10 business books for a Happy New Year!

In search of book recommendations for the holiday season? The team at Business Digest has selected ten outstanding books for you to read curled up in front of the fire. Happy Holidays!

The Outsiders: Eight Unconventional CEOs and their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success

by William Thorndike (Harvard Business Review Press, October 2012)
What distinguishes exceptional CEOs from the rest of the crowd? Readers interested to learn the secrets to running highly successful companies will discover the compelling stories, traits, and methods of eight unconventional CEOs in The Outsiders.

How Will You Measure Your Life?

by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon (Harper Business, May 2012)
The author of The Innovator’s Dilemma is back! In his latest book, Clayton Christensen explores how to ensure the three building blocks of a fulfilling life: a satisfying career, enduring relationships, and… staying out of jail. The latter is no joke, says Christensen, who has several acquaintances that wound up in jail, such as Jeff Skilling of Enron fame.

Renegades Write the Rules: How the Digital Royalty Use Social Media to Innovate

by Amy Jo Martin (Jossey-Bass, October 2012)
“The good news is that even if you’re late in joining the new frontier called social media, you no longer have to stumble your way through a cracked and dry land to find water. A path has been forged that you can follow,” writes Amy Jo Martin, founder of Digital Royalty, the social media company that developed Shaquille O’Neal’s Twitter strategy.

What Money Can’t Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets

by Michael Sandel (Penguin, April 2012)
The treatise by Michael Sandel, Harvard professor and second-time author, on “the moral limits of markets” was shortlisted for the Goldman Sachs and Financial Times’ best book of 2012 award. In the book’s opening lines, Sandel notes the growing power of markets and market values: “There are some things money can’t buy, but these days, not many.”

The Success Equation: Untangling Skill and Luck in Business, Sports, and Investing

by Michael J. Mauboussin (Harvard Business Review Press, November 2012)
“Much of what we experience in life results from a combination of skill and luck,” writes celebrated author and leading investment strategist Michael J. Mauboussin, who in his latest work clears up the all-too-often blurry line between skill and luck, explaining how to tell the difference between the two ahead of time.

Standing on the Sun: How the Explosion of Capitalism Abroad Will Change Business Everywhere

by Christopher Meyer and Julia Kirby (Harvard Business Review Press, February 2012)
Christopher Meyer and Julia Kirby show that emerging markets are inventing a new logic of value creation — one that emphasizes the social value of business rather than the importance of maximizing shareholder returns. What are the implications of this profound shift in the history of capitalism?

Makers: The New Industrial Revolution

by Chris Anderson (Crown Business, October 2012)
Chris Anderson, bestselling author of The Long Tail (Hyperion, 2006), proclaims the development of a new industrial revolution, led by numerous agile, autonomous, and interconnected individuals who have seized the means of industrial production thanks to new technologies such as 3D printing. Does this development signal the erosion of big conglomerates and the redistribution of the sites of value creation to new players?

The Third Industrial Revolution: How Lateral Power is Transforming Energy, the Economy, and the World

by Jeremy Rifkin (Palgrave Macmillan, November 2011)
According to Jeremy Rifkin, economic and social changes always come from the convergence of new energy and communication technologies. With the concurrent rise of renewable energies and the Internet, the 21st Century is set to see the emergence of distributed capitalism — in other words, more cooperative and less centralized ways of doing business.

The Pirate Organization: Lessons from the Fringes of Capitalism

by Rodolphe Durand and Jean-Philippe Vergne (Harvard Business Review Press, December 2012)
What do 17th-century sea pirates, 20th-century radio pirates, today’s cyber hackers, and future conquerors of space have in common? They are all key players in the development of capitalism, challenging it and contributing fundamentally to how it changes over time.

Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder

by Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Random House, November 2012)
For economist Nassim Taleb, it is no longer enough to be simply resilient in the face of major disruption; the imperative now for businesses and individuals is to become “antifragile.” This means learning to thrive on disruption, like an immune system that becomes progressively stronger in response to viral attacks. Do not be afraid to confront disruption rather than seeking — uselessly — to avoid it!