Book Reviews: Perfect Pitch

September 26th, 2016

boy_at_microphoneEveryone in business is selling something – pitching a product; launching a company; convincing a client; supporting an idea; advancing a career. Managers are responsible for influencing decisions and motivating others, but not everyone is naturally persuasive. Dozens of books offering advice on making an impression or promoting an idea are published every year, but it is not easy to know which ones are best. These 3 new books in the Ford Library are rated 4.5 to 5 stars on Amazon.com.

Gallo, Carmine. The Storyteller’s Secret. St. Martin’s Press, 2016. 

Executive coach and author of two bestselling books about making presentations, Carmine Gallo uses 100 compelling tales to illustrate how to craft a brief and emotional story about overcoming adversity and hardship to captivate an audience.

Also available as an audiobook on OverDrive.

Port, Michael. Steal the Show. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2015.

Author and professional actor Michael Port demonstrates how to use acting techniques, such as stagecraft and improvisation, to overcome fear and to improve everyday performances, including giving speeches, closing deals and nailing job interviews.

Nguyen, Kenny and Gus Murillo. The Big Fish Experience. McGraw-Hill Education, 2016.

Co-founders of Big Fish Presentations show how to create an unforgettable experience for the audience by creating engaging content, adding memorable visuals, and developing a powerful delivery.

Book Review: Leading through Language

September 12th, 2016

book cover imageEngal, Bart. Leading through language: Choosing words that influence and inspire. Wiley, 2015.

Desperately searching for a model strategic plan, I reviewed the 2016 plan produced by an elite university library. The first page listed new strategic directions, including these three:

  • Creating platforms for scholarly engagement
  • Supporting emerging literacies
  • Transforming the information ecosystem

All 5 pages of the strategic plan use this cryptic language.

This is not unusual. Managers often use particular phrases to capture complex ideas, assuming that the audience understands their meaning. Stringing these phrases into sentences and paragraphs makes it even less comprehensible.

In his new book Leading Through Language, Bart Egnal, CEO of The Humphrey Group, a communications consulting firm, explains that in the business world, jargon often undermines effective leadership. He uses his experience as an executive coach to explain why people use jargon and how leaders can use clear language to convey their ideas and to influence others.

Egnal begins his book by explaining that use of jargon can be positive. Jargon used within a small group of similar people fosters a sense of shared identity or serves as shorthand for concepts that everyone knows. But Egnal catalogs many negative types jargon, such as the unnecessary add-on (At the end of the day; Having said that) or the baffling noun cluster (Team strategy plan priorities) that confuse the listener. He encourages speakers to adopt the mindset of a leader, to communicate ideas clearly and to use every conversation as an opportunity to inspire action.

To speak as a leader, Egnal recommends developing a mental script of well-defined ideas that are ready to be articulated as communication opportunities arise. Scripts are adapted for particular audiences and delivered with authenticity and conviction. Every script has a clear subject, one sentence that defines the topic for the audience. An effective script also has a single leadership message that is positive, engaging and true and it ends with a call to action.

In Leading Through Language, Egnal shows how to articulate ideas that motivate others. He includes many examples of strong and weak messages. However, his book does not include something promised by the subtitle and the cover design – the specific “words that influence and inspire.” Nonetheless, this book is recommended for anyone who aspires to be a leader.

© Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.

Ford Library Open Labor Day

September 2nd, 2016

imageFord Library will be open for our normal Semester / Term Hours on Labor Day, Monday, September 5th.

All Library services and resources as provided by our circulation desk attendants will be available except for research assistance.

Our professional staff, and expert reference librarians will return on Tuesday, September 6th to help guide you toward success in your MBA.

Good Luck in Fall Term 1!

Book Review: Presence

August 29th, 2016

Cuddy, Amy. Presence: Bringing your boldest self to your biggest challenges. Little, Brown and Company, 2015.book cover image

Next time you walk down the mallway, watch how Fuqua students walk. Early in the academic year, most students walk confidently with a long stride, swinging their arms and moving their heads. By October, some students are walking with a shorter stride and smaller arm movements. Their shoulders are rolled forward and their heads are stationary. These students are losing their confidence.

In her new book, Presence, Harvard Business School faculty member Amy Cuddy offers this advice to discouraged students: To regain your confidence and to feel your personal power, begin carrying yourself in an expansive way. Start acting like you are strong and in control and your confidence will return. The body shapes the mind.

In 2012 Amy Cuddy taught millions of viewers about power poses through her popular TED talk. In Presence she explains the science behind her work, citing academic research on how to make the best impression – by being confident, passionate and enthusiastic. To channel these qualities, people need to be genuine, to believe in their own abilities and to feel at ease when revealing them to others.

The way you carry yourself – how you walk or stand or sit – does not change your abilities. Yet Cuddy explains that the body’s posture is a source of personal power that increases feelings of strength and skill. She presents ample evidence that expansive posture makes people more open, bold and creative. It improves the ability to relate to others. It fosters confidence and enhances performance, particularly under pressure.

Graduate school at a top university is stressful and Presence has much to offer students in Fuqua’s demanding programs. For Cuddy, presence is not about winning. It is about approaching challenges without dread, executing them without anxiety and living without regret. This book is recommended. For those short on time, Amy Cuddy’s TED talk is also recommended.

Also available as an audiobook on CD and in the Ford Library Kindle – Business bestseller collection.

© Meg Trauner & Ford Library – Fuqua School of Business.
All rights reserved.

Library Services at Fuqua

August 23rd, 2016

ford library imageWelcome to our new MBA and MMS students and welcome back to our returning second year MBA’s. Students bring an energy and vitality to our university and to our city. We hope your move went smoothly and that as you explore the city and the university, you come to enjoy your new home as much as we do.

Duke Libraries are among the elite libraries of the world. Since you have found your way to the Ford Library Blog, you must already know that the library web pages give you access to the library 24 hours every day. You can access the online catalog for all of Duke’s libraries as well as the libraries of other research universities in the area, including UNC and NC State (noted in the catalog as TRLN Libraries).

Besides print resources, the Duke catalog gives you access to the thousands of full-text journals, eBooks, and audiobooks (online or on CD) that you can download to your own devices. We also offer business e-book collections on Kindles as well as a variety of career tools.

I also invite you to come in person to our library, the most beautiful space on campus (“like reading in a forest” – an actual quote from an MBA), and a quiet place to study. Introduce yourself to Jane Day, our fabulous director of reference services. Or consult with any of our reference librarians in person at the reference desk, by email or by online chat.

We can help you be successful during your time here at the Fuqua School.

Meg Trauner MLS, MBA
Associate Dean for Library Services
and Ford Library Director

New Movies for August

August 23rd, 2016

Here are the summer’s latest DVD titles:

Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justiceelvisnixon
The Boss
Criminal
Dear Eleanor
Allegiant
Elvis & Nixon
Everybody Wants Some!!
Green Room
The Mermaid
Miles Ahead
Only Yesterday
Sing Street
Underdogs

You may browse the entire DVD collection via the library catalog.

New Movies for July

July 18th, 2016

Here are our latest DVD titles:

10 Cloverfield Lane hailcaesar1
45 years
Anesthesia
The Brothers Grimsby
Eddie the Eagle       
Eye in the sky
Hail, Caesar!
Hello, My Name is Doris
Kung Fu Panda 3
London has Fallen
Midnight Special
Mr. Right
My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2
The Wave
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot
Zootopia

You may browse the entire DVD collection via the library catalog.

New Database Resource: Mergent Online

July 7th, 2016

mergentonline

The Ford Library is pleased to announce that we now subscribe to Mergent Online, a comprehensive source of information about US and international companies, both public and private. Research company histories, executives, financials, competitors, equity research, SEC filings, and more. Search by individual company name/ticker or use the “Advanced Search” tab to screen according to a variety of criteria.

Our subscribed modules also include Global Industry Reports, Country Profiles, and Investext Snapshot analyst reports.

Access Mergent Online via our Databases A-Z list.

Ford Library Closed July 4th

July 1st, 2016

fireworks_flagFord Library will be closed Monday, July 4th in observance of Independence Day. Our summer hours will resume on Tuesday, July 5th.

Wishing you a safe and happy holiday!

 

Faculty Reading Recommendations

June 29th, 2016

Fuqua Daytime MBA 2016 graduate, Adam Schwebach has compiled a list of recommended readings selected by Fuqua faculty. While intended for alumni who want to continue their professional development and learning beyond their time at Fuqua, the list can also benefit current Fuqua MBA and Duke students who want to dive more deeply into content recommended by our faculty. This post highlights a selection of recommended books available in Ford Library and on Amazon. But don’t miss the link to the full list that appears at the bottom of this posting.

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Shane Dikolli (Management Accounting)

dikolli-happy-money

Recommends: Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending by Elizabeth Dunn.
Library Catalog | Amazon

“Two professors combine their fascinating and cutting-edge research in behavioral science to explain how money can buy happiness–if you follow five core principles of smart spending.”
Summary from Library Catalog.

 

wade-benzoni-originalsKimberly Wade-Benzoni (Negotiations and Power and Politics)

Recommends: Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World by Adam Grant.
Library Catalog | Amazon

“The New York Times bestselling author of Give and Take examines how people can champion new ideas–and how leaders can encourage originality in their organizations.” Summary from Library Catalog.

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Kevin Shang
(Core Operations Management)shang-art-war

Recommends: The Art of War by Sun Tzu.
Library Catalog | Amazon

“Written in China more than 2,000 years ago, Sun Tzu’s classic The Art of War…examin[es] not only battlefield maneuvers, but also relevant economic, political, and psychological factors.”
Summary from Library Catalog.

 

brown-get-you-thereMark Brown (Management Communications)

Recommends: What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful by Marshall Goldsmith.
Library Catalog | Amazon

“Whether you are near the top of the ladder or still have a ways to climb, this book serves as an essential guide to help you eliminate your dysfunctions and move to where you want to go.”
Summary from Library Catalog.

 

Jim Smith (Decision Models)smith-signal-noise-

Recommends: The Signal and the Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail–but Some Don’t by Nate Silver.
Library CatalogAmazon

“Nate Silver built an innovative system for predicting baseball performance, predicted the 2008 election within a hair’s breadth, and became a national sensation as a blogger—all by the time he was thirty. He solidified his standing as the nation’s foremost political forecaster with his near perfect prediction of the 2012 election.” Summary from Library Catalog.

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soll-decisiveJack Soll (Leadership Ethics and Organizations LEO)

Recommends: Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work by Chip Heath and Dan Heath.
Library Catalog | Amazon

“[T]he bestselling authors of Switch and Made to Stick, tackle one of the most critical topics in our work and personal lives: how to make better decisions.” Summary from Library Catalog.

 

Download the full list of recommended readings (login required):  Fuqua Alumni | Current Duke & Fuqua Students

Yvonne Dittmar also contributed to this post.