Book Recommendations: 2017 Winter Break Edition!

Hola Todos!

As we celebrate one of the most festive times of the year, we might also have some down time to “feed our head” (i.e., nuggets!). So I thought I should offer up some nugget recommendations for the winter break just in case you get some “me time.” In addition to books (we all know I love books), I have some smaller “bite size” recommendations beyond books (i.e., Netflix, podcasts, articles, and videos). Beyond the items listed below, one could also go back to see my book recommendations from 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016. If you have a more particular interest, drop me an email and we can go deeper into a specific topic.

To start off with, I wanted to make some recommendations to the students who just wrapped my Professional Selling course. Specifically:

  • Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth
  • Thanks for the Feedback: The Science and Art of Receiving Feedback Well by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen
  • Pre-Suasion: A Revolutionary Way to Influence and Persuade by Robert Cialdini

Grit is the ultimate “new-school” professional selling book and is one of my top recommendations of all recommendations from the last 5 years. Thanks for the Feedback is masterpiece discussing verbal & non-verbal presentation skills. We talked A LOT about persuasion this semester and of course Cialdini was a central part of the conversation and this is his latest book.

Next up, is a set of book recommendations I picked for myself and I cannot wait to read:

  • The Brain: the Story of You by David Eagleman
  • Presence: Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges by Amy Cuddy
  • The Language of Man: Learning to Speak Creativity by Larry Robertson
  • Hit Makers: The Science of Popularity in an Age of Distraction by Derek Thompson
  • Blockbusters: Hit Making, Risk-Taking and The Big Business of Entertainment by Anita Elberse

The Brain is a storytelling book and storytelling is a research topic that is near and dear to my heart. Also note, there is a DVD set of this book with the same title since it was 6-part PBS series. Presence is part persuasion and part motivation book. I’ve heard Amy Cuddy on at least a dozen different podcasts and if you do not have time to read the book, Professor Cuddy has one of the top 20 TED talks of all time. Recently, I heard Larry Robertson talk about The Language of Man on a podcast and I was impressed with the content. In sum, this is a creativity book! In my mind, both Hit Makers and Blockbusters explore a similar question – what is interesting? Its not east to “get outside the box” and both of these books talks specifically to how to be different in a crowded marketplace.

Perhaps you do not have enough time for a book over the break but you’re still looking for some nuggets?

Netflix Documentaries

  • Banking on Bitcoin
  • The Secret Rules of Modern Living: Algorithms
  • Lo and Behold: The History of the Internet

Podcast Recommendations

  • How I Built This with Guy Roz
  • Master of Scale with Reid Hoffman
  • HBR IdeaCast
  • Hidden Brain with Shankar Vedantam

Finally, I would like to speak directly to the students in my Spring 2018 Digital Marketing class. Here are a few recommendations specifically for you:



Dr. Dan-o


Daniel M. Ladik, Ph.D.,

Assistant Professor of Marketing

Director, MBA Program

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University





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