My 3 Favorite Books On Communication
Just today, someone asked me what my favorite books on communication are.
Being a professional communicator, I get asked this a lot.
Funny thing is…
When I tell them, they sort of get this almost-but-not-quite disappointed look on their face.
Some might even say:
“Oh, everyone’s heard of those. Tell me something new.”
Here’s the thing:
There’s a reason you keep hearing the same books recommended over and over again.
It’s because the ideas in these books just work.
People read them, apply them, see the results, then tell others.
Others read them, apply them, see the results, and tell others.
And so on.
Stuff that works, lasts.
There’s even a mathematical theory about it called the Lindy Effect.
Without going all scientific on you…
The Lindy Effect states that the longer a thing lasts, the longer it is likely to last.
Examples of “Lindy” things:
- Technology like the spoon, the cup, and the wheel.
- Ideas like religions
Good books are “Lindy.”
Charles Dickens wrote A Tale Of Two Cities in 1859. To date, it has sold over 200 million copies. It’ll probably sell 200 million more.
So, when I give you my recommendations on the best books to read to become better communicators…
It’s because they’re Lindy.
With that said, here are the recommendations:
1) How To Win Friends And Influence People by Dale Carnegie – 80 years in print. This is as classic as it gets. If you want better relationships – family, friendship, love, work – this is the book to read. There’s also a really good summary of it on Wikipedia. I still recommend you buy it and read it at least 10 times.
2) Influence: The Psychology Of Persuasion by Robert Cialdini – Originally published in 1984. Cialdini was literally ahead of his time with this book because it didn’t sell well at all for the first 4-5 years after it came out. It only gained popularity after “evidenced-based decision making” became a thing. Cialdini intended this book for the average Jane like you and me. He wanted to show us how we are susceptible – in helpful and harmful ways -. to influence and persuasion.
3) The Stress Test by Ian Robertson – This book is new (2016.) So we don’t know if it’s Lindy just yet. Robertson gives you a fabulous look into the brain and how we react and respond to things. Based on science. Do you ever wonder why something you said made someone react the way you did? This book will show you.
Chief Book Recommender, MENA Speakers
P.S. What books are you reading right now? Let me know in the comments. I love getting book recommendations myself. 😉