December 20, 2021 4 min read

Are you looking to turn a career corner but don’t know where to start? Why not pick up a professional development book to read in between your Netflix binge time? Yes, you’ve earned every single minute of your downtime, but your career goals for the new year won’t materialize without some personal investment. With a little help from the CMA NXT team, these professional development books are sure to help reframe your mindset when it comes to your career. From marketing advice to books to help you find your passion and everything in between, add one or two of these to boost your motivation and esteem.

For the Strategic Marketer

Think. Do. Say by Ron Tite

The Rundown: One of the main challenges marketers face is capturing their customers' attention without overloading them in a very busy world. This is a must-read for marketers who are frustrated with a capital “F” and need some inspiration on how to approach and plan an engaging campaign.

Lucy Collin, Vice President, Member Experience recommends this book because “it’s a great read, entertaining and informative on what makes great campaigns great and how organizations need to be aligned.”

The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell

Young man reading a book outside in a park.

The Rundown: That idea that you can’t shake off and you know has star potential – now to convince everyone else. Cultivating ideas, big or small, to the point where they catch on and gain popularity is every marketer’s endgame. This read examines the common denominator of what makes those ideas, trends or social behaviour, transform into big cultural moments.

Judy Morfitt, Marketing Lead had this to say about it: “One of my early favourites! It was recommended to me by my boss at the time and it opened my eyes to thinking differently about ideas, actions and impacts. I personally followed it up with his book "Blink" which was also very insightful.”

Building New Habits for Success

Grit by Angela Duckworth

The Rundown:Sometimes all it takes to be good at something is pure commitment. It’s not about your talent, your IQ or your grades from that really bad year in college. Based on research from dozens of high achievers, the message is crystal clear: if you can learn it, you can master it no matter if it comes naturally or not.

Aurora Gutierrez-Ruiz, Content Marketing Specialist, just started this book and is hooked. “A truly uplifting read with tons of incredible examples of perseverance. Couldn’t put it down!”

Atomic Habits by James Clear

Blue book with headphones laying on cover.

The Rundown: We all have a few bad habits here and there that we (and everyone around us) put up with but what if you could change them? That’s what this book explores with a framework on how to zero in on what’s going on with your habits and bring the best forward.

What the marketing team has to say about it: “An easy read and inspiring!” For the Brand Enthusiast (AKA Every Marketer)

Shoe Dog by Phil Knight

The Rundown: Who doesn’t know Nike? But really, who does know Nike? The story behind the swoosh, this classic shows the magic behind the scenes of one of the biggest and most recognizable brands out there. With it, you’ll discover start-up lessons and the mentality it takes to make a memorable brand epic.

Why did Sam Martin, Digital Marketing Co-ordinator pick this up? “It's about creating your brand vision and living it. The book provides a case study on how to implement marketing tactics to build a successful brand.”

Creativity, Inc by Ed Catmull

The Rundown: The magic of Pixar draws adults and children alike but how does such a giant of a business do it? Written by the co-founder, this book explores the many ways they were able to bring us some of the most beloved stories of our time.

For Angelika Orgacki, Director of Marketing, leadership comes with the job which is why she was looking for insight. “It was a pretty good read, and its focus is all about how to build a creative culture. That’s what marketers do and what my team and I do daily.”

Weaving Marketing & Design Together

The Laws of Simplicity by John Maeda

The Rundown: When marketing and technology come together, it’s more than just ‘martech’. Finding the right balance of innovation and simplicity is the heart of this book. With ten laws outlined, marketers will learn how to approach all the wonderful technology advancements and learn when to say enough.

This is a go-to for Ian Kwan, Web Development & Digital Specialist. “It’s more focused on design, but it helps with understanding things from technology and business too.”

Crossing the Chasm by Geoffrey A. Moore

Young woman holding book up in front of bookshelf.

The Rundown: Do you have that one friend who always has the latest iPhone? If so, there’s a reason for this sort of behaviour which is all dissected in this renowned martech read. Learn how to bring products to market with these insights and connect to consumers across all stages.

The marketing team all picked this up at one point and it was an eye-opener. “Lots to discuss after this one. It really gets you thinking on different marketing methods and timing.”

Career Motivation

Need more recos? Why not check out what CMA’s Martech Council recommends? With all these professional development books calling your name, your career motivation is just within grasp. When you take the initiative to improve, you’re already showing you have what it takes to turn a career corner.


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