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Software Engineering, Project Management, and Effectiveness

Best Leadership Books

Best Leadership Books

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My Best Leadership Books list is now ready for action.   I’ve revised the Top 10 Best Leadership Books section, added a Getting Started section and an A-Z List of the Best Leadership Books to help you quickly scan the full collection.  I hope you find it to be one of the most useful lists of leadership books available on the Web.

This leadership books list features the greatest hits from many favorites including Stephen Covey, Peter Drucker, John Wooden, John Maxwell, and more. 

Here are some of the skills that this list of leadership books helps you with:

How to create and share your vision, mission, and values
How to adopt a leadership mindset
How to build better daily leadership habits
How to build your emotional intelligence
How to deal with setbacks and failures as a leader
How to develop the leader within you
How to develop the leaders around you
How to do succession planning
How to execute
How to look and act like a leader

How to find your motivation and drive and help others find theirs
How to influence without authority
How to create a culture of excellence
How to create a learning organization and culture of growth
How to use situational leadership to improve your leadership ability
How to play to your strengths
How to prioritize and take decisive action
How to practice principle-centered leadership
How to practice servant leadership
How to establish healthy teamwork

I’ve organized the best leadership books into the following meaningful categories:

Attitude
Authenticity, Authentic Leadership
Change
Character
Communication
Daily
Development, Leadership Development
Effectiveness
Emotional Intelligence, Compassion, Heart, Empathy
Ethics
Excellence
Execution
Failure, Setbacks
Influence, Rapport
Interpersonal Skills
Leadership, Lessons in Leadership
Learning, Growth
Principles, Practices, Strategies, Tactics
Purpose, Passion, Motivation
Reflection, Inner-Engineering
Servant Leadership
Situational Leadership
Strengths
Strategy
Teamwork
Trust
Vision, Mission, Values

As you can imagine, it’s an extensive collection of leadership books. 

There is an even a book on executive presence.  This is a popular topic for people looking to go up in levels and establish their credibility among their peers.

One thing you’ll notice is that John Maxwell dominates the leadership books scene.  John Maxwell has clearly advanced the practice of leadership through many of his specific and actionable leadership books.  He’s written on various aspects of leadership from attitude to interpersonal skills  The beauty of his leadership books is that they are like little playbooks that are compact, insightful, and actionable.  It also helps that his writing style is down to Earth and conversational while staying positive and inspirational.

But don’t let Maxwell’s amazing collection of leadership books overshadow the contributions of other great leadership books.  For example, if you really want to build a culture of excellence and have people spend more time in their strengths, then read Good to Great by Jim Collins, and Go Put Your Strengths to work by Marcus Buckingham.   If you want to master building high-performance teams, then be sure to read Flawless Execution where James Murphy shares lessons from the Air Force.   If you lead people, be sure to read about Situational Leadership so you can balance your directing and motivating styles with the needs of the people you manage.   To really take your leadership game to the next level, read Leadership on the Line, by Ronald A. Heifetz, to avoid hitting glass ceilings, know what hard-core leadership really entails, and to distinguish between technical and adaptive challenges … your leadership career may very well depend on it.

Take my Leadership Books List for a test drive and I think you will find at least three new leadership books to add to your leadership development collection.