New interview with Carmine Gallo at Worth

“Master raconteur and author of the upcoming book The Storyteller’s Secret, Carmine Gallo talks about struggle, persuasion and the importance of sharing stories.”

WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO WRITE SPECIFICALLY ABOUT STORYTELLING? I wrote Talk Like Ted (2014), which I viewed as a public-speaking book. Very few people will actually ever give a TED talk. But I wanted to identify what it is about some of the world’s greatest public speakers—how did they go about delivering these presentations that went viral? There are a lot of elements about how to prepare and how to rehearse. But the chapter that really caught on was about storytelling. [Worth.com]

Daniel McGinn’s book tops this Forbes Summer Reading List

Psyched Up by Daniel McGinn is the first book on Forbes’ Kimberly Whitler’s summer reading list.

To kick it off, I will share a hot-off-of-the-presses book that I have really enjoyed. It’s Psyched Up: How the Science of Mental Preparation Can Help you Succeed, by Daniel McGinn. It isn’t a marketing, management, technical, or leadership book. Rather, this book combines theory, research, and practice to uncover the scientific approaches that can help strengthen mental preparation, resulting in greater success. What I particularly like about the book is that it is written by an artful, vivid storyteller who has appreciation for research and evidence-based insight. The tools provided can help anybody, whether giving a big speech or making an important client pitch or preparing for an interview, build a pre-game muscle to achieve better game-time performance. [Forbes.com]

Sam Weinman on why “Confidence Kills”

Sam Weinman has written a new piece for Golf Digest, “Confidence Kills: What If Everything You’ve Been Told To Think Is Wrong?”

Most golfers have selective memories. Ask us to recount our best shots, and we can tell you the club we hit, where we hit it, and whatever it was we just had for lunch. It’s everything else that tends to be a blur. The implication of needing just one great shot to “bring you back” is that you’re choosing to repress all the mediocre shots that came before and after. [GolfDigest.com]

The $100 billion per year back pain industry is mostly a hoax

Read a new feature at Quartz on Crooked, the new book by Cathryn Jakobson Ramin.

Anyone who has endured back pain knows it is an erratic dictator. It takes hold of your psyche, demanding your attention and devotion before all else—before you can plan a hike, return to a work routine, pick up your child for a hug. So when someone offers to make that dictator disappear, it’s hard to resist—no matter what the price“People in pain are poor decision-makers,” says the investigative journalist Cathryn Jakobson Ramin, author of a new book, Crooked: Outwitting the Back Pain Industry and Getting on the Road to Recovery. [QZ.com]

Read the NY Times review of T.R. Reid’s latest book

T.R. Reid’s new book A Fine Mess shows “What a World Tour of Tax Codes Can Teach the U.S. About How to Reform Its Own.”

Tax ranks high among global economic activities. Federal taxes alone constitute more than a quarter of the American economy. Including state and local levies brings the total tax burden to more than a quarter of Gross Domestic Product. Taxes account for about 45 percent of the economies of Denmark, France and Belgium, while in less prosperous countries like Chile and Mexico taxes are a fifth or less of the economy. Overall taxes, and disguised taxes like government fees, account for about 21 percent of the global economy. Given those numbers, researchers coming here from another planet might report back home that Earthlings love taxes, especially those humans living in rich countries, because high-tax countries tend to be the most prosperous. [NYTimes.com]

Read Bob Pozen’s HBR piece here

Bob Pozen has published a new article in the latest Harvard Business Review [HBR.org].

Each year most public companies issue reports describing the pay packages of their CEOs. In them compensation committees attempt to explain the rationale behind the pay figures to the shareholders, who often must vote to approve them. The issue is, in their reports many committees adjust performance numbers in obscure and inappropriate ways that lead to overly generous CEO pay. And they do so using nonstandard criteria that are difficult for even sophisticated institutional investors to decode. In this article, the former executive chairman of MFS Investment Management and an MIT professor of accounting and finance sort through the reports’ fine print and expose practices that stack the deck in CEOs’ favor: Adjusting earnings to be 100% higher than GAAP income. Paying out 80% of an incentive award for bottom-quartile performance. Choosing “peer companies” that are not comparable in size or in industry. And more. Shareholders should be more skeptical, say the authors, and comp reports must start providing much clearer explanations. But what’s needed most are new standards for compensation design and reporting [Download the full article here.]