reading a book with a cup of coffee


Growth  |  3 min read

Here's My Q1 Book List

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Clate Mask

A couple days ago, I posted about the importance of reading. I said, “leaders are readers” and shared that I read six books per quarter.  Someone called me out on that and asked me to share the books I read. I agreed to do that. I will sometimes write a dedicated blog post (or two) about one of the books, as I did back on January 25 and 26 when I wrote about “Extreme Ownership.” From now on, I’ll always write one blog post about the six books I read in the quarter. So, here goes…

During January, February, and March, I read these six books, in order of my preference, from most favorite to least favorite:

  • "The Advantage" by Patrick Lencioni (Yes, two books by Patrick Lencioni this quarter—both are outstanding, but this one was the best book of the quarter. I thought I had read it, but turns out, I was confusing it with “The Alliance,” a book of similar size, color, and topic, which I read about a year ago.)
  • "Influencer" by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan, and Al Switzler
  • "5 Temptations of a CEO" by Patrick Lencioni for a second time—apparently, I’m tempted a lot. 
  • "Extreme Ownership" by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin
  • "The Great Game of Business" by Jack Stack and Bo Burlingham
  • "Focus" by Al Ries

None of the books were bad—I am glad I read them all. I loved “The Advantage” because its premise is something I absolutely believe: that organizational health (or “culture,” as we broadly define it at Infusionsoft) trumps everything else in business. As Peter Drucker says, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” It is a great, great book. I’ve given a summary to my executive team for us to discuss at our offsite next week. And we’ll likely make it our “book of the quarter” in Q2.

I also loved “Influencer,” a book about how to “make change inevitable” by mastering the six sources of influence: personal motivation, personal ability, social motivation, social ability, structural motivation, and structural ability. I highly recommend this book to anyone. It would have been my No. 1 book this quarter if I hadn’t read "The Advantage," which is so incredibly relevant and timely for me and my team right now.

Another quarter, another great six books. I find that as good as the books are, what matters most is the stimulation of thought and ideas that I get from reading. When I was young I hated reading. “Too boring,” I told my parents and teachers. Now, I can’t live without it—I love it.

SBS Idea of the Day: If you tell yourself you’re not a reader or you don’t like reading, change your thoughts. You just haven’t found a method that works for you. I challenge you to find a method that works for you and start reading books on topics you enjoy. The stimulation of thought will be your greatest reward as a grower and leader.

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Infusionsoft is now Keap. That’s weird to write, but it’s also exciting.

In 2001, trying to get Infusionsoft off the ground, there were many times when I wanted to quit. I’ll never forget my wife, after two years of struggling to survive, hugging me and saying, “Keep going.”

Over the last two years, we’ve talked with thousands of small business owners to get a deeper understanding of their unique challenges in today’s market. We learned that it’s harder than ever to succeed in small business. Customers expect more. On-demand is the rule. There’s no shortage of platforms on which to complain. A failed job or two can be damaging to your business.

Keap is our signal to the world—and to ourselves—that it’s time to make it easier to succeed. We’re on a mission to simplify growth for millions of small businesses. Our new name is a nod to the tenacity of the small business owner and encompasses everything we know to be true when it comes to success: keep going, keep serving, keep growing.

Along with a new name, we’ve expanded to two products. Keap, our newest product, is smart client management software that helps service businesses progress leads to satisfied clients. Infusionsoft by Keap is powerful CRM and sales and marketing automation software for advanced business needs.

Both are designed to make it easier than ever for more small businesses to get organized so they can deliver great service and close more business.

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To your success,
Clate Mask
CEO + Co-Founder