When I was a kid my family had a tradition of going to a bookstore and out to eat every Friday night.
Rain or shine, my mom, my brother, my grandparents, and I would pack into the car and head to Joseph-Beth Booksellers.
Every single week, I looked forward to that the most because I knew, no matter what, they would buy me a book.
Now, before you start saying, “Has your family ever heard of the library? It’s free…” Yes, we were frequent visitors there as well.
The point is my mom did everything she could to encourage our love of reading.
And it worked!
To this day I read almost anything I can get my hands on.
I love recommendations and suggestions for new books.
So this week, we asked our lovely Spin Sucks community on Slack to recommend their favorite professional development books.
Turns out, they love books as much, if not more than I do, if we go by how quickly they answered this week’s #SpinSucksQuestion.
What are some of the most influential books you’ve read pertaining to your career?
Professional Development Books for PR Professionals
Heidi Foy listed a couple of her favorites:
Chris Williams’ focused on copywriting:
“The Well-Fed Writer” by Peter Bowerman. This introduced me to the idea of copywriting, way back in the day.
Lauren Anderson chose one by Malcolm Gladwell:
“The Tipping Point” by Malcolm Gladwell. It opened my eyes to the fact something so minuscule can make all the difference in a campaign.
Kelly Goucher’s favorite book is one we may all want to add to our lists:
“The Content Trap”, by Bahrat Anand gave me a totally different perspective on content and really influenced my approach to storytelling.
Ashton Meisner added another to the list of books focusing on the PR industry:
“Pitch Perfect” by Bill McGowan is an incredible read. It breaks down communication/public speaking/PR in a different light and shows how the smallest changes can make all the difference. Highly recommended!
Micah McGuire looked at the community’s suggestions and mentioned how many books she was adding to her “to read” list and we’re sure she wasn’t the only one.
Obviously, I’m skewed to the “productivity nerd” end of the spectrum, but “The Power of Habit” literally changed the way we did business at work and “Getting Things Done” kicked off all of my personal productivity habits.
While Kelly Cutrone actually scared me on America’s Next Top Model, Katie Robbert is a fan of her book:
Covet the Covey
For professional development, Heather Feimster is a fan of this book by Stephen M. R. Covey.
“The Speed of Trust” by Stephen M. R. Covey. It’s allowed me to take the idea of trust—which can seem very touchy-feely to business-minded people—and make the case for its very real affect on the costs to your business relationships. Highly recommended.
John Wall also likes Stephen M.R. Covey:
Assembling a Library?
Shane Carpenter is getting some brownie points with his answer:
For me, there isn’t one book that stands out above all the others that I can point to and say, “That book completely changed my life.” I learned more from some than others but they are all part of a tapestry.
Some stand outs I highly recommend are:
- “The Tipping Point” and “Outliers” both by Malcolm Gladwell
- “Who Moved My Cheese” by Spencer Johnson
- “Zapp!” By William Byham and Jeff Cox
- Only the Paranoid Survive by Andy Grove
- “Simplicity” by Bill Jensen
- “Wooden” by John Wooden with Steve Jamison
- “Leadership and the New Science” by Margaret Wheatley
- “Democracy in an Age of Corporate Colonization” by Stanley Deetz
- “Bill and Dave” by Michael Malone
- “Creativity, Inc.” by Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace
- “Being Strategic” by Erica Anderson
- “Measure What Matters” by Katie Paine
- “Improvise” by Fred Cook
- “Traction” by Gino Wickman
- “Spin Sucks” by our own Gini Dietrich
And our own Dave Johnson chimed in with his list:
Hmm. So many to choose from.
Let’s Talk Books
Do you have a must-read book about professional development?
If you aren’t part of our Spin Sucks community on Slack and have some suggestions, why don’t you join our community!
It’s free, a really fun group, and we’re always looking for new members. Plus it’s a handy way to meet others in our industry.
Or you can add your choices to the comments down below.