He that loves reading has everything within his reach. – William Godwin
Every so often, I like to share with you books that I have recently read that have helped me on my leadership journey, either in business or my personal life. It’s officially summer and now is the time when leaders often look forward to catching up on great reads. Here are a few I recommend.
Essentialism by Greg McKeown. You may have noticed that I have mentioned this book several times in recent blog posts. It has encouraged me to eliminate a lot of the extra “stuff” you accumulate through life and focus on the essentials. While it has not been an easy read, it has been incredibly influential in this season of my life.
Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne. This is an older book, but the concepts are still dead on. In fact, this is the book our team is currently reading for this month’s book club at Southwest Michigan First. Blue Ocean Strategy is about discovering the differentiators for your organization that will lead you away from the shallow, bloody, competitive waters out into the beautiful blue ocean. While reading this book, you can take various products, divisions or companies through the step-by-step strategy to discover your blue ocean and how you can not only beat the competition, but completely set yourself apart.
Getting There: A Book of Mentors by Gillian Zoe Segal. This is a fun, easy read that will feed your leadership. It is a compilation of 20 different leadership and mentoring pieces, written by great leaders in every industry imaginable.
Do Over by Jon Acuff. If you know Jon, this book is done in his typical style and it is a great, easy read. It’s about re-starting and understanding that the past doesn’t define you. Instead of focusing on past experiences or decisions, you can simply say, “Here is my starting point; I’m getting a do over in this area of my life.” This book is sure to inspire.
rEvolution by Tim Leman. For me, too many leadership books turn into all-star highlight reels, but Tim’s book doesn’t do that. As the president of a large insurance organization in Indiana, Tim takes you through a lot of things that didn’t work in his leadership and business, openly sharing the lessons he has learned over time while building a thriving organization. He lays out mistakes he has made in hopes that you don’t repeat those same mistakes. It is nice to see a leader be vulnerable and share insight into his leadership journey that we can really learn from.
I truly enjoyed each of these reads and know you will too.
Question: What are you reading this summer that should be on my list too?