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Ask HN: Non-tech books that have helped you grow professionally?
152 points by tsaprailis on Sept 2, 2016 | hide | past | favorite | 105 comments
I've recently moved back to reading non-tech books (I have spent the last years reading on solely programming languages or frameworks) and it was a bit of an eye opener regarding getting a more general picture of startups and businesses. I have read the four hour work week, the daily entrepreneur, and the 22 immutable laws of marketing. I have a few others under consideration (like Peter Thiel's From zero to one) but I'm wondering which other books have you read that have had the most impact on you professionally or even personally?

An acquaintance recommended Peter Drucker's "The Effective Executive" as a first book to read about management. I found it very interesting and it changed my outlook on the value of tracking time, focusing on strengths and what contribution matters. (I am not a manager myself.)


Deep Work has been one of the most influential books about productivity.


Can you give me a tl;dr?

> The book is written as if it's presenting "a new, flashy, grand theory of everything". It's not that. The idea of working in a deep, focused manner isn't a new one or one that would shock people (as the book's extensive citations show). But the book puts up a very intense battle against an army of straw men. I don't think you'd find anyone who disagrees with the general notion of working intensely on your priorities; it's making your life conducive to it (and getting done what you aim to get done when you sit down) that's the hard part. So the book feels more to me like ideas you'd share with friends about how to be more productive than a revolutionary new idea, but you have to wade through pages of why this is life-changing and flashy to get to the more useful actionable steps.

I checked it out and it seems to criticize the whole open office movement which is good I think.

This is the problem with almost all self help books. I ignore the category because of this.

"I'm wondering which other books have you read that have had the most impact on you professionally or even personally?"

Professionally: Peter F. Drucker's books.

Personally: "Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius, "A Treatise of Human Nature" by David Hume, "The Law" by Frédéric Bastiat, "Autobiography" by Benjamin Franklin, "Common Sense" by Thomas Paine, "Gespräche mit Goethe" by Johann Peter Eckermann, "The Old Regime and the Revolution" Alexis de Tocqueville, "On Liberty" by John Stuart Mill, "The Man Versus the State" by Herbert Spencer, "The Revolt of the Masses" by José Ortega y Gasset, "The Logic of Scientific Discovery" by Karl Popper, "On Power" Bertrand de Jouvenel, "1984" by George Orwell, "The State" by Anthony de Jasay, "Sketched With the Quill" by Andrzej Bobkowski, "Metaphysical Horror" by Leszek Kolakowski, "Rationality in Economics" by Vernon L. Smith, "The Machinery of Freedom" by David Friedman.

The most important books I've read in the last 10 yrs (with respect to professional growth) are:

Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else, by G. Colvin

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business, by C. Duhigg

These books have reshaped how I work and how I think about work. With the knowledge contained in these books it's not hard to outline the daily routines needed to be great at just about anything.

I am interested and curious. Could you give an example of something you were dissatisfied with, and at which you became great because of those books? Thanks.

Well, I'm still a work in progress! I'm working on a PhD and passed my oral exams because of these books. I have a weekly schedule that balances reading/doing math, writing and coding and producing toward the dissertation. These books have helped me 'discover' the process for becoming an expert. Cribbed from my notes:

One very important idea is the idea of intrinsic motivation: the best motivation is perhaps a really compelling and or interesting problem. Also, time is needed to learn and practice, and this practice comes at the cost of time spent elsewhere (eg producing). So there is a natural division of time into learning (incl. practicing) and producing. A lot of the Talent book is the sort of nuts and bolts of deliberate practice.

From the Habit book: Have a plan for what to do when the pain or other emotional event threatens to derail your action. Such as when this happens, I will do __. Having a plan helps people to get through the event, encouraging will power, and continue on until the will power action becomes a habit (by being incorporated into long term memory I suppose). (Incidentally, this is why having a daily plan help one to be more productive. When you get tired and easily derailed, and are low in will power, you can fall back onto your plan).

1) Cue, 2) Routine, 3) Reward. That is the habit loop.

A book called Moonwalking with Einstein, as well as a number of Cal Newport's books have also been helpful with these goals.

Moonwalking with Einstein -Definitely. Also Brain Rules is a good one as well.

I would be cautious with Cal Newport's books and take it with a box of salt, however. To be fair, I only read one of his books (So Good They Can't Ignore You). His intentions with framing the book and its details are great. But I found it hard to trust that he actually believes in some of the things he writes - as opposed to just writing books that can sell well

Thank you all for you feedback. I must admit I was not expecting so many responses :) I have gone through all comments and compiled a list of all suggestions sorted by genre to keep track of everything if anyone else is interested: https://github.com/kostistsaprailis/non-tech-books-for-devel...

You missed The Effective Executive book on that list

Done! Thanks, I added a few more books I have missed. If you think I missed any more, let me know.

I grew up in a single-parent household back in the 70's before computers and startups were the thing they are now and although my mom was an uneducated immigrant, I was fortunate to grow up in the bay area and get an education at a good public school where my teachers introduced me to

  Harold Jacobs's "Geometry"
  Nietziche's "Thus Spoke Zarathustra"
  Freeman Dyson's "Disturbing The Universe"
  Nigel Calder's "The Key to the Universe"
  Jacob Bronowski's "The Ascent of Man"
  Douglas Hofstadter's "Gödel, Escher, Bach"
I especially loved spending time in the library, reading OMNI magazine, Scientific American magazine (especially Martin Gardner's column) and the stories of Issac Asimov and Larry Niven.

Those authors made me want to go to college and learn from people like them - people capable of thinking big ideas about science and civilization - and while none of those books ever helped me raise money or start a business, they did help me help me overcome my personal feelings of inadequacy from having come from a poor family and eventually become accepted into a technical community which appreciated an ability to think and ask questions.

Really surprised nobody has mentioned How to Win Friends & Influence People by Dale Carnegie yet. IMO, required reading for understanding and communicating with people.

I was about to mention it. I still find it hard sometimes not to get into long winded arguments with people, but after reading this book I've gotten much better at picking my battles.

It is the sort of book that is worth reading again if it's been 5 years.

totally right on that one, it goes to every area of life

Seneca's Letters to Lucilius helped me come to grips with the modest scale of my own achievements (or lack thereof) and the futility of further ambition at the expense of anything else.


For those interested in Seneca's timeless letters but short on time (or if you find existing translations a bit dry), http://stoicletters.blogspot.com/ is a phenomenal resource which concisely but effectively modernizes the language. They're a pleasure to read.

Also, Seneca's De Brevitate Vitae, or On the Shortness of Life

That's Letter 49 IIRC.

FYI: For Your Improvement, A Guide for Development and Coaching (4th edition)

Several close colleagues & mentors recommended this book as their "career bible". I finally listened to them (took me 10 years, but finally did it). And glad I did.

In my opinion, it is the most infornation-dense, non-BS, completely actionable advice I have found in a business book. Strongly recommend. From my understanding, the 4th Ed is the one you want.

This is the way you take your professional & career life to the next level.


The Five Dysfunctions of a Team - Patrick Lencioni. It's a pretty fast read, I think the thing that stuck with me the most from it was the reassurance that (constructive) conflict on a team is not something to be avoided at all costs.

I guess someone has to be the first to say "Thinking Fast and Slow"[1] by Daniel Kahneman. It's certainly a very useful book (even for it's flaws) for it's detail on cognitive phycology and human biases. It certainly improved my personal and professional life.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thinking,_Fast_and_Slow

>It certainly improved my personal and professional life.

If you don't mind me asking how has it improved your life? Also, have you seen the effects wearing off after a while?

Looks interesting, thanks!

Depends on what you're after. If you like the 4 hour work week and want to change your lifestyle then I'd read inspiration for the four hour work week; vagabonding by Ralf Potts and more recently the obstacle is the way by Ryan Holiday. At the end of this month I'll be heading off on a round the world trip with no return ticket starting in india. I have the four hour work week to thank for that, I changed my job to one where I was able to work remote, started my own product gocaller.co.uk whether it's going to bring income to support long term travel will be interesting to see, nevertheless it's a fun ride. I feel more confident now that I can go back to doing what im doing now I love software development and the interesting people I've had the pleasure of working with

I was similarly impacted by both books -- Four Hour Work Week led me to Vagabonding which is much better. If you haven't already, you should read the inspiration for Vagabonding: Walden by Thoreau.

Neat thank you for sharing. Out of interest what's the biggest thing you've changed after reading these books?

Quit my "prestigious" but hollow job of 10 years. Sold 90% of my possessions. Let go of my loft apartment. Dramatically cut back my lifestyle.

I'm much freer (and happier) as a result. Thoreau calls it Economy. I like to say that I broke out of captivity and am now an outdoor cat.

Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams by Tom DeMarco and Tim Lister (http://amzn.to/2ckIYbJ)

"The Goal" by Eliyahu Goldratt, while set in a traditional manufacturing world, does a great job in clarifying the role of constraints in any team effort. It's written in the form of a novel.

It is not perfect. I think it hase some sexist undertones, is generally just super-eighties and kind of self serving as a novel. But it has definitely changed the way I think about business in a deep way.

"The Power Broker" by Robert Caro.

At first glance, it's a 1,000-page, detailed biography of a (in)famously effective city planner Robert Moses. At its core, it's a lucid examination of the anatomy of power. It has completely changed how I think about power, where it comes from (whether it's at work or in the greater market/world) and how it is retained and lost.

It's also a great antithesis to junk-food journalism and online reading that we've become addicted to. Caro's research is thorough and his writing is inspiring.

I recently finished this book and I have to agree. An exceptionally well written historical artifact. A critical, but not prescriptive, description of power.

The Design of Everyday Things by Don Norman

This should be a required reading for anyone who does UI design. It helps explain why items you interact with subconsciously frustrate you and why product simplicity is typically better than more features.

You will never look at another Norman door the same ever again

[0] http://99percentinvisible.org/article/norman-doors-dont-know...

Not just UI design, either. The same concepts that make a UI or a physical object pleasing to interact with apply to the API your library exposes to other developers, or even your own helper functions that nobody but you will ever use.

I too have been recommending this book quite a bit for new UI developers.

A couple of these have been named and I've upvoted them, but this is my list:

* "Flow" by Mihály Csíkszentmihályi. Being fully immersed and engaged in an activity. 1) Knowing the value of this mental state, 2) being able to recognize when you're in it, and 3) setting yourself up so that you can be in this state as much as possible is really valuable. File it under living an examined life, IMO. All the popular "don't interrupt the programmer" and Pomodoro and other time management techniques build on this old research.

* "Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius (several translations, worth comparing for even more insight) -- this is a man who understood duty and getting things done! (Not surprising from a stoic, but somehow this collection has extra impact because I know they were primarily notes and reflections written for his own clarity, more than for an audience.) Wisdom to apply to situations. Patterns to recognize in yourself and others.

* "Seven Habits of Highly Effective People" by Stephen Covey. When more sophisticated or trendy approaches to effectiveness reach their limits, you can't go wrong falling back on "Begin with the end in mind", "Sharpen the saw", classifying activities into the Four Quadrants, etc.

* Modern (typically psychological) interpretations of Buddhism. If a single book pops into my head, I will update this, so right now I'm talking about a whole category of books on Buddhist perspectives on character traits and habits of behaviour. If you strip any paranormal nonsense from Buddhist psychology you are often left with effective ways to classify your own thoughts, words, and deeds and work on improving them. A simple example would be the Four Sublime Attitudes. If I reflect on any relationship or interaction I have with colleagues or clients or new prospects, I can almost always take direct action immediately to improve it by applying these old rules: 1) replace anger toward someone with active good will toward them, 2) replace jealousy or envy of someone else's fortune with sympathetic joy for them, 3) approach anyone's suffering as your own suffering (compassion), 4) treat all situations and people impartially without judgement of of "good" or "bad" (equanimity).

I'm sorry these are really old! For me, these just don't go out of style and their wisdom works cross-culture.

I really enjoyed and got value from books about companies/people I admire; Hatching twitter, In the Plex, Elon Musk, etc.

More specific topics, however:

* "what every body is saying" - how to read/understand body language

* "an astronauts guide to life on earth" - by Chris Hadfield, lots of good general advice

* "speed reading" - for digesting information quickly (albeit, I find with less depth)

* "The 8 traits successful people have in common" - kinda painfully obvious advice, but often it's the context and stories that help you digest a message

* "the lean startup" - wasn't mindblowing but looks aligned with what you've been reading, still worth reading.

I definitely agree with getting value from books about companies/people you admire. I think it's more memorable to read about real people's actions and lifestyles as opposed to reading "how-to" or "self-help" books, though I read those too and have received value from them as well.

Here are some books I'd recommend in the former vein:

1. Elon Musk - as mentioned, awesome, inspiring read

2. Creativity, Inc. - Ed Catmull's story of Pixar

3. Masters of Doom - Carmack is a boss

4. The Innovators - The people who created the computing world

5. Hackers - The people who created the computing world

6. Steve Jobs - obligatory, whether positive/negative

Hackers & Masters of Doom are two of my favourite books. And I'm not even really a gamer.

Will check these just because Elon Musk is on the list :)

Hatching Twitter is excellent!

Thanks a lot for these. The lean startup is already on my list, will check the rest.

Professionally by adding to soft skills - Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High

Personally - by helping me appreciated science better - Cosmos: Carl Sagan

As a side note - a lot of the startup stuff is learned on the job and by talking to others about their experiences. Doing a side project can be a good way to try out and you will be forced to think about marketing, sales, etc.

Shameless plug: http://hackernewsbooks.com/ - is what books the HN community comments on, maybe you find something interesting there

How to Measure Anything: Finding the Value of "Intangibles" in Business . A vital step in becoming a more (instrumentally) rational person is to track and calibrate your beliefs.

This book teaches you of how to do that.

Probably the best to start with is "How to read a book". That opened my eyes and helped me a lot with deciding what to read and how to read it.

+1 for How To Read a Book by Mortimer Adler. I wish I had found this at a younger age.

I have a lot of the classics on my list, but a new one that I've found extremely growth spurring was "Ego is the Enemy" by Ryan Holiday. I never really considered myself an egotists; confident perhaps, but something I never struggled with. This book showed me that I indeed did have more ego than necessary and gave me some really good guidance on how to live a better, happier, and more fulfilled life. Really something for a book I didn't even know I needed.

Coders At Work and Founders At Work. Immensely inspirational.

Founders at Work was phenomenal. Its a collection of interviews with early startup founders where Jessica Livingston asks great, probing questions. An excellent example of how to conduct a good interview.

Are there any other books that are as inspirational? I very much enjoyed reading those ones.

YMMV but I found Masterminds of Programming quite a worthy read. It is an interview based book and talks to the creators of a variety programming languages, including such 'obscure' ones as Forth, APL and Eiffel. I am interested in programming languages in a meta way, and even dabble around designing a couple, so it was inspirational to me, also quite an eye opener.

This is a very different book, it definitely impacted my personal life. He literally helped me go out of an infinit loop in life when it came to interactions with women and humen connections:

Game Over: From Pick-Up Artist to Social Heartist



David Allen's Book Getting Things Done http://gettingthingsdone.com

Up the organization https://www.amazon.co.uk/Up-Organization-Corporation-Stiflin...

The complete Yes Minister https://www.amazon.co.uk/Yes-Minister-Prime-Complete-Collect...

The undercover economist and it's follow up https://www.amazon.co.uk/Undercover-Economist-Tim-Harford/dp...

I would struggle to encapsulate it all except "people and organizations can be vicious and complex but we all innately want them to be simple, fair and if we can find someone believable we can turn around any hideous situation"

Ayn Rand's "The Fountainhead" changed me when I was younger. Malcolm Gladwell's "Outliers" changed me back when I got older.

A couple of thought provoking professional reads-

The Sticking Point Solution: 9 Ways to Move Your Business from Stagnation to Stunning Growth In Tough Economic Times > http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6515635-the-sticking-poin...

Pitch Anything: An Innovative Method for Presenting, Persuading, and Winning the Deal > http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10321016-pitch-anything?a...

* Several excellent recommendations already posted here, always impressed by HNers!

Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen.

I think it has made me a better teammate, mentor, and mentee.

If you'd like to know more before buying it, check out http://www.npr.org/2015/09/22/434597124/trying-to-change-or-...


I would look at a few design and user experience books... "Don't make me think", "Thinking fast and slow" and "Designed for use" come to mind.

As developers, and even PMs we will tend to overload our users with too much... simplification, structure, clarity come to mind. Another deep issue, and I don't have any books to recommend center around nomenclature... Too many projects don't take the time to concentrate on naming things from a high level... From project features to user roles and the language/platform that integrate them, there's often confusion and blurred lines with the same names used in different contexts.

I agree with others on the "Meditations" by Marcus Aurelius.

Off the top of my head, I would add:

* "The Way to Wealth," by Benjamin Franklin: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0918222885 (also available online for free; it's in the public domain) -- no-nonsense practical advice from a super-successful individual

* Warren Buffett's Letters to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders: http://www.berkshirehathaway.com/letters/letters.html (also available organized by topic, in a bound book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/1611637589 which some will find much easier to read)

* "The Intelligent Investor," by Benjamin Graham (specifically the chapters titled "The Investor and Market Fluctuations" and "Margin of Safety"): https://www.amazon.com/dp/0060555661

* "Influence: the Psychology of Persuasion," by Robert Cialdini: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0688128165


* "Devil Take the Hindmost," by Edward Chancellor: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0452281806

* "A Short History of Financial Euphoria," by John Kenneth Galbraith: https://www.amazon.com/dp/0140238565

* "Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds," by Charles Mackay: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1586635581

Great Work with the list! I can see it becoming a thing in the future!

I would add Douglas Adams & Terry Pratchett to your fiction category, although it is hard to quantify why. They are an amazing interplay of imagination, creativity & playfulness and by going through them, some of it rubs off to their readers.

In the case of Terry Pratchett in particular, some of the books are actually quite indirectly educational and as good as philosophical critiques on society and aspects of. Including: Authoritarianism, Government, Racism, Superstition, Charlatanism, Economics, Mortality etc etc.

I haven't got a chance to put its advice into practice yet, but I liked "Getting to Yes". It's short and to the point, providing a good perspective on handling negotiations.

Vagabonding: An Uncommon Guide to the Art of Long-Term World Travel by Rolf Potts

On the surface, it's about traveling the world on a budget for extended periods of time, but deeper than that is a philosophy about going without things you don't need and connecting with people more authentically.



What Got You Here Won't Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful by Marshall Goldsmith.

This book really helped me make the transition between being valued primarily for my technical abilities and focusing more on interpersonal relationships and how that affects my ability to be part of a successful team. It was very humbling to read as I realized I had been guilty of so many of the things mentioned in this book. It really changed my career for the better.

The first scene in Tolstoy's War and Peace should be required reading for engineering graduates, particularly the hyper-rational Sheldon types. I'm referring specifically to the impact Pierre has on the people at the party, the importance of manners, why small talk, etc. War and Peace is generally a great book because of how much it captures about human nature and power plays and it is still relevant today. It has a reputation for length but I found it much more readable than, say, Lord of the Rings.

Delta Force by Col. Charlie Beckwith. Think your company has red tape? Try the US Army post-Vietnam. It's a great example of someone moving through bureaucracy to achieve great things and taught me to stop making excuses based on organisational behaviour. The Phantom Major by Virginia Cowles is in the same vein with some phenomenal hustling lessons. I still think of both men whenever I think whatever I'm doing is hard.

Dynamic Hedging by Taleb was written whilst he was a pit trader and is the most intuitive introduction to thinking about options I've read. It informs my thinking about decision making in terms of probability, path dependency and higher order greeks, and helps me take risks in a smart manner. I recommend it to a lot of people but nobody takes it up because (I'm guessing) it's only available as a second hand paper copy, and people think trading options has nothing to do with their life.

Legionnaire by Simon Murray was recommended to me by my thesis supervisor shortly before graduation. I respected his opinion so I read the thing and it blew my mind in what people were capable of doing when pushed to the edge. Murray went on to have multiple interesting careers and set records as a helicopter pilot.

There are two books that were lessons in what they did not teach me.

Clayton Christensen's Innovator's Dilemma/Solution presents a very enticing idea but I think the core explanation for what it covers is much better set forward in Marc Bloch's Strange Defeat. There are regular sub-threads on the book on HN so I won't go into it further.

I also read a couple of Jack Welch books and thought, wow, this guy knows what he is talking about. This was before 2007. After 2007, I heard from a few people - including very smart investors - who basically put GE's success down to the 30 year bull market and to the growth of GE Capital which became something like 60% of the company and indeed did almost take down GE with it after Lehman. It introduced the possibility that some famous leaders and gurus might not be as competent as they are branded to be and it's important to check for confounding variables.

"Built to Last", by James Collins and Jerry Porras. Great book that goes into the principles of how to build enduring businesses.

The Tao of Power by R.L. Wing https://www.amazon.com/Tao-Power-Leadership-Excellence-trans...

It's like The Art of War, but for life in a business/leadership context.

Impro by Keith Johnstone

There's a reason why it's one of two books on Palantir's new employee reading list.

Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest by Amy Cuddy


The Charisma Myth: Master the Art of Personal Magnetism by Olivia Fox Cabane

I really liked these books about how to be more influential in everyday life. These books provide simple techniques you can use right after you have read. Available as audiobooks too.

Have you seen the awesome list[1] Ramiro Gomez put together? Lot of great non-tech books on there.

[1] http://ramiro.org/vis/hn-most-linked-books/

I never see this recommended but any book about Contracts (law). It's very valuable for lay persons to understand the basic principles and it will help a lot in your business and personal life.

Made in Japan had a profound impact on me - how two engineers disgruntled by their nation's defeat in world war 2 went on to become leading company in electronics.

Atlas Shrugged. It clarifies the moral benefit of a selfish honest creative pursuit of money. It seriously improves your workday to feel faintly heroic about it.

One of the best read of mine, "Who is John Galt ?"

Never Split the Difference is ostensibly a book on negotiation, but I found it also a great primer on the more subtle and emotional side of human communication.

Pathologies of Power -- Dr. Paul Farmer

The ones from Scott Adams and Cal Newport.

The Scott Adams book "How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Win Big" is surprisingly good. It's too early for me to tell if it's made an improvement, but I have a ton of highlights and I've been reviewing them every couple of weeks. [I've had a similar reaction recently to "Everything I Know" by Paul Jarvis as well.]

Influence - Psychology of persuasion

Gun Germs and Steel

Hero with a thousand faces

Starting Strength

Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

absolutely, it focuses you to what matters

Big impact for me both professionally and personally : The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

The Bible.

Maybe elaborate a little bit? Its certainly an influential book. I can think of a lot of professional lessons it could contain, (I've turning the other cheek a lot at work this summer with some very abrasive folks; hard to tell how well its worked so far...) but you probably should be the one to justify it. I'm an Atheist, though culturally christian, so I won't pretend to understand it well.

Start with the book of Proverbs, follow its wisdom and advice, if all you're after is career improvements. Great wisdom.

(Wisdom about people, situations, attitudes, and actions are all found there).

But, move on to John, if you are eager for more.

0 points?!?!?

I thought this was about what non-technical books have helped me, professionally.


The Bible provides a solid moral background for a very successful career in the long-term.

I'd ask material atheists to go beyond the realms of Genesis and focus on the true revolutions it has brought about. Go ahead and read about Rene Girard.

"Thou shall not covet or kill" is not a self-evident concept for Humanity.

>turning the other cheek a lot at work this summer

Interesting to contemplate that gesture as being active or passive...


The books of Pieter Hintjens, ok, he is a developer but...

Seth Godin: "Purple Cow" "Tribes"

Extreme Ownership by Joko Wilink

Team of teams by Gen. Stan McChrystal

Both of these are required reading for understanding how humans work together.

Since there are so many readers in this thread, are you guys managing your books: Goodreads, Google Books, etc?

Good old fashioned dead trees, on my end.

* Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

* Freakenomics

* Slideology

* The Checklist Manifesto

the hard thing about hard things & zero to one

The book of Mirdad

"made to stick" is a great read for techies because it helps you think about simplifying communication to non techies. It also helps technical founders think about market perceptions about your product. It's a super fast read and well written.

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