Winter Reading List (from POLYWOOD Employees!)

There are always those cold, blustery winter days made for sweatpants, warm blankets, and a piping-hot cup of tea or coffee. Spending more time indoors by the fireplace is the perfect excuse to cozy up with a good book in your favorite chair and indulge in some much-needed “me time.” To help you find the perfect book for your newfound downtime, the POLYWOOD team is here to offer recommendations on what you should read this winter. Here are the books our team just couldn’t put down.

“Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win” by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin

 Genre   Biography, Iraq War History, Intelligence & Espionage

 POLYWOOD Employee   Jon Hueni, Director of Sales & Marketing

What’s the Book About?

“This book drives home the idea that leaders must take complete ownership of everything in their world. When mistakes happen, instead of trying to shift blame to other people or unfavorable circumstances, leaders should take responsibility for the issue, learn from it, and develop a strategy to prevent it from happening again.”

What Did You Enjoy About it?

“This was a timely read as there were plenty of disruptions in 2020. ‘Extreme Ownership’ positively influenced my mindset by keeping me grounded in my responsibilities and encouraging me to be outcome-oriented. In a lot of ways, this book served as my roadmap through the fast-changing landscape of 2020.”

Who is This Book For?

“This book is for anyone ready to check their ego and start solving problems by personally owning them — start to finish.”

“Life Is in the Transitions: Mastering Change at Any Age” by Bruce Feiler

 Genre   Self-Help, Psychology

 POLYWOOD Employee   Dawn Savidge, Digital Content Manager

What’s the Book About?

A study of the themes and takeaways for navigating change — based on the life stories of thousands of everyday people.”

What Did You Enjoy About it?

“It was comforting to hear that ‘life-quakes’ occur much more frequently now than when our parents worked one job from college to retirement while steadily climbing the ladder of success. With Jim Collins-like precision (of Good to Great fame), the author provides techniques to successfully navigate these life-quakes based on the experiences of thousands of everyday, extraordinary people.”

Who is This Book For?

This book is for anyone undergoing a life change or helping someone else going through a change.”

“Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World” by David Epstein

 Genre   Self-Help, Development Psychology

 POLYWOOD Employee   Rob Sevison, E-Commerce Account Executive

What’s the Book About?

“David Epstein examined the world’s most successful athletes, artists, musicians, inventors, forecasters, and scientists. He discovered that in most fields — especially those that are complex and unpredictable — generalists, not specialists, are primed to excel. Generalists often find their path late, and they juggle many interests rather than focusing on one. They’re also more creative, agile, and able to make connections their more specialized peers can’t see.”

What Did You Enjoy About it?

“As someone with a wide variety of interests and who also has trouble limiting myself to a single discipline, ‘Range’ quickly hit me on a personal level. This book reinforces the idea that most people work in complex environments. And data has shown that people with cross-functional knowledge often succeed in leadership and innovator roles because they’re able to work through obstacles that specialists can’t navigate.”

Who is This Book For?

“Anyone who has felt limited to a single discipline, but is looking for a reason to broaden their interests.”

“Manage Your Day-to-Day: Build Your Routine, Find Your Focus, and Sharpen Your Creative Mind” by Jocelyn K. Glei 

 Genre   Business, Self-Help

 POLYWOOD Employee   Shane Eagan, Art Director

What’s the Book About?

“This book contains a collection of short essays on the topic of productivity from 20 leading creative professionals. The book provides plenty of actionable strategies to increase your creative output while also dealing with everything that’s killing your productivity on a daily basis.”

What Did You Enjoy About it?

“The digestibility of this book keeps me coming back to it whenever I get burned out creatively. Nice short reads, which are grouped into four useful buckets: Building a Rock Solid Routine, Finding Focus in a Distracted World, Taming Your Tools, and Sharpening Your Creative Mind. The book even summarizes sections into key-takeaway pages for a quick skim. Also, I’m a sucker for a well-designed book, and this one looks good on your bookshelf!”

Who is This Book For?

“For any creative industry professional who works all day at a breakneck pace, only to leave the office feeling like you accomplished none of your most important to-do’s. This book will help you determine what work deserves your full creative bandwidth vs. work that doesn’t.”

The Fred Factor: How Passion in Your Work and Life Can Turn the Ordinary into the Extraordinary” by Mark Sanborn 

 Genre   Self-Help

 POLYWOOD Employee   Adam Stoffel, Director of Information Services

What’s the Book About?

“The book revolves around four main principles the author gleaned from his mailman. First, everyone makes a difference. Second, success is built on relationships. Third, you must continually create value for others, and it doesn’t have to cost a penny. Fourth, you can reinvent yourself regularly.”

What Did You Enjoy About it?

“I first encountered this book close to 10 years ago. It’s a simple, easy read that is a timeless encouragement that doing your best and positively impacting others is under your control and a worthy endeavor. From experience, I can testify how sweet it is when it becomes embedded in a team’s culture when others encourage you to be a Fred and when you get to be on the receiving end of a Fred.”

Who is This Book For?

“Anyone who takes pride in doing their best….or at least wants to.”

Losing yourself in a great book is an excellent way to pass the time in any season. There’s a great page-turner for everyone and we hope you’ll give our recommendations some consideration. Which book are you most interested in reading? Let us know in the comments below!

Check out the POLYWOOD blog for more related articles.

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