Book Review #7 – 12-in-12 Book Challenge | The Ciccarellis

Last month we finally finished our 12 in 12 book challenge! The last books were The Compassionate SamuraiAwaken the Giant Within and The Nordstrom Way; books #10, #11 & #12 in our 12-in-12 book challenge.

(Catch up with our other reviews by clicking the links: 1st2nd3rd4th5th, or 6th)

Book #10: The Compassionate Samurai by Brian Klemmer

This is one of Erik’s favorite books ever. It’s simple, uses a lot of common sense, and touches on 11 characteristics that are important for all of us to have. He says this is a must read!

Take-Away we use NOW:

1. Personal Responsibility – Problems help us become the people we are today through our strengths and abilities to get through them. The moment we discover it’s in our power to choose how we want to respond to the problem we overcome. “You are never without the ability to choose in life.” -Klemmer


Book #11: Awaken the Giant Within by Anthony Robbins

One of my favorite books of the challenge, for sure! It’s more of a total package self awareness book, not so much about business. I absolutely loved it, soaked it in by only reading a bit each day and actually read it for 2 months because it’s such a large and insightful book (plus activities).

Take-Away we use NOW:

2. You Control your Emotions – It was an eyeopener reading that someone doesn’t make you feel bad…YOU are letting that other person make you feel bad! I loved all the tools and tips for gaining control over your emotions and all the positive things that come about after knowing what you value. This is just the tip of the iceberg with this incredible book!


Book #12: The Nordstrom Way to Customer Service Excellence 

by Robert Spector and Patrick McCarthy

Such a fantastic book if you’re in an industry where you need to be excellent in customer service. This book actually made me go buy a new pair of shoes at Nordstrom after being frustrated with the service I received at several other shoe stores…true story.

Take-Away we use NOW:

3. Going Above & Beyond – Common sense stuff like greeting people with a smile, and asking about their day, or even…gasp!…remembering something about a returning customer. All of these things make you a better person and your business better.


To finish off this challenge we wanted to say thanks for the encouragement you all gave us to keep reading! We actually loved it so much that we’re continuing our challenge this year (and hopefully every year to come!). We won’t be blogging about every book, but we will be putting our favorites on our For Photographers page as well as my Pinterest Book board (you’ll also see some of my favorite fiction books too).
Here is also the new list so far for this year’s 12-in-12 challenge.
Worth Every Penny by Sarah Petty & Erin Verbeek
Start Something That Matters by Blake Mycoskie
Entreleadership by Dave Ramsey
Onward by Howard Schultz
Book Yourself Solid by Michael Port
The Power of Less by Leo Babauta
Ignore Everybody And 39 Other Keys to Creativity by Hugh MacLeod
The Little Big Things 163 Ways to Pursue Excellence by Tom Peters
The Magic of Thinking Big by David J. Schwartz
Losing My Virginity by Richard Branson
The Leader Who Had No Title by Robin Sharma
Please let us know if you have any suggestions for amazing reads! Happy reading. ~Erik & Marissa
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