Book Riot's Read Harder Challenge discussion

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2019 Read Harder Challenge > Task #17: A business book

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message 1: by Book Riot (new)

Book Riot Community (book_riot) | 405 comments Mod
Use this space to discuss books you're reading or that might fit the 17th Read Harder task.


message 2: by Milena (new)

Milena (milenas) | 85 comments How is business book defined? Is any book about a business a business book? Is it open to our own interpretation?


message 3: by Book Riot (new)

Book Riot Community (book_riot) | 405 comments Mod
Milena wrote: "How is business book defined? Is any book about a business a business book? Is it open to our own interpretation?"

Check out the subgenres under Business in Amazon for some guidance.


message 4: by Sheri (new)

Sheri Lisker | 48 comments I'm thinking Barbarians at the Gate about the fall of Nabisco or Den of Thieves by Stewart. Maybe The Other Guy Blinked about the Coke/Pepsi wars. Or possibly a book of essays by Warren Buffet. I wonder if any of these work for this.


message 5: by Serendipity (new)

Serendipity | 17 comments I'm offering bonus points to whoever can come up with a really short suggestion for this one. Its not something that interests me at all. Although admittedly I have been thinking more along the lines of books about how to be a manager or entrepreneur. Books about the history or a business may be more palatable.


message 6: by Serendipity (new)

Serendipity | 17 comments I'm offering bonus points to whoever can come up with a really short suggestion for this one. Its not something that interests me at all. Although admittedly I have been thinking more along the lines of books about how to be a manager or entrepreneur. Books about the history or a business may be more palatable.


message 7: by Mercedes (new)

Mercedes (villadinorah) | 125 comments Serendipity wrote: "I'm offering bonus points to whoever can come up with a really short suggestion for this one. Its not something that interests me at all. Although admittedly I have been thinking more along the lin..."

Check out the Financial Times website, they recommend many business books which are probably more like true white collar crime books. I had to resort to something other than the self help stuff.


message 8: by Amber (new)

Amber | 34 comments Serendipity wrote: "I'm offering bonus points to whoever can come up with a really short suggestion for this one. Its not something that interests me at all. Although admittedly I have been thinking more along the lin..."

I'm reading Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup for this prompt and going by your description of what you'd like I think it might be something you'd enjoy! It's about the rise and fall of a company that claimed it had some revolutionary technology which turned out to be non-existent. From what I've read in reviews it's more investigative journalism/ true crime than traditional business book.


message 9: by Bonnie G. (new)

Bonnie G. (narshkite) | 1306 comments People may find this a useful list. I did https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/17/10-gr...


message 11: by Jordan (new)

Jordan (justiceofkalr) | 27 comments For those who are willing to stretch this challenge a little, the Craft Sequence books would probably work. They're basically magic as a business. The first book, Three Parts Dead, has a main plot that pretty much revolves around bankruptcy law. Which... is a lot more fun than it sounds.


message 13: by Laura (new)

Laura (affiknitty) | 9 comments Could you count a micro-history about businesses? One that I really enjoyed was The Emperors of Chocolate: Inside the Secret World of Hershey and Mars.


message 14: by Kate (new)

Kate | 116 comments I wonder if I could bend this to include management at large. I don't work for a business, but could a book about, for example, library management count? It's in the same wheelhouse, I feel.


message 15: by Justin (new)

Justin Hawley March Serendipity wrote: "I'm offering bonus points to whoever can come up with a really short suggestion for this one. Its not something that interests me at all. Although admittedly I have been thinking more along the lin..."

Not short and a little overly technical, but if you some history would make this selection a little more palatable for you I would suggest A History of the United States in Five Crashes: Stock Market Meltdowns That Defined a Nation by Scott Nations or Liar's Poker by Michael Lewis.


message 16: by Eujean2 (new)

Eujean2 | 34 comments There are quite a few lists of business books on GoodReads. This is "the 100 best business books of all time" as per Marketplace on NPR: https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/1...

I was poking around to figure out what people characterized as a "business" book and found The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business. It's been on my TBR since my friend recommended it earlier in the year in a non-business context.

For someone looking for a short book, this list also includes Oh, The Places You'll Go!. Only 44 pages and fully illustrated.


message 18: by Irina (new)

Irina | 1 comments Serendipity wrote: "I'm offering bonus points to whoever can come up with a really short suggestion for this one. Its not something that interests me at all. Although admittedly I have been thinking more along the lin..."

Michael Lewis's "The Big Short" is relatively short and relatively fun read considering the subject.


message 19: by Angela (new)

Angela | 10 comments Radical Candor is an easy read. Just DON'T listen to the audiobook -- poor choices


message 20: by Martha (last edited Dec 17, 2018 09:40PM) (new)

Martha (marthag503) | 168 comments I'm going with soft skills for a business choice. I'm doing the 2019 Nonfiction Growth Challenge (only 10) and I'm choosing books that teach problem solving (Thinking, Fast and Slow) or (Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking), how to think critically (Wait, What?: And Life's Other Essential Questions), or books about emotional intelligence, creativity, making decisions, and communication (Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age)


message 21: by Karen (last edited Dec 18, 2018 04:26AM) (new)

Karen Witzler (kewitzler) | 123 comments I knew immediately what I wanted to read for this: Accounting for Slavery: Masters and Management by Caitlin Rosenthal. I recently read an excellent article about the origins of modern management practices and the management of oppressed and captive peoples. This book also has fewer than 100 ratings on Goodreads.

Also considering something about Kaizen, which has taken over my workplace -- maybe: One Small Step Can Change Your Life: The Kaizen Way by Robert Maurer or The Kaizen Pocket Handbook by Kenneth W. Dailey.


message 22: by Laura (new)

Laura (affiknitty) | 9 comments Karen wrote: "I knew immediately what I wanted to read for this: Accounting for Slavery: Masters and Management by Caitlin Rosenthal. I recently read an excellent article about ..."

I think I will read a book on kaizen for this task as well. I loved One Small Step Can Change Your Life: The Kaizen Way ... I think I will read The Spirit of Kaizen: Creating Lasting Excellence One Small Step at a Time for this.


message 23: by Tracy (new)

Tracy (tracyisreading) | 9 comments ugh..... I don't want to

The first thing that came to mind was The 4-Hour Workweek ( and really? If I could work 4 hours and be rich I would)

But I found this one The 7-Step Guide to Authorpreneurship, so maybe that if I can find it.

I do like the ideas about nonfiction about actual businesses though. I didn't event think of that.

In a pinch I have Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High on my shelf and I haven't read it in all these years so maybe that.

I want to just not do this prompt honestly .... not at all interested in any way :-(


message 24: by Brandon (new)

Brandon Harbeke You could try a Dilbert-based book like The Joy of Work by Scott Adams.

Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration is another nontraditional business book.


message 25: by Shelley (new)

Shelley | 47 comments I'm going with The Sushi Economy: Globalization and the Making of a Modern Delicacy. There's a bunch of books that still have business as a genre on GR, but just below more exciting categories like food or true crime.

Dark Money: The Hidden History of the Billionaires Behind the Rise of the Radical Right is my backup.


message 26: by Doug (new)

Doug (dougreadsbooks) | 8 comments Instant: The Story of Polaroid has been sitting neglected on my shelf for quite some time. I think I'll take this opportunity to finally give it a read.


message 28: by Tabitha (new)

Tabitha D (windmillstilt) | 49 comments I'm using On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft for this task.


message 29: by Sue (new)

Sue (sue_re) | 20 comments I'm going to try The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business which has been sitting on my shelf for a while. Another one I've been wanting to read is Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity.


message 30: by Ava (new)

Ava | 29 comments Eujean2 wrote: "There are quite a few lists of business books on GoodReads. This is "the 100 best business books of all time" as per Marketplace on NPR: https://www.goodreads.com/list/show/1......"

Thank you for this list! This task is one I was not looking forward to, but I may read Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking. Typical business/management books don't interest me at all so I was looking for something different that would still fulfill this task.


Allison ༻hikes the bookwoods༺ (allisonhikesthebookwoods) | 23 comments I’ve been meaning to read #GIRLBOSS for ages, so this may finally be the year I get to it.


message 32: by Catie (new)

Catie (catieohjoy) | 35 comments I read Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup this year and it was excellent—highly recommend for anyone who hasn't picked that up yet!

For this task, I think I might go with a book that my husband already has on our history or biography shelves. Possibly The Fish That Ate the Whale: The Life and Times of America's Banana King, about Samuel Zemurray of the United Fruit Company, or Fordlandia: The Rise and Fall of Henry Ford's Forgotten Jungle City, about Ford's (failed) company town and rubber plantation in Brazil. (Both are looks at American capitalist colonialism in Latin America, if that rather specific genre is of interest to anyone else!)


message 33: by Danae (new)

Danae  - WordPeace (wordpeace) | 3 comments I highly recommend The Culture Code: The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups by Daniel Coyle. It relates stories about many teams and groups and how they come together as a cohesive, problem-solving unit in companies like Pixar, Zappos.com, Google, etc. Great to listen to on Audible as well!


message 35: by Teresa (new)

Teresa | 337 comments So far, I'm considering Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything which sounds similar to the Planet Money podcast, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference because it was on my 2018 sociology list, and The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business about business and personal decisions.


message 36: by Audrey (new)

Audrey | 1 comments I just read that The Art of War by Sun Tzu is considered a business book. I’m going with that!


message 37: by Jaime (new)

Jaime (msjaimeleigh) | 19 comments Radical Candor for me! Was recommended in a recent training. I’m excited for this one.


message 38: by Sarah Ruth (new)

Sarah Ruth (smurf_bunny) Tamara wrote: "Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered"

This looks really good. I think I am going to switch out my business book for this one.


message 39: by Jenny (new)

Jenny (bybibookgirl) | 81 comments I'm going with No Logo by Naomi Klien for this. Surely a book about the terrible results of big businesses can count as a business book?


message 41: by Whitney (new)

Whitney Bonnie wrote: "People may find this a useful list. I did https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/17/10-gr..."

Excellent! If Bill Gates and CNBC consider Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup a business book, then it certainly qualifies. Plus it's about non-violent true crime and is written by a journalist, so if I'm running out of time at the end of the year it can be used for the trifecta.


message 42: by Susanne (new)

Susanne | 48 comments I'll pick Feminist Fight Club: An Office Survival Manual for a Sexist Workplace by Jessica Bennett! (Or maybe another book on how to assert yourself as a woman in the workplace, if I don't like it.)


message 43: by Kendra (new)

Kendra Strand (kendrastrand) | 8 comments Audrey wrote: "I just read that The Art of War by Sun Tzu is considered a business book. I’m going with that!"
I was thinking of that one, too!


message 44: by Meg (new)

Meg (megatza) | 7 comments I'm planning on The Ten-Day MBA : A Step-By-Step Guide To Mastering The Skills Taught In America's Top Business Schools or Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World for this category. I will say that Ten Day MBA is definitely not an easy read - i started it last year, and it was a bit to wrap my head around (I'm a Director of Operations, but all on-the-job training, no MBA myself). One of my bosses recommended Deep Work to me, after he read it.

Another really great fun, easy option for a lot of people would be Ask a Manager: How to Navigate Clueless Colleagues, Lunch-Stealing Bosses, and the Rest of Your Life at Work. It's fantastic for people at almost any level in an organization to navigate interpersonal interactions and manage your own career growth!


message 45: by Hope (new)


message 46: by Jessica (new)

Jessica | 3 comments Tracy wrote: "ugh..... I don't want to

The first thing that came to mind was The 4-Hour Workweek ( and really? If I could work 4 hours and be rich I would)

But I found this one [book:The 7-Step G..."


I am right there with you on not wanting to do this prompt! Honestly, just reading the titles on Goodreads business book list makes me cringe. Where are we all on allowing Oh, the Places You'll Go on this one?


message 47: by Megan (new)

Megan | 131 comments Oh, the place’s=not a business book


message 48: by Kate (new)

Kate | 8 comments Thank to Bonnie for the list. I’m excited about That’s what she said and The person you mean to be


message 49: by Alanna (new)

Alanna I think I'm going with Console Wars: Sega, Nintendo, and the Battle that Defined a Generation, which will leave Bad Blood in my book by a journalist slot.


message 50: by Karen (new)

Karen Witzler (kewitzler) | 123 comments Patrick wrote: "Any one have anything that focuses on socialist business practices?"

Nothing off the top of my head... but an interesting path to pursue.
Maybe Governing the Commons: The Evolution of Institutions for Collective Action by Elinor Ostrom or Women and the Gift Economy: A Radically Different Worldview Is Possible by Genevieve Vaughan

The book I chose looks at the way in which the modern concepts of business management were derived directly from the principles applied to slave labor management. Accounting for Slavery: Masters and Management by Caitlin Rosenthal.


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