The business-minded gift that keeps on giving


December is looming, and it’s crunch time for me. Year-end business wrap ups are on the horizon, but it’s also the start of the gifting season. In addition to charitable contributions, I buy Christmas presents for my family, friends and the best next-door neighbors, the Hoovers. But I also have a double whammy of December birthday preparations for my mom and brother.

Now, my mom is fairly easy to shop for, but my brother’s shopping takes some thought. Because we’ve both had long careers in business, I try to find the latest business book that I think he will enjoy. Here are my top three contenders for this year:

“Conversational Intelligence: How Great Leaders Build Trust and Get Extraordinary Results” by Judith E. Glaser

“To get to the next level of greatness depends on the quality of the culture, which depends on the quality of the relationships, which depends on the quality of the conversations,” according to Glaser. “Everything happens through conversations.” The book translates the wealth of insights coming out of neuroscience and offers ways to apply those insights into our conversations. The book offers tools, conversational rituals and practices for all levels in an organization.

“Effective Virtual Conversations: Engaging Digital Dialogue for Better Learning, Relationship and Results” by Jennifer Britton

 We live and work in an increasingly digital world. More and more of our professional interactions are moving from the “real world” to the virtual realm.  Britton guides readers to get the most out of this brave new world of communication. She includes tools, worksheets and activities to boost the connections, trust and engagement of our virtual events.

“Capacity: Create Laser Focus, Boundless Energy and an Unstoppable Drive in Any Organization” by Chris Johnson and Matt Johnson

Matt and Chris Johnson set the mark on how to succeed with their energizing message, humorous stories and generational differences. The pressure to do more with less has reached epidemic levels of concern with organizations scrambling on how to recruit, retain and attract the best talent for the future. This book is slated for a December release date.

Get a jump on your holiday shopping and check out one of these new books.  Happy Thanksgiving!


Susan Combs

Susan Combs, MBA and Professional Certified Coach, works with coaching clients to create fresh starts, enhance their leadership skills and increase their confidence. She is an authorized licensee of the Fit Leader's Program. Susan provides one-on-one coaching, DiSC team-building training and manages corporate mentor programs. She lives in Lansing with her son, Max, and their golden retriever puppy. Visit or for more information.

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