The Expert Formula for a Perfect Summer

June 25, 2013


Summer officially began last week, and in many regions that means beguilingly warm days and a nagging desire to trade spreadsheets for sunscreen. But not everyone is ready to abandon their professional ambitions for three months. Plenty of new graduates, entrepreneurs and strivers of all stripes want to find ways to enhance their careers during the summer.

LinkedIn’s Summer Guide has you covered on both counts. Whether you’re looking for a break from the daily grind, a way to get a professional edge while everyone else is lounging in hammocks, this compilation is your one-stop shop. The best part? LinkedIn Influencers — the sharpest thinkers and most successful people in business — are making the recommendations, so you’re reading the advice of people with a proven history of working smart and playing well.

For Influencers’ top picks in a host of categories from books to investments, click through to the full list here. Below, some recommendations to get your summer started off right:

Best activity or fitness routine

Steven Sinofsky, the former head of Windows at Microsoft, sings the praises of hot yoga, and not just because it tones muscle. He claims it can inform product development, too American Banker editor in chief Neil Weinberg swears by tennis, in part because it’s not a team sport. “We tennis players are gladiators,” he writes. “We scorn the culture of the third-grade soccer tournament, where everyone gets a trophy.”

If you think summer’s the time to take on big challenges, you could climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, like Robert Wood Johnson Foundation CEO Risa Lavizzo-Mourey did. Of course, not everyone has access to the world’s largest peaks, which is why Lavizzo-Mourey also tells you how to tackle your metaphorical mountains.

Best book
Lots of people equate summer reading with a lack of substance, but venture investor and former HealthCentral CEO Christopher Schroeder offers up a pick that feeds the brain while challenging assumptions in My Isl@m, by Amir Ahmad Nasr. Vivian Schiller, chief digital officer at NBC News, says she’s surrounded by real-life drama all day at work, so her leisure reading leans more toward personal, character-driven narratives. She recommends nine. Finally, McKinsey partner David Edelman offers a professional pick, but one that can give readers a vacation from the dull Powerpoint decks corporate America has come to loathe, Nancy Duarte’s Resonate.

Best summer career tip
Likeable Media CEO Dave Kerpen has good news: It turns out that Margaritas, a summer favorite, can go hand in hand with career development. And CEO Michael Fertik advises that summer is a great time to re-examine your to-do list and put your focus on all of those items you’ve been putting off.

Best cocktail
Is it the Uptown Sour, as chef and author Marcus Samuelsson suggests, the Martini (in founding editor John Abell’s post you’ll find a mouth-watering recipe for the perfect one), or something called the “Inexhale,” offered by Citi Managing Director Linda Descano? Read their cases for their favorite tipple, and weigh in on yours.

Best vacation
Whitney Johnson, co-adviser at hedge fund Rose Park Advisors, offers a fresh way of thinking about vacations: start by tossing out your sense of obligation. If summer music festivals aren’t truly your idea of a good time, but basic cable marathons and outdoor dinners with the family are, then go with what makes you happy — not what you think you should do with your time. Johnson’s picks? Litchfield, Conn. and a few episodes of “Master Chef.” Buzzfeed President Jon Steinberg keeps his vacation even simpler, offering the guide to a perfect summer nap (complete with pictures).

But if you had a more traditional vacation in mind, Arne Sorensen, CEO of Marriott International, provides 10 long-distance travel tips, from fighting jet lag to keeping it real.

This is just a sampling of the fun, and productive, ways Influencers want you to spend your summer. For the full array of summer bests, and to subscribe to the summer guide channel, go here.

Now for your top picks: Tell the world what books, movies, gadgets, games and more they’re missing this summer on our LinkedIn Company Page or on Twitter with