“In a rapidly-changing complex world, the most important thing is your rate of learning.”
The above quote was the thesis of Jeff Davis, CEO of Molio, when we guest spoke during my MBA Marketing class. In the early days of YouTube, as the former CEO of Orabrush, his small tongue-brush company was one of the first to take advantage of viral online video as a medium and became one of the top brand-sponsored YouTube channels until being acquired by Proctor & Gamble.
As somebody working in the technology industry, his lesson resonated well with me. To simply keep up, let alone thrive, I need to constantly be learning. I believe my most important asset in this life is our own mind. From it flows our judgement, our creativity, our drive, and our values. Developing a habit of broad, continuous learning and a love of books is one of the best ways to prepare us for rapid change of the future.
I’ve ranked below all the books I read in 2019 from my favorite to least favorite of the year. Favorite, in this case, was a function of the resonance of the book’s message at the time I read it, how the principles have stuck with me, and how much they have shaped my own thinking or personal philosophy since reading it.
🔁 indicates books I re-read in 2019 and are some of my all-time favorites. The themes from this year’s list include user-experience design, decision-making psychology, personal finance, and developing a set of personal leadership principles.
I’m building my 2020 list now. What recommendations do you have?
- Shoe Dog
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People 🔁
Stephen R. Covey
- Radical Candor
by Kim Scott
- The Making of a Manager
- Atomic Habits
- Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance 🔁
- Lean UX 🔁
- Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead
- Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World
- How Will You Measure Your Life
Clayton M. Christensen
- Creativity Inc. 🔁
- It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work
- Refactoring UI
Adam Wathan & Steve Schoger
- Playing with FIRE: How Far Would You Go for Financial Freedom?
- Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking
- Thinking Fast and Slow
Richard H. Thaler
- The Intelligent Investor
- The Startup Way
- Design Better eBook Series (DesignOps, Leadership, Design Systems)
- 80/20 Running
- The Four Agreements
- Good to Great 🔁
- Actionable Gamification: Beyond Points, Badges and Leaderboards
- Digital Minimalism
- The One Minute Manager
- Bad With Money
- How to Win Friends & Influence People
- The One Thing