Practical Advice from ‘Smart Trust’ by Stephen M. R. Covey (An Actionable Books summary)

“In today’s networked world, trust has become the new currency.”

Smart Trust, page xxiii

Would you loan me $20?

Unless you know me personally, probably not.

When you buy a book at Amazon.com, do you take the great deal offered by BrandNewSeller#37 and get a “like new” used copy for half price, or do you pay full price to get it from Amazon?

Take a look at Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index. Chart the gross domestic product of each nation, and note the near-perfect correlation between trust to prosperity, worldwide.

From individuals to companies to entire nations, trust affects not only how we do business, but how much business we do. If we are perceived to be trustworthy, business is streamlined. There’s less muss and fuss when both players trust. Warren Buffett has closed multimillion dollar deals on, literally, a handshake, because there was trust on both sides.

Introduced in his first book The Speed of Trust, Covey’s concept of “smart trust” aims to help us find a human and rational balance between our innate desire to trust and our learned fear of being taken for a ride and then asked to pay the fare.

Here’s what you’ll learn: … more … “Practical Advice from ‘Smart Trust’ by Stephen M. R. Covey (An Actionable Books summary)”

Practical Advice from ‘Imagine’ by Jonah Lehrer (An Actionable Books summary)

“[B]ecause we finally understand what creativity is, we can begin to construct a taxonomy of it, outlining the conditions under which each particular mental strategy is ideal.”

Imagine, page XVIII

How does creativity work? The very question is audacious.

We see two types of problem-solving: inch by inch, gaining ground on a solution, or the flash of insight, unforeseen. All arts, all acts of human creation are prone to this division.

Understanding that creativity is not centered in one portion of our brain, in a single specialized process, but a variety of sometimes unrelated processes, is vital to unlocking its keys.

Here’s what you’ll learn: … more … “Practical Advice from ‘Imagine’ by Jonah Lehrer (An Actionable Books summary)”

Practical Advice from ‘Make Your Idea Matter’ by Bernadette Jiwa (An Actionable Books summary)

“Ideas are formed in the mind but triumph in the heart.”

Make Your Idea Matter, page 7

Ever since I read Seth Godin’s All Marketers Are Liars I’ve been looking for practical advice on how to tell my story better in business.

I learned more in a 20-minute chat with Bernadette Jiwa than the rest of last year. Now, you can get an entire hour of Bernadette, three to five minutes at a time.

While each bit of Make Your Idea Matter stands alone, they add up to a clear vision of personal connection as your best marketing strategy.

Here’s what you’ll learn: … more … “Practical Advice from ‘Make Your Idea Matter’ by Bernadette Jiwa (An Actionable Books summary)”

Practical Advice from ‘The Luck Factor’ by Dr. Richard Wiseman (An Actionable Books summary)

“Luck is not a magical ability or a gift from the gods. Instead,
it is a state of mind―a way of thinking and behaving.”

The Luck Factor, page 165

We all know someone whose card is always drawn in the raffle, who gets tickets to the hot show, whose car never breaks down and whose marriage is bliss.

And we know their opposites, too.

Whether superstitious or not, most folks believe that luck is a mysterious force of the universe. Either mostly good things happen to you as you go through life, or mostly bad things happen. That’s true, as far as it goes.

But most of us believe there’s nothing we can do about it. And Dr. Richard Wiseman is here to tell you that’s wrong.

Luck, it turns out, can be changed. It can be controlled. Luck is a skill you can learn and a tool you can apply in business, in life.

Here’s what you’ll learn: … more … “Practical Advice from ‘The Luck Factor’ by Dr. Richard Wiseman (An Actionable Books summary)”

Practical Advice from ‘How We Decide’ by Jonah Lehrer (An Actionable Books summary)

“The first step to making better decisions is to . . . honestly assess our flaws and talents, our strengths and shortcomings.”

How We Decide, page 259

We’d all love to think that logic and reason are the foundation of our choices. Gotta keep those emotions in check when we’re making life’s big choices. After all, when we’re buying a house or car, choosing a life partner, deciding what to eat or whether or not to have children, we want to make the best choice possible. Pure logic, we assume, leads to the best choices.

We’re wrong.

How We Decide uses the latest scientific research to explain brand new understanding about how our brain works. This information is vital to better decision making.

Here’s what you’ll learn: … more … “Practical Advice from ‘How We Decide’ by Jonah Lehrer (An Actionable Books summary)”

Practical Advice from ‘Likeonomics’ by Rohit Bhargava (An Actionable Books summary)

“How can any person, organization, or idea become more trusted and more believable?”

Likeonomics, page xxiii

You don’t need to be told there’s a believability crisis. Whether you’re stuck buying a used car or listening to political ads, you know you have a hard time believing what these folks are saying. And you know why: for far too long, businesses of all kinds have focused on profit over good behavior. Rohit Bhargava, author of Likeonomics: The Unexpected Truth Behind Earning Trust, Influencing Behavior, and Inspiring Action, would probably love it if everyone were altruistic enough to be likeable just because it’s the right thing to do. He’s sharp enough to know that we’ll take more notice if he points out one of the inevitable side-benefits of likeability: a more profitable, less stressful business. Here’s what you’ll learn: … more … “Practical Advice from ‘Likeonomics’ by Rohit Bhargava (An Actionable Books summary)”

I Want to Make My Books a Proper Meal

Our little one is a voracious reader. No surprise there.

We’ve finally told her that after her bedtime routine (more reading, that) she’s no longer allowed to play computer games or watch videos; she can only read books until lights out.

Within 4 days after her weekly library trip, she moans that she doesn’t have anything to read. We know what she means, of course. Though she’ll have us read The Seven Sneezes every night for a month, reading on her own must be something new and exciting.

I know the feeling. … more … “I Want to Make My Books a Proper Meal”