What they’re reading now

Real estate pros share picks for books on work/life balance, business ethics,
and e-commerce

Apr.April 01, 2016 12:00 PM

books-aprilSherry Tobak
Senior vice president, Related Companies

What are you reading right now?

I’m reading Anne-Marie Slaughter’s “Unfinished Business.”

What spurred you to read that book?

I see this book as an honest portrayal of the conflicts that working parents experience and as a guide to how women can lead at home as well as in the corporate world. As a working mother, it is my responsibility to ensure that my own daughters and the young people with whom I work understand that both men and women can and must be equal partners in order for both to succeed.

Has anything you’ve read in it stuck with you? Would you recommend it to others?

What stuck with me most is the notion that caring for and nurturing our children has less value in our society than caring for and nurturing our careers — even in the 21st century. I am struck by the choices that women must still make between work and family. Even more striking is Slaughter’s concept that gender inequality also applies to men and will continue to exist in our society until fathers are allowed the same workplace flexibility and respect for being the lead parent as mothers. I would surely recommend this book to all ambitious men and women who want to “have it all.”

Lazer Sternhell
CEO of Cignature Realty Associates

What are you reading right now?

“Winners Never Cheat” by Jon M. Huntsman, an entrepreneur and philanthropist who built his fortune on a petrochemical and plastics business.

What spurred you to read that book?

I was running through Kennedy airport, on the way to Miami, and was looking for something to read and the title of the book caught my eye! I am always intrigued by the intersection of integrity, success and good business sense.

Has anything you’ve read in it stuck with you? Would you recommend it to others?

Jon Huntsman may be the billionaire you never heard of but his lessons about integrity and how he applied it to his successful business empire are great examples to anyone. It’s refreshing to see in today’s dog-eat-dog world that you can still find entrepreneurs who stick by their ethics and still achieve great success. I was particularly moved by the incident where Jon was facing difficult financial times yet he still took out a multimillion loan to meet his charitable commitments. He also walked away from $196 million in additional profits because he shook hands on a lower-priced sale and felt he needed to keep
his word.

Frank Giordano
Broker and member of the Cox+Co team, Compass

What book are you reading?

I’m reading “Delivering Happiness” by Zappos chief executive Tony Hsieh.

What spurred you to read that book?

My sister recommended it to me. I have a huge interest in learning about other entrepreneurs and their paths to success. I love the nitty gritty — who, where, why and how they became so successful. In this instance, we’re talking about a guy that started a multibillion dollar e-commerce company that sells shoes. Shoes!

Has anything you’ve read in it stuck with you? Would you recommend it?

Stick to your guns when it comes to your goals. It may be painful in the short term, but if you believe in what you are building, it will all be worth it in the end. If you do something nice for someone, great. But don’t expect something in return. Instead, focus your energy on building long-term, meaningful relationships. It’s something I try to focus on both personally and professionally. Hsieh does a great job of being relatable, likable and funny, which makes for a good read.


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