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While I visit my local bookstore on a regular basis, I am lucky to have friends and colleagues who are constantly telling me about their latest “favorite book.” The following books have all contributed key teachings and themes in leadership curricula I’ve written or have been highly influential resources:
Women Who Changed the World
This is a great resource! It highlights 50 women who influenced the world in politics, business, entertainment, religion, etc. You get the background, timeline of her life, and notable accomplishments for each woman. From today’s influencers (Oprah Winfrey, Hillary Clinton) to history’s rebels (Joan of Arc, Marie Curie) this is a great reminder of woman who accomplished remarkable things to pave the way for the rest of us today.
The Leadership Pill
The Leadership Pill is told in a story-telling format. The authors imagine a leadership pill that actually improves and stimulates the powers of the mind and body. But, the pill contains the wrong ingredients which makes people obsessive and successful, but short-sighted. It’s a quick airplane read. While there isn’t a leadership model asserted in it, you get some commonsensical dos and don’ts for leading others. This is a book to read and pass on to another friend.
Much has been written of today’s Millennial Generation. Here’s another one! What was compelling for me was the by-line – “Why today’s young Americans are more confident, assertive, entitled, and more miserable than ever. For those of us working with Millennials in the workplace or volunteering alongside them in our organizations, this provides interesting insights into our youngest contributors.
The Nordstrom Way
Nordstrom is all about customer service. Their employees and fans all have fascinating stories of outstanding customer service. They don’t want to be known for good customer service but exemplary service. They want you to love them and shop there so often that you have a “Nordie” (an uber-committed employee) who exceeds your expectations… and you keep coming back for more… telling others those stories of service.
Emotional and intellectual “smarts” is not enough these days. What I loved about this book is the authors asserted that leaders and managers can improve business performance as well as personal leadership success. Knowing your own moral values and principles is key to becoming a success in any environment.
The Difference “Difference” Makes
I’ve always enjoyed books where each chapter is written by a different person. You get various perspectives on a common issue/theme from a variety of sources. This book focuses on the difference of women in leadership in the context of law, politics, business, education, etc.