Book Recommendations in January 2021 Suman February 9, 2021

Book Recommendations in January 2021

Anyone who knows me knows how much I love books! I share my reading lists, monthly updates, book reviews and constantly have references from books I have read.

There are so many books that have made an impact in me and taught me so much.

And as a part of sharing my passion for books, I decided to start a new hashtag on Linkedin to make sure all my recommendations are easily located.

Here are books I recommended in January


This is also the first book I read this year.

This is one of the very few great books I have read on communication! It brought fresh perspectives even for me!

The best thing I love about this book is the “inside out” approach – effective communication starts with us, and not with other people.

This really helped me understand my own disruptive communication patterns in my personal life and how to take care of them.

I highly recommend this book for the following reasons:

– Each communication style is explained very well. It also chalks out how to communicate with each style

– All the information is research backed and dealt with in a well rounded manner. No loose ends there

– Personal stories and case studies make the concepts more relatable

– And finally, every concept is followed by a list of practical things you can do to master that step

Whether you are an entrepreneur or a home maker – and definitely – if you are an employee – this book is a must read!

I know I’ll be dipping into it from time to time!

Here is a detailed review of the book : Soft is the New Hard


If there’s one book you read on writing well, this is the book – literally!

With emails coming back into fashion and us writing like never before on social media, your writing skills represent your personal brand as much as your personality!

I am re-reading William Zinsser’s book and this book is solely the reason behind my obsession with clarity and concision in writing.

The first part lays out the rules of great writing. From structure to clarity and simplicity, this covers it all.

The second part deals with different kinds of writing genres and how to write them best.

The book not just discusses the aspects of writing well, it demonstrates those traits through Zinsser’s own writing.

If writing skills is on your list for 2021, grab this one!

Here is a review of the book: Confessions of Public Speaker by Scott Berkun


I also recommended a podcast last month.

I am not big on podcasts but this one is a free university for entrepreneurs – especially for trainers, running their own business!

Training Business is a podcast hosted by Mark Garrett Hayes and discusses a wide variety of topics related to the training business.

I love it for 2 big reasons:

– It is centered around running a “training” business – a rare resource in our industry – with a goldmine of information

– It has trainers and guests from across the world sharing their business experiences. That just brings in so many perspectives in one podcast!

It has 100+ episodes over the last 3 years and covers topics like:

– How to write a 1-page training proposal
– How to scale your business
– How to launch an online course (and market it)

The episode I am recommending today is a 2-part series: Successful cold calling for trainers (link in the first comment)

Cold calling is a bane for any entrepreneur. This episode covers:

– a practical system to add cold calling to your work routine
– a list of things you should consider before calling
– how to actually make those calls

PS: some of the services/references in some episodes may not apply to India


This is my first fiction recommendation for the year!

While fiction takes the flak for being fluff and of no practical use, I can assure you that reading the right stuff can be not just entertaining but useful too!

Fiction stimulates the mind to improve memory, focus and vocabulary.

It also helps us develop empathy when we identify with the characters and gives us a peek into the culture and times of the book.

50 Greatest Short Stories brings the best short stories from some of the greatest writers of the world.

Each one has a different style of writing, a unique world of characters and each one as entertaining.

It’s a great collectible – especially like the one I have with gold-edged pages!

I dip into it any time I am looking for a reading treat which wouldn’t need me to read a whole novel!

You also have another version – 100 greatest short stories – which is double the number of stories and more authors to read from!

Connect with me on Linkedin and follow the hashtag #sumanrecommends for new recommendations every Friday. 

I’ll be back with a round up of February posts at the end of the month!


Book Review: Eat That Frog By Brian Tracy

Book Review: The Hard Truth About Soft skills by Peggy Klaus