BIF’s List of Must Read Books

Photo by Stephanie Ewens
Books are in abundance at the Business Innovation Factory. Stacked high on desks and sporadically placed on random bookshelves throughout the office, if only just for a short while before being taken off the shelf again and revisited.
In honor of #WorldBookDay we at BIF have compiled a list of thought-provoking, transformative and inspiring books that we hope you will enjoy as much as we do:
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Disrupt Yourself: Putting the Power of Disruptive Innovation to Work

by Whitney Johnson

In Disrupt Yourself, Whitney Johnson helps you understand how the frameworks of disruptive innovation can apply to your particular path. We are living in an era of accelerating disruption; no one is immune. Johnson makes the compelling case that managing the S-curve waves of learning and mastery is a requisite skill for the future. If you want to be successful in unexpected ways, follow your own disruptive path. Dare to innovate. Do something astonishing. Disrupt yourself.

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Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

by Daniel Pink

Most people believe that the best way to motivate is with rewards like money — the carrot-and-stick approach. That’s a mistake, says author Daniel H. Pink. In this provocative and persuasive new book, he asserts that the secret to high performance and satisfaction-at work, at school, and at home — is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world.

Drawing on four decades of scientific research on human motivation, Pink exposes the mismatch between what science knows and what business does — and how that affects every aspect of life. He examines the three elements of true motivation — autonomy, mastery, and purpose-and offers smart and surprising techniques for putting these into action in a unique book that will change how we think and transform how we live.

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Peers Inc

by Robin Chase

When Robin Chase cofounded Zipcar, she not only started a business but established the foundation for one of the most important economic and social ideas of our time: the collaborative economy. With Peers Inc, she broadens our thinking about the ways in which the economy is being transformed and shows how the Peers Inc model is changing the very nature of capitalism.

When the best of people power is combined with the best of corporate power to form “Peers Inc” organizations, a potent creative force is released. The “Inc” in these collaborations delivers the industrial strengths of significant scale and resources, and the “Peers” bring together the individual strengths of localization, specialization, and customization, unlocking the power of the collaborative economy. When excess capacity is harnessed by the platform and diverse peers participate, a completely new dynamic is unleashed.

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Practically Radical

by Bill Taylor

In Practically Radical, William C. Taylor, the New York Times bestselling co-author of Mavericks at Workoffers a refreshing, rigorous new look at pragmatic ways to shake things up and make positive change in difficult times. Anything but your typical business book, Practically Radical is a must-own for small business owners and CEOs, for managers at all levels, and innovators and entrepreneurs of every stripe

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Business Model Innovation Factory

by Saul Kaplan

Blockbuster’s executives saw Netflix coming. Yet they stuck with their bricks and mortar business model, losing billions in shareholder value. They were “netflixed.” Business models don’t last as long as they used to. Historically CEO’s have managed a single business model over their entire careers. Today, all organizations must be capable of designing, prototyping, and experimenting with new business models. The Business Model Innovation Factory provides leaders with the survival skills to create a pipeline of new business models in the face of disruptive markets and competition.

Avoid being netflixed. Your organization must be a business model innovator to stay competitive in today’s turbulent world.

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Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers

by Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur

Business Model Generation is a handbook for visionaries, game changers, and challengers striving to defy outmoded business models and design tomorrow’s enterprises. If your organization needs to adapt to harsh new realities, but you don’t yet have a strategy that will get you out in front of your competitors, you need Business Model Generation.

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Power of Pull

by John Hagel

In this revolutionary book, three doyens of the Internet age, whose path-breaking work has made headlines around the world, reveal the adjustments we must make if we take these changes seriously. In a world of increasing risk and opportunity, we must understand the importance of pull. Understood and used properly, the power of pull can draw out the best in people and institutions by connecting them in ways that increase understanding and effectiveness. Pull can turn uncertainty into opportunity, and enable small moves to achieve outsized impact.

Drawing on pioneering research, The Power of Pull shows how to apply its principles to unlock the hidden potential of individuals and organizations, and how to use it as a force for social change and the development of creative talent.

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Power of Habit

by Charles Duhigg

In The Power of Habit, Pulitzer Prize–winning business reporter Charles Duhigg takes us to the thrilling edge of scientific discoveries that explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. Distilling vast amounts of information into engrossing narratives that take us from the boardrooms of Procter & Gamble to sidelines of the NFL to the front lines of the civil rights movement, Duhigg presents a whole new understanding of human nature and its potential. At its core, The Power of Habit contains an exhilarating argument: The key to exercising regularly, losing weight, being more productive, and achieving success is understanding how habits work. As Duhigg shows, by harnessing this new science, we can transform our businesses, our communities, and our lives.

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Gamestorming

by Dave Gray, Sunni Brown & James Macanufo

Great things don’t happen in a vacuum. But creating an environment for creative thinking and innovation can be a daunting challenge. How can you make it happen at your company? The answer may surprise you: gamestorming.

This book includes more than 80 games to help you break down barriers, communicate better, and generate new ideas, insights, and strategies. The authors have identified tools and techniques from some of the world’s most innovative professionals, whose teams collaborate and make great things happen. This book is the result: a unique collection of games that encourage engagement and creativity while bringing more structure and clarity to the workplace. Find out why — and how — with Gamestorming.

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101 Design Methods

by Vijay Kumar

The first step-by-step guidebook for successful innovation planning. Unlike other books on the subject, 101 Design Methods approaches the practice of creating new products, services, and customer experiences as a science, rather than an art, providing a practical set of collaborative tools and methods for planning and defining successful new offerings. Strategists, managers, designers, and researchers who undertake the challenge of innovation, despite a lack of established procedures and a high risk of failure, will find this an invaluable resource. Novices can learn from it; managers can plan with it; and practitioners of innovation can improve the quality of their work by referring to it.

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The Connected Company

by David Gray

To keep pace with today’s connected customers, your company must become a connected company. Connected companies have the advantage, because they learn and move faster than their competitors. While others work in isolation, they link into rich networks of possibility and expand their influence.

Connected companies around the world are aggressively acquiring customers and disrupting the competition. In The Connected Company, we examine what they’re doing, how they’re doing it, and why it works. And we show you how your company can use the same principles to adapt — and thrive — in today’s ever-changing global marketplace.

Hear David Gray tell his story at BIF2016 this year!

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Disrupted: Strategy for Exponential Change

by Larry Quick, David Platt, & Kristin Van Vloten

Disrupted is a guidebook to the exponential era and a toolbox for proactively leveraging this change. By exploring well-known examples of disruption-opportunists like Apple and Tesla Motors, Disrupted helps readers to understand the kind of “strategic thinking” that allow teams and leaders to confidently pursue opportunities with a shared strategic language, and a methodology designed for timely and agile execution at all levels of their organization.

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The Digital Marketer: Ten New Skills You Must Learn to Stay Relevant and Customer-Centric

Larry Weber & Lisa Leslie Henderson

Big data. Digital loyalty programs. Predictive analytics. Contextualized content. Are you ready? These are just a few of the newest trends in digital marketing that are part of our everyday world. In The Digital Marketer: Ten New Skills You Must Learn to Stay Relevant and Customer-Centric, digital marketing guru Larry Weber and business writer and consultant Lisa Leslie Henderson explain the latest digital tools and trends used in today’s marketing initiatives.

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Future Crimes: Everything Is Connected, Everyone Is Vulnerable and What We Can Do About It

by Marc Goodman

Future Crimes provides a mind-blowing glimpse into the dark side of technological innovation and the unintended consequences of our connected world. Goodman offers a way out with clear steps we must take to survive the progress unfolding before us. Provocative, thrilling, and ultimately empowering, Future Crimes will serve as an urgent call to action that shows how we can take back control over our own devices and harness technology’s tremendous power for the betterment of humanity — before it’s too late.

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Hip Hop Genius

by Sam Seidel

Many educators already know that hip-hop can be a powerful tool for engaging students. But can hip-hop save our schools? In Hip Hop Genius, Sam Seidel introduces an iteration of hip-hop education that goes far beyond the usual approach of studying rap music as classroom content and looks instead at deeply honoring the knowledge of urban students. Seidel lays out a vision for how hip-hop’s genius — the resourceful creativity and swagger that took it from a local phenomenon to a global force — can lead to a fundamental remix of the way we think of teaching, school design, and leadership.

Through stories about the professional rapper who founded the first hip-hop high school and the aspiring artists currently enrolled there, Hip Hop Genius invites readers to think outside the (boom)box about what hip-hop education can mean and to consider the implications that a broader definition of hip-hop education could have on their teaching and learning experiences.

This book is for all of the educators in need of new solutions and all the hip-hop heads who know hip-hop is far more than music. It is for everyone who refuses to watch brilliant young people slip through the cracks and is down to take action.

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Reinventing You: Define Your Brand, Imagine Your Future

by Dorie Clark

A step-by-step guide to reinventing you. Whether you want to advance faster at your present company, change jobs, or make the jump to a new field entirely, the goal is clear: to build a career that thrives on your unique passions and talents. But to achieve this in today’s competitive job market, it’s almost certain that at some point you’ll need to reinvent yourself professionally. Consider this book your road map for the next phase of your career journey.

In Reinventing You, branding expert Dorie Clark provides a step-by-step guide to help you assess your unique strengths, develop a compelling personal brand, and ensure that others recognize the powerful contribution you can make.

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Yearnings: Embracing the Sacred Messiness of Life

by Irwin Kula

Life is messy and imperfect. Living in this world is anything but simple. Facing disasters, betrayals, and family problems, we yearn for answers — clear paths, comfortable…easy solutions. And we shouldn’t. That’s the message at the heart of Irwin Kula’s remarkable first book Yearnings: Embracing the Sacred Messiness of Life (Hyperion, September 2006). In fact, Kula says, the messiness is the sacred stuff that keeps us growing. And our ever present yearnings for meaning and purpose, for love and happiness — to make sense of it all — define our spiritual path and lead to wonderful opportunities and discoveries. After all if you’ve never had dirty dishes in the sink, you’ve probably never had a home cooked meal.

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This Luscious Life

Kelley Black

As author Kelley Black writes: This book is about living a luscious life. It’s my heartfelt wish for every reader to live one. And since there is no recipe for simply knowing, no how-to-method for claiming personal power, no power-through technique for being receptive . . . I decided to write from my life experience. This life has cracked me open through joy and suffering. I can honestly say that it’s been an odyssey of experiences both exhilarating in their happiness and excruciating in their pain. Somehow, its deep polarities have arrived in equal measure.

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Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Behind Bitcoin Is Changing Money, Business, and the World

by Don Tapscott & Alex Tapscott

Blockchain Revolution is the business leaders’ playbook for the next decade and beyond. The first generation of the digital revolution brought us the Internet of information. The second genera­tion — powered by blockchain technology — is bringing us the Internet of value: a new, distributed platform that can help us reshape the world of business and transform the old order of human affairs for the better. 
 
Blockchain is the ingeniously simple, revolution­ary protocol that allows transactions to be simul­taneously anonymous and secure by maintaining a tamperproof public ledger of value. Though it’s the technology that drives bitcoin and other digital cur­rencies, the underlying framework has the potential to go far beyond these and record virtually everything of value to humankind, from birth and death certifi­cates to insurance claims and even votes.

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For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood… and the Rest of Y’all Too: Reality Pedagogy and Urban Education

by Chris Emdin

Putting forth his theory of Reality Pedagogy, Chris Emdin provides practical tools to unleash the brilliance and eagerness of youth and educators alike — both of whom have been typecast and stymied by outdated modes of thinking about urban education. With this fresh and engaging new pedagogical vision, Emdin demonstrates the importance of creating a family structure and building communities within the classroom, using culturally relevant strategies like hip-hop music and call-and-response, and connecting the experiences of urban youth to indigenous populations globally. Merging real stories with theory, research, and practice, Emdin demonstrates how by implementing the “Seven C’s” of reality pedagogy in their own classrooms, urban youth of color benefit from truly transformative education.

Lively, accessible, and revelatory, For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood…and the Rest of Y’all Too is the much-needed antidote to traditional top-down pedagogy and promises to radically reframe the landscape of urban education for the better.

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Women on Men

by Liza Donnelly

Chekhov once wrote, “Women deprived of the company of men pine, men deprived of the company of women become stupid.” And lest the world become a sadder, duller place, Liza Donnelly brings clear-eyed feminine comedy to the intersection of the sexes.

As with the best cartoons, the images themselves are piquant and amusing, and the captions sharpen the humor. When we think of Liza Donnelly, we can’t help but think of Jane Austen’s genial satire. For what do women and men live for, if not to laugh and make sport with each other? Donnelly is one of the great, wise, comedic chroniclers of our age.

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Leadership Ensemble: Lessons in Collaborative Management from the World’s Only Conductorless Orchestra

by Harvey Seifter

An exciting new model for streamlining organizational management and structure, from an organization known around the world for its innovative structure. Leadership Ensemble is designed to show business leaders in any industry how to re-create the successful “Orpheus Process” in their own companies by dismantling top-heavy hierarchies; developing flexible, responsive strategies and decision-making procedures; and unleashing employee creativity, responsibility, and productivity.


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