Summer Reading List Keeps Me Sharp

Growing up, summers meant library time and signing up for the book club. Whatever the minimum level, it was never a problem to reach as I read voraciously. I still do.

In the summer, though, I tend toward less weighty subjects that are best read poolside. I do, however, create a summer reading list to keep me sharp.

This summer is no different, and I’ve selected five books, which is a bit ambitious.

The Marketing Agency Blueprint by Paul Roetzer. This one was recommended to me by Brian Forester of Dynamic Web Solutions. The book presents 10 rules for building tech-savvy, hybrid agencies that will disrupt and transform the marketing services industry. One caveat, several reviews criticized it for its heavy focus on HubSpot. I still think I’ll benefit from it as the communications world now has such a heavy focus on digital.

Katie Paine shared her books at a workshop. (Photo by Cynthia Price)

Katie Paine shared her books at a workshop. (Photo by Cynthia Price)

Measuring the Networked Nonprofit by Beth Kanter and Katie Delahaye Paine. The premise is simple, “If you want to change the world, be networked, use measurement and make sense of your data.” I’ve heard both authors speak, and I follow Beth’s blog. When Katie spoke to my local PRSA chapter, I finally bought the book. She also signed it for me and provided some great inspiration, “May all your results be great by any measure and may you change children’s lives with data.”

Engage by Brian Solis. This one’s been out for awhile, and I have the version that includes a forward by Ashton Kutcher. Brian has been at the forefront of social media and this book is often touted as a must-read. The reason it’s languished on my shelf for so long unread is that every time I pick it up, I turn to a sentence that is unwieldy, and I don’t think I can read further. This past week, though, I turned to a section that did pull me in so I’m going to read it and skip over the poorly written sentences.

Authentic Leadership by Bill George. The book club I belong to at work has selected this book for our September discussion. I didn’t read the last book, so I’m determined to read this one. The Amazon site notes that George has become the unofficial spokesperson for responsible leadership—in business, the media and academia. He shows how to develop the five essential dimensions of authentic leaders—purpose, values, heart, relationships and self-discipline.

Words That Mean Success by Jeffrey D. Porro. I’ve worked with Jeff Porro and have learned much from him. In this book he tells you how to take your speeches and presentations from good to great.

Once I finish a book, I plan to write a blog on it. It’s a way to keep myself accountable. Plus, if you are interested in the book and haven’t committed to reading the book, maybe the post will encourage you.

What books do you recommend?

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