Book Recommendations From Elon, Steve, Bill, Marissa and others (887 Words)

Some people aren’t really exceptional at anything.  I’m one of those people.  So what does one do when you’re sitting at mediocre on various facets of life?  You try to learn from those who have been successful, and maybe look to their sources of inspiration.  So these are some of the book recommendations, from some of the most successful individuals of our time (source: favobooks.com).

Bill Gates:

  1. “My Years with General Motors” by Alfred Sloan [Book on Business]
  2. “Better Angels of our Nature” Steven Pinker [On the decline of violence]
  3. “SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance” by Steven D. Levitt [Title probably explains it well enough]
  4. “That Used to Be Us” by Thomas Friedman [How to Make America Great Again (Pre-Trump)]
  5. “For the Love of Physics” by Walter Lewin [Importance of experiments and measuring data]

And from a recent piece self-written piece by Bill Gates on the New York Times (http://www.nytimes.com/2016/05/20/t-magazine/my-10-favorite-books-bill-gates.html?_r=0):

  1.  “How Not to be Wrong: The Power of Mathematical Thinking” by Jordan Ellenberg
  2. “Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind” by Yuval Noah Harari
  3. “The Power to Compete” by Ryoichi Mikitani and Hiroshi Mikitani [Japan in the 80s and now]
  4. “The Vital Question” by Nick Lane & “Sustainable Energy – Without the Hot Air” by David MacKay [Both on Energy]
  5. “Parenting with Love and Logic” by Foster Cline and Jim Fay

Steve Jobs:

  1. “Only the Paranoid Survive” by Andrew Grove [Strategy]
  2. “Inside the Tornado” by Geoffrey Moore [Business]
  3. “The Innovator’s Dilemma” by Clayton Christensen [Dealing with disruptive innovations]
  4. “Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind” by Shunryu Suzuki
  5. “Cutting Through Spiritual Materialism” by Chogyam Trungpa

Elon Musk:

  1. “Benjamin Franklin: An American Life” by Walter Isaacson
  2. “Howard Hughes: His Life and Madness” by Donald Barlett
  3. “Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age” by B. Carlson
  4. “Ignition!: An informal history of liquid rocket propellants” by John Clark
  5. “Structures: Or Why Things Don’t Fall Down” by J.E. Gordon

Peter Thiel:

  1. “Things Hidden Since the Foundation of the World” by Rene Girard
  2. “The New Atlantis” by Sir Francis Bacon
  3. “The American Challenge” by Jean-Jacques Servan-Schreiber
  4. “The Great Illusion: A Study of the Relation of Military Power to National Advantage” by Norman Angell

Jack Dorsey:

  1. “The Checklist Manifesto:  How to Get Things Right” By Atul Gawande
  2. “The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom” by Don Miguel Ruiz
  3. “The Score Takes Care of Itself: My Philosophy of Leadership” by Bill Walsh
  4. “Tao Te Ching” by Laozi
  5. “Between the World and Me” by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Jeff Bezos:

  1. “The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done” By Peter Drucker
  2. “Built to Last” by Jim Collins
  3. “The Goal: A Process of Ongoing Improvement” by Eliyahu Goldratt

Guy Kawasaki

  1. “Influence: Science and Practice” by Robert Cialdini
  2. “The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow a Remarkable Business in Any Field” by Mike Michalowicz
  3. “Uncommon Genius: How Great Ideas are Born by Denise Shekerjian
  4. “Crossing the Chasm:  Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers” by Geoffrey A. Moore
  5. “Inevitable Illusions: How Mistakes of Reason Rule Our Minds” by Massimo Piattelli-Palmarini
  6. “Mastering the Dynamics of Innovation” by James Utterback

Pavel Durov

  1. “Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience” by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
  2. “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle
  3. “The Black Swan” by Nassim Taleb
  4. “Hackers & Painters: Big Ideas from the Computer Age” by Paul Graham
  5. “The Art of Non-Conformity” by Chris Guillebeau
  6. “An Introduction to Zen Buddhism” by D.T. Suzuki
  7. “The 48 Laws of Power” by Robert Greene

Elizabeth Holmes

  1. “The Complete Story of Civilization” by Will Durant and Ariel Durant
  2. “The Emperor’s Handbook: A New Translation of The Meditations” by Marcus Aurelius

Marc Andreessen

  1. “The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses” by Eric Ries
  2. “Leaving Microsoft to Change the World (An Entrepreneur’s Odyssey to Educate the World Children)” by John Wood

Richard Branson

  1. “Long Walk to Freedom: The Autobiography of Nelson Mandela”
  2. “Mao: The Unknown Story” by Jung Chang
  3. “In-N-Out Burger: A Behind-the-counter Look at the Fast-Food Chain that Breaks All the Rules” by Stacy Perman
  4. “Wild Swans” by Jung Chang
  5. “An Inconvenient Truth:  The Planetary Emergency of Global Warming and What We Can Do About It” by Al Gore

Tony Hsieh

  1. “Search Inside Yourself” by Chade-Meng Tan, Daniel Goleman, and Jon Kabat-Zinn
  2. “The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom” by Jonathan Haidt
  3. “Outliers: The Story of Success” by Malcom Gladwell
  4. “I Love You More Than My Dog” by Jeanne Bliss
  5. “Peak: How Great Companies Get Their Mojo from Maslow” by Chip Conley
  6. Tribal Leadership: Leveraging Natural Groups to Build a Thriving Organization” by Dave Logan, John King, and Halee Fischer-Wright
  7. “Crush It!” by Gary Vaynerchuck
  8. “The $100 Startup: Reinvent The Way You Make a Living, Do What You Love, and Create a New Future” by Chris Guillebeau

Dustin Moskovitz:

  1. “The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers” by Ben Horowitz
  2. “Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future” by Peter Thiel
  3. “The Facebook Effect: The Inside Story of the Company That is Connecting the World” by David Kirkpatrick
  4. “The Tao of Leadership:  Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching Adapted for a New Age” by John Heider
  5. “Nonviolent Communication: A language of Life” by Marsall B. Rosenberg

Marissa Mayer:

  1. “The Design of Everyday Things” by Don Norman
  2. “The Charisma Myth” by Olivia Fox Cabane

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