In our fast-changing world, great leadership has become all the more crucial for inspiring, mobilizing, empowering and uniting people to solve problems and build extraordinary organizations. Are there any timeless leadership principles and philosophies that you can adopt? How can you develop your insights and skills in key leadership roles like visioning, coaching, motivating, communication and management, to become a more effective leader and manager? Well, here’s our pick of the 6 best leadership books that any leader should read. Check out the links below to our free book summaries to these get a quick overview of the key insights, tools and tips.
No time to read them all? Simply get our detailed infographic, text and audio summaries for all 6 books here!
1. THE COACHING HABIT
Leaders play a vital role in developing their teams. Coaching is increasingly recognized as an important aspect of leadership and development, yet of us don’t receive nor deliver effective coaching. This book helps you to improve your skills as a coach and leader to help others solve problems and develop themselves
Specifically, it explains 3 vicious cycles at the workplace, how to counter them with effective coaching, and how to apply 7 key questions that capture the essence of coaching. You can use these questions to change how you engage others, manage your relationships, and guide your employees or co-workers to solve problems and develop themselves.
2. THE 21 IRREFUTABLE LAWS OF LEADERSHIP
“Everything rises and falls on leadership.” The book covers 21 principles that help you to become a more powerful and effective leader, based on John Maxwell’s insights from over 40 years of leadership successes, mistakes, and observations of leaders in business, politics, sports, military etc. For each of these 21 Leadership Laws, Maxwell includes recommended actions that you can apply immediately to start improving your leadership and influence on multiple fronts. Read The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership free summary here, or get the full infographic/ text/ audio summary bundle here.
3. THE LEADERSHIP CHALLENGE
Based on 30 years of researching leaders at their personal best, this is one of the best leadership books that presents 5 Practices of Exemplary Leadership that are crucial for uniting and mobilizing people to turn challenges into successes and create extraordinary results. Here, you’ll learn how to Model the Way, Inspire a Shared Vision, Challenge the Process, Enable Others to Act, and Encourage the Heart, to create truly outstanding results for your organization. Read The Leadership Challenge free summary here, or get the full infographic/ text/ audio summary bundle here.
4. THE 5 LANGUAGES OF APPRECIATION IN THE WORKPLACE
With increasingly-intense business competition, retaining quality employees has become a crucial element of business success, and even survival. Workplace appreciation can help companies to improve motivation and retention, without a huge cash outlay. This book is built on the hugely-successful “5 Love Languages” by Dr. Chapman: it explains the 5 languages of appreciation at the workplace, how to identify your/ your colleagues’ primary and secondary languages, and apply these principles to improve motivation, retention and business success. Read The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace free summary here, or get the full infographic/ text/ audio summary bundle here.
5. THE NEW ONE-MINUTE MANAGER
This book presents 3 important secrets that will help you to concurrently achieve better results, have more time for yourself, and empower your team to be more effective and fulfilled. Specifically, the authors explain common management/ leadership pitfalls to avoid, and 3 secrets of the New One-Minute Manager, including how to set “one-minute goals”, and keep your team on track with “one-minute praisings” and “one-minute re-directs. These simple but powerful approach allows you to invest in people and implement a collaborative approach that frees up your own time while improving results and fulfillment for you and your team. You can apply it in at work or at home, to enjoy a happier and more fulfilling life. Read The New One Minute Manager free summary here, or get the full infographic/ text/ audio summary bundle here.
6. THE DICHOTOMY OF LEADERSHIP
Leadership is full of nuances and contradictions. Great leaders balance the forces that pull them in opposite directions, e.g. they take full ownership yet empower others, are disciplined but not rigid, humble but not passive. This book helps leaders to understand the dichotomy of leadership in 12 key areas (including how to balance your people, your mission and yourself), and how to embrace them to become a better leader. Read The Dichotomy of Leadership free summary here, or get the full infographic/ text/ audio summary bundle here.
So here you are: the 6 best leadership books that we’ve come across. They provide valuable foundations, insights and tips for leaders at any level. Do read all 6 books if possible, as they cover different important aspects of leadership which are equally powerful.