A comprehensive and informative handbook for those who see a book as a useful step on their career paths.

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IDEAS, INFLUENCE, AND INCOME

WRITE A BOOK, BUILD YOUR BRAND, AND LEAD YOUR INDUSTRY

A guide to publishing that focuses on using authorship for professional positioning.

In this debut business book, Hall, the CEO of the hybrid-publishing company Greenleaf Book Group, guides would-be authors through the process of publishing a book, developing a platform, and generating income from book sales, speaking engagements, and other related pursuits. She offers strategies for developing publishable ideas, understanding the market, and approaching the traditional and self-publishing processes. Along the way, the book identifies common challenges—such as the fear of criticism and the difficulty of making time for writing—and provides workable solutions for each problem. Readers unfamiliar with publishing-industry practices will find the overview of copyright, retail sales, and marketing particularly useful. Hall discusses developing material for multiple channels, using a publication to drive a speaking career, licensing content and trademarks, and establishing credentials, citing authors Gary Vaynerchuk, Suze Orman, and Joe Cross as examples of success. The book makes it clear that its intended audience isn’t people looking to make writing their sole career (“After all, you are probably not a writer by trade,” notes one aside), and it encourages readers to hire writing coaches and ghostwriters if their own skills are insufficient: “knowing how to delegate is a sign of leadership.” But although the book does acknowledge that not all ideas are best presented in book form, it doesn’t urge readers to ask themselves whether a book intended to accelerate one’s career as an “influencer” is actually a necessary addition to the “crowded marketplace.” Readers who pursue this path will find Hall’s book to be an effective tool, as well as an object lesson: Hall’s company name appears on 15 pages, ensuring that readers won’t forget it.

A comprehensive and informative handbook for those who see a book as a useful step on their career paths.

Pub Date: May 27, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-62634-514-0

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Greenleaf Book Group Press

Review Posted Online: March 30, 2018

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Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our...

THINKING, FAST AND SLOW

A psychologist and Nobel Prize winner summarizes and synthesizes the recent decades of research on intuition and systematic thinking.

The author of several scholarly texts, Kahneman (Emeritus Psychology and Public Affairs/Princeton Univ.) now offers general readers not just the findings of psychological research but also a better understanding of how research questions arise and how scholars systematically frame and answer them. He begins with the distinction between System 1 and System 2 mental operations, the former referring to quick, automatic thought, the latter to more effortful, overt thinking. We rely heavily, writes, on System 1, resorting to the higher-energy System 2 only when we need or want to. Kahneman continually refers to System 2 as “lazy”: We don’t want to think rigorously about something. The author then explores the nuances of our two-system minds, showing how they perform in various situations. Psychological experiments have repeatedly revealed that our intuitions are generally wrong, that our assessments are based on biases and that our System 1 hates doubt and despises ambiguity. Kahneman largely avoids jargon; when he does use some (“heuristics,” for example), he argues that such terms really ought to join our everyday vocabulary. He reviews many fundamental concepts in psychology and statistics (regression to the mean, the narrative fallacy, the optimistic bias), showing how they relate to his overall concerns about how we think and why we make the decisions that we do. Some of the later chapters (dealing with risk-taking and statistics and probabilities) are denser than others (some readers may resent such demands on System 2!), but the passages that deal with the economic and political implications of the research are gripping.

Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our minds.

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-374-27563-1

Page Count: 512

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: Sept. 4, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2011

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A readable, persuasive argument that our ways of doing business will have to change if we are to prosper—or even survive.

REIMAGINING CAPITALISM IN A WORLD ON FIRE

A well-constructed critique of an economic system that, by the author’s account, is a driver of the world’s destruction.

Harvard Business School professor Henderson vigorously questions the bromide that “management’s only duty is to maximize shareholder value,” a notion advanced by Milton Friedman and accepted uncritically in business schools ever since. By that logic, writes the author, there is no reason why corporations should not fish out the oceans, raise drug prices, militate against public education (since it costs tax money), and otherwise behave ruinously and anti-socially. Many do, even though an alternative theory of business organization argues that corporations and society should enjoy a symbiotic relationship of mutual benefit, which includes corporate investment in what economists call public goods. Given that the history of humankind is “the story of our increasing ability to cooperate at larger and larger scales,” one would hope that in the face of environmental degradation and other threats, we might adopt the symbiotic model rather than the winner-take-all one. Problems abound, of course, including that of the “free rider,” the corporation that takes the benefits from collaborative agreements but does none of the work. Henderson examines case studies such as a large food company that emphasized environmentally responsible production and in turn built “purpose-led, sustainable living brands” and otherwise led the way in increasing shareholder value by reducing risk while building demand. The author argues that the “short-termism” that dominates corporate thinking needs to be adjusted to a longer view even though the larger problem might be better characterized as “failure of information.” Henderson closes with a set of prescriptions for bringing a more equitable economics to the personal level, one that, among other things, asks us to step outside routine—eat less meat, drive less—and become active in forcing corporations (and politicians) to be better citizens.

A readable, persuasive argument that our ways of doing business will have to change if we are to prosper—or even survive.

Pub Date: May 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-5417-3015-1

Page Count: 336

Publisher: PublicAffairs

Review Posted Online: Feb. 17, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2020

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