Technologist, business leader, and compassionate philanthropist, Bill Gates is a household name. He has become an inspiration to millions worldwide. He has his day scheduled down to the minute, yet still finds time to read a new book every week.
While Gates does read some fiction novels, he mostly sticks to nonfiction books that cover his broad range of interests. The majority of the titles are about the evolution of society paradigms, such as how nations develop and how social change comes about. A few times each year, he releases a list of his favorite books. Most recently, he compiled a list of those recommended in honor of the TED 2015 conference.
1. “Business Adventures” by John Brooks
A 1969 compilation of John Brooks’ writings for the New Yorker, “Business Adventures” holds the place of being Gates’ favorite business book. Gates maintains that the titles offers the reader “sharp insights into timeless fundamentals of business.”
2. “The Bully Pulpit” by Doris Kearns Goodwin
A fan of Theodore Roosevelt, Gates revels in Goodwin’s biography as it sets the foundation for understanding the way social change manifests.
3. “On Immunity” by Eula Biss
In On Immunity, essayist Eula Bliss deconstructs the argument that vaccines are dangerous inventions that cause more harm than good. She, according to Gates, “uses the tools of literary analysis, philosophy, and science to examine the speedy, inaccurate rumors about childhood vaccines that have proliferated among well-meaning parents.” While Bliss may have taken up this topic “not for academic reasons but because of her new role as a mom,” but she expertly sets the record straight when it comes to the alleged dangers of vaccines.
4. “Making the Modern World” by Vaclav Smil
Vaclav Smil is Gates’ favorite living author because Smil is “an original thinker who never gives smile answers to complex questions.”
Smil gives an in-depth look at the physical materials – iron, cement, and plastic, that make up life in modern society. The book is “full of staggering statistics”, and leaves the reader pondering over mind-blowing facts that directly affect today’s society.
5. “How Asia Works” by Joe Studwell
Joe Studwell is a business journalist whose central mission is “understanding “development.”
Gates says that the book’s thesis goes like this:
Every country that becomes a developmental success (1) creates conditions in which small farmers can do well, (2) uses the revenue accrued from the agricultural surpluses to produce exports, and (3) nurtures both of these aspects with financial institutions – such as banks – that are closely controlled by that country’s government.
6. “How to Lie with Statistics” by Darrell Huff
Published in 1954, “How to Lie with Statistics” serves as introduction to statistics and the manipulation thereof. Gates feels this book, and the principles within, are “more relevant than ever.” In fact, “one chapter shows you how visuals can be used to exaggerate trends and give distorted comparisons.”
In this era of social media, the premise of this book is vital for those searching for success in both business and life.
Not only are these books sure to provide some inspiration, but reading them will also help you to become more successful. Don’t forget to share this post, and spread the inspiration.