The Best Career Books of 2014 From the LiquidPlanner Team

Tatyana Sussex | December 23, 2014

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We’re big readers here at LiquidPlanner. So from time to time, we like to share the books that are making a difference to the way we think, work and manage our daily projects. Here’s a list of some of the best career books we’ve read this year. What books have made a difference in your job this year?

Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products, by Nir Eyal
This book brings together concepts from psychology, design, and business. It’s a very nice introduction to what makes people tick, and how to use this understanding to build products that engage people.

Brick by Brick: How LEGO Rewrote the Rules of Innovation and Conquered the Global Toy Industry,  by David Robertson  and  Bill Breen
This book uses the LEGO company as a case study on how to make innovation work for you. It covers the different approaches LEGO has taken, what’s worked and what’s failed, and how your company culture will affect what innovative approaches are right for you.

Lean UX: Applying Lean Principles to Improve User Experience, by Jeff Gothelf
This is an extremely pragmatic way to look at solving product and design-related problems. It suggests a workable framework that drives cross-functional teams toward solving specific problems. Beyond the framework, it promotes an iterative development process aimed at testing hypotheses in order to validate whether or not your team is on the right path to solving the problems you’ve identified. It’s short, sweet, and practical.

How to Get Your Point Across in 30 Seconds or Less, by Milo O. Frank
This short book helps you boil down the key points of your messaging to the essentials. It’s breezy and to the point.

The Pragmatic Programmer, by Andrew Hunt and David Thompson
The resource for anyone learning about programming best practices.  If there’s one book every programmer should read at least once a year, it’s this one.  While it doesn’t go into extreme detail on any one concept, it provides an overview of the major concepts every programmer should be familiar with.

Code Complete, by Steve McConnell
If “The Pragmatic Programmer” is an overview of best practices, “Code Complete” is a technical manual for best practices. It’s quite a tome, but it contains detailed descriptions of many, many concepts in software engineering. These practices span programming disciplines, paradigms, and languages.

The Twelve-Factor App
Surprise!  This isn’t exactly a book—it’s more of a manifesto. It describes key elements and best practices for web application development and is an excellent guide for any engineer who’s building SaaS applications.

Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant, by W. Chan Kim  and Renée Mauborgne
This book breaks down markets and talks about how to appeal to different customer segments by addressing the things that they value.

Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business, by Gino Wickman
This book takes the idea of getting traction for your business through multiple marketing channels and how to keep them open and optimize them. This is an actionable book and comes with a spreadsheet of how to track ideas.

Add your book to the list, in Comments.

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