Our Favorites

If Earl Nightingale was right and ‘We become what we think about,’ then one way to know us is to understand what we’re thinking about. We draw inspiration from many authors, speakers, entrepreneurs, and publications.

  • Farnam Street: “Seeking wisdom by mastering the best of what other people have figured out.” It’s not really a blog. It’s more like a feed of incredible tools to help you THINK. Farnam Street is run by prolific reader Shane Parrish. We’ve partnered with Farnam Street because we feel like it gives us a chance to invest in the sharing of ancient wisdom and modern thinking – in the form of digestible nuggets.
  • Fast Company: Every FOR IMPACT ORGANIZATION needs to be a FAST ORGANIZATION!
  • Walt Disney: Walt provides many life and leadership lessons.
  • Jim Collins: author of Good to Great. We often use his ‘bus’ metaphor (“getting the right people on the bus, the wrong people off the bus, and the right people in the right seats”) to drive conversations and thinking around team and talent.
  • Pixar and Ed Catmull: Our guarantee: If you read what Pixar/Disney does at these BRAINTRUSTS … you will never have another ‘regular meeting‘ again!

    Ed Catmull, President of Pixar Animation and Disney Animation, wrote Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces that Stand in the Way of True Inspiration, the 20-year story of how Pixar has dominated the world of animation with Toy Story, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, Incredibles, etc. This is a must-read for anyone trying to change the world.

  • The One Thing: “If you chase two rabbits … you will not catch either one.” The primary author is Gary Keller, Chairman of the Board and Co-Founder of Keller Williams Realty, largest real estate company in the United States. Keller and co-author Jay Papasan give a ton of great examples around why focusing on the ONE THING creates huge exponential success. They also have a website, The1Thing.com.
  • Og Mandino: Tom is called called O.G. (Old Guy) by all his grandkids (and many others). One of his favorite authors of all time, Mandino had a very powerful influence on the early years of his life. Mandino has a great message in the Spellbinder’s Gift about busy work. Read any of his wonderful books for a real lift.
  • Man’s Search for Meaning: If you’re looking for a great life philosophy read that applies to just about everything, Victor Frankl’s book about Nazi war camps, attitude, purpose, etc. is a must read. It’s said to be one of the ten best books ever written.
  • Think & Grow Rich: Yes, it was written in 1937 by Napoleon Hill, and revised a couple of times since then. And the language and examples are outdated.

    But the principles are extraordinarily powerful. This book has been referred to by almost all of the most successful people as one of their most influential reads; supposedly, more people have pointed to this as their turning point in their lives (Tom included) than any other book besides the Bible.

  • Success Magazine: Full Disclosure: Tom’s a Success Magazine freak. He bought his very first copy in 1974 when it was a small 6 x 9 booklet published by W. Clement Stone. Og Mandino is a former editor at Success Magazine. Darren Hardy has resurrected the magazine and it is, in Tom’s humble opinion, one of the best magazines out there.

    Note from Tom: Oh yeah, I should also add that I won a Trip Around the World in a contest sponsored by Success Magazine in 1996. 23 Days. 32,000 Miles. 9 All-Night Planes and Trains. Amazing. As the The Monkees would say, “I’m a believer.”

For even more recommendations, download Tom’s Reading List.