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Enormous changes are occurring in the world, from the endless technological revolution to crises of leadership in global business and politics. To craft and implement a coherent business strategy that takes all these pressing challenges into account, there are six books the curious practitioner should make sure are included in their personal library.

New season. New perspectives. New opportunities. Here’s to an eye-opening season of change ahead!


“Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age”

In this New York Times bestseller, social psychologist and MIT Professor Sherry Turkle delves into the implications of relying on technology for all our interactions, warning of the threat to human empathy and intimacy. She shows organizations how to differentiate themselves in a digital, impersonal world by embracing the power of face-to-face conversation in a business setting.

“Superminds: The Surprising Power of People and Computers Thinking Together” (Little, Brown and Company, May 2018)

MIT Professor Thomas Malone argues that all great human achievements have been the products of numerous individuals working together; today, computer technology can connect humans with one another (and with AI capabilities) to a never-before-seen extent. Malone also offers insights on how the future of work will not be displacement of humans by machines, but enhanced human-computer collaboration.


“The Challenge Culture: Why the Most Successful Organizations Run on Pushback” (Public Affairs, September 2018)

Former CEO of Dunkin’ Brands Nigel Travis has seen the ups and downs of disruptive transformation at numerous companies and concluded the survivors are brands that operate on the principle of “pushback.” In this upcoming book, the global retail executive gives a first-hand account of what NOT to do in business, outlines his approach to management and explains why rigid hierarchy is the enemy of innovation.


Hal Gregersen’s “Questions Are the Answer: A Breakthrough Approach to Your Most Vexing Problems at Work and in Life” will propose a radical new approach to engineering innovative ideas within companies. Based on the premise that executives need to ask questions rather than search for answers, Gregersen tackles the ingrained biases of the corporate world and urges leaders to embrace what he calls the “Question Burst Method” for soliciting ideas and feedback from employees.

Nathan Furr’s “Leading Transformation: How to Take Charge of Your Company’s Future,” co-written with Kyle Nel and Thomas Zoega Ramsoy, is a guide to how business leaders can take their firms from stagnation to the cutting-edge of progress. Furr argues that companies fail to innovate when they only focus on the existing state of affairs. Rather, they must proactively and creative imagine the future, and use new insights and technologies to get there before the competition does.

Innovation experts Bob Moesta and Michael Horn will address the ongoing challenges of making higher education fit for purpose in “Choosing College: How to Help People of All Ages Make Better Decisions About School” (Wiley, fall 2018). Employing the revolutionary “Jobs To Be Done” theory to higher education, Moesta and Horn will show students, universities/colleges and employers how to flip the lens on learning, viewing education as a job being hired to achieve a desired outcome.

For more insights from thought leaders in every field and industry, see Stern Speakers’ celebrated roster of speakers and advisors.

6 Essential Books to Read This Fall was last modified: October 14th, 2022 by Danny Stern