Four “Must Read” Leadership Books.

Most leadership writing is not helpful, and worse some is harmful, un-actionable, drivel. I believe that the best way to learn about “Leadership” is to read the biographies of leaders.

Pick somebody you like, are interested in, or has had an impact on history, and learn about their life. I tend to prefer military leaders, but you can pick whom you like of course.

So what gives me the right to publish a “must read” Leadership Reading List? Well, not all management and leadership books are crap, and I believe that these are some of the best out there that I currently know of. If you think I’ve missed one then please let us know in the comments, or check out my list on Goodreads to see what other books are on my “must read” list.

  • The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software EngineeringThe Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering – Frederick P. Brooks Jr. – one of the first management books I read over 25 years ago. Recently reprinted, which in itself is a singular recommendation. While focused on software development, the ideas and principles apply to any cognitive work. First book to describe why adding more people to a late project makes it later, and other counter-intuitive project management truths.

2 thoughts on “Four “Must Read” Leadership Books.

  1. Hi Bernie,

    Alan Axelrod (Ph.D) has written numerous books about history’s great leaders and applying lessions of leadership to today’s business world.

    Interestingly, “Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard” did not make your list !


  2. Thanks vs,

    Haven’t read Alan Axelrod yet, I’ll throw him on my reading list. Thanks! I have about a dozen books on my “leadership must read” list, and I’ll be sharing more of it in the future.

    And while I’m a big fan of the Heath brothers, I haven’t read “Switch!” yet. I know. I feel ashamed. They may make they list yet!


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