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On the Bookshelf: Ch-ch-change

On the Bookshelf: Ch-ch-change

You’ve heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing again and again while expecting different results. And you know it’s true. But if you’re like most people, you still continue to do the same things. We are creatures of habit. Consistency makes us comfortable.

If you really want the results you say you want, something must change. You must change. The books on the bookshelf this month will bolster your courage and help you chart a new course of action. Change is good. It’s necessary. Go ahead; make the modifications you know you need to make. Once you move out of your comfort zone and adjust, you’ll be glad you made those changes.

Running the Gauntlet: Essential Business Lessons to Lead, Drive Change, and Grow Profits

by Jeffrey Hayzlett
McGraw-Hill, 2011

It’s hard enough to change yourself… but modifying your organization or the way your business operates? That can seem almost impossible. With all of the obstacles and naysayers that threaten to block innovation, Jeffrey Hayzlett’s new book explains that change can feel like running the gauntlet—with enemies lined up on both sides of your path ready to beat and chastise you as you attempt to make it through alive and whole.

Why go through all that hassle and abuse? Because change, as challenging and scary as it can be, is necessary for survival. Sticking with the status quo may feel safe, but the reality is that if you are not relevant and adaptable, your company can’t grow in today’s marketplace.

Running the Gauntlet examines how to make necessary, meaningful alterations. In bite-sized chapters packed with real-life examples that relate to businesses of any size, Running the Gauntlet gives you the know-how and courage to survive the trials of transformation so your company can thrive.
Noteworthy Quote: “If something sucks, get rid of it. If it isn’t working, change it, and own those changes. Refuse to tolerate problems and passivity. Period.”

A few things you’ll learn:

Why you must be willing to change

How to get past the fear of doing so

Why the mood of your organization matters

For Better or For Work: A Survival Guide for Entrepreneurs and Their Families

by Meg Cadoux Hirshberg
Greenleaf Book Group, 2012

Whether you’re an entrepreneur yourself or the spouse of one, Meg Cadoux Hirshberg’s For Better or For Work: A Survival Guide for Entrepreneurs and Their Families is a must read (preferably before you step into the mire of launching a business). Wife of a founder of Stonyfield Farm Yogurt, Hirshberg takes a no-holds-barred approach to exploring the effects of entrepreneurship on marriage and families.

The result isn’t necessarily pretty, but this is a page-turning wake-up call that will enlighten you on how the world of self-employment can challenge families. It also offers strategies for surviving and overcoming the challenges.
Noteworthy Quote: “Family members [who work for the business] form memories and learn to appreciate each other in different ways. And as the company grows, so does the sense that they are all involved in something important.”

A few things you’ll learn:

How to balance work and home when work and home occupy the same space

Why you should treat your spouse as your biggest client

How to really break free from technology (and work) addiction—and why you need to

Practical Genius: The Real Smarts You Need to Get Your Talents and Passions Working for YOU

by Gina A. Rudan
Touchstone, 2011

With a sassy blend of street smarts and business acumen, author Gina Rudan explains that practical genius is the place where skill meets passion, and she states that everyone possesses the essential ingredients. When you fully embrace all sides of yourself and celebrate the fact that you are a paradox of opposing factors, you open yourself to opportunities for growth, collaboration and ultimately, a better life. Rudan’s advice and roadmap to discovery show you how to do all that and more.
Noteworthy Quote:

“Living life as a practical genius is a choice. It’s a conscious choice to be a childlike learner, a curious explorer, a paradox,
a guru.”

A few things you’ll learn:

Knowing yourself is essential to discovering your practical genius

Your creativity offers a competitive edge that separates you from the pack and fulfills you

You must be willing to have mentors whose experience will teach and guide you on your journey

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