You are here

5 Books for Millennials to Get Ahead


5 Books for Millennials to Get Ahead

Managers and millennials continue to misunderstand each other on the job, raising concerns for employers who want to retain this talented generation, according to Bentley University’s PreparedU research. As we grapple with the “hows” and “whys” of these issues, it’s time to put aside RSS feeds and 140-character limits and pick up a good book. Firsthand accounts from high achievers on what works and doesn’t work will prove worthy reads for business students and managers alike.

Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose by Tony Hsieh

Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh created a corporate culture that values and delivers happiness. The winning operating procedure?

  • Pay brand-new employees $2,000 to quit
  • Make customer service the responsibility of the entire company, not just a department
  • Focus on company culture as the No. 1 priority
  • Apply research from the science of happiness to running a business
  • Help employees grow-both personally and professionally
  • Seek to change the world
  • Oh, and make money too . . .

Hsieh shares the different lessons he learned in business and life, from starting a worm farm to running a pizza business, through LinkExchange, Zappos and more. The powerful model applies to corporate culture and individuals, emphasizing how concentrating on the happiness of those around you can dramatically increase your own happiness.

Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell

An intellectual journey through the world of “outliers” — the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful — explores what makes high-achievers different. Malcolm Gladwell warns that we pay too much attention to what successful people are like, and too little attention to where they are from: that is, their culture, their family, their generation and the idiosyncratic experiences of their upbringing. Along the way, he explains the secrets of software billionaires, what it takes to be a great soccer player, and what made the Beatles the greatest rock band.

The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg

Pulitzer Prize–winning business reporter Charles Duhigg looks at scientific discoveries that help explain why habits exist and how they can be changed. Narratives from the boardrooms of Procter & Gamble, the sidelines of the NFL and the front lines of the civil rights movement present a new understanding of human nature and its potential. He argues that understanding how habits work is the key to exercising regularly, losing weight, being more productive and achieving success with the power to transform businesses, communities and lives.

Generation Me — Revised and Updated: Why Today’s Young Americans Are More Confident, Assertive, Entitled — and More Miserable Than Ever Before by Jean M. Twenge

Want to know what baby boomers and Gen Xers think about you? Find out why millennials are labeled as tolerant, confident, open-minded and ambitious, but also disengaged, narcissistic, distrustful and anxious. Research, data and statistics, stories and cultural references explain how “Gen Me-ers” have shifted the American character, redefining what it means to be an individual in today’s society. Stories about real people reveal the hopes, disappointments and challenges of Generation Me to help boomers and Gen Xers help those in their teens, 20s and 30s find their road to happiness. 
Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street by John Brooks

Does history repeat itself? John Brooks takes 12 stories from corporate and financial life in America to look at commonalities among iconic companies and moments that define the intricacies of corporate life: the $350 million Ford Motor Company disaster known as the Edsel, the fast and incredible rise of Xerox, and the unbelievable scandals at General Electric and Texas Gulf Sulphur. Both entertaining and informative.

Kristen Walsh is a freelance writer. 


by Kristen Walsh October 19, 2018

Alison Davis-Blake, the former business school dean at the Universities of Michigan and Minnesota, was inaugurated as the eighth president of Bentley University in a ceremony attended by students, faculty, staff, alumni and other members of the extended Bentley community.

TOPICS: News, Leadership