Summer Reading Recommendations for ISVs

Here is a list of must-read business best-sellers to keep you on your toes (while they’re dipped in the swimming pool)

Summer is here and there’s nothing better than enjoying the good weather with a good book. Here is a list of must-read business best-sellers to keep you on your toes (while they’re dipped in the swimming pool):

  1. No Rules Rules: Netflix and the Culture of Reinvention, by Reed Hastings and Erin Meyer

Erin Meyer, INSEAD professor, researcher and author of The Culture Map, teamed up with Netflix CEO Reed Hastings to write No Rules Rules which describes the unique corporate culture of the global giant.  The book addresses fundamental issues that Netflix needed to overcome in order to create a culture of trust so as to function without the rules and procedures that so often create bottlenecks and stifle creativity within large corporations.  Not only is this book eye-opening and interesting, it also provides key insights and actions to inspire you to model your business after theirs to boost innovation and achieve success.

  1. The Power of Vulnerability: Teachings of Authenticity, Connections and Courage, by Brené Brown

What do shame and vulnerability have to do with running a business?  Everything according to Brené Brown, shame researcher and best-selling author.  In her book, The Power of Vulnerability, (which is best listened to as an audiobook because she is such a great storyteller), she explains how her research led her to the discovery that embracing vulnerability is absolutely key to creating connection and building a whole-hearted life.  Her book is full of a plethora of stories to exemplify her point and hits home many key takeaways that can be implemented by business leaders including building trust and leading by example (two critical must-have’s for any successful business) can only happen when the top management themselves are willing to be vulnerable, take risks and stay open.

  1. The Surrender Experiment, by Michael A. Singer

Michael A Singer, serial entrepreneur, as well as the founder and former CEO of Medical Manager, became a billionaire when his company was acquired by WebMD.  But his life story as told in The Surrender Experiment goes well beyond anything you would imagine for a renowned business leader.  His practice of meditation and yoga brought him to write the best-selling spiritual guide, The Untethered Soul, which hit number one on the New York Times’s best-seller list in 2007.

The Surrender Experiment (published in 2015) is Singer’s second bestselling book, which is in fact an autobiography. In this book, Singer describes his journey of how he became interested in meditation, how he started the Temple of the Universe and the Medical Manager Corporation, and how through his attempts at “surrendering yourself to Life itself”, and not letting his personal ego intervene with opportunities that presented themselves to him, he achieved amazing success.

  1. Never Split the Difference: Negotiating as if your Life Depended on It, by Chris Voss

Chris Voss is best known for his work as a former FBI hostage negotiator.  In his book, Never Split the Difference, Voss outlines the skills he developed while negotiating with terrorists and criminals and demonstrates how they are transferable to the business world.  The book is full of interesting and compelling stories and provides concrete and applicable tips on how to mirror prospects, use non-verbal cues and mimic specific language to obtain the end result you want out of any negotiation.

  1. The Go-Giver: A Little Story About a Powerful Business Idea, by Bob Burg and John David Mann

This is a quick and easy read but a relatable story about how giving even more value to your customers will enable you to win.  While you may scoff at this book and think it’s silly, its message is inspiring: showing up to give instead of to “get” will help you build more significant business relationships.  This is the perfect book to take with you to the beach!


Liz Lemarchand is the Chief Operating Officer of MediaDev, a global IT marketing firm. She has 20 years of marketing experience and provides strategic counsel to software vendors both large and small.