You may have seen some of these books, authors, blogs or bloggers referenced on FraternityMan.com, and for good reason! Click on a link to be taken to a website to purchase any book, to learn more about an author on our “Author List,” or to explore a blog about Greek Life or run by a fraternity man or woman from our “Blog List.” Refer books, authors & blogs by sending an email to Nik@FraternityMan.com
Book of 2017: For the Real Talker In You: The 50th Law by Robert Greene & 50 Cent
Robert Greene is all over this reading list, but his most recent work in partnership with 50 Cent is a modern appeal to a younger, entrepreneurial generation who grew up as rap matured into the beast of a genre it is today. The 50th Law takes Robert Greene’s exceptional method of demonstrating his tactics of leadership through historical references and crosses it with the lift and story of 50 Cent, a once-dealer turned rapper famous for being shot 9 times turned business mogul. It’s an edgy book that’ll boost your confidence and unapologetically teach you to be a change-maker.
For the Recruiter in You: Good Guys by Matt Mattson & Josh Orendi
In 2015, Good Guys was our “Bonus Credit” book For the Recruiter in You, but we feel as if it is a basic necessity for all fraternity men in the modern era and particularly at a time when there are more and more non-traditional students attending college. Recruitment is a simple process of building friendships that has been complicated by rules and numbers, compromising the ability of a chapter to steadily attract and recruit new men to their ranks. Buy this book. Now.
Level Two: Finish that? Sally Hogshead’s How The World Sees YOU will help you define both what about you is most fascinating to others AND how to make better use of those skills when making impressions. Think of it as the way to personalize your technique under the guidance of another.
For the Educator in You: Mastery by Robert Greene
Have you ever been amazed by how bad ass a writer must have been to have written a ridiculously awesome book? That’s how I feel whenever I read anything by Robert Greene. Mastery is Greene’s newest work and emphasis the importance of exploring one’s vocation, apprenticeship & mentorship and how a focus on mastery of a particular subject is the only way for every person to feel fulfilled and make a difference. Any man or woman looking to grow both during and after their collegiate career should seriously consider this guide to continued learning.
Get Technical?: The School Revolution is Ron Paul’s de-centrilist take on the future of education. Politics aside, Paul spends a good portion of this book discussing how technology is working to change our educational system in a way that mimics the fraternity and sorority community’s concern for the effects of online education on membership. Like Mastery, this book focuses on the importance of adopting a vocation early, something in which fraternities can and should play an integral role.
For the Historian in You: Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power by Jon Meacham.
T.J. is basically my favorite president, but also the pen behind the Declaration of Independence and the philosophical soul of American philosophy and politics. If you are one of those people who thinks that politics is “worse” now than at any point in our history, this book will open your eyes. The arguments are the same; the childish behavior is the same; the only difference is that Thomas Jefferson is cooler than anyone alive today.
For the Encourager in You: Motivate the Middle by T.J. Sullivan
T.J.’s book is probably the most common-sense way to teach people to avoid the traps set by apathetic members. Motivate the middle is a short read (I finished it on a 1.5 hour plane trip), but packed with practical tips, examples and quotes to make you feel like a completely new leader after just one read through. You may have a hard time getting an entire staff or executive board to read any book on this list, but even the most time-consumed student should have time for this perspective-altering book. [P.S. T.J. just released the 2nd edition of this book!)
For the Introspective You: The Origins of Virtue by Matt Ridley
I held on to The Origins of Virtue for a long while before finally picking it up to read. The cover isn’t very enticing and I wasn’t sure I was ready for some lecture on human history. This book is awesome. Ridley cleverly ties virtuosity to our genetic desire to reproduce by following the core elements of virtuous behavior found by observing ants and bees and chugs along with comparisons to fish, mammals, primates and, eventually, humans! If you’re interested in spoilers, being virtuous is tied to gift giving and building social clout. Surprise!
Level Two: Anything by Robert Anton Wilson is going to make you think about things well beyond your comfort zone. I’m lucky in that although I never would have happened upon his work on my own, I have family and friends unique enough to introduce me to something so out-of-this-world.
For the Power Player In You: 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene
Did I mention Robert Greene is an all-star? In Power, Greene uses historical figures from Cleopatra to Kissinger to demonstrate 48 unique tactics used to obtain influence. He is straightforward in his approach, and each story is followed by his explanation of the key principles of each law. If you really enjoy learning lessons from history, check out his 33 Strategies of War and The Art of Seduction. Both incorporate the same principles laid out in Power, but use different historical references to help get the ideas across.
PREVIOUS BOOKS OF THE YEAR
Book of 2015: For the Entrepreneur in You: Zero to One by Peter Thiel
The theme for Fraternity Man in 2015 is for our organizations to become truly indispensable to the American educational system by finding and developing a niche. Peter Thiel’s Zero to One delves deep on the keys to success when developing or re-developing an organization. A talking point that has made its way into a couple Fraternity Man posts instructs that markets tend to shift when a new technology outperforms an older technology by a power of ten. The book is a must for anyone seriously considering opportunities for growth and redemption in the field of Fraternity & Sorority Life.
Book of 2016: For the Resolution Junkie In You: The Motivation Manifesto by Brendon Burchard
Plenty of books offer advice as to how best go about doing things you want to go about doing. Some may even already be included in this list. What is great about The Motivation Manifesto is that it at once empowers a reader and provides him or her with a solid moral foundation to get work done. Each person desires to experience the pursuit of happiness, and this book is a great way to get your new resolutions ironed out. . . for good.
OTHER READING SUGGESTIONS
Listed below are books recommended for fraternity men and women by other fraternity men and women! We’d also love to include your chapter’s, institution’s or organization’s reading list on this page, so feel free to send any recommendations to firstname.lastname@example.org.
There are some authors we just love. Listed below are those authors, a description of their work, and links to their personal pages/blogs.
Tim Ferriss: Whether you are trying to add time, health, sanity or some combination of the three to your life, any book by Tim Ferriss will meet your needs. His blog is filled with a ridiculous amount of content and links to content that reduce the amount of time you spend stressing about life, a great body or great food and increase the amount of time you have to enjoy life, a great body or great food. [check him out]
Robert Greene: As mentioned before, Robert Greene is a bad ass. His books have a no-nonsense approach to help individuals obtain influence, master a trade, or navigate a tough environment. Greene is the perfect author for those who love historical context when learning about new ideas. [check him out]
Malcolm Gladwell: When you need to think of something in a different way, or need to define the moments in your life that can or will forever change your life, Gladwell should be a go-to. His books elegantly share grand ideas in a way that a four year old could understand. [check him out]
Susan Scott: This woman is a power player with regard to mastering the art of leading and conversations. Do you often sandwich bad news between two little blurbs of good news? Scott will tell you why you’re stupid. [check her out]
The following are a list of blogs about the world of fraternities and sororities or written by fraternity and sorority men or women. Click on the logo to visit the blog. Have a blog you’d like to suggest for the reading list? Email Nik@Fraternityman.com.