ending stream of the most incompetent co-workers imaginable. Léonce’s motto? Make Bullshit Great Again! But the status quo built on a bogus peace only lasts until a burnout epidemic and a whistleblower upend this precarious balance. Here’s my opinion about the book: not a match for the first volume published in 2022, which is worth reading again and again to your heart’s content…

Redonner du sens au travail

Thomas Coutrot and Coralie Perez
(Seuil 2022)

Is my work helpful for other people? Is it in sync with my values? Does it allow me to grow? And what about yourself: how would you answer these same questions? This substantial, stimulating book shows us that a sense of purpose is not just a problem for the well-off. The authors also prompt us to think again about those management methods that play a part in undermining what we do at work.

Beyond disruption

W. Chan Kim and Renée A. Mauborgne
(Harvard Business Review Press 2023)

This instance applied to the field of innovation: how can we break free of a Schumpeterian vision of disruptive innovation, which is often synonymous with social and economic impact? How could innovative practices benefit everybody? This book provides an inspiring alternative to the race for innovation at any cost.

The Good enough job

Simone Stolzoff,
(Portfolio 2023)

Is it really your job that should give meaning to your life and identity? What if your work was just one of many things you did, but that you got paid for? It would stop a slew of workaholics – and repeat burnout offenders – going off the rails. So, don’t go looking for a dream job at all costs that might well gobble you up and spit you out. Stolzoff’s book provides an original and unabashed answer to the question of the meaning of work.

Magic words

Jonah Berger
(Harper Business 2023

We think this book is great! Is “please” the magic word that will get you what you want? But don’t forget that there are many other words that boost your chances of fulfilling your wishes – such as “because” – for whatever reason. Discover the six different types of word that will help you inspire trust, for instance, or ask the right questions or convey your feelings.

Living with Robots

Ruth Aylett and Patricia A. Vargas
(MIT Press 2023

Forget dystopias where robots come back to bite their creators – even now they have trouble operating in a complicated environment. While we have a tendency to project our human behaviors onto robots, this book will help you understand what they are really capable of doing (or not doing). Then you’ll be able to stop wasting so much time investing so many hopes and fears in them.


Bradley L. Kirkman and Adam C. Stoverink
(Stanford University Press 2023)

How did a crew of firefighters cope with a wildfire at Mann Gulch in difficult terrain? Spoiler: it ended badly for them. What can we learn from their experience? What can scuttle the chances of a team made up of trained experts? How can you make your crew more resilient? You need to be able to improvise and build psychological safety among other things. This book provides four key resources to engineer a team that gets through any and everything.

The Portfolio Life

Christina Wallace
(Balance 2023)

Slashers, polymaths and other multi-talented potentials – this book is for you, but not just you! It explores an alternative to a one-path career (the type that fills you with dread and boredom): a portfolio of jobs. What are the benefits? You don’t have to choose between several types of job, and the diverse nature of your work protects you from crises. Guilt-free and inspiring!

Leadership Team Alignment

Frédéric Godart and Jacques Neatby
( Stanford Business Books 2023)

Although this is a conventional survival manual for upper management, its message bears repeating. You’ll learn how to minimize political game-playing (although, of course, it can never be entirely eliminated); dodge the silo trap; encourage everyone to work for the good of the company rather than for their personal success; and identify the key individuals to include in this circle. You can also turn to the book as a self-assessment tool and work out where you stand…

The Anxious Achiever

Morra Aarons-Mele
(Harvard Business Review Press 2023)

Anxiety is one of the most widespread psychological illnesses at work, and it shows no sign of abating. In reality, however, it is your best friend. The author, herself an extremely nervous individual, shows the reader how to leverage the benefits of anxiety: the ability to think ahead, for example, or to be creative. Unclench your jaws and transform your anxiety into a superpower!

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Florence Meyer
Published by Florence Meyer
Executive coach, change management expert, and author. Constantly on the lookout for the latest management and leadership trends.