Leadership & Business Growth Books for October 2013
Here are our top picks for the best leadership and business growth books this month.
The Good Struggle: Responsible Leadership in an Unforgiving World by Joseph L. Badaracco, Jr.
The question of how to lead successfully and responsibly is crucially important in our uncertain, high-pressure, turbulent world. In this book, Harvard Business School Professor Joseph Badaracco answers this question in practical and, at times, provocative ways.
Leaders today are surrounded by what Badaracco calls “the new invisible hand”—powerful, pervasive markets that touch and shape almost everything. As a result, understanding the inevitability and importance of struggle is critical. And leaders must go a step further to create what Badaracco calls “the good struggle” in order to meet their goals at work, as well as their goals in life.
The Good Struggle helps you meet the relentless challenges of being a leader today by identifying the most important questions you should be asking yourself. New answers to these questions can be found by watching leaders in dynamic settings, especially entrepreneurs. The conditions entrepreneurs have always faced—intense competition, scarce resources, and unforgiving markets—are true now for the rest of us, and they offer valuable, practical lessons about struggling and succeeding in volatile and uncertain environments.
If “the joy of life is in the struggle,” as one thoughtful entrepreneur put it, The Good Struggle can help you find meaning in your work, stay focused on what matters despite the turbulence around you, and keep you on the path to leading successfully and responsibly.
Eat Move Sleep: How Small Choices Lead To Big Changes by Tom Rath
Eat Move Sleep: the latest New York Times bestseller from the author of StrengthsFinder 2.0, How Full Is Your Bucket?, Strengths Based Leadership, and Wellbeing. A “transformative” book and online application that will improve your health for years to come. While Tom’s bestsellers on strengths and well-being have inspired more than 5 million people in the last decade, Eat Move Sleep reveals his greatest passion and expertise. Quietly managing a serious illness for more than 20 years, Tom has assembled a wide range of information on the impact of eating, moving, and sleeping. Written in his classic conversational style, Eat Move Sleep features the most proven and practical ideas from his research. This remarkably quick read offers advice that is comprehensive yet simple and often counterintuitive but always credible. Eat Move Sleep will help you make good decisions automatic — in all three of these interconnected areas. With every bite you take, you will make better choices. You will move a lot more than you do today. And you will sleep better than you have in years. More than a book, Eat Move Sleep is a new way to live.
Creative Confidence: Unleashing The Creative Potential Within Us All by Tom Kelley & David Kelley
Too often, companies and individuals assume that creativity and innovation are the domain of the “creative types.” But two of the leading experts in innovation, design, and creativity on the planet show us that each and every one of us is creative. In an incredibly entertaining and inspiring narrative that draws on countless stories from their work at IDEO, the Stanford d.school, and with many of the world’s top companies, David and Tom Kelley identify the principles and strategies that will allow us to tap into our creative potential in our work lives, and in our personal lives, and allow us to innovate in terms of how we approach and solve problems. It is a book that will help each of us be more productive and successful in our lives and in our careers.
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos & The Age of Amazon by Brad Stone
Amazon.com started off delivering books through the mail. But its visionary founder, Jeff Bezos, wasn’t content with being a bookseller. He wanted Amazon to become the everything store, offering limitless selection and seductive convenience at disruptively low prices. To do so, he developed a corporate culture of relentless ambition and secrecy that’s never been cracked. Until now. Brad Stone enjoyed unprecedented access to current and former Amazon employees and Bezos family members, giving readers the first in-depth, fly-on-the-wall account of life at Amazon. Compared to tech’s other elite innovators–Jobs, Gates, Zuckerberg–Bezos is a private man. But he stands out for his restless pursuit of new markets, leading Amazon into risky new ventures like the Kindle and cloud computing, and transforming retail in the same way Henry Ford revolutionized manufacturing.
THE EVERYTHING STORE will be the revealing, definitive biography of the company that placed one of the first and largest bets on the Internet and forever changed the way we shop and read.
Grounded: How Leaders Stay Rooted in an Uncertain World by Bob Rosen
Confronted by disruptive change and economic turbulence, many of today’s leaders find themselves ill-equipped to manage the hazards they now face. They must contend with chronic uncertainty, cynical employees, and personal burnout. Most are poorly served by the prevailing paradigm that obsessively focuses on what we do to produce short-term results while sabotaging who we are as healthy human beings. Few have seen alternatives, until now.
Grounded proposes a new approach that’s designed for actual humans who must grapple with these forces. This new paradigm speaks to our better selves. Based on the author’s Healthy Leader model, it focuses on the six personal dimensions that fuel—and refuel—the world’s top leaders: physical, emotional, intellectual, social, vocational, and spiritual health.
The book argues that leaders at every level can be more self-aware, develop their untapped potential, and drive significantly better results—for themselves, their teams, and their organizations.
David & Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits and the Art of Battling Giants by Malcolm Gladwell
Three thousand years ago on a battlefield in ancient Palestine, a shepherd boy felled a mighty warrior with nothing more than a stone and a sling, and ever since then the names of David and Goliath have stood for battles between underdogs and giants. David’s victory was improbable and miraculous. He shouldn’t have won.
Or should he have?
In David and Goliath, Malcolm Gladwell challenges how we think about obstacles and disadvantages, offering a new interpretation of what it means to be discriminated against, or cope with a disability, or lose a parent, or attend a mediocre school, or suffer from any number of other apparent setbacks.
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