Books to Consider Reading: Part Two

I’m back with more of my suggested books to consider reading from my supplemental reading list for ACCT 4154:

“A son can bear with composure the death of his father, but the loss of his inheritance might drive him to despair.” Nicolo Machiavelli, The Prince (Knopf, originally written in 1513), ISBN 0-679-41044-9.

Who else but me would find an estate planning nugget of truth in this book about politics? I studied this book in a history class at LSU, and I’ve read it a couple of times since. It certainly explains some people’s behavior.

“Jumping in to say what’s on our minds–before we’ve even acknowledged what the other person said–short-circuits the possibility of mutual understanding. Speaking without listening, hearing without understanding is like snipping an electrical cord in two, then plugging it in anyway, hoping somehow something will light up.” Michael P. Nichols, The Lost Art of Listening (The Guilford Press 1995), ISBN 0-89862-267-0. (now out in a second edition that rewrites and changes the above to (I prefer the first edition quote) “[T]alking without listening is like snipping an electrical cord in half and hoping that somehow something will light up.” P. 1 (The Guildford Press 2009), ISBN 978-1-59385-986-2.

This book is chock full of wisdom. I quoted it extensively in my article on the initial client interview. Dr. Nichols is correct: we think that we’re better listeners than we really are, including me.

“In The Nichomachean Ethics, Aristotle’s philosophical enquiry into virtue, character and the good life, his challenge is to manage our emotional life with intelligence. Our passions, when well exercised, have wisdom; they guide our thinking, our values, our survival. As Aristotle saw, the problem is not with emotionality, but with the appropriateness of emotion and its expression. The question is, how can we bring intelligence to our emotions–and civility to our streets and caring to our communal life?” “But given the crises we find ourselves and our children facing, and given the quantum of hope held out by courses in emotional literacy, we must ask ourselves: Shouldn’t we be teaching these most essential skills for life to every child–now more than ever? And if not now, when?” Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence (Bantam Books 1995), ISBN 0-553-09503-X.

I must confess that I’ve not pulled this book out in a while, although I have read several other books on emotional intelligence, including one by this author. However, it had a significant impact on me when I read it 20 years ago. It really explains why the smartest people, i.e., those with the highest IQs, aren’t always successful if their EQ is lacking. I became convinced that the EQ was a superior predictor of future success over the IQ.

“People who feel good about themselves produce good results….The best minute is the one I invest in people….Everyone is a potential winner. Some people are disguised losers, don’t let their appearances fool you….Goals begin behaviors. Consequences maintain behaviors.” Kenneth Blanchard, Ph.D. and Spencer Johnson, The One Minute Manager (Berkeley Books), ISBN 0-425-09847-8.

This is a timeless book and is well worth the short read that one must invest in it. This book convinced me to interact with others under my purview by “catching them doing something right” and praising them on the spot for it. I subsequently learned the “sandwich method” of correcting someone at, of all places, a baseball coaches clinic. The sandwich method involves a compliment followed by a correction followed thereafter by another compliment. In my experience, having used this method many times over the years, it works very well. That method certainly is a logical extension of this book. 

That’s all for now!

About lpaulhoodjr

I am an inactive lawyer who practiced almost 20 years as a tax and estate planning lawyer. Today, I am a speaker, author and consultant on tax and estate planning. In the recent past, I was the Director of Planned Giving for The University of Toledo Foundation. I am the co-author of six books, the sole author of another book and a frequent speaker and writer on estate planning, planned giving and business valuation.
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1 Response to Books to Consider Reading: Part Two

  1. Eric Rigby says:

    I look forward to reading your blog on a regular basis in 2017

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