Reading books gives you two superpowers that can help you achieve your goals: it helps you develop critical thinking and level up your communication skills. Conquer the world with CZ’s Summer Reading List: 14 Books You Should Be Reading This Summer.
2020 is destined to be an extraordinary year. Although the first half of the year was shrouded in the coronavirus pandemic, with the joint efforts of people worldwide, the epidemic is gradually weakening. For about half the year, people around the world have been locked down at home, unable to travel, or meet their friends and loved ones.
The best time to start reading was yesterday; the second-best time is now. If you missed the opportunity to read during the isolation, then the upcoming summer vacation (at least for the Northern Hemisphere) may be an excellent opportunity. Resting during the holidays through leisurely activities like reading can ease the mental tension and pressure caused by the epidemic, politics, and other negative matters from the past few months. It allows you to rethink your connection with the world and identify things in your life that will help you become a better version of you.
“These are the top books I recommend. They all impacted and contributed to my understanding and view of the world as well as shaping my thinking models. I believe they will have a positive impact on you too.”
Changpeng Zhao (CZ), Binance Founder & CEO
CZ is not only a crypto pioneer, he is also an avid reader, and so is most of the Binance team. Need proof? We published the article “CZ’s 10-Book Reading List for the Holidays” last year, as well as “Ten Books We’re Reading: Book Recommendations to Pass the Time During Quarantine” earlier this year.
This time, we’re adding more book recommendations from CZ, as we welcome the upcoming holidays.
CZ’s Book Recommendations
1. The Law by Frédéric Bastiat. This short (only 60+ pages) but timeless book by French essayist Bastiat from 1850 talks about what the law should be and should not be. What areas should be protected: person, property and freedom. And what areas should be left alone. It forms a fundamental view of the world and of right and wrong.
2. Economics in One Lesson by Henry Hazlitt. More than 60 years have passed since this book was first published, but there are few books that better encapsulate the inner workings of economics than this one. Again, this book shows how the economy should work, what governments should and should not do. Why some of the common concepts we are being brainwashed with are fallacies.
3. Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World by Gen. Stanley McChrystal. CZ said, “I believe every modern organization should be run like this.”
- Top-down structures no longer work
- Decisions should be made by people who understand the situation
- Embed / exchange program
- Information sharing to everyone
- Eyes on, hands off
4. Loonshots: How to Nurture the Crazy Ideas That Win Wars, Cure Diseases, and Transform Industries by Safi Bahcall. The title says it all. After reading this book, you will understand why we tolerate failures at Binance, and more importantly, what types of failures we tolerate or not.
5. The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leaderless Organizations by Ori Brafman, Rod Beckstrom. This book talks about decentralized organizations vs. centralized ones. And why and how regulations won’t stop decentralized organizations. “I really wish every regulator on the planet would read this book. Regardless, it gives you an idea of how decentralized organizations operate,” CZ said.
6. Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World by David Epstein. While many books talk about specialization and the 10,000-hour rule in an ultra-competitive world, this book gives a different view to balance that argument. And how many great inventions happen at the intersection of disciplines.
7. Super Pumped: The Battle for Uber by Mike Isaac. While we don’t want to follow everything in this book, Uber did face similar challenges developing in a new industry with unclear regulations, fast growth, etc. “They took a far more aggressive approach to it, well, depending on your view. Regardless, this book is a great read,” CZ added.
8. Alchemy: The Dark Art and Curious Science of Creating Magic in Brands by Rory Sutherland. This book addresses some of the counterintuitive points in life and business in a very interesting way.
9. Hug Your Haters: How to Embrace Complaints and Keep Your Customers by Jay Baer. This book is a must-read for Marketing and Customer Service teams. It talks about how we should service our users, interact with them on social media, and more.
10. The DevOps Handbook: How to Create World-Class Agility, Reliability, and Security in Technology Organizations by Gene Kim, Patrick Debois, John Willis, Jez Humble. This book explains how modern technology departments work. How to do a continuous deployment of code and build high-quality platforms. A must-read for Tech teams.
11.The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier. If you are leading a team or mentoring someone, you should read this book.
12. Sell with a Story: How to Capture Attention, Build Trust, and Close the Sale by Paul Smith. Learn how powerful storytelling is, and become a better salesperson, marketer, and communicator.
13. Platform Revolution: How Networked Markets Are Transforming the Economy – and How to Make Them Work for You by Geoffrey G. Parker, Marshall W. Van Alstyne, Sangeet Paul Choudary. A great book about platforms, how to build them, and why they are important and impactful.
14. Exponential Organizations: New Organizations Are Ten Times Better, Faster, and Cheaper Than Yours (and What to Do About It) by Salim Ismail, Yuri van Geest, Michael S. Malone. An excellent book on organizations.
Whether you’re free to read the whole day or you only have time for a few pages at a time, we’re encouraging you to take the chance to enjoy reading wherever you are. No matter if you prefer to read books in hardcover or e-book, or even listen to audiobooks, which is something that CZ is fond of doing regularly. Dive deep into the list and gain new inspiration and knowledge to improve your life and performance.