December 18

Tom’s 12 Days of Christmas 2023 Reading List

I’m a voracious reader. I always have been. The best Christmas gift I ever received was a Kindle Unlimited Subscription. I mean, books are the cheapest, highest ROI investment you can make in your future and career. So with that in mind… here is my Christmas gift to you this year. The 12 best business books (and non-business just for fun) of 2023.  And if you want a few more great books, check out my 12 favorite books of 2022 or my 12 favorite books of 2021

On the first day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Whoever Tells the Best Story Wins

AUTHOR: Annette Simmons

Whoever tells the best story wins

Why you should read: Technology dumps so much information on us; we now need a conscious process to translate that information back into the human brain’s inborn format for understanding the world: into story. The science is in. The brain thinks in stories. Stories replenish information with the food of human connection and reignite powerful motivations stimulated when we feel the sense of our shared humanity.

If you want to learn how to tell better stories and leverage them for persuasion, grab this one.

On the second day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Zero Dollar Consultancy

AUTHOR: Phil Gerbyshak

Zero Dollar Consultancy

Why you should read: Because Phil is a buddy of mine and because who doesn't like free? I'm kidding; while the book is free if you have Kindle Unlimited, Phil's advice is worth every dollar you non-unlimited peeps have to pay. My favorite quote from the book is: Building a habit of excellence requires discipline and consistency. AMEN.

And if you're frustrated with the constraints of corporate America and considering jumping to the consultant side of the world, read this before you quit your day job. 

On the third day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Never Split the Difference

AUTHOR: Chris Voss and Tahl Raz

Never Split the Difference

Why you should read: Chris Voss, a former FBI negotiator, is an amazing person with an even more amazing story. He's probably forgotten more about negotiating than you or I will ever know, but thankfully, he's put most of it in this book. It's a fantastic read, as proven by the 101 highlights my Readwise account says I made.

Even if you don't negotiate as part of your day-to-day existence, pick this one up and read it. It's really that interesting and helpful. 

On the fourth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Magic Words

AUTHOR: Jonah Berger

Magic Words

Why you should read: If you're like me and you believe words matter, pick this one up. It will blow your mind how changing a single word can significantly change an outcome. For instance, if you want a child to help clean up, don't ask them if they want to help you clean up. Instead, ask them if they want to be a helper. That one small change makes all the difference.

If you give presentations as part of your job, this is a MUST READ, to become more effective.

On the fifth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Code Red

AUTHOR: Kyle Mills

Code Red

Why you should read: All work and no black opps espionage thriller makes Tom a dull boy. I'm a sucker for the Mitch Rapp series to unwind after a long day or survive yet another overloaded flight to or from some digital sales & marketing keynote speaking engagement. Kyle Mills took over the series after its originator, Vince Flynn passed, and I'm happy to say, he's kept up the same page turning, cliff hanging chapter ending style that I've loved all these years. 

When you want to give your brain a break, grab this one or start at the beginning of the series.

On the sixth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Imagine Heaven

AUTHOR: john burke

Imagine Heaven

Why you should read: If you don't believe in God or Heaven, you may want to just keep scrolling because this one probably isn't up your alley. But, if you've ever wondered what comes after, this book is fascinating. One of my buddies in my prayer group recommended it and it didn't disappoint. The stories presented blew my mind. I mean, even if you're not a believer, reading about the details some of the people who had a near-death experience recount — details they could not have imagined — will make even the staunchest non-believer at least go, "hmmm." 

On the seventh day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

The Business of Courses

AUTHOR: abe crystal, Ph.d.

The Business of Courses

Why you should read: Maybe you heard, I started converting my workshops and training programs into courses in 2023. So, I picked this one up in hopes of learning a tidbit or two that I could apply to developing and marketing my own sales training courses. I ended up with waaaay, more than two! If you're a solopreneur thinking about launching your own courses, it's definitely worth the money or free for you Kindle Unlimited users like me.  

On the eighth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

The Time to Win: How to Exceed Your Customers’ Need for Speed

AUTHOR: Jay Baer

The Time to Win

Why you should read: Total transparency, Jay's a good friend, but that's not why I always recommend people read his books. Ever since I picked up his first one, The Now Revolution, I've read everything he has written. In his latest missive, Jay shows you the value of speed and walks you through his 6-piece Time to Win framework, to help you optimize your organization's responsiveness and leverage it for competitive advantage.  

On the ninth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

The Point

AUTHOR: Steve Woodruff

The Point

Why you should read: Seems all my author buddies were busy this year. This is Steve's second book, and just like the first one, it's chocked full of great advice for anyone looking to become a better, more persuasive communicator

You'll love his 4 Rules of Successful Communication Design or as he calls it The Clarity Fuel Formula -- utterly simple, but far too often ignored and disobeyed by professionals daily. 

On the tenth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Unforgettable: The Art & Science of Creating Memorable Experiences

AUTHOR: Phil Mershon

Unforgettable: The Art & Science of Creating Memorable Experiences

Why you should read: Yes, Phil is another friend. What can I say, I like smart people that write smart books. If you're in the experience creation business, conferences, events, etc., then this one is a no-brainer gotta buy kind of book. But I'd argue there is a ton of application outside the event world too. If you serve customers in a physical space — restaurant, bank, retail outlet, etc., — grab a copy of Phil's book and think about how you can apply his knowledge to make your customer's experience unforgettable. 

On the eleventh day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

Everything Men Know About Women

AUTHOR: Dr. Alan Francis & Cindy Cashman

Everything Men Know About Women

Why you should read: I picked this one up mid-year because a buddy told me it was a quick read and absolutely dead on. And boy was he right. You could read it on Kindle, but my advice: get a physical version instead. This is one book that really is far more impactful in print than on a screen. 

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my Kindle gave to me:

The Invisible Sale

AUTHOR: Tom martin

Why you should read: You didn’t think I was going to miss a chance to pimp my book, did you? But seriously, the core concepts of the Invisible Sale, Self Educating Buyers, Propinquity and the step-by-step instructions to build a digitally powered sales & marketing machine to help you prospect, nurture, and close new leads virtually have never been more critical than it is in today’s WFH, hybrid office, post-pandemic world. You can grab the Kindle version—or if you’d prefer an old-fashioned autographed copy, click here, and I’ll send you one (since it’s Christmas and all). I’ll even ship it for free. 

And that’s it folks… go grab one or all of these great books here. Yes, I’m so nice I put them all on a single Amazon List to make it easy for you to grab a copy or two for your holiday reading enjoyment. Have a very merry Christmas and a wonderful New Year. 

Before you go, if you're a first-time reader and liked this piece, why not consider subscribing so we can stay in touch? Of course, you can break up at any time if you don't like what we send 😉.  Till next time. 

This post was originally published on Painless Prospecting, the weekly sales and marketing blog created by the fine folks at Converse Digital. If you want to learn how to create, engage in, and convert conversations into new clients and customers, give them a call

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