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Books - top 12 Christmas reads

by Lewis Panther SA FIN | 12 Dec 2018
Here are some of FINSIA’s top reads for the summer holidays. 500 Books - top 12 Christmas reads - FINSIA - InFinance

It’s in no particular order and a fairly random selection with a heavy dose of banking and business, guessing that if you’re planning to have your head down in a books over the 12 Days of Christmas you want to keep the brain cells whirring. Good luck getting your teeth into something thought-provoking, meaty, topical, educational and inspirational. 

1. A Matter of Trust: The Practice of Ethics in Finance, Clare Payne & Paul Kofman.

One of the founders of The Banking and Finance Oath explores how the finance sector can - and needs to - stand as a true profession. 

The book that was published just before the start of the Royal Commission also provides a practical guide to make everyday business decisions in an ethically sound way. 

2. Kids Don’t Get Cancer, Michael Crossland

Since he was just a baby, Crossland has spent a quarter of his life in hospital fighting the disease. Yet it hasn’t stopped him becoming an elite, successful financier and philanthropist.

Now - even after being diagnosed with another bout of incurable cancer - he is continuing to travel the globe as a world-renowned motivational speaker with a following that saw his latest You Tube video attracting close to 40million views. An emotional rollercoaster of an autobiography.

3. The Monkey and The Rhino, Daniel Murray 

Another inspirational read, the story of the Monkey & the Rhino was inspired by  people Murray encountered during his corporate career. 

So often, he says, the most amazing people he worked with were simply told to toughen up. 

The leaders in business made it to the top by being tough and expected everyone else to do the same. But that’s not the only way. A wonderful illustrated tale.

4. The Price of Fortune - The untold story of being James Packer, Damon Kitney

Never before has a member of the Packer dynasty - deemed by many to be closest thing to royalty in Australia - sat down with an author to tell their story.

Kitney’s book has the real story of how Packer went off the rails after his marriage to singer Mariah Carey went into meltdown and his public admission earlier this year that mental health issues forced him to resign from the board of the Crown casino company he owns.

The billionaire reveals how trusting the wrong people and his rash actions cost him friends, his health and his reputation on the global stage. 

5. The 25 Minute Meeting. Half The Time - Double The Impact, Donna McGeorge

This could be the perfect present for all those executives who come home or head off to work in the morning complaining they have got a diary full of back-to-backs.

McGeorge’s claim that she can cut that never-ending round of hour-plus meetings in half - and some - while still getting more done might seem fanciful stuff. 

But you should be able to polish the 208 pages off between dips in the sea during a day at the beach and get back to work in 2019 with a roadmap to short, sharp productive meetings.

6. Tribe of Mentors, Tim Ferris

The best selling author who penned The 4-Hour Work Week has turned to the subject of mentors for his latest offering after tracking down more than 100 to help him with some of life’s crucial lessons.

He gets tips and lessons from elite athletes like world champion surfer Kelly Slater, skateboard legend Tony Hawk and Maria Sharapova, help on mediation and mindfulness from Jimmy Fallon, and finds out why Ben Stiller dunks his head in a bucket of ice cream in the morning. 

It’s got to be worth buying just to find out about the actor’s strange breakfast ritual.

7. Start Before You’re Ready, Mick Spencer 

The university dropout turned entrepreneur who set up ONTHEGO custom sports clothing has been called a business leader to watch by Virgin founder Richard Branson.

His pitch on Shark Tank two years ago earned him $600,000 which, at more than double what he wanted, wasn’t bad for someone who only had $150 in the bank when he started his business. 

8. 50 Business Classics, Tom Butler-Bowden

Business leaders who know how to delegate will appreciate this boiled down version of what Butler-Bowden grandly claims is “the Greatest Books Distilled”.

But with boiled down versions of books by Google founder Eric Schmidt, the aforementioned Richard Branson and even Donald Trump’s 1987 The Art of The Deal, he’s gone for the big beasts in business.  

9. The Power of Positive Destruction, Seth Merrin 

The business entrepreneur who has been behind four start-ups since the 1980s when he first hit Wall Street as an intern spoke to FINSIA about his philanthropic work earlier this year - telling us how it helped with recruitment.

10. Brotopia: Breaking Up the Boys’ Club of Silicon Valley, Emily Chang

Chang’s expose of the tech giants followed on from the great strides made by the #MeToo movement.

It is an apt reminder that just because you wear a tight T-shirt and jeans and skateboard around the office doesn’t mean you aren’t any different from the power brokers who went before.

Worryingly, she reveals there is a “scarcity” of women in the industry that is reshaping our culture.

11.  The Land Before Avocado, Richard Glover

For a bit of nostalgia, Glover’s witty journey back in time to life in the early 1970s is a must-read for all those millennials out there and shows just how far Australia has come since dinners were dominated by processed meat in pies and pasties. 

The book is also a brilliant analysis of how far we’ve progressed socially and how attitudes to gender and minority have changed.

12. The Lost Man, Jane Harper

After the sensational success of The Dry, which was snapped up by Hollywood, and the follow-up Force of Nature, Harper looks as if she has a hat trick of bestsellers.

The psychological thriller is a real slow burner set in the vast expanses of the Queensland outback. Like many a great crime novel there’s almost an element of travelogue.



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