What they’re reading now

What they're reading now

Aug.August 01, 2016 11:00 AM
books-august

Roger Fortune
Vice president, the Stahl Organization

What are you reading right now?

“Architect and Engineer: A Study in Sibling Rivalry,” by Andrew Saint, a historical study of the once-interlocked professions of engineering and architecture and how they have grown apart in responsibilities, skills, education and temperament since the Renaissance.

What spurred you to read that book?

Before attending business school, I was an architect by training. But my father was an architectural engineer, and I am now pursuing a master’s in engineering. I’ve always been fascinated by the different values, languages and ways of thinking between architects and engineers. I wanted to understand why there are so many differences between them.

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

Definitely. It’ll help any developer understand why their architects and engineers can’t communicate. Engineering became a profession distinct from architecture in 18th century France, with the rise of the first engineering schools. Architects were those who focused on the design of civil and ecclesiastical projects, while engineers were focused on military structures. Furthermore, architects concentrated on how something would look, while engineers focused on how something would be built.

Barry Brandt
Director of sales, Argo Real Estate

What book are you reading?

“The Last Lecture,” by Randy Pausch. It is both the heart-wrenching story of a 47-year-old father and husband who faces the realities of a terminal cancer diagnosis head-on and the reflections of a dreamer whose life goals were achieved through hard work, passion and a determination to succeed on his own terms.

What spurred you to read that book?

I manage teams, so I often look for books that provide life lessons that can be translated into motivational tools for the salespeople I supervise.

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

The author promotes the idea that a good manager is one who can enable the dreams of others. You must encourage people to create their personal vision of success, help them to refine it so that it is viable, then work with them to build a path to achieving their goals. He also says that “experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted.” This should be the mantra in an industry where a deal is not a deal until the ink is dry and the checks have cleared.

Corlie Ohl
Agent, Citi Habitats

What are you reading right now?

I am reading “Porcelain: A Memoir,” by the DJ and recording artist Moby.

What spurred you to read that book?

I read an interview [in the Guardian] with Moby in which he said, “I was walking up Orchard Street, and it was one of those shitty days, 36 degrees Fahrenheit, sleeting, gray snow, and I realized there is sometimes an elective quality to suffering.” That line resonated with me. Every New Yorker has thought to themselves at one time or another, “Am I crazy for living here?” We stay because those moments of suffering don’t compare to the great experiences and opportunities available to us.

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

Absolutely. From losing his father at age 2 to spending his childhood in poverty and then facing many years of drug and alcohol addiction, Moby’s road has been a rocky one. However, he overcame these challenges to make music that we sing in the shower or recognize on the radio. This book inspires me to keep following my dreams.


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