Guy Kawasaki is renowned as a brand expert, business leader and successful author. As well as writing must reads such as The Art of the Start 2.0, The Art of Social Media and Enchantment; many people were curious as to what his own favourite books are.
To answer the question he kept being asked, Guy wrote a blog on his own website detailing his 10 favourite books.
Here they are:
1. Influence: Science and Practice (5th Edition) by Robert B. Cialdini
Cialdini combines evidence from experimental work with the techniques and strategies he gathered while working as a salesperson, fundraiser, advertiser, and in other positions inside organizations that commonly use compliance tactics to get us to say “yes.”
Guy reviews this books on another recent post. “Every sales and marketing person needs to read it.”
2. The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business by Clayton M. Christensen
“The Innovator’s Dilemma” is becoming a handbook for CEOs remaking their businesses for the Net.”- BusinessWeek
Guy Says: “it taught me why it’s so hard to come up with a second hit and why startups often have the advantage when creating curve-jumping innovation.”
3. The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done (Harperbusiness Essentials) by Peter F. Drucker
The measure of the executive, Peter F. Drucker reminds us, is the ability to “get the right things done.” This usually involves doing what other people have overlooked as well as avoiding what is unproductive.
Guy Says: “I devoured this book while in college. I can’t say that I’ve always been an effective executive, but Peter Drucker was a hero of mine.”
4. Crossing the Chasm: Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers by Geoffrey A. Moore
In Crossing the Chasm, Geoffrey A. Moore shows that in the Technology Adoption Life Cycle—which begins with innovators and moves to early adopters, early majority, late majority, and laggards—there is a vast chasm between the early adopters and the early majority.
Guy Says: “The early adopters are easy–“main street” is hard. Entrepreneurs should read this book when they are cranking out their “conservative” sales projections.”
5. The Hockey Handbook by Lloyd Percival
When Percival wrote the original version of this book in 1951, the NHL virtually ignored it. But the Soviets made it their “bible,” & the legendary Russian coach Anatoli Tarasov praised Percival for his wonderful book on Canadian hockey.
Guy Says: “Probably the best book ever written about hockey tactics–although this opinion is coming from a Hawaiian who took up hockey at forty-eight, so you never know. Also, I’ve read it twice, and I’m still not very good.”
6. Inevitable Illusions: How Mistakes of Reason Rule Our Minds by Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini
Everyone knows that optical illusions trick us because of the way we see. Now scientists have discovered that cognitive illusions, a set of biases deeply embedded in the human mind, can actually distort the way we think.
Guy Says: “This book should“ have been called, How Entrepreneurs Think because it explains how entrepreneurs confuse themselves.”
7. Uncommon Genius How Great Ideas Are Born by Denise Shekerjian
Drawing on interviews with 40 winners of the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship—the so-called “genius awards”—the insightful study throws fresh light on the creative process.
Guy Says: “A lovely book that gets into the minds of the ”genius“ award winners of the MacArthur Foundation.”
8. If You Want to Write: A Book about Art, Independence and Spirit by Brenda Ueland
Ueland firmly believed that anyone can write, that everyone is talented, original, and has something important to say. In this book she explains how find that spark that will make you a great writer.
Guy Says: “Perhaps my favorite book of all time. It was my guiding light when I first started writing. Obviously, the book is for writers, but if you substitute ”program,“ ”market,“ ”evangelize,“ or ”start“ for the word ”write,“ you’ll see why its concepts are widely applicable.”
9. The Chicago Manual of Style by University of Chicago Press Staff
The Chicago Manual of Style is the authoritative, trusted source that writers, editors, and publishers turn to for guidance on style and process.
Guy Says: “I can’t stand bad grammar. This is the definitive book on how to handle the tweaky issues that come up in writing.”
10. Mastering the Dynamics of Innovation by James M. Utterback
The author presents a compelling look at how innovation transforms industries, raising the fortunes of some firms while destroying others.
Guy Says: “This book opened my eyes with evidence and findings about innovation.”