Curl up with your Kindle

Curl up with your Kindle

By Trevor Anderson, Megan Hess, Caleb Krueger, and Mitchell Wachtendonk with contributions from Gretchen Hutterli

Are you looking for something to do over the long and cold nights during winter break? Why not curl up with a good book?

The explosion of internet-related content has given people the impression that books are outdated and irrelevant. That couldn't be further from the truth.

"Books provide depth to the readers that magazines and articles don't," said Dr. Chuck Tomkovick, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire marketing professor. "Magazines and websites are built on flash while books are built on content," he continued.

This is important for students to remember. We live in a society where information can be attained quickly through various mediums. However, this does not mean the information found quickly is always the best. Sometimes the best information takes effort to find.

To help business students find interesting reading material, we asked Tomkovick and three other University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire business professors—Mark Alfuth, associate finance lecturer, Cynthia Hofacker, senior business communication lecturer, and Justin Gardner, management lecturer to recommend books they found to be personally and professionally useful. Based on their recommendations, we compiled a list of ten books that have wide appeal. (See below.). The first five books in particular are titles the professors valued the most. 

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has sold more than 10 million copies. This book focuses on behaviors that can be formed and improved in order to live a highly effective life. The content is not geared directly toward specific groups of people but rather aimed at individuals seeking personal improvement.

StrengthsFinder 2.0 is an online assessment that helps readers identify their talents and develop strategies for applying them in the life.

The Corner Office: Indispensable and Unexpected Lessons from CEOs on How to Lead and Succeed is based on interviews the author did with over 75 CEOS and top executives. This book is good for students who are close to graduating because it breaks down the key characteristics employers look for in an employee.

Self-Leadership and the One Minute Manager, is an easy-to-read book that examines how "power, freedom, and autonomy come from having the right mind-set and the skills needed to take personal responsibility for success" ( book description).

How to Win Friends and Influence People explains how communicating effectively is more important than being smart. First published in 1936, this self-improvement classic contains timeless tips for home and office that are still relevant today.

Reading books by different authors on a wide variety of topics helps readers learn more about their themselves and the world they live in. Mark Alfuth agrees.

"It's important that a person is strong enough to bring his or her own perspective to the world," said Alfuth, "Lessons presented in books can serve as fundamental starting points in building one's perspective."

So this winter break, pick up one of these books—or any other title that intrigues you. You might just be surprised by what you learn.


The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey

StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath

The Corner Office: Indispensable and Unexpected Lessons from CEOs on How to Lead and Succeed by Adam Bryant

Self-Leadership and the One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie


Good to Great by Jim Collins

Moneyball by Michael Lewis

The Snowball by Alice Schroeder

When Genius Failed by Roger Lowenstein

A Random Walk Down Wall Street by Burton Malkeil

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