Leadership Development Books & Resources

leadership development books and resources

“Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other” – John F. Kennedy

I bet you can name at least one major book that’s inspired you to pivot, pursue a new idea, or even change the way you think. So whether it’s for the C-suite, workplace development, or just your own personal journey, here are a few of my all-time favorite business and personal book recommendations. They’re the types of gems you’ll uncover something new from each time you read them.

BUSINESS

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations DroptheBall 2

Credit: Goodreads

Drop the Ball

by Tiffany Dufu

Dufu teaches us how to say no to some things and instead focus on and excel at a few, rather than trying to do it all.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheCultureCode

Credit: Amazon

The Culture Code

by Daniel Coyle

Building upon insights from some of the world’s most powerful organizational cultures, Coyle identifies fundamental principles that make groups successful.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations ResonantLeadership

Credit: Goodreads

Resonant Leadership

by Richard Boyatzis & Annie McKee

A research-backed guide for building the more intangible quality of resonance as a leader, and how to avoid the perils of stress and burnout to get there.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations BigPotent

Credit: Amazon

Real Happiness at Work

by Sharon Salzberg

Written by one of the world’s leading meditation teachers, a must-read for integrating more mindfulness into work every day.

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Credit: Simon & Schuster

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance

by Angela Duckworth

With a background in psychology and a heartfelt personal story, Duckworth shows us success depends much more on attitude than intelligence alone.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations StartwithWhy

Credit: Penguin Random House

Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

by Simon Sinek

One of the most important business books you’ll read, Sinek reminds us to always go back to our fundamental reason for starting – our why.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations Essentialism

Credit: Amazon

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

by Greg Mckeown

Minimalism. Minimalism. Minimalism. Focus. Focus. Focus. McKeown reminds us it’s not about the amount, but getting the right things done.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations LeadershipfromtheInsideOut

Credit: Amazon

Leadership from the Inside Out: Becoming a Leader for Life

by Kevin Cashman

Now a classic, Leadership from the Inside Out changed the game, connecting personal growth with one’s ability to lead. With a new version this past Fall, you’ll want to highlight and return to often.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheTalentCode

The Talent Code

by Daniel Coyle

Using research and stories from all over the world, Coyle shows us how to grow and ultimately fulfill our full talent.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations LeadingQuietly

Leading Quietly

by Joseph L. Badaracco, JR.

While the loudest leaders are often the ones who make headlines, Badaracco gives us a much-needed reminder that it’s those who lead quietly that tend to make the biggest differences in the end.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TribeofMentors

Tribe of Mentors

by Timothy Ferriss

This compilation of short profiles of the world’s top performers across industries will help give you guidance, no matter your question.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations GiveandTake

Give and Take

by Adam Grant

A manifesto for collaboration and how our willingness to put others before individualistic interests drives ultimate success.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations ForcesforGood

Forces for Good

By Leslie R. Crutchfield & Heather Mcleod Grant

A non-profit management quick read that nicely distills the key things that make non-profits great.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheSubtleArtofNotGivingaFuck

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck

by Mark Manson

Mark Manson is not afraid to give it to you straight. All with an epic sense of humor, he’ll flip your world upside down and make you take a hard look at what you really care about.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations Principles

Principles

by Ray Dalio

With so many unique principles and practices Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio personally developed and used over the course of his career, you’re sure to come away with at least a few new ideas to try.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations WhatGreatSalespeopleDo

What Great Salespeople Do

by Michael Bosworth & Ben Zoldan

A great guide for using the power of stories to influence and persuade. Applicable across roles and organizations both in and outside of sales.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations Originals

Originals

by Adam Grant

By looking at leaders who choose to go against the grain, Grant shows us how true progress and innovation come from being brave enough to challenge the status quo.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheCoachingHabit

The Coaching Habit

by Michael Bungay Stanier

A guide to developing and integrating coaching methods into your daily team dynamic. A must-read for every manager.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations BigPotential

Big Potential

by Shawn Achor

Urging us to ditch the myth of individual achievement, this gem shows us how the greatest potential for success lies in the connections around us.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations Quiet

Quiet

by Susan Cain

Essential for anyone who has ever found themselves quieted by a society that overemphasizes the big and charismatic.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations BuildingtheBridgeasYouWalkAcrossIt

Building the Bridge as You Walk On It

by Robert E. Quinn

Transformation is rarely a smooth process. Instead, Quinn encourages an ethos of experimentation and a commitment to marching forward toward one’s purpose despite a lack of ultimate control.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheHeartAroused

The Heart Aroused

by David Whyte

In a completely original concept, Whyte applies the lessons of both classic and modern poetry to the workplace to reinvigorate the soul in today’s corporate environment.

OTHER

Books to read to be a better human…

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheBookofJoy

Credit: Penguin Random House

The Book of Joy

by The Dalai Lama & Desmond Tutu

Co-written by two of our generation’s most profound leaders, not to mention two who have encountered adversity more than most, The Book of Joy teaches us how to find joy despite hardship. A must-read for all walks of life.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations HortonHearsaWho

Credit: Harper Collins

Horton Hears a Who

by Dr. Seuss

Because your word is everything!

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations TheArtofPossibility

The Art of Possibility

by Rosamund Stone Zander & Benjamin Zander

A masterful guide to unleashing your creativity, The Art of Possibility will teach you how to see possibility all around you.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations WhyBuddhismisTrue

Why Buddhism is True

by Robert Wright

Combining psychology, philosophy, and even evolutionary biology, Wright makes a compelling case for how a little bit of mindfulness can lead to a much more compassionate society as a whole.

Extraordinary Knowing

by Elizabeth Lloyd Mayer, PH.D.

With some of the most fascinating and unconventional research on the power of the mind, Mayer will open your eyes to a world of inexplicable phenomena. I’ll leave you to explore for yourself.

LeadershipDevelopmentBookRecommendations Seeing

Seeing

by Jose Saramago

Masterful piece of fiction. I found it highly relevant to our current times as a country full of people peacefully, creatively and mysteriously rise up, together, against established, self-serving political/bureaucracy norms. It inspired hope in humanity.

Starla Sireno is an NYC Executive Coach. She partners with leaders to more effectively navigate the complexities of their roles, increase their influence at all levels, and hone their interpersonal communication skills in order to become more impactful both internally and in client-facing roles. Inquire how you can work with Starla or her team.

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