Beth Wonson & Company

Weekly Podcast & Blog

Empowering Executives, Emerging Leaders, Teams, & Individuals For Over 20 Years

What I'm Into


A question that I’m frequently asked is “How do you learn all this stuff?” That’s an easy answer. I read constantly.

So today I’m going to share with you the just some of the authors that are stacked up on my desk, my bedside table, and in my computer bag; I’m going to let you in on “what I’m into” right now!

Social Intelligence, The Revolutionary New Science of Human Relationships by Daniel Goleman. The first time I heard Daniel Goleman was on an NPR interview. I felt like everything I suspected was true about humans—how we interact, what motivates us, and how we connect—was being explained!

I had certainly studied emotional intelligence and knew that Goleman was influential in the acceptance of its importance in education and human development, but I had not actually listened to him speak. I logged onto Amazon Prime and ordered Social Intelligence immediately.

What I love about Goleman is how he unravels and simplifies the complexities of what happens in our brains, hearts, muscles, and cells when we interact with others.

If you know people, work with people, depend on people for your livelihood or emotional stability, I recommend checking out this book!

I love books and can’t ever resist checking out what my smart friends are reading. I was at my home away from home in Groovy Beach, CA when I spied a title I’d never seen on my friend and colleague Betsey Nash’s coffee table.

The title of the book, The 15 Commitments of Conscious Leadership: A New Paradigm for Sustainable Success, was right up my alley.

I asked Betsey about it and she told me she had been given the book by her client. I thumbed through the pages and saw headings such as “Why We Blame” and “Generating Appreciation.” Anyone who has ever heard me speak or been in one of my workshops can only imagine how giddy I became as I read this book. So of course, I went directly to Amazon Prime (which as you may now realize is a dangerous place for me) and ordered it immediately.

The book, by authors Jim Dethmer, Diana Chapman, and Kaley Warner Klemp, really got me thinking about how yes, this is great information for leaders and leadership, but it is also amazing information and a model for how staff who aren’t in leadership positions can be successful.

I not only devoured both books, reading eagerly into the early morning hours, filling the pages with highlighter markings, post-it notes, and dog-eared corners, but I also finalized my two newest workshops—both of which had been simmering in my mind for months.

The first, Joy at Work - Re-Energizing Staff pulls from The 15 Commitments of Conscious Leadership but focuses on the ways in which we box ourselves in a story of unhappiness and victimization or become part of the virus of gossip and drama that brings us all down in the workplace. I just feel so passionately that it is great for leaders to develop their skills, but when the staff has not been introduced to the possibility of changing their own paradigms, the leader’s work can be exhausting.

The second workshop, designed specifically for customer service or sales people, focuses on how emotional triggers happen, how they impact customer relations, and how we can use what we know to build rapport, trust, and connection quickly.

As an activator,* someone whose strength is to turn ideas into action, books are lush gardens of ideas. I love authors and thought leaders who offer new perspectives, delve into topics that shift my thinking, and share ways that can inspire me in service to my clients.

What books inspire you?

*Activator is one of the strengths in the Strengths Finder 2.0 from Gallup. You can learn more about this and discover your own strengths at