Recommended Books on Leadership


Patton on Leadership, Alan Axelrod

Axelrod analyzes Patton's aggressive leadership style by illustrating lessons on strategy, planning, prioritization, communication, and motivation.  There are numerous stories illustrating various leadership qualities.


How to Think Like a CEO, D.A. Benton (Cassette)

A book that discusses the twenty-two traits shared by all effective CEOs, and features      observations and insights from top business leaders.  Provides an analysis of the actions,      outlooks, attitudes, and philosophies of business leaders.


The Leader in You, Dale Carnegie & Associates (Cassette & CD)

This book defines principles and values that are common among leaders.  Explains and encourages the development of skills essential in leading an organization.  An excellent, and most valuable, "must-have" book for leaders.


The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen Covey

This book provides insight on the importance of establishing principles for self-guidance. It also instructs the reader on setting and maintaining priorities in both personal and professional experiences.


The Leader, Normand L. Frigon, Sr. & Harry K. Jackson, Jr.

This is a technical "How To" book on developing leadership skills, building and communicating a vision, planning, and self-assessment.


Common Sense Leadership, Roger Fulton

Being an effective leader requires a combination of common sense and learned skills. Fulton teaches these skills and techniques that will help you gain both respect and results in your leadership role.  Easily read, broken down into short chapters on supervising, managing, team management, and leading.


Primal Leadership-Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence, Daniel Goleman

Discusses the role of Emotional Intelligence (how we handle ourselves and our relationships) in successful leadership.  If a leader resonates energy and enthusiasm, an organization thrives; if a leaders spreads negativity and dissonance, it flounders.  The book describes six different leadership styles ranging from from visionary to coaching to pacesetting, and the importance of each one in different situations.


The Leadership Secrets of Colin Powell, Oren Harari

Harari takes an in-depth look into the foundations of Powell's compelling leadership style.  It examines: Powell as Provocateur, encouraging group debate and consistently arriving at the best solution; The Powell Character, assuming the role of leader and setting a positive tone throughout any organization; Powell Principles, concise yet powerful credos that have guided Powell through times of triumph and doubt.  Good book, with insight into "how Colin Powell leads" in any position.


The Tao of Leadership, John Heider (Cassette)

Based on Lao Tzu's ancient book Tao de Ching ("The Way of Life" or "The Book of How Things Happen").  Describes the laws of effective leadership that Lao Tzu discovered after years of meditation and observation.  It is primarily a book of eastern, somewhat "new age", philosophy on leadership.  One of the most memorable principles is that leaders act for the common good, not for their own benefit or to impress anyone.


The Power Principle: Influence with Honor, Blaine Lee (Cassette)

This book teaches core principles that dramatically affect our lives and careers.  Dr. Lee tells how to influence the people you care most about for the rest of your life and how to create a legacy that will outlast you.  He teaches that principle-centered power is the ability to influence others' behavior--not to control, change, or manipulate it.  "Power is something other people feel in your presence because of who you are, what you stand for, and where you are going.  Honor is power, the kind of power that is genuine and lasting."


Leadership Secrets of the Rogue Warrior, Richard Marcinko

This book is an "in your face" drill on leadership, with the emphasis on strength, strategy, and skill in overcoming adversity.  This direct approach, laced with expletives, suggests that a leader demand the best and most efforts from self first, in order to better command the respect of his or her team.


The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John H. Maxwell

The encyclopedia of leadership.  It covers the principles and skills of leadership in great depth.  Easily read and understood, with enough detail to keep you learning and developing for years just from the information provided.


Developing the Leaders Around You, John H. Maxwell

An excellent book on nurturing those potential leaders in your organization.  Includes areas pertaining to environment, education and personal development, and counseling up-and-coming leaders.


Success is a Journey, Jeffrey J. Mayer

Provides hundreds of tips, techniques, ideas, and strategies that will help you succeed in the business of life.  Includes thought-provoking exercises to help you learn.  I found it interesting that he mentions Optimist International and includes the complete creed in a chapter on developing optimism as a part of your success strategy.


Lincoln on Leadership, Donald T. Phillips

This explains Lincoln's unique style, and the invaluable leadership skills that he developed during his lifetime, that allowed him to lead the country through the turbulent crisis of Civil War.

Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun, Wess Roberts, Ph.D.

Roberts explains Attila's leadership skills by taking chapters from the life of the notorious King of the Huns, and using them as lessons that he might have taught to his Hun chieftains around the campfire.  An interesting explanation of lessons learned from Attila's lifelong struggle against the Roman Empire.


Rules & Tools for Leaders, Perry M. Smith, Ph.D.

The "nuts & bolts" of leadership skills are explained in great depth, but with easily understood language.  This is very nicely done, with checklists that are invaluable on transition, communication, planning, and decision-making.  A "must-have" book for anyone aspiring to a leadership position.


The Leadership Engine, Noel Tichy

The books stresses that a winning organization possesses a "leadership engine", a proven system for creating dynamic leaders at every level.  Focuses heavily on the term "Teachable Point of View", which is at the core of how leaders develop other leaders.  Lays a framework for developing leaders and effectively establishes that it is the major responsibility of the current leaders to develop the next generation.


The Art of Leadership, J. Donald Walters

This is a small book with short, concise chapters, with a summary at the end of each chapter.  It gives practical techniques for clear results on: Developing an inspiring vision, creative solutions to challenging problems, winning loyalty of others, and building effective teams.




*Several books on this subject are available on cassette.  Check the business section in the audiobook displays of major bookstores such as Barnes & Noble, MediaPlay, or other bookstores.