Dan's Biz Bookshelf

Column from: Dan Beaulieu

Dan Beaulieu has over 35 years of experience in the printed circuit board industry. He is considered one of the industry's top marketing and sales experts, as well as perhaps the strongest and most focused strategist in the industry. His main focus is helping the companies he works with to achieve their fullest potential

Mr. Beaulieu is also a well-known industry writer and columnist writing sales and marketing columns including contributing to Printed Circuit Design and Manufacture, U.S. Tech, Printed Circuit News and The ERA Representer. He is best known for his work with I-Connect007 for whom he has contributed numerous interviews both print and video with some of the industry's most renown leaders. He is also the author of the popular weekly column It’s Only Common Sense for which he has written over 400 columns and counting.

Since co-founding D.B.Management Group, Mr. Beaulieu has worked personally with numerous companies among them PCB Fabricators: Prototron Circuits, Murrietta Circuits, American Standard Circuits, Sierra Circuits and over 100 others, as well as peripheral companies such as: The Gardien Group, Taiyo America and RBP Chemicals.


July 04, 2024

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'Fire Your Hiring Habits: Building an Environment That Attracts Talent Top Talent in Today’s Work Force'

I have been doing a lot of reading, thinking, and writing about the so-called labor shortage, not only in our industry but the world as a whole. So, when I saw this book by our own industry’s Dr. John W. Mitchell, I had to read it. I’ll say it right here: You should read it too.
June 27, 2024

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'The Practice: Shipping Creative Work'

As you must know by now, I am an unabashed fan of Seth Godin and an equally unabashed fan of this particular book. Out of all of Seth’s books, and there are a lot of good ones in the 20-plus he has written, this one motivates me the most. I go back to it repeatedly when I’m stuck in the middle of a creative project and I need a good swift kick in the you-know-what to get moving.
April 11, 2024

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Seeing the How

I might say this about a lot of books, but this one is a must-read. The author addresses a whole new way of doing business. It’s not like one day we woke up and there it was, a new way to get a ride (Uber), a new home away from home (Airbnb), a new way to get groceries (Instacart) and (DoorDash), and so on. The flood gates have opened, and there’s more to come.
February 22, 2024

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'How the Best Leaders Lead'

There is something so authentic about Brian Tracy books and this one is no exception. 'How the Best Leaders Lead' is actually more of a manual on how to become a leader in a very short time. In short but cogent chapters, he explains what it takes to assume the leadership role in any organization or company effectively. This is a great book for everyone, and I mean everyone, whether or not they are leaders today. Don’t pass this one up!
January 11, 2024

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'Negotiation Made Simple'

Negotiation Made Simple by John Lowry is not your average book about negotiations. Most of the time negotiation books have a “take no prisoners” attitude. Fortunately, this one does not, and as a longtime advocate of win-win negotiations, this one has a heart and feels like it was written by a human being. I appreciate that.
January 02, 2024

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Now… Build a Great Business!

This gem of a book is an oldie but goodie. In this fast-moving world, it is amazing that a 12-year-old book is still as pertinent now as it was then, but I guess that’s the true definition of a business classic. Truth be known, I just reread this book for the third time since I first read it 10 years ago, and it makes sense: The advice still applies today. For example, when you start designing a great marketing plan, ask these four questions:
November 22, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The Entrepreneurial Brain

Author Jeff Hays is a “serial entrepreneur” who has achieved much success, so, in many ways, reading his book is like spending time with a wise mentor. I like how he not only highlights his business successes but writes candidly about his failures: What didn’t work and why. For me, these stories are perhaps the most helpful part of the book, which is not only informative and factual, but inspirational and encouraging.
September 14, 2023

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Founder vs. Investor

Finally, a book that covers the ongoing, sometimes friendly (and sometimes not) relationship between a company’s founder and the venture capitalist. Elizabeth Zalman, a two-time founder and CEO of venture-backed companies, goes up against venture capitalist Jerry Neumann in this informative and interesting book.
May 04, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: ‘Talent Tectonics’

With all the challenges of finding, hiring, and keeping the right employees these days, it is important that you provide them an opportunity to develop a career path in your company and keep them engaged in and passionate about their work. This means walking in their shoes and looking at things from their point of view. What would engage employees? What would make them enthusiastic about their work? What kind of company mission would inspire them?
April 27, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'Who: The A Method for Hiring'

We’ve all hired the wrong person at one time or another. It’s a mistake that, if left uncorrected, can keep on giving for a long time. It reminds me of the adage, “Hire slow, fire fast.” In their book 'Who: The ‘A’ Method for Hiring', Geoff Smart and Randy Street share the best ways to hedge your bets in hiring and improve your selecting and hiring techniques. You will probably get rid of your hiring headaches and mistakes, which are often caused by putting more emphasis on who we hire than on why we hire.
March 24, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'The Rare Find: How Great Talent Stands Out'

Have we been doing it wrong all these years? Did looking for the perfect person for our company not mean looking for the perfect resume? Author George Anders is rightfully confirming that theory. His advice: Look for candidates with a “jagged resume,” explaining that this is the resume where the background appears to teeter on the edge between success and failure.
February 02, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: ‘What Customers Hate’

“Customers do hate you.” That’s the way this book starts—with the hard truth. Customers enter a relationship with you, the seller, with a huge chip on their shoulders; they are often expecting the worst. Nicholas Webb writes that when they buy from you, customers assume that they are getting the second-best product or service. This is because the “ideal” product or service is something that exists only in their heads, and nothing can compare to that. Read on.
January 27, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: ‘Leading in Tough Times’

I am not unique in saying that John Maxwell is one of my favorite business authors—there are about 34 million people who share that opinion. Of all the Maxwell books I have read over the years, "Leading in Tough Times" is one of my favorites. This timely little book is focused on what a leader needs to do when things get tough. It’s almost an understatement to say that, right now, things are tougher than they have been in years.
January 19, 2023

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: ‘If Harry Potter Ran General Electric’

We’ve heard from everyone else—from Santa Claus and Teddy Roosevelt to Atilla the Hun—so why not the world’s greatest wizard? That’s right, now Harry Potter has gotten into the act. To be honest, this is a clever and entertaining little book, especially if you are a reader of the Harry Potter books. But don’t worry if you’re not (I am not), the book is still fun and informative and helpful.
December 22, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: End the Time Sink With ‘Make Meetings Matter’

Like everyone else, I have been subjected to a lot of pointless meetings in my day. You know what I’m talking about: meetings where some blowhard pontificates for an hour, reveling in the sound of his own voice while the rest of us are stuck sitting there, silently praying for release. Meetings where everyone is so busy positioning themselves favorably in the eyes of the boss that nothing gets done. Meetings that start 20 minutes late and go on for hours. Meetings where everyone is so busy looking at their devices that they act like the meeting is an interruption.
December 08, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: A Timely Book on a Timely Subject—'Selling the Price Increase'

Prices for everything are on the rise. Inflation is getting worse. This means many companies will be or are facing the challenging need to raise prices. It’s a daunting task for companies—especially their salespeople. This new book by Jeb Blount is a true “must have” for anyone who must face telling their customers that prices are about to rise. In this review, I'll share the author's five-step approach to raising prices while still maintaining the value of your company.
November 24, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: 'Real Change Now—Company Change Mastery'

If you are uncomfortable with change, or you know change is coming, this is the book for you. My advice is to read it and keep it right by your desk for easy access and constant reference. "Real Change Now" is all about leading change in your company or organization. Author Daren Martin takes us through the different types of change—from intended to unintended, creeping to cataclysmic, and forecast to constant—and how to handle each in a steady and calm way, no matter what the changes and how they are occurring.
November 04, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Pick Up the Gum Wrapper

How do you promote an engaged workforce? How do make people feel excited about coming to work? How to you create an atmosphere of respect and cooperation in your company so you achieve “Worvana?” Keep reading to find out what I mean.
August 23, 2022

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Broken to Better—13 Ways Not to Fail at Life and Leadership

No one is perfect and this book by Michael Kurland talks about what we can do when we discover that we are not. Most of us have a difficult time acknowledging when we are not operating on all eight cylinders. When we feel ourselves slipping a bit in our leadership role it’s not easy to admit it, and harder to decide to make changes, hopefully improvements. While we are all so quick to judge and advise others, it is much more difficult to make those judgments and then improvements on ourselves. Now you don’t have to go it alone.
July 27, 2022

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Leading With Gratitude

I like this book because gratitude is something in which I have always believed. So, it was fun for me to find a book, a very good book I might add, that said the same thing. I have always been confused and surprised by leaders who do not like to say thanks. I have never understood it. All I can think of is that they are afraid that if they show too much gratitude the person, they are thanking will ask for a raise. Or maybe they are reserving the right to lay that person of someday, so they don’t feel comfortable telling her she is doing a good job.
July 14, 2022

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: TeamWork—How to Build a High-Performance Team

Interesting fact: Out of 31.5 million small- to mid-size business in this country, 25 million list one employee—the owner. The next 5.3 million business in the group have two to 15 employees, and get this, only the last 600,000 business have more than 15 employees. Frankly, I was shocked by these statistics, enough to make me buy and read the book. I’m glad I did. In this book, author Natalie Dawson talks about how to grow a team and what it takes to scale that team to success by using various methods of employee engagement.
July 07, 2022

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: 'The Millennial Myth—Transforming Misunderstanding into Workplace Breakthroughs'

This is a book we all must read right now. I have had it with people ignorantly and blindly attacking millennials. We should be trying to understand them rather than just blindly knocking them. It is in our own self-interest to give them a break. We are going to have to work with these folks. And as we boomers age out, we will be turning the reins over to them.
June 02, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Fanocracy: Turning Fans into Customers and Customers into Fans

This one’s going to blow your mind. It’s the past, present, and future all rolled into one. It is about exactly what the title indicates—finding ways to connect with customers by creating bonds between your company and your customers. The message is likely antithetical to what you've always believed. I know it was for me.
May 19, 2022

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Back to Human—How Great Leaders Create Connection in the Age of Isolation

In some ways, the work-from-home situation works out fine, but in other ways, it's really not working. For many of us, we haven't seen our co-workers in person for over two years. While technology has done well to connect us, often we're still not "connecting." Author Dan Schawbel looks at the current landscape and offers some advice.
May 06, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: A One-Legged Stool—How Shareholder Primacy Has Broken Business

Thank you, Ed Chambliss, for writing this new book. It is long overdue. I think I loved it so much because I agree with the whole idea, including the premise that the shareholders’ economics philosophy expounded by Milton Friedman so many decades ago is basically the root of most of what is wrong with our companies and our economy today.
March 17, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Firms of Endearment

Get ready to have your world rocked as I discuss this book, Firms of Endearment: How World-Class Companies Profit from Passion and Purpose. First, let’s start by how not to run your business and handle your employees.
March 03, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Leaders Eat Last—Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t

Leaders create culture and the right culture is what makes great companies and organizations. Leaders lead by example. Leaders allow their teams to be great. No matter the size of your organization, whether it’s three or 3,000 people, culture is always important. Culture is what makes a great company in the end, and that must come from the top.
February 24, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The Future of Sales

As I told a friend the other day, I learned more in the first 13 pages of this book than any other book I have read in a long time—and I’ve read a lot of good ones. The reason I love this book so much is that it is timely. It is the perfect book for COVID-influenced sales both during and post (please let’s be able to say “post” soon).
February 11, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Start With Why—How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

This is the ad that Ernest Shackleton placed in the London Times to recruit the crew of the Endurance that was setting out for the South Pole: “Men wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness, constant danger, safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in case of success.” Shackleton didn’t get just a crew; he got a great crew of brave, heroic men who went through nearly unbearable hardships and yet all came back alive, primarily because they looked out for each other. If you get a chance, read a book about their adventures. It’s a fascinating and inspiring story.
January 14, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Excellence Now: Extreme Humanism

For those of us who grew up reading Tom Peters, it is always exciting when he puts out a new book. Such was the case with me a couple of months ago when "Excellence Now: Extreme Humanism" came out. I bought and read it with great anticipation. In fact, I based several of my recent columns on some of the ideas from this book. As always, Peters is right on the mark. This is the perfect book for our times. Reading it will help us meet the challenges we are facing today.
January 05, 2022

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The EOS Life

If you are asking why I read and recommending this book, it’s this: We are all entrepreneurs; we are in business for ourselves when all is said and done. This is especially true for salespeople, whether you are directly employed or an independent sales rep; you are in business for yourself. At least that is the attitude you should have. This an excellent book to read as the year winds down and you evaluate your business and your life turning the corner into the new year.
December 30, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The Cult of the Customer

I am a customer service fanatic. I am nuts about great customer service, customer service stories, and most of all, good books about customer service—how to train people to deliver it and how it helps companies surpass their competition. This is an especially appropriate book because we are in the time of very poor customer service. I am sure this is because of the labor shortage which is certainly causing a dip in customer service. And then, of course, there are the people who are coming to work untrained. But being the glass-half-full guy that I am, I see this as an opportunity, especially in our business. What better time to improve your customer service while everyone else’s is terrible?
December 22, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Love as a Business Strategy

The basis of this interesting book is that we are all better together. If we can look out for each other, and we keep one another’s interest at heart, we will all succeed in the end. Sure, some of you will think that this a good basic premise for doing business, but realistically this message needs to be said repeatedly because some companies just don’t get it. If business is always between people, then the need for caring for those people we do business with is a true prerequisite for doing business.
December 10, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Amaze Every Customer Every Time

If you could only buy and read one book on customer service, this would be the one. Filled with easy to read, understandable concepts for delivering great customer service this book would make an excellent primer for training your own customer service and inside salespeople. But it is much more than that. Among his nuggets of knowledge: The customer is not always right. Get this book.
December 02, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Built to Fail—The Inside Story of Blockbuster’s Inevitable Bust

Shall we talk about the epitome of a “woulda, shoulda, coulda” story? This is the real deal. "Built To Fail: The Inside Story of Blockbuster’s Inevitable Bust" takes us on a fascinating reverse fortune adventure illustrating how things should not be done in business. How the world’s leading movie rental business literally overlooked opportunity after opportunity only to find that straight path to failure.
November 19, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Pogue’s Basics

David Pogue is one of my favorite reporters on CBS Sunday Morning, one of my favorite programs. He is also the technology reporter for the New York Times. And he is the opposite of what you’d expect for a tech reporter for the “Old Gray Lady.” His Techno Santa features every December are not to be missed, and Pogue will be the keynote speaker at IPC APEX EXPO this year.
November 05, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The Icarus Deception: How High Will You Fly?

This is another worthy title by the great Seth Godin. I am often asked why I am so enamored of this writer. And my answer is always the same: He writes the best and most common-sense books on sales, marketing, and strategy, and everybody knows, I love common sense. First, let’s get this out of way. The Icarus Deception is actually about the fear of success, of flying on waxed wings like Icarus, too close to the sun. The heat of the sun melts the wings and Icarus goes tumbling down. In this book, Godin urges us to dare to make art. And to Mr. Godin, we are all capable of making art, even our own art that no one understands.
October 29, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: The Secret—What Great Leaders Know and Do

Here is the simple truth of leadership from one of the most concise books on leadership I’ve ever read. This is actually the 10th anniversary edition and marks over half a million copies sold. So, I guess I’m not the only one who appreciates this one. Of all the books on leadership, this is by far the very best. It is the gold standard of leadership books.
October 22, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: It's Not How Good You Are, It's How Good You Want To Be

You can read all of the business books on strategy that you want, but if you really want to cut to the chase when it comes to creative ideas for setting your business direction there are no better books than those on advertising by people in advertising. This is one of my favorites.
October 01, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Experts Never Chase—The Hassle-Free Guide for Expert-Based Entrepreneurs

Experts Never Chase: The Hassle-Free Guide for Expert-Based Entrepreneurs takes us to the next level of selling. The authors demonstrate from their own experience how to get close to clients on a more valuable and personal way than “selling them.”
September 23, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Own Your Weird

Take some cues from this serial entrepreneur whose ideas are refreshingly creative, even if they aren't all successful. Find lessons of inspiration in a way you've never heard before.
September 16, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The Obstacle is the Way

Even though this book was published in 2014, it’s message is perfect for the past almost two years we have been living through. This book as the title indicates is all about handling obstacles that stand in the way of achieving our goals.
September 10, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Design Is How It Works

Jay Greene visits with eight of the most iconic companies in the world to discuss and describe how they handle design and innovation, which includes how they handle their product designers. It's fascinating and worth the read.
September 02, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Jack Reacher’s Rules

Okay, nobody thinks that Jack Reacher is in business, right? Those of us who are Reacher fans (of the books, not the mini-me Reacher played by little Tommy Cruise in the movies) know that this six-foot-five, 225 pounds of solid muscle is in the business of taking care of business.
August 27, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Blockchain—The Next Everything

The technology that allows crypto currency to exist is called blockchain and it is much more than just a system that supports bitcoin. In fact, bitcoin is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg when it comes to blockchain.
August 19, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: The Future is Faster Than You Think

Hold onto your hat, folks. The ride into the future (literally) is flying at speeds never before imagined. This book provides a significant look into today's, and tomorrow's, technology.
August 06, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Damn Good Advice (For People with Talent)

If you want a book that not only shows how to be creative and spark your own creativity, but provides real-life examples of what true originality looks like, this is the book for you. It is a small book filled with 119 ways to spark your own creativity. I love this book. I keep it on my desk at all times so that when I get stuck for an idea to write about, I look through it and I always find something that will get my engine running again.
July 23, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Grow Your Audience, Grow Your Brand

The thing I like most about Nancy Marshall’s book Grow Your Audience, Grow Your Brand is that she takes what some of us think are a very complicated passage through social media and makes it simple and understandable. From the explanation of content marketing in the first chapter, to the chapter on developing your brand story, Marshall (also known as “the PR Maven”) describes in clear and concise terms not only how these marketing and branding tools work but how to create them as well.
July 15, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Go Live! Turn Virtual Connections into Paying Customers

If one thing has become clear during the pandemic, more people are using social media to communicate. Use that to your advantage in your business. Dan reviews helpful tips from this book by Jeffrey Gitomer.
July 08, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Change is Good… You Go First: 21 Ways to Inspire Change

Change is Good… You Go First: 21 Ways to Inspire Change focuses on this dichotomy: Everyone acknowledges that businesses must evolve, but no one want to be the first to change.
July 01, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: The Strangest Secret

Every so often we must go back to the classics: the books that are the building blocks of the business writing. This is one of those classics.
June 25, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: The Printed Circuit Designer’s Guide to... Thermal Management: A Fabricator’s Perspective

Finally, here’s an RF book from the fabricator’s point of view. This book gives PCB designers valuable insight into what it takes to build an RF PCB. For the first time, designers get a complete understanding on how their designs become a reality.
June 18, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: ‘Who Gets It? How to Find, Motivate, and Retain Top Talent’

This book is all about finding talent, the people who “get it.” They are the ones who figure it out, who always find a way. They are not afraid to break policy, especially when the policy is stupid (as most of them are). These are the people who will never let you down because they are so mission driven that achieving their goals and fulfilling that mission is more important to them than it is to anyone else.
June 09, 2021

Dan’s Biz Bookshelf: Winning the War for Talent

Author Chris Czarnik explains the recruitment process in today's social environment, and what different generations of workers are looking for. Important advice for our industry!
June 02, 2021

Dan's Biz Bookshelf: Make Virtual Meetings Matter

This book is filled with suggestions and ideas on how to not only run, but also attend these meetings. The author, Paul Axtell, has spent a lot of time thinking and coming up with several very good ways to make these meetings as productive—and yes, even inspiring as possible.
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