Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup, by John Carreyrou
Bad Blood is sort of like the Enron scandal meets The Emperor’s New Clothes. It is everything people hate about Silicon Valley rolled into one very entertaining book. While reading you’ll be in both disbelief and outrage as the Theranos story unfolds.
The book reveals how incestuous the startup world can be. One of the most interesting topics broached by this book is the powerful fear running rampant in the startup word – the fear of missing out.
Powerful: Building a Culture of Freedom and Responsibility, by Patty McCord
Patty McCord’s Powerful is probably the best book on organizational culture and managing people that I’ve read.
She offers insightful nuggets about the culture at Netflix and how the company motivates its employees. McCord maintains that the greatest motivation is the feeling of contributing to success. Sure, money is important, but people show up to work because they want to contribute to something bigger than themselves.
McCord’s “radical” recipe to HR success? Simply treat employees like adults, be open with them, share challenges and corporate direction, and don’t keep looking over their shoulder. The more we check-in, the more demotivated employees become.