Achieving Business Excellence with John Spence

Five MUST READ Business Books


  1. John, thank you for always being the incredible resource that you are. I’ll admit I’ve been putting Tom Peters’s book off while I worked through some others, but I’m going to take your advice and tackle it a little bit at a time.

    I call Awesomely Simple a gem – highly compact and highly valuable. Thank you for writing it.

    You were asking for suggestions – I’m in love with “Small Giants” because I love to see businesses built around someone’s passion, and it sounds like that’s what “Start with Why” is about. If you’d like to do a quick whack pack around that theme, I would find it invaluable.

    Looking forward to getting my hands on these other recommendations. As always, thanks for being the inspiration you are.

    • johnspen says:

      Small Giants is a great book too… some similar ideas to Simon’s book – both worth a read.

  2. Can’t disagree with your list at all. Hard to limit it to a specific number. Chuckled slightly at how you felt about Tom Peters’ book because I approach almost all of his books that same way – read a bit, put it down, pick it up later, repeat.

    • johnspen says:

      Randy — very hard to pick only five – there are soooooo many great books out there — so I will continue to post more reviews.

  3. John,

    Don’t be humble, your own book merits the credit. I think its a great resource, bringing all parts of a business together. Trust Agents I’ve read and agree with your review. It’s a great reference for anyone struggling to make an impact with Social Media. The others I’ll have to add to my Kindle collection!

    A book to suggest? I’m currently reading “Blue Ocean Strategy”, Kim and Mauborgne, which remains valuable especially as we need to review our business models in these hard times. I also recommend “Peak” by Chip Conley, a great application of Mazlow’s Hierarchy of Needs in a business context.

    Look forward to your next recommendations,


    • Bill – thanks for the kind words about my book. I read Blue Ocean Strategy and have worked with the authors – very interesting book – a big idea! Also enjoyed “Peak” — I gave a speech with Chip about two years ago – super, super nice guy and a wonderful speaker.

  4. Hey John –

    Thanks for the recommendation.

    The goal is to get as many companies as possible to wake up with a sense of Why they do what they do. To build their cultures into places where people love to come to work everyday. Not “like” – that’s about pay and benefits – “LOVE,” which is about going home at the end of the day feeling fulfilled.

    Thanks for being a part of the movement and for sharing the message in the work you do also.

    Inspire on!

    – Simon

    • Thanks so much for the comments Simon — I LOVED your book and feel so very lucky that I am one of those people who knows their WHY and gets to live it every day. MY “job” is my craft, my way of expressing myself and the joy I find in my work… and sharing it with others in a loving and thoughtful way… much like you! You were spectacular in Gainesville – I am harsh critic on speakers — and you and your message were amazing! Keep up the important and excellent work you do. Indeed — Inspire on my friend – Inspire on!!!

  5. Teresa says:

    Thank you John for your recommended books. I won your published book “Awesomely Simple” some months ago and was so pleased with the information that I became aware of areas in the company I work with and the improvements that could be done to raise its quality and service. I did sit with two operation managers and gave them examples that were in your book and encouraged them to purchase and give their employees workshops with the resources from your site. They wrote down book name and site. That is how much I believe in the 6 principles and would like to see more companies use them. Thank you for all your research and time invested.