These books, articles, and blogs are my recommended reading list for work-related improvement.
#1 Recommendation: Radical Candor by Kim Scott
This is my favorite “work book”. It’s a very practical and actionable set of habits and guidelines for creating open, honest and direct conversations.
Start With Why by Simon Sinek might seem like it was directed at leaders, and in some ways it is, but who isn’t a leader of some kind? I found a lot of value in his directions to look for root causes, to find motivations and to understand your own “why” moments. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7108725-start-with-why
The Best Service is No Service by Price & Jaffe has tons of great bite-sized pieces of wisdom that can help all of us navigate the customer experience. You’ve probably heard me say things like “If a customer call us then we’ve already failed them in some way.” That comes from this book! https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/2410462.The_Best_Service_Is_No_Service
I’ve got copies of these books and a couple more business related/management books on my desk. Come check one out of the Workwell CS Library!
Work Blogs and Articles
- Help Scout’s blog about customer support skills: https://www.helpscout.com/helpu/playlists/customer-support-skills/
- The Zendesk Blog: https://www.zendesk.com/blog/
- The Monzo tone of voice book: https://monzo.com/tone-of-voice/
- How to write a customer service email: https://www.thewordfactory.com/write-better-customer-service-emails/
- An excellent community of Support Professionals: https://supportdriven.com/
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke – magic, war, personal conflict all in Victorian England. What’s not to love? The language of this book is beautiful and transporting. It’s a slow-paced, intricate character study that is not like anything else I’ve read short of Jane Austen novels. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/14201.Jonathan_Strange_Mr_Norrell
Winner of the 1961 Hugo Award for Best Novel and widely considered one of the most accomplished, powerful, and enduring classics of modern speculative fiction, Walter M. Miller, Jr.’s A Canticle for Leibowitz is a true landmark of twentieth-century literature—a chilling and still provocative look at a post-apocalyptic future. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/164154.A_Canticle_for_Leibowitz
Moby Dick by Herman Melville is my favorite extended version of The Old Man and the Sea
Ok, that’s not really fair. The two are not much related beyond the superficial “big fish, old man”. Where The Old Man is about resilience, reflection and introspection Moby Dick gives us a peek into a mind tipping through obsession into insanity. The stage set in both of these books in captivating. The Old Man will only take you about 90 minutes to read the whole thing and Moby Dick is about a 13 hour read.