Top Deck Daze: Adventures on the Frog and Toad
by Bill James
In my opinion this is the best and most hilarious business book of all time. This comes with a strong language warning and a caution that it is not for the faint hearted. It follows the creation of the world’s largest retail travel agency and its beginnings as a bus tour company in London in the seventies. The book is not easy to get hold of, but it will have you rolling in fits of laughter if you can get your hands on a copy. It is also jammed with lessons for start-ups and anyone trying to grow their business.
How to Measure Anything: Finding the Value of “Intangibles” in Business
by Douglas Hubbard
10 years ago, when I first read this book it opened my eyes to what terms like intangible, measurement and informational value mean. It will inspire you with low cost ways to get the information you need to make more informed strategic decisions. The first half of the book is the story and gives you the executive level understanding of what is possible. The second half of the book is very heavy with statistical theory, so don’t venture there unless you really want to be the technical implementer. I’ve since had lunch with the author, Douglas Hubbard in London and also hired him to deliver courses for colleagues. So, learning how he took an idea that an entire profession already exists to deliver, and make it accessible to a much wider audience has been fascinating. Not least because this book was number one in its category on Amazon for three straight years.
This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor
by Adam Kay
Just finished reading this book and it is a ‘must read’ for every Briton. Hilariously inspiring while also being a truly scary insight into how the NHS operates. Perhaps without being too deliberate about it, the book gives all sorts of insights into how poorly some large organisations execute their strategies. On the human level, the book is cathartic, and I found myself laughing out loud uncontrollably more than enough times to embarrass myself. A real page turner.