According to Dictionary.com: “In 2014, the Ebola virus, widespread theft of personal information, and shocking acts of violence and brutality dominated the news. Vulnerability and visibility were at the core of the year’s most notable headlines. Encapsulating those themes, Dictionary.com’s Word of the Year for 2014 is exposure.”

Click here for the infographic.

Scaling_up             Leaders_Eat_Last

Here are Library Journal’s picks for best business books of the year 2014, as chosen by reviewers and columnists. Library Journal is an important publication used by professionals to evaluate titles for their libraries.

Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration, by Ed Catmull 

Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt, by Michael Lewis 

Capital in the Twenty-First Century, by Thomas Piketty 

Scaling Up Excellence: Getting To More Without Settling for Less, by Robert I. Sutton & Huggy Rao 

Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t, by Simon Sinek  

TheCircle              Capital_Amazon

PwC Strategy& (formerly Booz & Company), through its publication, strategy + business, has made available its annual review of the year’s best business books. The “Top Shelf” winners for each of the seven categories are as follows:

Strategy
Accelerate: Building Strategic Agility for a Faster-Moving World, by John P. Kotter
(Harvard Business Review Press, 2014)

Marketing
Tilt: Shifting Your Strategy from Products to Customers, by Niraj Dawar
(Harvard Business Review Press, 2013)

Executive Self-Improvement
Left Brain, Right Stuff: How Leaders Make Winning Decisions, by Phil Rosenzweig
(PublicAffairs, 2014)

Organizational Culture
The Circle, by Dave Eggers
(Knopf, 2013)

Innovation
Social Physics: How Good Ideas Spread—The Lessons from a New Science, by Alex Pentland
(Penguin Press, 2014)

Sustainability
The Big Pivot: Radically Practical Strategies for a Hotter, Scarcer, and More Open World, by Andrew S. Winston
(Harvard Business Review Press, 2014)

Economics
Capital in the 21st Century, by Thomas Piketty, translated by Arthur Goldhammer
(Belknap Press, 2014)

CIO.com’s James A. Martin reviews GetAbstract, an app that provides brief summaries of business books. GetAbstract’s website “provides downloadable summaries of more than 10,000 business books, TED Talks and other content, organized in 12 categories and with 50 new summaries added each month….You can download the apps for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, andBlackBerry devices. They are free, and you can use them to download up to six free summaries as part of a trial. After that, you need a subscription, which range from $89 a year to $999 a year.”

Mr. Martin’s only complaint is that many current best sellers are not offered.

Founded by longtime research analysts Laura Young and Michael Hill, Bizologie is an independent research consultancy serving venture capital firms, private equity firms, start-ups and established companies. On their website, they provide listings of free business research resources. They state, “One of our goals at Bizologie is to help you keep up with free resources for business research. Here are a few of our favorite sites, tools and tactics for doing business research on a shoestring budget.” The resource categories are: Favorite Tactics; Favorite Tools, such as Prezi, Aviary, and Bliss Control; Finance; General Business; International Statistics; Marketing, Advertisers, and Shoppers; Oil & Gas; Private Companies-Domestic; Private Companies-International; and Statistics & Government Data. There are also great blog posts including “How To Find a SWOT Analysis,” and “Using Investor Presentations for Energy and Gas.”

Open Culture posted this infographic on what causes the smell of old and new books from a chemistry perspective. The infographic is created by Andy Brunning, a chemistry teacher in the UK and posted, with a written explanation, on his excellent website, Compound Interest. Click on the image for a larger view.

Infographic courtesy of Open Culture and Compound Interest

Infographic courtesy of Open Culture and Compound Interest

Sam McNerney (250 Words) provides the list of nonfiction nominees for the National Book Award, which is given by The National Book Foundation. He notes that “there are only a few books on the list that would qualify as ‘business books’ but published the list for readers who ‘are intelligent business thinkers who are interested in smart non-fiction books in general.’” Here is the list:

Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? A Memoir, by Roz Chast

The Heathen School: A Story of Hope and Betrayal in the Age of the Early Republic, by John Demos

No Good Men Among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War Through Afghan Eyes, by Anand Gopal

The Mantle of Command: FDR at War, 1941-1942, by Nigel Hamilton

The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses, and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution, by Walter Isaacson

Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh, by John Lahr

Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China, by Evan Osnos

When Paris Went Dark: The City of Light Under German Occupation, 1940-1944, by Ronald C. Rosbottom

Nature’s God: The Heretical Origins of the American Republic, by Matthew Stewart

The Meaning of Human Existence, by Edward O. Wilson

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