At our company, our employees crave growth and development. One way we add to this focus is through our quarterly book club. Our business book club is different from most, as we all read a book we are interested in, not one we all read together.
Having a book club where we all read different business books exposes us to a huge library to explore that we may not have thought of before. It also allows us to grow in areas that appeal to us.
Reading is one of the major habits successful people have in common. For instance, Bill Gates reads 50 books per year, Warrant Buffett reads 500 pages every day, and Mark Cuban reads 3+ hours a day.
How Reading Improves Leadership Skills
Reading can improve your business and leadership skills in many ways:
- Expands your vocabulary. When you are exposed to various writing styles, voices, and delivery methods, your verbal and communication style improves.
- Fosters a growth mindset. Reading takes the mind to places you haven’t traveled before. To develop yourself personally, this is one of the easiest and quickest ways to do so. Reading exposes you to ideas and new ways of doing things you may not have thought of before.
- Allows you to become inspired. Your imagination is open to running freely as you read. You can learn how to solve problems, find someone who has run into similar problems as you, and learn from their successes and mistakes.
It is easy to believe the myth that you don’t have time to read, that you are just too busy. Let that excuse go!
One of the books a few of us read this year was Atomic Habits. What stood out was that we all have daily habits, but what if we added a new habit to the mix? James Clear offered the idea of “habit stacking,” which would be an easy way to add reading to your daily routine. Adding a new habit of reading for 15-20 minutes daily is an easy way to begin.
31 Books to Help Develop Yourself in 2023
Imagine how you can develop yourself in 2023 if you pick up a book. To get you started with ideas, here are the books people in our company read this year.
1. The Talent War
By: Mike Sarraille and George Randle
The Talent War explores how US Special Operations Forces assess, select, and develop their world-class talent. You'll learn how to adopt a talent mindset, the single greatest weapon you can possess in the war for talent. When your organization reflects this mindset, you will hire, train, and develop the right people, and put them in the best positions to make decisions that allow you to retake the advantage and win the war.
By: Ray Dalio
Dalio argues that life, management, economics, and investing can all be systemized into rules and understood like machines. The book’s hundreds of practical lessons, built around his cornerstones of “radical truth” and “radical transparency,” include Dalio laying out the most effective ways for individuals and organizations to make decisions, approach challenges, and build strong teams.
3. Eight Paradoxes of Great Leadership
By: Tim Elmorl
The Eight Paradoxes of Great Leadership unpacks the fresh strategies and new mindset required today from a next-generation leader.
4. Atomic Habits
By: James Clear
No matter your goals, Atomic Habits offers a proven framework for improving--every day. James Clear, one of the world's leading experts on habit formation, reveals practical strategies that will teach you exactly how to form good habits, break bad ones, and master the tiny behaviors that lead to remarkable results.
5. Go for No!
By: Richard Fenton and Andrew Waltz
Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones, but “NO” Can Never Hurt Me!
That’s the lesson twenty-eight-year-old copier salesman Eric Bratton is about to learn. And he’s going to learn it from the most unlikely of mentors - himself!
6. Quench Your Own Thirst
By: Jim Koch
Pull up a chair and crack open a Sam Adams. It’s time to leave behind business as you know it. Quench Your Own Thirst covers everything from finding your own Yoda to Koch’s theory on how a piece of string can teach you the most important lesson you’ll ever learn about business.
7. Stick Together
By: Jon Gordon and Kate Leavell
Stick Together delivers a crucial message about the power of belief, ownership, connection, love, inclusion, consistency, and hope. The authors guide individuals and teams on an inspiring journey to show them how to persevere through challenges, overcome obstacles, and create success together.
8. Presentation Zen
By: Garr Reynolds
Garr tackles storytelling through slides and shares his approach to effective presentation design.
9. Game On: Reinventing Organizational Culture with Gamification
By: Arthur Carmazzi
Game On shares research, case studies, and step-by-step processes that will take you on a fun journey of culture evolution success while impacting your teams’ innovation and lives. And with Pandemic ready strategies, you can easily start getting results immediately.
10. Leaders Eat Last
By: Simon Sinek
Imagine a world where almost everyone wakes up inspired to go to work, feels trusted and valued during the day, then returns home feeling fulfilled. This is not a crazy, idealized notion. Today, in many successful organizations, great leaders create environments in which people naturally work together to do remarkable things.
11. The Coffee Bean
By: Jon Gordon
Life is often difficult. It can be harsh, stressful, and feel like a pot of boiling hot water. The environments we find ourselves in can change, weaken, or harden us and test who we truly are. We can be like the carrot that weakens in the pot or like the egg that hardens. Or, we can be like the coffee bean and discover the power inside us to transform our environment.
12. The Advantage
By: Patrick Lencioni
There is a competitive advantage out there, arguably more powerful than any other. Is it a superior strategy? Faster innovation? Smarter employees? No, New York Times best-selling author, Patrick Lencioni, argues that the seminal difference between successful companies and mediocre ones has little to do with what they know and how smart they are and more to do with how healthy they are.
13. Can't Hurt Me
By: David Goggins
In Can't Hurt Me, Goggins shares his astonishing life story and reveals that most of us tap into only 40% of our capabilities. Goggins calls this The 40% Rule, and his story illuminates a path that anyone can follow to push past pain, demolish fear, and reach their full potential.
14. Thinking, Fast And Slow
By: Daniel Kahneman
In his mega-bestseller, Thinking, Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, the renowned psychologist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Economics, takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think.
15. You Are The Team
By: Michael G. Rogers
A book for you, your team and entire organization to improve teamwork by helping members of your team and/or organization(s) to become stronger and more connected and committed team players. To increase the level of teamwork, you must increase the level of the teammate. Great teams are made up of great teammates.
16. Switch: How To Change Things When Change Is Hard
By: Chip Heath and Dan Heath
In a compelling, story-driven narrative, the Heaths bring together decades of counterintuitive research in psychology, sociology, and other fields to shed new light on how we can effect transformative change. Switch shows that successful changes follow a pattern, a pattern you can use to make the changes that matter to you, whether your interest is in changing the world or changing your waistline.
17. Remote Not Distant
By: Gustavo Razzetti
The future of work is here. Will you adapt or be left in the dust? With actionable advice, this book offers you the insights and tools you need to succeed in a hybrid workplace.
18. Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook - How To Tell Your Story In A Noisey Social World
By: Gary Vaynerchuk
Published in 2013, Gary Vaynerchuk shares hard-won advice on how to connect with customers and beat the competition. A mash-up of the best elements of Crush It! and The Thank You Economy with a fresh spin, Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook is a blueprint for social media marketing strategies.
19. Stealing Fire
By: Steven Kotler and Jamie Wheal
Kotler and Wheal spent four years investigating the leading edges of this revolution—from the home of SEAL Team Six to the Googleplex, the Burning Man festival, Richard Branson’s Necker Island, Red Bull’s training center, Nike’s innovation team, and the United Nations Headquarters. And what they learned was stunning.
20. Winning on Purpose
By: Fred Reichheld
In Winning on Purpose, Reichheld demonstrates that the primary purpose of a business should be to enrich the lives of its customers. Why? Because when customers feel this love, they come back for more and bring their friends—generating good profits. This is NPS 3.0 and it puts a new take on the age-old Golden Rule—treat customers the way you would want a loved one treated—at the heart of enduring business success.
21. Career Development IRL
By: Bill Hendrich
Bill shares his wisdom throughout his media career. He is matter-of-fact and tells it as it is.
22. Living with a Seal
By: Jessee Itzler
Entrepreneur Jesse Itzler will try almost anything. His life is about being bold and risky. So when Jesse felt himself drifting on autopilot, he hired a rather unconventional trainer to live with him for a month-an accomplished Navy SEAL widely considered to be "the toughest man on the planet"!
23. 12 Rules For Life: An Antidote for Chaos
By: Jordan B Peterson
Dr. Peterson journeys broadly, discussing discipline, freedom, adventure and responsibility, distilling the world's wisdom into 12 practical and profound rules for life. 12 Rules for Life shatters the modern commonplaces of science, faith, and human nature while transforming and ennobling the mind and spirit of its readers.
24. The 6 Types of Working Genius
By: Patrick Lencioni
The 6 Types of Working Genius is the fastest way to help people identify the type of work that brings them joy and energy, and avoid work that leads to frustration and burnout.
25. Content That Converts
By: Laura Hanly
This book is for entrepreneurs and the leaders of B2B businesses who want to use content marketing to bring a predictable stream of qualified leads into their sales cycles, and need a replicable system to make it happen.
26. Emotional Intelligence For The Modern Leader
By: Christopher D. Connors
Success requires more than hard work and good ideas: you need to be able to understand, inspire, and motivate those around you. Emotional Intelligence for the Modern Leader helps you hone your emotional intelligence (EQ)—the ability to be aware of, control, and express your emotions, as well as handle interpersonal relationships empathetically—and enhance your ability to lead.
27. Now, Discover Your Strengths
By: Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton
Many people have little sense of their talents and strengths, much less the ability to build their lives around them. Instead, they are raised and taught to become experts in their weaknesses — and spend their lives trying to fix them — while their strengths lie dormant.
28. Whatever It Takes
By: Brandon Bornancin
No matter who you are or where you come from, your education, or your network, you can defy the odds to create the life you want and build the business you’ve only dreamed about.
29. What's In It For Them?
By: Joe Polish
In What’s in It for Them?, Polish faces the problem of personal and professional disconnection head-on, offering entrepreneurs a heart- and mind-expanding guide.
30. Love Is Free, Guac Is Extra
By: Monty Moran
In Love Is Free, Guac Is Extra, Monty shows how he used curiosity, vulnerability, love, and a unique understanding of the true meaning of empowerment to build a distinctive and wildly effective culture.
31. Marcus Aurelius Meditations
By: Marcus Aurelius
Short paragraphs of stoic observations, written in the 1st century by a Roman Emperor for his personal guidance.
Developing yourself personally and professionally is a lifelong endeavor. Regardless of the type of stories you choose to read, reading will help you understand others better.
Learning the strategies used by some of the world's most successful business leaders is sure to have a positive impact on your career. These books listed are just a few of the many titles out there that will help teach and motivate you through your career.