Can a trend involving as little as 1 percent of the population generate a significant business opportunity? PR executive and political advisor Mark J. Penn thinks so. In Microtrends (Twelve, $25.99), Penn identifies 76 such miniwaves, explaining the forces behind them and the implications for entrepreneurs. For instance, there are about 11 million more American women seeking husbands than there are men available to marry. Penn says that means opportunity for industries such as home repair and investment management. Whatever industry you're in, these minitrends are sure to suggest possibility.
In From Difficult to Disturbed (Amacom, $22), psychologist Laurence Miller uses case studies to teach entrepreneurs how to handle employees with common disorders like passive-aggressive and avoidant personalities. The book explains the problems each disorder typically generates, the strengths each is likely to bring and how to communicate with people who display them.
Busy doesn't always equal productive. These helpful articles, our most-viewed stories on the hot topic this year, illustrate the difference. Check them out to learn how to stay focused and get more done in the year ahead.
Reflecting back on his life, serial inventor Stephen Key recalls the importance of having confidence. Trust yourself to make good decisions, he advises. Have the courage to make changes when things don't feel right.