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Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book Recommendations

Carissa Dunphy of Optician Now and ROWT Magazine has compiled an impressive selection of her favorite reads.




Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book Recommendations

(Editor’s Note: This story originally appeared in ROWT Magazine titled “Recommended Books For Business.”)

Whether you’re a rep or an optician, most of your days are spent determining your own success.

Over the years, I’ve read some really great books that have proved to be invaluable. I’ve gathered a list of all of my most favorite books — some newer and some older.

I hope you love my list of recommended business books!

(Scroll to the bottom of the list for an embedded short video I shared online, which shows the actual books.)

The Go-Giver

Authors: Bob Burg and John David Mann


Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: The Go-Giver tells the story of an ambitious young man named Joe who yearns for success.

Joe is a true go-getter, though sometimes he feels as if the harder and faster he works, the further away his goals seem to be. One day, desperate to land a key sale at the end of a bad quarter, he seeks advice from the enigmatic Pindar, a legendary consultant referred to by many devotees simply as the Chairman.

Over the next week, Pindar introduces Joe to a series of successful ‘go-givers’ who teach him how to open himself up to the power of giving. Joe learns that changing his focus from getting to giving – putting others’ interests first and continually adding value to their lives – ultimately leads to unexpected results.

The Go-Giver is a classic bestseller that brings to life the old proverb ‘Give and you shall receive.’

Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don’t Know

Author: Adam Grant

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: Organizational psychologist Adam Grant is an expert on opening other people’s minds – and our own. As Wharton’s top-rated professor and the bestselling author of Originals and Give and Take, he makes it one of his guiding principles to argue like he’s right but listen like he’s wrong. With bold ideas and rigorous evidence, he investigates how we can embrace the joy of being wrong, bring nuance to charged conversations, and build schools, workplaces, and communities of lifelong learners.


You’ll learn how an international debate champion wins arguments, a Black musician persuades white supremacists to abandon hate, a vaccine whisperer convinces concerned parents to immunize their children, and Adam has coaxed Yankees fans to root for the Red Sox.

Think Again reveals that we don’t have to believe everything we think or internalize everything we feel. It’s an invitation to let go of views that are no longer serving us well and prize mental flexibility over foolish consistency. If knowledge is power, knowing what we don’t know is wisdom.

Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers

Author: Ben Horowitz

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: While many people talk about how great it is to start a business, very few are honest about how difficult it is to run one. Ben Horowitz analyzes the problems that confront leaders every day, sharing the insights he’s gained developing, managing, selling, buying, investing in, and supervising technology companies.

A lifelong rap fanatic, he amplifies business lessons with lyrics from his favorite songs, telling it straight about everything from firing friends to poaching competitors, cultivating and sustaining a CEO mentality to knowing the right time to cash in.

Filled with his trademark humor and straight talk, The Hard Thing About Hard Things is invaluable for veteran entrepreneurs as well as those aspiring to their own new ventures, drawing from Horowitz’s personal and often humbling experiences.


Purple Cow, New Edition: Transform Your Business by Being Remarkable

Author: Seth Godin

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: In Purple Cow, first published in 2003 and revised and expanded in 2009, author Seth Godin launched a movement to make truly remarkable products that are worth marketing in the first place.

Through stories about companies like Starbucks, JetBlue, Krispy Kreme, and Apple, coupled with his signature provocative style, Godin  inspires readers to rethink what their marketing really is saying about their product.

In a world that grows noisier by the day, Godin’s challenge has never been more relevant to writers, marketers, advertisers, entrepreneurs, makers, product managers, and anyone else who has something to share with the world.

Your Next Five Moves: Master the Art of Business Strategy

Author: Patrick Bet-David

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: Both successful entrepreneurs and chess grandmasters have the vision to look at the pieces in front of them and anticipate their next five moves.

In this book, Patrick Bet-David “helps entrepreneurs understand exactly what they need to do next,” says Brian Tracy, author of Eat That Frog!, by translating this skill into a valuable methodology.

Whether you feel like you’ve hit a wall, lost your fire, or are looking for innovative strategies to take your business to the next level, Your Next Five Moves has the answers.

You will gain: CLARITY on what you want and who you want to be. STRATEGY to help you reason in the war room and the board room. GROWTH TACTICS for good times and bad. SKILLS for building the right team based on strong values. INSIGHT on power plays and the art of applying leverage.

Combining these principles and revelations drawn from Bet-David’s own rise to successful CEO, Your Next Five Moves is a must-read for any serious executive, strategist, or entrepreneur.

The Digital Sales Rep: Find and Close Your Target Clients Online With The 10 + 10 System

Author: Trudi Charest

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: The Digital Sales Rep is a practical step by step guide to prospecting and closing sales online. If you are in outside sales, inside sales, or managing a team of salespeople, you want to read this book.

Selling in today’s world has changed. Sales people need to be part marketer, part social media guru, part digital expert, part copywriter, part graphic designer, and, of course, part salesperson. This book will show how you can easily be amazing at all of those tactics.

You will learn how to mix digital efforts with traditional outreach to connect to 100+ target clients every single day. The days of pounding the pavement on the road as your only source of business acquisition are long gone. The most successful sales reps utilize the power of digital and social channels to effectively network and gain sales opportunities with clients that would otherwise be impossible to reach. These strategies don’t just open doors, they secure welcome invitations to talk about your products and services.

This book delivers a proven system, actionable guidelines, and steps to follow that will result in closed sales. No fluffy sales advice here. The 10 + 10 Sales System works.

The Ideal Team Player: How to Recognize and Cultivate The Three Essential Virtues

Author: Patrick M. Lencioni

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: In The Ideal Team Player, author Patrick M. Lencioni tells the story of Jeff Shanley, a leader desperate to save his uncle’s company by restoring its cultural commitment to teamwork. Jeff must crack the code on the virtues that real team players possess, and then build a culture of hiring and development around those virtues.

Beyond the fable, Lencioni presents a practical framework and actionable tools for identifying, hiring, and developing ideal team players.

Whether you’re a leader trying to create a culture around teamwork, a staffing professional looking to hire real team players, or a team player wanting to improve yourself, this book will prove to be as useful as it is compelling.

Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t

Author: Simon Sinek

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: In his work with organizations around the world, Simon Sinek noticed that some teams trust each other so deeply that they would literally put their lives on the line for each other. Other teams, no matter what incentives are offered, are doomed to infighting, fragmentation and failure. Why?

The answer became clear during a conversation with a Marine Corps general. “Officers eat last,” he said. Sinek watched as the most junior Marines ate first while the most senior Marines took their place at the back of the line. What’s symbolic in the chow hall is deadly serious on the battlefield: Great leaders sacrifice their own comfort – even their own survival – for the good of those in their care.

Too many workplaces are driven by cynicism, paranoia, and self-interest. But the best ones foster trust and cooperation because their leaders build what Sinek calls a “Circle of Safety” that separates the security inside the team from the challenges outside. Sinek illustrates his ideas with fascinating true stories that range from the military to big business, from government to investment banking.

Zero To One

Authors: Peter Thiel with Blake Masters

Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsSummary: If you want to build a better future, you must believe in secrets. The great secret of our time is that there are still uncharted frontiers to explore and new inventions to create.

In Zero to One, legendary entrepreneur and investor Peter Thiel shows how we can find singular ways to create those new things. Thiel begins with the contrarian premise that we live in an age of technological stagnation, even if we’re too distracted by shiny mobile devices to notice.

Information technology has improved rapidly, but there is no reason why progress should be limited to computers or Silicon Valley. Progress can be achieved in any industry or area of business. It comes from the most important skill that every leader must master: learning to think for yourself.

Doing what someone else already knows how to do takes the world from 1 to n, adding more of something familiar. But when you do something new, you go from 0 to 1. The next Bill Gates will not build an operating system. The next Larry Page or Sergey Brin won’t make a search engine. Tomorrow’s champions will not win by competing ruthlessly in today’s marketplace. They will escape competition altogether, because their businesses will be unique.

Zero to One presents at once an optimistic view of the future of progress in America and a new way of thinking about innovation: it starts by learning to ask the questions that lead you to find value in unexpected places.

(Editor’s note No. 2: All the titles featured in this article are available for purchase on Amazon. Or, better yet, pick them up at your local bookseller!)


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A post shared by Carissa Dunphy, ABOC (@opticiannow)


Make Your Way in the World of Business With These Book RecommendationsThis article was written by Carissa Dunphy.

Carissa has been working in private practice optometry since 2008 and is the founder of Optician Now (

She writes the monthly Real Deal feature in INVISION Magazine and also is a contributor for ROWT Magazine.

Follow Carissa on Instagram and Facebook at @opticiannow.



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