My current book list

29 Aug 2019 by Ryan Ververs-Bijkerk



My current book list

I’m not a big reader but always during my holiday I love to relax and take some time to read a book. Now I do love to read a book that I can use in my personal and professional life. In this blog post, I will share a couple books that I find interesting.

1. The Making of a Manager: What to Do When Everyone Looks to You

No idea what you’re doing? No problem. Good managers are made, not born.

Top tech executive Julie Zhuo remembers the moment when she was asked to lead a team. She felt like she’d won the golden ticket, until reality came crashing in. She was just 25 and had barely any experience being managed, let alone managing others.

Her co-workers became her employees overnight, and she faced a series of anxiety-inducing firsts, including agonising over whether to hire an interviewee; seeking the respect of reports who were cleverer than her; and having to fire someone she liked. Like most first-time managers, she wasn’t given any formal training, and had no resources to turn to for help. It took her years to find her way, but now she’s offering you the short-cut to success.

This is the book she wishes she had on day one. Here, she offers practical, accessible advice like:

  • Don’t hide thorny problems from your own manager; you’re better off seeking help quickly and honestly
  • Before you fire someone for failure to collaborate, figure out if the problem is temperamental or just a lack of training or coaching
  • Don’t offer critical feedback in a ‘compliment sandwich’ – there’s a better way!

Whether you’re new to the job, a veteran leader, or looking to be promoted, this is the handbook you need to be the kind of manager you’ve always wanted.


2. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be “positive” all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.

For decades, we’ve been told that positive thinking is the key to a happy, rich life. “F*ck positivity,” Mark Manson says. “Let’s be honest, shit is f*cked and we have to live with it.” In his wildly popular Internet blog, Manson doesn’t sugarcoat or equivocate. He tells it like it is—a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is his antidote to the coddling, let’s-all-feel-good mindset that has infected American society and spoiled a generation, rewarding them with gold medals just for showing up.

Manson makes the argument, backed both by academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade, but on learning to stomach lemons better. Human beings are flawed and limited—”not everybody can be extraordinary, there are winners and losers in society, and some of it is not fair or your fault.” Manson advises us to get to know our limitations and accept them. Once we embrace our fears, faults, and uncertainties, once we stop running and avoiding and start confronting painful truths, we can begin to find the courage, perseverance, honesty, responsibility, curiosity, and forgiveness we seek.

There are only so many things we can give a f*ck about so we need to figure out which ones really matter, Manson makes clear. While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. A much-needed grab-you-by-the-shoulders-and-look-you-in-the-eye moment of real-talk, filled with entertaining stories and profane, ruthless humor, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck is a refreshing slap for a generation to help them lead contented, grounded lives.


3. Grip (Dutch)

Het is best gek dat we nooit écht hebben leren werken. Hoe houden we ons staande in deze tijd van voortdurende bereikbaarheid?

Hoe bewaren we overzicht, met die uitpuilende mailbox, overvolle agenda en eindeloze takenlijst? En nog veel belangrijker: hoe zorgen we ervoor dat we eindelijk toekomen aan de plannen die we wel hebben maar niet uitvoeren?

Sommige mensen lijken altijd grip op de zaak te hebben. Een van hen is Blendle-man Rick Pastoor. In dit boek deelt hij zijn razendslimme werkmethode GRIP, die hij door de jaren heen ontwikkelde. Zijn no-nonsenseaanpak leert je hoe je rust, ruimte en richting in je werkweek krijgt. En hoe je jezelf kunt uitdagen, ook al heb je het druk. Het resultaat? Je gaat niet alleen effi ciënter aan de slag, maar vooral effectiever. En zodra je grip hebt, ontstaat er ruimte voor grotere plannen en levensdromen. GRIP toont hoe je die kunt realiseren. In dit boek geen eindeloze theorieën, maar eenvoudige, concrete stappen. En je begint gewoon vandaag.


4. The Phoenix Project

Bill is an IT manager at Parts Unlimited. It’s Tuesday morning and on his drive into the office, Bill gets a call from the CEO.

The company’s new IT initiative, code named Phoenix Project, is critical to the future of Parts Unlimited, but the project is massively over budget and very late. The CEO wants Bill to report directly to him and fix the mess in ninety days or else Bill’s entire department will be outsourced.

With the help of a prospective board member and his mysterious philosophy of The Three Ways, Bill starts to see that IT work has more in common with manufacturing plant work than he ever imagined. With the clock ticking, Bill must organize work flow streamline interdepartmental communications, and effectively serve the other business functions at Parts Unlimited.

In a fast-paced and entertaining style, three luminaries of the DevOps movement deliver a story that anyone who works in IT will recognize. Readers will not only learn how to improve their own IT organizations, they’ll never view IT the same way again.



These are just a couple books that I’m currently reading or still have on my reading schedule. It is a mix from becoming a great manager that is not giving a fuck while working efficiently by techniques like DevOps. All those books contain valuable information to improve in personal and professional life. What do you have on your reading list? Share those in the comments below.

Photo by Link Hoang on Unsplash

Ryan Ververs-Bijkerk
Written by Ryan Ververs-Bijkerk

Ryan is currently a Technical Evangelist at RawWorks focused on the End-User Computing area. Ryan is primarily focusing on the user experience in centralized desktop environments.


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