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Every great leader started as a follower and paved their way up, from the bottom to the zenith of success. A good leader always leads himself first, learns from his own mistakes, and guides others to not repeat the same.
Even though we all ‘have what it takes’, mastering the art of leadership can be a herculean task.
While some may inherently possess these skills, new avenues are created every day for those willing to develop their abilities.
One of the best ways to ensure success is through extensive reading.
Books are the ultimate companion at times of need. The most trustworthy source we can turn to while exploring new fields.
To help your potential skyrocket, we present to you, a list of :
Best Leadership Books That Will Turn Your Life Around
1. Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek
What Simon Sinek, the best-selling author of ‘Start with why‘, wanted to convey through his seminal work, is very simple; the strength that lies in the united force of the followers form the foundation of true leadership, of which empathy and trust are the building blocks.
He further stresses the notion of the circles of safety and the balance of the 4 chemicals in the human body.
A. Sinek’s concept of the circle of safety teaches us about the core values of human survival; the power of togetherness.
The solace we find in the hearth of our homes, we must wreath the same love and trust into a close-knit community of co-workers or like an extended family, where we can split all of our ups and downs among ourselves.
After all, shouldn’t we all love our neighbors as ourselves?
B. Having received a BA in Cultural Anthropology, Simon Sinek describes the functionalities of the 4 chemicals present in our bodies and how they are responsible for our actions and conduct.
The chemicals are essentially accountable for determining the behavioral credibility of a leader, namely endorphin, dopamine, serotonin, and oxytocin can be subdivided into 2 categories
- The first 2 are designated as selfish chemicals. Also known as feel-good hormones, these hormones give us a sense of accomplishment and instant gratification.
- The next 2 are called selfless chemicals. These chemicals help us nurture and solidify our comradeship and form stronger bonds based on mutual respect.
C. Lastly, Simon, in his work ‘Leaders Eat Last’, compares leadership with exercising. A day-to-day comparison to look for drastic changes can only draw us unmotivated sighs.
However, with patience and perseverance, a leader not only enhances his skills but develops a healthy environment for his team.
Intrigued by this leadership book? Buy it here
2. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R Covey
Stephen Covey’s timeless piece adorns a high stance in the fathomless ocean of literary masterpieces, especially in the self-improvement genre.
One of the classics, ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’ continues, to date, to inspire its readers owning to its compelling lines and its productive advice that has sustained the interest of the crowd and has helped bring constructive developments in their lives.
Covey’s words, capture vividly his thought process.
“The mind is everything. What you think you become”
We see our surroundings through tainted lenses.
For undergoing positive changes, we must allow ourselves to develop the 7 habits that Stephen further elaborates in the succeeding sections of one of the best leadership books ever written.
- Be proactive: Focus on what we can achieve rather than the unachievable.
- Begin with the end in mind: Start with a clear vision of your goal in your mind. Never settle for any less.
- Put first things first: Schedule your priorities. Develop your emotional intelligence.
- Think win-win: Build relationships based on trust and support.
- Seek first to understand, then to be understood: Be a good listener first, empathize with your teammates. Your actions dictate the consequences.
- Synergize: Look for modified solutions to critical problems with the help of combined efforts.
- Sharpen the saw: To reach our optimum capacity we must invest time in rejuvenating ourselves physically, mentally, socially, and spiritually.
Stephen’s 7 habits of highly effective people offers a plethora of valuable insights into the mind of the author.
Learn more about this amazing book here.
3. How To Win Friends And Influence People By Dale Carnegie
Another quintessential self-help read, Dale Carnegie’s “How to win friends and influence people”, can be considered a guide to deal with the difficulties we come across in life.
The book revolves around the core objective of modern life: be the change you want to see in others.
We can alter other’s behavior towards us by altering our own.
The fundamental philosophies to become more likable, to understand others better, to see life in a different light, and most importantly, to win over people through leadership qualities are revealed to us with great care throughout the book.
Without a doubt, this is one of the best leadership books to date and for anyone needing direction in life to explore their potential to the fullest, I’d recommend grabbing a copy of this nonpareil book as soon as possible.
You can do that right here.
4. Good to Great by James C. (Jim) Collins
A brainchild of Jim Collins, Good to Great is the result of substantial research carried on by Collins and his team. The book talks about the difference between good and great companies and the transition of some good organizations to great ones and why others fail to make the cut.
Published in 2001, Good to Great went on to become a bestseller, surpassing the bounds of the traditional business audience.
4 of the key takeaways from good to best are summarised below :
- Level 5 leadership: Leaders having humility, merged with determination to achieve the best for their company and their team.
- First Who, then What: Gather the right people before venturing into the unknown.
- Hedgehog Concept: Get down to the basics while facing adversities. Do what only you can do best.
- The Flywheel: Take small initiatives contributing towards the whole.
A must-read for people in the business field. Seal the deal here.
5. Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman
A psychologist by profession, Daniel Goleman portrays the importance of emotional intelligence and how it can triumph over IQ in today’s world.
Goleman talks about the 4 pillars upon which emotional intelligence is founded, which are:
- Self-awareness: Being aware of who you are rather than who you are supposed to be, a sound knowledge of yourself as a leader, and your capabilities to “make it” work for your team.
- Self-management: The ability to rein in your emotions and your actions. Comes especially handy during testing times when the leader is held responsible for the proper functioning of his team.
- Social awareness: Leaders keeping in touch with their team’s wellbeing by picking up non-verbal actions and behaviors and are aware of the choice of their words are well-liked by others and often assume the position of unparalleled power.
- Relationship management: Forming a deep-seated connection with co-workers can eventually lead to a peaceful working environment and sustainable bonds that can last a lifetime.
Know more about Emotional intelligence here.
6. The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership By John c Maxwell.
Inspiring a million lives and training thousands more, John Maxwell, in his bestseller has attempted to break down the concept of leadership into 21 fundamental units for the readers to digest easily.
Starting with the law of the lid, Maxwell talks about the laws of navigation, influence, process, and many more for better comprehension.
Claim your copy, here
7. Dare to Lead by Brené Brown
A holy grail for building audacity and Valor, Dare to Lead talks about the cruel suppression of vulnerability in workplaces leading to the want of innovative ideas and dauntless opinions.
Considered as one of the best leadership books, the work is all about leading fearlessly, about owning up to our shortcomings and using them as the staircase to reach our goals.
In the words of the author herself :
“Vulnerability sounds like truth and feels like courage. Truth and courage aren’t always comfortable, but they’re never weakness”
8. Wooden on Leadership by John Wooden
The pre-eminent UCLA coach, John Wooden’s take on leadership is kneaded with his own treasured experiences. In his work on leadership, Wooden talks about maintaining a “balance” between the mind, body, soul, heart, and career.
Fame and glory can change our lives drastically, and when it does, we should be mentally prepared for its repercussions. Rising from the rags to the riches, Wooden’s fame always bothered him as a distraction.
According to him, A person without goals is like a body without a soul, meaningless. He emphasizes being true to your own self and always practice what you preach.
This paragon of self-improvement lets us have a preview into the mind of a legend and learn the key lessons constructed from his own experiences.
Gautam Buddha has taught us that the sole purpose of our life should be to find the purpose we are here for and devote our heart and mind to it. Hence, We have provided you with these 8 trusted companions to look for, when in need.
If you want to go beyond, Here is a list of 5 other leadership classics, to help you hone your skills :
- “Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies” by James C. Collins and Jerry I. Porras
- “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us” by Daniel H. Pink
- “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead” by Nell Scovell and Sheryl Sandberg
- “The Fifth Risk” by Michael Lewis
- “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman
If you liked our compilation and have some recommendations, please let us know in the comments below.
We hope you flourish with success and reach the pinnacle of prosperity.