A Director of Product Experience & Strategy’s Favorite Books
by Angel Ayala
Building the industry bookshelf one recommended read at a time
These books have been instrumental in my personal and professional life. Many of them serendipitously came to me when I needed them the most, and I’m eternally grateful for these, and many more, that I now own and carry with me anywhere I am — in my phone, my kindle, my library at home, or in my head.
These are remarkable pieces of history that we get to enjoy and reflect upon. I love the depth and the slowness it requires to be fully enjoyed. I simply love the mindset of slowing — almost to a stop — to take in this book and its profound learnings.
“Everything we hear is an opinion, not a fact. Everything we see is a perspective, not the truth.”
Love how Paul Rand makes the simplest and most elegant expression of what Design truly is. His definition of Design is a powerful depiction of a masterful and creative teacher.
“To design is much more than simply to assemble, to order, or even to edit: it is to add value and meaning, to illuminate, to simplify, to clarify, to modify, to dignify, to dramatize, to persuade, and perhaps even to amuse. To design is to transform prose into poetry.”
Thinking before we act is a powerful way to challenge us to take action and reflect on that, rather than the opposite which leads us to never accomplish something worth living for. Herminia Ibarra’s work is phenomenal — it teaches us to recognize insight as an outcome rather than input, and shift preconceived notions into something actionable and dynamic.
“Knowing what we should be doing and actually doing it are two very different things.”