Meryl Streep

10 Books Sure to Kickstart Your Career

We’ve all heard the spiel: to get a good job you must go to college. But what happens when you get out of college, are about $70,000 in debt, and don’t have the two years of relevant experience that all “entry-level” jobs require nowadays? I’m really asking. 

 

We millennial women need to stick together in all realms these days, including supporting each other to reach for our highest goals in the job market. I, like most, am having major difficulty in transforming myself from easily-picked-on-millennial to highly-respected-female. To get these answers I figured I’d do what I do best: read. Seeing as how there is no shortage of how-to books, I specifically chose the books with the highest ratings. I’ve compiled a list of ten books sure to help all millennial women achieve their goals from highest to lowest Goodreads rating! 

 

1. The Power of Onlyness – Nilofer Merchant (4.38 stars)

 

Onlyness

Image Via Penguin Random House 

 

In The Power of Onlyness, Nilofer Merchant, one of the world’s top-ranked business thinkers, reveals that, in fact, we have now reached an unprecedented moment of opportunity for your ideas to “make a dent” on the world. Now that the Internet has liberated ideas to spread through networks instead of hierarchies, power is no longer determined by your status, but by “onlyness”–that spot in the world only you stand in, a function of your distinct history and experiences, visions and hopes. If you build upon your signature ingredient of purpose and connect with those who are equally passionate, you have a lever by which to move the world.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

2. Permission to Screw Up – Kristen Hadeed and Simon Sinek (4.34 stars)

 

Permission to Screw Up

Image Via Amazon 

 

Per Goodreads, “This is the story of how Kristen Hadeed built Student Maid, a cleaning company where people are happy, loyal, productive, and empowered, even while they’re mopping floors and scrubbing toilets. It’s the story of how she went from being an almost comically inept leader to a sought-after CEO who teaches others how to lead.”

 

3. Lower Ed – Tressie McMillan Cottom (4.26 stars)

 

Lower Ed

 Image Via Amazon 

 

Despite the celebrated history of not-for-profit institutions of higher education, today more than 2 million students are enrolled in for-profit colleges such as ITT Technical Institute, the University of Phoenix, and others. Yet little is known about why for-profits have expanded so quickly and even less about how the power and influence of this big-money industry impact individual lives. Lower Ed, the first book to link the rapid expansion of for-profit degrees to America’s increasing inequality, reveals the story of an industry that exploits the pain, desperation, and aspirations of the most vulnerable and exposes the conditions that allow for-profit education to thrive.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

4. Reset – Ellen Pao (4.24 stars) 

 

Reset

Image Via Penguin Random House 

 

After Kleiner, Pao became CEO of reddit, where she took forceful action to change the status quo for the company and its product. She banned revenge porn and unauthorized nude photos–an action other large media sites later followed–and shut down parts of reddit over online harassment. She and seven other women tech leaders formed Project Include, an award-winning nonprofit for accelerating diversity and inclusion in tech. In her book, Pao shines a light on troubling issues that plague today’s workplace and lays out practical, inspiring, and achievable goals for a better future.

Ellen K. Pao’s Reset is a rallying cry–the story of a whistleblower who aims to empower everyone struggling to be heard, in Silicon Valley and beyond.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

 

5. The Crowdsourceress – Alex Daly (4.22 stars)

 

crowd-sourceress

Image Via Crowd-sourceress  

 

In recent years, the crowdfunding industry has generated several billions in funding. But the harsh reality is that around 60 percent of Kickstarter campaigns fail. Enter Alex Daly, a crowdfunding expert who has raised over $20 million for her clients’ campaigns. She has run some of Kickstarter’s biggest projects-TLC’s newest album, Neil Young’s audio player, and Joan Didion’s documentary. In this book, Daly takes readers deep inside her most successful campaigns, showing you how to get fans and influencers excited about your launch, build an appealing and powerfully designed campaign, access proven video tips, pitching tactics, press releases, and rewards ideas, and avoid the most common headaches and pitfalls.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

6. Playing Big – Tara Mohr (4.18 stars)

 

Playing Big

Image Via Amazon 

 

In her coaching and programs for women, Tara Mohr saw how women were “playing small” in their lives and careers, were frustrated by it, and wanted to “play bigger.” She has devised a proven way for them to achieve their dreams by playing big from the inside out. Mohr’s work helping women play bigger has earned acclaim from the likes of Maria Shriver and Jillian Michaels, and has been featured on the Today show, CNN, and a host of other media outlets.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

7. The Defining Decade – Meg Jay (4.12 stars)

 

defining decade

Image Via Amazon 

 

Dr. Meg Jay, a clinical psychologist, argues that twentysomethings have been caught in a swirl of hype and misinformation, much of which has trivialized what is actually the most defining decade of adulthood.

Drawing from a decade of work with hundreds of twentysomething clients and students, THE DEFINING DECADE weaves the latest science of the twentysomething years with behind-closed-doors stories from twentysomethings themselves. The result is a provocative read that provides the tools necessary to make the most of your twenties, and shows us how work, relationships, personality, social networks, identity, and even the brain can change more during this decade than at any other time in adulthood-if we use the time wisely.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

8. Things Are What You Make of Them – Adam J. Kurtz (4.11 stars)

 

Things Are what you make of them

Image Via Penguin Random House  

 

From the creative mind and heart of Adam J. Kurtz comes this quirky, upbeat rallying cry for creators of all stripes. Expanding on a series of popular guides he’s created for Design*Sponge, this handwritten and heartfelt little book shares wisdom and empathy from one working artist to others. The advice is organized by topic, including:

(How to) Get Over Comparing Yourself to Other Creatives

Seeking & Accepting Help from Others

How to Get Over Common Creative Fears (Maybe)

How to Be Happy (or Just Happier) 

As wry and cheeky as it is empathic and empowering, this deceptively simple, vibrantly full-color book will be a touchstone for writers, illustrators, designers, and anyone else who wants to be more creative–even when it would be easier to give up act normal.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

9. What Works – Iris Bohnet (4.09 stars)

 

bohnet

Image Via LSE Blogs 

 

“What Works” is built on new insights into the human mind. It draws on data collected by companies, universities, and governments in Australia, India, Norway, the United Kingdom, the United States, Zambia, and other countries, often in randomized controlled trials. It points out dozens of evidence-based interventions that could be adopted right now and demonstrates how research is addressing gender bias, improving lives and performance. “What Works” shows what more can be done often at shockingly low cost and surprisingly high speed.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

10. The New Rules of Work – Alexandra Cavoulacos (4.08 stars)

 

new rules of work

Image Via Amazon 

 

In this definitive guide to the ever-changing modern workplace, Kathryn Minshew and Alexandra Cavoulacos, the co-founders of popular career website TheMuse.com, show how to play the game by the New Rules. The Muse is known for sharp, relevant, and get-to-the-point advice on how to figure out exactly what your values and your skills are and how they best play out in the marketplace. Now Kathryn and Alex have gathered all of that advice and more in The New Rules of Work. Through quick exercises and structured tips, the authors will guide you as you sort through your countless options; communicate who you are and why you are valuable; and stand out from the crowd. The New Rules of Work shows how to choose a perfect career path, land the best job, and wake up feeling excited to go to work every day– whether you are starting out in your career, looking to move ahead, navigating a mid-career shift, or anywhere in between.

Synopsis courtesy of Goodreads 

 

I’ll be adding every one of these to my Amazon cart (and Christmas List). Let me know some of your other favorites!  

 

Feature Image Via Amazon and Crowd-sourceress