What books am I reading in 2023?

20 books in 2022 and hundreds of articles (via Pocket)! With me setting a goal last year of >15, I did pretty well. Especially in the first six months of the year, I had a good pace and averaged 2.5 books a month. In the second half, I slowed down and read some larger ones.

Why am I writing this blog post? For the last seven years, I wrote blog posts (202220212020201920182017 & 2016) listing the books I read in the past year and want to read during that year. Commit to reading and sharing publicly to get more book recommendations.

My favorite books of 2022

  • Zero to IPO: The book follows a similar format to the High Growth Handbook from Elad Gil that I read a couple of years ago, which is still one of my most recommended books. Zero to IPO focuses a bit more on the title: growing to an IPO. While Okta, to me, isn’t the most exciting business in the world. It adds a lot of value in terms of understanding the different facets of a product, business, and industry to make it successful.
  • The Founders: If you’re working in tech/startups and haven’t heard of the PayPal mafia, you’ve likely lived under a rock for the past decade. The Founders goes in-depth about the different people (Musk, Sacks, Thiel, Levchin) involved in the creation and success of PayPal. It is very detailed, sometimes a little much for my liking as it didn’t add that much extra for me, but an amazing read as it’s one of the biggest successes.
  • Angel: 2022 was the first year for me to start angel investing. While learning the ins and outs, I picked up this book by Jason Calacanis to understand his mindset and process for finding the right opportunities. Together with a bunch of other resources, it gave me enough confidence to get going and hopefully pick some (future) winners.

What books I’m planning to read in 2023

  • The Signal and the Noise: We were gifted this book in 2022, and while it’s already a classic, knowing it was published a decade ago, I can’t wait to get into this Nate Silver book as it put him (and his work) on the map. A lot of my interest well over a decade ago in marketing, analytics & data came from the predictions and data being used in the Obama ‘08 election and inspired me to go that route.
  • The Customer Base Audit: Most tech companies have their eyes early on set on the acquisition of users over retention, which makes total sense. However, that also means that in a later stage, the need for CRM, retention, and genuinely understanding the customer increases if they get there. Having read a few Wharton-powered books before that added value, I’m hopeful this one will also.
  • Pragmatic Capitalism: While writing this, I’m reading the Intelligent Investor. This book was a recommendation from @RickDronkers after talking about it as a good counter to the more oldskool approach in Benjamin Graham’s book.
  • What It Takes: Lessons in the Pursuit of Excellence: Over the last years, through executive coaching, I’ve learned about myself that I value mastery of skills very highly (sometimes too much). Reading more about how to get better at certain skills and the lessons learned is a good back. It won’t likely be mindblowing, but throughout the year, I always like to mix in a couple of personal development books.
  • Principles for Dealing with the Changing World Order: Why Nations Succeed and Fail: Ray Dalio’s book Principles was a long but good read. Understanding how he thinks about decision-making and setting a guiding framework for himself and Bridgewater. His work in this book has been mentioned many times, so picking it up to read seems like a good idea.
  • Good Is The New Cool: The Principles Of Purpose: Purpose remains a hot topic in building businesses/marketing. Over the years, I have read many articles on this topic and listened to just as many podcasts. Picking up a book this year about it feels like a good way to keep up the knowledge.

Recommendations on what else to read?

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