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The Best Books of 2005
All of the book covers and reviews featured on the site are highly recommended as we only feature reviews and press releases of the books we believe are valuable. These are the best of 2005 as rated by the editors of The CEO Refresher.
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Best Books



The Best Business Books
of All Time!


Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking
by Malcolm Gladwell
Malcolm Gladwell's Blink is a fascinating exploration of rapid cognition, the "thinking" that takes place within the "blink of an eye." In the author's words "It's thinking - it's just thinking that moves a little faster and operates a little more mysteriously than the kind of deliberate, conscious decision-making that we usually associate with "thinking." This is serious brain food!
SPARK: Be More Innovative Through Co-Creation
by John Winsor
Co-creation is the central point of Spark, and the book itself is a co-creation of absolutely fascinating stories of many "innovative voices." In the author's words, "... the fundamental idea of co-creation - that it takes more than one brilliant mind to make an innovation happen - is an essential element in business." This is a most mindful work!
The Loyalty Advantage
The Loyalty Advantage: Essential Steps to Energize Your Company, Your Customers, Your Brand
by Dianne Michonski Durkin
Customer satisfaction and brand loyalty are directly connected to the passion and energy of an organization's employees. In The Loyalty Advantage, readers will learn how to create a loyalty-driven company and how to direct company culture and leadership to develop widespread employee enthusiasm. The book demonstrates how in-house dedication to employees translates naturally into superior customer service, which then creates brand loyalty.
Radical Careering
Radical Careering: 100 Truths to Jumpstart Your Job, Your Career, and Your Life
by Sally Hogshead

Do you have a career worth loving? Sally Hogshead redefines "Careering" as taking action to become the most powerful, valuable and fulfilled version of yourself and Radical Careering will definitely inspire you to kick your career into high gear. It's an extremely entertaining, engaging, energizing and edgy handbook that reaches in, twists your head, gives you a swift kick in the pants and inspires you to create your no-compromises future. This is one of the best! Enjoy!
The Forgotten Half of Change
The Forgotten Half of Change: Achieving Greater Creativity through Changes in Perception
by Luc de Brabandere
Inspiring creativity is one of the most pressing needs for American corporations, particularly those in markets that are forcing them not only to improve but transform themselves. Yet true creativity can be had only if you are willing to break the rules that have locked you in a set way of thinking, not just doing. This unique book will help managers think about how they think. This understanding will help them inspire creativity and sense when it is time to focus on the second half of change—changing perception.
Why Johnny Can't Brand
Why Johnny Can't Brand: Rediscovering the Lost Art of the Big Idea
by Bill Schley and Carl Nichols
High-concept Super Bowl commercials, baffling corporate names, "formless positioning and flabby claims that lack any differentiating punch"—all come in for abuse in this sprightly old-school marketing primer. Harking back to the "Unique Selling Propositions" of the "Brand Titans" that bestrode advertising's golden age in the early television era, brand consultants Schley and Nichols exhort companies to redefine their products in terms of a single, mesmerizing "Dominant Selling Idea." Writing in an engaging, straightforward style the authors provide much useful, hands-on advice for perplexed leaders.
Corporate Canaries
Corporate Canaries: Avoid Business Disasters with a Coal Miner's Secrets
by Gary Sutton
A century ago coal miners hung canary cages in their tunnels. The little birds went silent and dropped when poison gas seeped into the mine, offering workers a warning of the lurking dangers. In the same way that canaries protected miners, the principles in Corporate Canaries will protect companies by alerting executives and managers when their businesses are headed for trouble. The book features five common business hazards, and each lesson is accompanied by an insightful story based on the author's grandfather's work in the coal industry.
When Customers Talk
When Customers Talk: Turn What They Tell You into Sales
by T. Scott Gross and BIGresearch
BIGresearch surveyed 100,000 retail customers, and their valuable feedback on service, pricing, habits, and what they look for in a shopping experience are presented for the first time in When Customers Talk." Their insights will help you anticipate customers' needs and use emerging trends to your advantage. You'll learn how to attract and retain profitable customers and effectively beat the competition.
Turbo Coach
TurboCoach: A Powerful System for Achieving Breakthrough Career Success
by Brian Tracy and Campbell Fraser
TurboCoach enables individuals to apply Tracy's proven counseling techniques to their own lives, and gives coaches tools to integrate his powerful strategies into their own professional programs. Each chapter begins with a series of self-assessment questions and ends in a set of exercises that can be used to energize an individual's results in that area. TurboCoach shows those in the coaching field how to elicit superior results from their clients, and individuals how to become their own coaches and rapidly improve the quality of their own lives and work.
Time Mastery
Time Mastery: How Temporal Intelligence Will Make You a Stronger, More Effective Leader
by John K. Clemens and Scott Dalrymple
Time Mastery is not about managing your time, but rather about discovering an intuitive sense of timing and seeing time as a leadership opportunity. The authors' notion of "temporal intelligence" as a leadership competency is fascinating and extremely relevant. Filled with interesting and entertaining anecdotes this book will "twist your head" to go beyond everything you have ever thought about time management.
Jack Welch and the 4 E's of Leadership:
How to Put GE's Leadership Formula to Work in Your Organization
by Jeffrey A. Krames

reviewed by Steven Bryce
The 4 E model is gaining fame in the business press. Whether you want to become such a leader yourself, and / or create a company of such people as your legacy, this is a very good primer on the leadership methods applied so capably at one of the world's great leadership factories.
Beyond Code
Beyond Code: Learn to Distinquish Yourself in 9 Simple Steps - by Rajesh Setty
reviewed by Michael A. Lally
If you are looking to throw off the shackles of your current position and break free from the confines of your cubicle and begin a difficult yet ultimately, rewarding path of self discovery and career ownership, you should use Beyond Code as your starting point. De-commoditize yourself today! This book will start you down the path and you will return to it again and again throughout your journey.
Branding Doesn't Work in Business to Business
by Maureen Blandford
"What if everything you know is wrong?" It's one of my favourite questions and Maureen Blandford takes conventional Marketing Communications thinking to task with this hard hitting and extremely compelling book. It's delightfully entertaining as she "twists your head" more than a bit and it will leave you totally aware of what your priorities must be for effective B2B sales. Your marketing folks won't want you to have this one, but this little book may save you millions! Great work Maureen! You're right! (ed.)
Get Out of Your Own Way at Work
Get Out of Your Own Way at Work... and Help Others Do the Same: Conquering Self-Defeating Behavior on the Job
by Mark Goulston
An extremely practical guide to help workers and managers deal with the self-sabotage that stands in the way of career advancement and satisfaction. Illustrated with anecdotes and "useable insights" drawn from Dr. Goulston's more than twenty years in clinical and organization settings, Get Out of Your Own Way at Work shows anyone how to stop being their own worst enemy.
Now in paperback!
Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make Competition Irrelevant
by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne
Based on a study of 150 strategic moves spanning more than a hundred years and thirty industries, Kim and Mauborgne argue that tomorrow's leading companies will succeed not by battling competitors, but by creating "blue oceans" of uncontested market space ripe for growth. Such strategic moves - termed "value innovation" - create powerful leaps in value for both the firm and its buyers, rendering rivals obsolete and unleashing new demand." Blue Ocean Strategy provides a systematic approach to making the competition irrelevant.
High-Impact Interview Questions: 701 Behavior-Based Questions to Find the Right Person for Every Job
by Victoria A. Hoevemeyer
Vicki Hoevemeyer's excellent book is about more than interviewing and questions. It is a comprehensive primer on Competency Based Behavioral Interviewing. It is an exceptionally valuable resource to help you ensure that candidates possess the job related competencies that are unique and critical to your team's success. This is the ultimate interviewer's handbook!
The Source of Success
The Source of Success: The Five Principles for Leadership and Personal Fulfillment in a Changed World
by Peter Georgescu and David Dorsey
Business leaders need an entirely new model to succeed today and into the future. Peter Georgescu, former CEO of Young & Rubicam, identifies and explains this unprecedented shift, and presents five guiding principles for a new standard of leadership which turns the old model on its head and focuses on the two key sources of value: the customer and the creative employee.
The Perfect Board
The Perfect Board
by Calvin K. Clemons
The Perfect Board describes what it takes to be an effective member of any Board of Directors. From loyalty to care to leadership and Rules of Order, The Perfect Board lends insight and direction into this very important position. This is indeed the 'Perfect' book for Board members who are looking to hone their skills as leaders within their organization.
Secrets of Special OPS Leadership: Dare the Impossible--Achieve the Extraordinary
by William A. Cohen
The Navy SEALs. The Green Berets. Delta Force. These are just a few examples of what are known as "special ops" -- elite and unique fighting forces trained to beat overwhelming odds on every mission. What techniques do the leaders of these small, fiercely motivated units use to accomplish such exceptional feats? Speed, purpose, repetition, surprise and simplicity - enabling these elite units to accomplish extremely challenging tasks against vastly superior forces.
Five Regions of the Future
The Five Regions of the Future: The New Paradigm of Understanding Technologies
by Joel Arthur Barker and Scott Erickson
Futurist Joel Barker was the first to apply the scientific concept of paradigm shifts to the world of business. Now Barker and fellow futurist Scott Erickson offer a bold new way of looking at today’s rapidly evolving technologies, as five distinct "ecosystems" that each operates with a distinct set of values, advantages, and disadvantages. Barker and Erickson give readers a totally new way to understand and take advantage of the future of technology. Five Regions of the Future is an essential book for anyone baffled by today’s technological onslaught.

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