Top 10 Leadership Books To Read Before You Die

  • Matt Collins, October 24th 2013
To inspire or add to your own reading lists, we’ve rounded up 10 of the best leadership books on the market. Let us know what other titles you would add to this list!

The Emperor’s Handbook

emperor Marcus Aurelius (2002)As emperor of Rome from 161 to 180 A.D., Marcus Aurelius was one of the world’s most powerful and respectable leaders. The Emperor’s Handbook is a translation of Aurelius’ personal notes (never meant to be published) on life, leadership and practical everyday advice.“A must read for business leaders. This is a fantastic achievement.” – Steve Forbes, CEO of Forbes“All of us today would do well to take counsel from Marcus Aurelius.” – Admiral Stansfield Turner, former director of the CIA


Primal Leadership: Learning to Lead with Emotional Intelligence

primal Daniel Goleman, Richard E. Boyatzis, Annie McKee (2004)By developing characteristics like empathy and self-awareness, great leaders connect with others through their ability to drive emotions in a positive direction to get results.This idea of emotional intelligence has largely changed the way people think about what it means to be smart.

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

7 habits Stephen R. Covey (2004)An internationally respected authority on leadership, Stephen Covey’s first groundbreaking novel implies true success is founded on personal and professional development habits like prioritization, empathy and self-renewal.


Developing the Leader Within You

developing John C. Maxwell (2005)Developing the Leader Within You is the first and most enduring work by John C. Maxwell, an evangelical Christian author, speaker and pastor who has penned more than 60 books on leadership.Using a biblical foundation, Maxwell offers principles and practices that can help guide any kind of group setting.

The Alchemist

alchemist Paulo Coelho (2006)The timeless fable of The Alchemist features a traveling shepherd boy who meets several spiritual messengers on his quest for treasure.Through these encounters, the boy learns simple truths about listening to your heart and staying true to your dreams.

True North: Discover Your Authentic Leadership

true north Bill George, Peter Sims (2007)Former Medtronic CEO Bill George and coauthor Peter Sims explain how to become an authentic leader by obeying your internal compass.Based on interviews with 125 of today’s top leaders, True North includes a comprehensive personal leadership development program centered on principles of authenticity.

How to Win Friends & Influence People

influence Dale Carnegie (2009)In one of the most recognized motivational books in history, Dale Carnegie’s proven advice for effective communication and interaction leaves people feeling valued rather than manipulated.

Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, And Why People Follow

strengths leadership Tom Rath and Barrie Conchie (2009)Using Gallup surveys, interviews and first-hand accounts from successful CEOs,Strengths Based Leadership outlines a roadmap for how to lead with your talents.

Switch: How To Change Things When Change Is Hard

switch Chip and Dan Heath (2010)Lasting change is difficult to achieve, both in our professional and personal lives.Using stories from everyday leaders, Switchteaches how to overcome obstacles to transformative change by mastering the way we approach our goals.

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High

crucial conversations Kerry Patterson, Rob McMillan, Al Switzler (2011)Crucial Conversations teaches how to communicate when it matters most.Though emotions may be tense and intimidating, the best leaders step up and get results through tools like openness and persuasion.


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