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Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Filling Up my Brain with Useful Stuff

I love this saying.  It's so true, isn't it?  Don't just sit around complaining, gosh darnit.  Do something about it.

In one of my smartest moves of all time, I recently enrolled in Marie Forleo's B-school.  If you know Marie, you're gasping and saying, "OMG Carol, I LOVE Marie".  If you don't know her you can check out her website here and sign up for her weekly updates.  She's a true inspiration.  I cannot fathom how much new business information I have been cramming into this little brain.  I am overwhelmed and overjoyed by all my new business skills.

Since so many of you reading are also running online businesses I thought it would be useful to share the books I've been reading lately.  These aren't so much required reading as recommended reading but who am I to turn down an opportunity to read.  It always feels like I'm cheating to be reading a book and then calling it work.  "Honey, can you take the kids to school?" "Sorry I can't.  I'm reading".  You can't do that when you're reading the latest copy of Vanity Fair but you sure can when it's a business book.

1. Blue Ocean Strategy - W. Chan Kim & Renee Mauborgne

It's all about reconstructing market boundaries.  What the heck does that mean?  It's about figuring out what the competition is doing and then creating a business doing something different that will make you unique.  Create an ocean of opportunity where there is no competition.
**I would suggest buying a paper copy of this book.  I downloaded a copy and found that I constantly wanted to flip back and forth between pages and chapters which is a bit more frustrating on an e-reader.

2. Now Find Your Strengths - Marcus Buckingham & Donald O. Clifton


Another unique perspective on both business and self.  It centres around the idea that you can crush it in business if you focus on your strengths.  Sounds logical, right?  There's an online StrengthFinder profile which helps you to pinpoint exactly what your strengths are.  Instead of trying to fix our weaknesses this book guides you to excel using only your strengths.  

3. The $100 Startup - Chris Guillebeau

A collection of stories about unexpected entrepreneurs.  These entrepreneurs all began with few resources, little money and often no experience.  All have grown into success stories earning a living doing what they want to do.  A great inspiration if you're thinking of doing it on your own.

So that's the stuff that I've been reading lately.  I'll share more of my good reads in a future post but that should keep you busy for a while.  If you've got a good business book, share it with me in the comments.  I need more excuses to get out of doing things I don't want to do, like cooking dinner or doing laundry or....

12 comments:

  1. Ooh, I might need to check out some of these books, although I have done strengthfinders already. :) Thanks Carol!

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  2. Thanks for sharing Carol. Next year when my youngest goes to college I'll have time to think about starting a home-based business, but it's never too early to start reading up on the topic. I'll be pinning the book titles.

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  3. These books sound great! Thanks for your recommendation! I will check them out when I get a chance.

    P/S: Come by and enter my current giveaway to win a stunning mural wallpaper(worth $500!)if you like, Carol!

    http://www.mixandchic.com/2013/04/giveaway-murals-wallpaper-worth-up-to.html

    Jessie
    www.mixandchic.com

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  4. 'Figure out what it is that you don't like to do, and stop doing it!' Isn't that such a refreshing perspective in contrast to the old adage of, 'What doesn't kill you makes you stronger', and all those 'nose to the grind stone' natterings? Marcus Buckingham is one of Clemens' favorites! And right now he's reading this pretty intense book called, 'Thinking, Fast and Slow' by Daniel Kahneman... I'm happy you're getting a lot out of your course - that's when you know it's the right thing to do!

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  5. What a great inspirational quote and your book recommendations couldn't come at a better time for me. I'll be checking these out for sure!

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  6. Thank you so much for sharing! I've been preparing (slowly) to start my own business. Right now I'm reading "The Entrepeneur's Toolbox by Krysta Gibson and Drawing Solutions by Patti Dobrowolski. I'm going to check out your suggestions. I think I need the ocean strategy. Finding something unique that no else has done is a tough one.

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  7. Carol, you're going to become a business dynamo! Thanks for the book recommendations!
    ~ Wendi

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  8. Thanks Carol for these book suggestions ...... I am always craving on how to do things better, more efficient and knowing that there are different ways than what others do. So inspiring to know that there is another way to do things that others don't do.

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  9. I watch Marie's videos weekly, and I've heard a lot about her B School. Love her sense of humor and no bull attitude. Interested to find out how you like it and if it was worth taking. Thanks for the book ideas. Haven't read any of those, but I love anything on business or finance. Just read Jim Treviling's (of Dragon's Den) Decisions and it was really good.

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  10. Thanks for the recommendations!
    AND such a great picture of you in S@H!

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  11. No way Carol, I am just reading this, but I am currently in B School too! I agree with you it is fantastic. The books I am reading as a result are Going Pro by Steven Pressfield and Refuse to Choose by Barbara Sher and my world has expanded tenfold. The $100 start-up is what inspired me to even think about starting my own business, it is so inspiring. I guess I'll see you in school! :p

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  12. Hey Carol,
    Just found you on a thread on FB (B-School Babes). Lovely blog! Love your post here on all these fab resources- go girl!

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