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The Extraordinary Business Book Club

Alison Jones, publisher and book coach, explores business books from both a writer's and a reader's perspective. Interviews with authors, publishers, business leaders, entrepreneurs, tech wizards, social media strategists, PR and marketing experts and others involved in helping businesses tell their story effectively.
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The Extraordinary Business Book Club
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Now displaying: June, 2023
Jun 26, 2023

"It's not thinking on your feet, it's listening on your feet. Yes and, what are you saying? How can I build on that? How can I move in the direction that we are going to go together?"

If the thought of trying to be funny at work brings you out in a rash, don't panic: I have it on good authority from Neil Mullarkey that there's no need to dress up as a chicken or do karaoke. And he should know. Co-founder of Europe's top improv troupe, the Comedy Store Players, Neil has spent many years sharing the principles of improv with business leaders to improve their confidence, communication, and creativity.

Neil's new book In the Moment is a call to embrace the importance of listening and co-creating in the moment, a key principle of improv. It's not about being funny per se, but rather about fostering collaboration, navigating ambiguity, and embracing vulnerability. In this context, humour enhances human connections, builds rapport, and fosters creativity - the elements, in fact, that we need most in our workplaces today. 

Jun 19, 2023

Catherine Garrod led Sky to become the most inclusive employer in the UK. Her message is clear: if you're not consciously including everyone, you're unconsciously excluding someone. And the rewards of conscious inclusion are extraordinary, from employee and customer satisfaction to future-proofing organizations in our ever-evolving world.

When it came to publishing her book, Catherine was determined to walk her talk, ensuring both language and design were as accessible as possible. She also reveals how she managed the delicate dance between perfectionism and deadlines, and learned how important it is an author to keep your sights on the reader and the difference you want to make.

Jun 12, 2023

No, not the Michelangelo biography by Irving Stone, but the highs and lows of the maddening, marvellous process of writing a business book. In this best bits episode I pick out the pearls from the last few conversations, and this time the common theme is the pain and pleasure of writing a book, the unrelenting difficulty of it, and the extraordinary joy and meaning it provides. Often all in the same moment. 

Whether you're agonising over your manuscript or feeling ecstatic about the progress you're making you'll relate to all of this, and if you're lacking motivation, you'll find it here in spades. 

With insights from: 

  • Steven Adjei on the nature of pain; 
  • Richard Charkin on the visceral vulnerability of becoming an author; 
  • Melissa Romo on the challenges of making the complex simple; 
  • Catherine Erdly on detail wrangling; 
  • Susan Doering on the relentless work of marketing; 
  • Eloise Skinner on dealing with the soul suck of social media; 
  • Adam Bryant on the all-consumingness of writing a book; and
  • Alex Hill on why we do it at all. 

Imagine what Michelangelo could have achieved if he'd listened to this...

Jun 5, 2023

'Everything at its core has to be one of those three things: a great insight, a great story, or a great practical approach.'

Adam Bryant, creator of the New York Times's Corner Office column, has interviewed a LOT of top leaders, but not in the way they expected. He ask them  about leadership, rather than strategy, and their own leadership in particular: questions that allow them to articulate answers they haven't seen before. 

In this fascinating conversation we explore how he's built on this journalistic approach to write a series of books, and how writing in public builds credibility, expands networks, and creates a perpetual motion machine for authorship.

If you're interested in leadership and writing, and if you love a good metaphor riot, this is unmissable. 

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