Never Stop Improving

Lowe’s hit the nail on the head with their slogan of “Never Stop Improving.” I can’t stress this motto enough in building your business acumen and professional career as well.

We’re all so busy getting things done that it’s often tough to find time for personal and professional development, but I assure you that it is time well spent when you invest in your own advancement and polish your behavior and skills.

I’ve never been a big reader, but I do love business-related books that help me become a better worker, team member and manager. Below are some oldies, but goodies, that I highly recommend, if you don’t already have them on your shelf. These are the type of books that don’t have to be read cover-to-cover, so even thumbing through them can bring value if you’re not a book-lover.

7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey — While you can skip the chapters of this book in which you already excel, I’m certain you’ll find areas of potential improvement for your professional demeanor. My personal favorites are “Put First Things First” which helps determine priorities and “Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.” We all could use better listening skills, right?

Lifescripts by Stephen M Pollan and Mark Levine — My cousin gave me this book with tabs on her favorite chapters when I was 25…what a phenomenal gift for a budding professional. It gives guidance on how to handle difficult conversations in your professional career such as asking for a pay increase or telling your supervisor that a colleague took credit for your idea. It also has management scripts for things such as denying a pay increase or telling a subordinate that he needs better personal hygiene. This book is great for timid workers who need more conviction as well as strong personalities who need more tact.

(For women) Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office by Dr. Lois P. Frankel — The subtitle of this book says it all, “101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make that Sabotage Their Careers.” This book is not about becoming a ball-buster. It’s about being identified as a “professional” instead of a “female professional,” which can at times hinder your forward progression in the workplace without your knowledge. Did you realize that you lose credibility every time you touch your hair?

So with New Year’s resolutions in full swing, spend a few of those gift cards you received on great additions to your bookshelf that will provide some much needed brain food and career potential!

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