15 Books That Could Change Your Life — What's Yours?
When I recently asked nonprofit experts in a range of fields — from fundraising to advocacy — to share the one book that has most influenced their professional lives, I had no idea what I’d hear back. So I was thrilled to hear so many passionate stories about books that have made a huge difference in these folks’ lives.
I’m sure that you, like me, are reading all the time — blogs, Facebook, e-newsletters and, yes, books. But what I heard from my colleagues (and know myself) is that reading a book is something different. Immersing oneself in a work that is longer, richer and frequently read in a distinct format (be that hard copy or an e-reader) is a unique experience. This immersion outside the day to day is highly engaging, energizing and refreshing on both creative and intellectual fronts.
With that possibility in mind, consider these top picks for your reading list. They could change your life.
Improving the way you work
1) "Orbiting the Giant Hairball" by Gordon MacKenzie. "Orbiting" inspired Tobi Johnson to find a working environment where she can make an impact and change the world in a concrete way, and it guides Jeff Brooks in solving conundrums and dealing with the frustrations he faces daily in his fundraising work.
2) "Little Bets: How Breakthrough Ideas Emerge from Small Discoveries" by Peter Sims. This book touts that low-risk actions taken to discover, develop and test an idea are the most productive path to take. When marketer Kivi Leroux Miller found "Little Bets," she found validation for the approach she has always taken and inspiration to continue “finding problems and solving them as you go.”
3) "Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us" by Seth Godin. Godin’s assertion that lasting and substantive change can be best affected by a tribe — a group of people connected to each other, to a leader and to an idea — motivates fundraiser John Lepp to do the two things he feared the most: lead and challenge the status quo.
4) "Art & Fear: Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Artmaking" by David Bayles and Ted Orland. "Art & Fear" is a great aid in developing your vision and increasing your confidence, says communicator Denise Gravelines.