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Larry Sharpe’s 5 Top Inspirational Books

Yesterday we brought you Larry Sharpe, Managing Director of the Neo-Sage Group. He may no longer be in the marines, but the attitudes and principles he learned have stuck with him. (If you missed Larry, go back and listen here.)

But, no man is an island – military personnel included. Larry Sharpe’s favorite resources all deal with finding the creative, counter-intuitive ways of thinking in business – whether it’s learning about the incentives that really motivate people or drilling to the heart of a company’s purpose.

1. Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman

All good communication starts with EQ. People can’t expect to make progress within a team if they don’t know how each member thinks, feels, and reacts. Goleman’s book redefines what it means to be smart, especially when a lot is on the line.

2. Start with Why by Simon Sinek

People need meaning to be truly engaged. Showing people why you do what you do gives them a reason to give you their all, without having to constantly incentivize them. It gives them legitimate reasons to believe in what you’re doing, which is something I’ve found is integral to building the best teams.

3. Just Listen by Dr. Mark Goulston

One of the biggest reasons our communication fails is that our innate desire to show how “right” we are overrides our desire to listen. Dr. Goulston explains that if we spent more time trying to understand people (not prove something to them), we’ll become better communicators and find greater success.

4. Predictably Irrational by Dan Ariely

Behavioral economics is an amazing field. And Dan Ariely’s look at the difference between a “market” mindset and a “social” mindset helps reveal how solid professional relationships depend on a balance. We wield the most influence when we read situations correctly. Predictably Irrational helps me get there.

5. Influence: Science and Practice by Dr. Robert Cialdini

In my opinion, this book is the foundation for any good influence system or program. It helps for leading, selling, marketing, customer service, and pretty much every case where one person wants to get key information across to someone else.


About the author, David Shriner-Cahn

David is the podcast host and community builder behind Smashing the Plateau, an online platform offering resources, accountability, and camaraderie to high-performing professionals who are making the leap from the corporate career track to entrepreneurial business ownership.

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