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Back To School Books

Grit by Angela Duckworth

Does talent always translate to success? Not so much, according to Angela Duckworth. We loved her Ted Talk, but we adored her book. Duckworth argues that persistence in pursuing goals, known as “grit”, is the true key to success and outstanding achievement. Drawing on stories from her own life, she describes individuals’ professional and personal journeys as a special blend of passion and tenacity. Wittingly personal, unfailingly insightful, and perhaps even life-changing for some, Grit paints a clear vision of the human experience of failing, and how that makes all the difference.

“Grit grows as we figure out our life philosophy, learn to dust ourselves off after rejection and disappointment, and learn to tell the difference between low-level goals that should be abandoned quickly and higher-level goals that demand more tenacity.”

Creativity Inc by Ed Catmull

Finding Nemo and WALL-E, what do they have in common? Pixar Animation Studios - the driving force behind the world of animation for twenty years, known for setting box-office records, and accumulating an impressive 30 Academy Awards. Catmull, one of the co-founders of Pixar alongside Steve Jobs, has changed the cinematic world forever. In his book, he speaks about the role of creativity in business and culture, and brings readers inside the minds behind the most successful animated films of all time. This novel is a must-read for anyone who values creativity in leadership, and wants to learn how breaking the status quo has led Pixar to such success.

“Don’t wait for things to be perfect before you share them with others. Show early and show often. It’ll be pretty when we get there, but it won’t be pretty along the way.”

Shattered by Jonathon Allen and Amie Parnes

It is difficult to forget the political turmoil that came of the the 2016 U.S Presidential Election. What has become impossible to forget is Hillary Clinton’s destructive fall from grace, and Donald Trump’s victory - arguably the most shocking upset the U.S has seen. The race should have never been this close, and Clinton was “supposed” to win. Do you want to find out what could have undone such a clear-cut race? Keep reading. This book mercilessly dissects each and every flaw of the Clinton campaign, from the infamous emails to the candidate own public persona, and is filled with revelations likely to alter the way we understand the events that led up to November 8th, 2016.

“Hillary didn’t have a vision to articulate. And no one else could give one to her.”

Ted Talks: The Official Guide to Public Speaking by Chris J. Anderson

For all of us inspired by a distinctly brilliant TED Talk, this, my friends, is an insider’s guide to mastering the art of public speaking. A how-to for creating unforgettable and engaging talks that unlock empathy, share knowledge, promote dreams, stir excitement, electrify and transform. As students and aspiring leaders, the value of powerful public speaking isn’t lost on us. Thankfully, Chris Anderson has worked behind the scenes with the people behind some of the world’s most famous TED Talks and in this book, he shares insights from all those inspiring individuals- from how to structure your speech, to leveraging the miracles of body language. The bottom line: this is staple-read for anyone who hopes to improve their public speaking in a creative and impactful way.

“Your number-one mission as a speaker is to take something that matters deeply to you and to rebuild it inside the minds of your listeners. We’ll call that something an idea.”

Radical Candor by Kim Scott

“If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all” is a common idiom we know far too well. The trouble with this, is that once we become managers, it suddenly becomes our job to say it. In this laughably honest and impactful book, Kim Scott, a seasoned CEO and businesswoman, draws on her own experiences to provide guidance on the essential “know-hows” of leading others. From giving and receiving feedback, to overcoming awkward situations and making smarter decisions without compromising - Scott tackles it all. In particular, she highlights the importance of caring personally while challenging directly to further establish credibility, trust and likeability in the workplace. So kids, if you want to challenge yourself as a leader- get your hands on Radical Candor.

“Make sure that you are seeing each person on your team with fresh eyes every day. People evolve,

and so your relationships must evolve with them. Care personally; don’t put people in boxes and leave them there.”

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