Top 7 Books for Innovators to Read in 2019

With the new year comes new business goals. Perhaps you want to be more entrepreneurial or become an expert negotiator. Maybe you want to cook-up a new business plan or refresh an existing one. Or, you want to learn how to overcome the gender pay gap or find ways to be a savvier business marketer. This year, you want to hone business skills that, in the words of Seth Godin, one of our featured authors, “will get you where you want to go.”

There are thousands of business books to choose from, but where to start? Which ones are the real deal? We’ve got you covered. We asked top business professors from Boston University Questrom School of Business for some help. After all, they do this all day, every day, in class, conducting research, and as leaders in their industry. They are world-class researchers, educators, entrepreneurs, executives, and consultants working with some of the world’s most innovative companies —and are always on the hunt for the best resources for innovative business leaders.

Here are seven business books to read in 2019.

Images Courtesy: Amazon.com

Seven Business Books To Read In 2019

1. NEGOTIATION GENIUS: HOW TO OVERCOME OBSTACLES AND ACHIEVE BRILLIANT RESULTS AT THE BARGAINING TABLE AND BEYOND

“Every kind of job can always benefit from developing one’s soft skills—how to navigate your job, your relationships with your customers, the people you work for, and the people you work with. I’d recommend this book to those looking to develop those skills in the new year.”
Carey Morewedge, Everett W. Lord Distinguished Faculty Scholar, Professor, Marketing

2. Venture Deals: BE SMARTER THAN YOUR LAWYER AND VENTURE CAPITALIST

“We recommended this for our undergrad and MBA teams preparing for entrepreneurship and finance related case competitions. It takes the reader through the key elements of a Term Sheet but more importantly, makes you think about how to determine a business’ inherent worth, how to monetize its value proposition, etc. I re-read it periodically to keep my own skills sharp.”
–Greg Stoller, Senior Lecturer, Strategy & Innovation

3. This Is Marketing: You Can't Be Seen Until You Learn To See

“I think this book would be great for innovators and business students to read.  Godin’s perspectives on marketing are spot on—as he says marketing is “about helping people get where they want to go”.  You don’t need a big market, instead, he recommends that you focus on finding the smallest viable audience for your offering.”
–Barbara Bickart, Senior Associate Dean of MBA Programs, Associate Professor, Marketing

4. THE RISK-DRIVEN BUSINESS MODEL: FOUR QUESTIONS THAT WILL DEFINE YOUR COMPANY

“This is a fantastic book that provides a framework and many examples that illustrate how to change the world through business model innovation. The book provides a set of fundamental ideas and step-by-step cookbook templates, and makes it possible to develop business models that work. I base my business model innovation course on it, but recommend this book to any Questrom student interested in innovation.”
Pnina Feldman, Assistant Professor, Operations and Technology Management

5. FEMINIST FIGHT CLUB: A SURVIVAL MANUAL FOR A SEXIST WORKPLACE

“Journalist and New York Times gender editor Jessica Bennett blends the personal story of her real-life office “fight club” with a studied assessment of the gender gap that continues to plague the American workplace and beyond. With equal measures wit and rigor, Bennett provides the tactical strategies—and camaraderie—that every woman needs to fight back, as well as tools for the men who support the cause.”
Rachel Spooner, Senior Lecturer, Markets, Public Policy, & Law

6. WEAPONS OF MATH DESTRUCTION

“Weapons of Math Destruction is a wakeup call to the risks associated with our growing dependency on big data and how unchecked such models can increase inequity and undermine democracy. Without qualitative attributes, groups particularly minorities, can be unjustly discriminated against. Importantly, this book reminds us that big data should only be used to help guide but is not a substitute for human judgement.”
Mark Williams, James E. Freeman Lecturer in Management, Executive-in-Residence, Master Lecturer, Finance

7. FLASH BOYS: A WALL STREET REVOLT

“This book superficially is about high frequency trading and the race by trading firms for the fastest order placements, but it is really about ethics and doing the right thing. Made more interesting because the characters are everyday people who noticed that something wasn’t right and decided to fix it because it was the right thing to do.”
Kabrina Chang, Clinical Associate Professor, Markets, Public Policy, & Law

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