7 Career Books to Read During a Job Search

While looking for a job, it’s natural to focus all your attention on applying for jobs and completing activities that will improve your chances of full time employment.

However, you can also look at a job search as a rare opportunity to step back, breathe, and plan your next career move.

Some very good books are available for people to read during a job search, books which can help shape your attitudes about work. Some can provide very practical advice, while others may make you to ask questions that you’d never considered before.

Reading is always a positive activity, but reading during your job search is also a way to help break up the monotony of applying for jobs. Here is a compilation of career books to read during your job search.

The 2-Hour Job Search: Using Technology to Get the Right Job Faster

By: Steve Dalton

The 2-Hour Job Search teaches job seekers to secure first interviews by working smarter (and faster). Dalton uses a prescriptive approach to explain how to tread through the Internet’s vast ocean of information and create a job-search system that relies on mainstream technology such as Excel, Google, LinkedIn and alumni databases to make a list of target employers, contact them, and then secure an interview, all within two hours. Dalton avoids using vague tips like “leverage your contacts” and shows job seekers exactly what to do and how to do it. Focusing on the critical middle stage of the job search, this empowering book helps readers organize what can often be an ineffectual and frustrating process.

The Unwritten Rules of the Highly Effective Job Search: The Proven Program Used by the World’s Leading Career Services Company

By: Orville Pierson

By observing characteristics which have led to success as well as failure, Orville Pierson has helped thousands of job hunters during his career. In The Unwritten Rules of the Highly Effective Job Search, he provides crucial information on how the job search project is structured by professional job search consultants, allowing you to apply the same winning approaches to your own search. He also shares inside information on how decision makers operate, providing you the opportunity to get the inside track on job openings before anyone else.

Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

By: Simon Sinek

This book is for anyone who wants to inspire others, or is looking for someone to inspire them. Derived from one of the most viewed TED talks of all time, this book is an inspirational read.

If you aren’t considering the book, you can improve your job search approach in only 10 minutes by watching Sinek’s TED talk.

TED Talk

Man’s Search For Meaning

By: Viktor Frankl

With its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival, Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers. Frankl labored in four different camps, including Auschwitz, between 1942 and 1945, while his parents, brother, and pregnant wife perished. Based on both his own experience and the experiences of those he later treated in his practice, Frankl argues that while suffering cannot be avoided, we can decide how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. Using a theory known as logotherapy, from the Greek word logos (“meaning”), Frankl states that our primary motivation in life is not pleasure, as Freud believed, but instead the discovery and pursuit of that which we personally find meaningful.

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

By: Daniel H. Pink

Many people think that using rewards like money-the carrot-and-stick approach – is the best way to motivate. Daniel Pink emphasizes, in this provocative and persuasive book,  that the uniquely human need to control our own lives, to learn and create new things, and to do better by ourselves and our world is the key to high performance and fulfilment at work, at school, and at home.

Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion

By: Gary Vaynerchuk

Do you have a hobby that you’d like to do all day long, or an obsession you can’t get enough of? Now is the perfect time to take those passions and turn doing what you love into a career. In CRUSH IT! Why NOW Is The Time To Cash In On Your Passion, Gary Vaynerchuk reveals how you can turn your interests into real businesses by using the power of the Internet. After spending years building his family’s local wine shop into a national industry leader, one day Gary turned on a video camera and used the secrets revealed in this book to transform his entire life and earning potential by building his personal brand. After reading this book, the reader will be able to harness the power of the Internet and turn their entrepreneurial dreams into reality. CRUSH IT! is the ultimate step-by-step guide for modern business.

Lead with a Story: A Guide to Crafting Business Narratives That Captivate, Convince, and Inspire

By: Paul Smith

Storytelling is a frequently used leadership tool in today’s business world. Whether you are attempting to sell an idea, communicate a vision, or land a great job, storytelling is tool which can often mean the difference between mediocre results and extraordinary achievements. “Lead with a Story” readers will find both ready-to-use stories and how-to guidance for creating their own.