by Scott Ronalds
Summer is just around the corner. With the kind permission of COVID-19, things will look a little different this year: social distance, empty ball parks, tanning lines for face masks and staycations. But so be it. There will be no better time to rediscover your garden, explore vast spaces, soak up some vitamin D and open a good book.
This is where our annual reading list comes into play. As every year, we have put together a varied mix of business and culture for 2020.
Rethink the business of creativity, by Ian Grais, Tom Shepansky and Chris Staples. Tom Bradley, our Chief Investment Officer, recommends this book, which was written to mark the 20th anniversary of Rethink, one of the leading advertising and design agencies in Canada. In it, the three founders share what they learned when they led Rethink to the top of the rankings and what disciplines they set up to stay there. It’s about doing business with creativity, but the lessons apply to management in most other areas. Do not confuse the funny, bright and informal approach as easy – there is a lot of meat here.
21 things you may not know about Indian law by Bob Joseph. Salman Ahmed, our portfolio manager, introduces this national bestseller, which is the essential guide to understanding the law and its impact on generations of indigenous peoples. In Salman’s words, “You can’t fix something without first understanding the problem. This book explains some of the structural challenges that Indigenous Canadians face. Learning these topics is the first step towards reconciliation for me.”
Salt, fat, acid, heat, by Samin Nosrat. Lisa Guo, one of our Associate Investor Specialists, recommends this book. It’s a New York Times bestseller that deals with mastering the elements of good cooking (something we’ve all done a lot lately). The author teaches how each element (salt, fat, acid and heat) affects your cooking, how much and when you need to use it and which kitchen / pantries everyone should have. Lisa tells me that she had little interest or appreciation for cooking, but after reading this, she changed her tune. The book also inspired a four-part Netflix series with Nosrat.
The ride of a lifetime by Robert Iger. This is my choice. The Disney director wrote this book late last year about the principles required for real leadership and the lessons he has learned from his 15 years of leadership. I found the chapters on the Pixar, Marvel, and Lucasfilm acquisitions particularly interesting because many people at the time thought they were bad deals (they made billions for Disney). What also makes the book interesting is that Iger has announced that he is ready to leave the company earlier this year (before COVID-19). However, Disney takes it on its head as most of its theme parks are closed, live sports are suspended (Disney owns ESPN), and film production is discontinued. With all of this in mind, Iger has changed course and is effectively running the company again as Executive Chairman.
How to make friends and influence people by Dale Carnegie. David Toyne, our chief development officer, recommends this book how you can be successful in your business and personal life. It was first published more than 80 years ago and, with more than 30 million copies sold worldwide, has become one of the best-selling books of all time. David wished he had read this book when he was 25 and started his career. In his words: “The lessons I learned / learned from the book definitely help me in my work and my life in many dimensions, including working with colleagues, customers, potential customers, the family and some ongoing renovations, our contractors! ”
Shimmering shimmering light by Sarah Selecky. This airy reading was kindly provided by Lori Norman (one of our investor specialists). Lori notes that it is a fun, satirical book (“though probably not for everyone”) that examines the self-improvement movement, consumerism, and the distracting power of social media with a touch of spirituality.
The art of happiness by Dalai Lama and Howard Cutler. Chris Stephenson (one of our investor specialists) recommends this – the original book about happiness. He suggests that reading B.C. The advice of health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry: “Be friendly, be calm and be safe.” And in Chris’ words: “Just looking at the cover with the Dalai Lama’s smile, where it looks like he’s about to burst out laughing, can only calm you down.”
Finally, a bonus selection for those with roots or interest in Northern Ireland. Don’t say anything by Patrick Keefe is a nonfiction page turner about the bitter conflict known as The concernsthat devastated Belfast and the rest of the country from the late 1960s to the late 90s. Say Nothing has been named one of the top 10 books of 2019 by the New York Times and the Washington Post and, in my opinion, lives up to the praise.
If you’ve had a great read lately, we’d love to hear about it. Let us know in the Remarks Section below.
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