As I’m often asked for book recommendations on various subjects, I decided to put together an online list of my top ten books in various categories. Basically, if I was only allowed 10 books in my library on that subject, these are the ten I would choose. Other posts include:
- Top 10 Books on Christ in the Old Testament
- Top 10 Books on Preaching
- Top 10 Books on Depression
- Top 10 Biographies of Christian Men
- Top 10 Biographies of Christian Women
- Top 10 Books on Fighting Porn
- Top 10 Books for Moms
- Top 10 Books for Graduates
- Top 10 Books on Christian Leadership
- Top 10 Books for Dads
- Top 10 Books on Using Technology
- Top 10 Puritan Books on Sin
- Top 10 Modern Books on the Doctrine of Sin
- Top 10 Books on Christians And Work
Today I’m listing the Top 10 Books on Leadership. Although not specifically Christian books, when read through the spectacles of the Bible you can read these books with great profit for every leadership role, including pastoral ministry. I’ll follow up with a separate list of books on Christian leadership.
These are the books I encourage my teenage sons to read to set them up for maximum usefulness in their homes, workplaces, and the church.
You may also want to see the leadership resources here:
After this Top 10 list you’ll find a poll where you can cast three votes for your favorite books and help others choose the best books on the subject. Click on “View Results” to see what books are most popular.
You can also add any book not on the list by writing the title in “Other” or in the Comments I’ll add these to the end of the post under “Reader Suggestions.”
1. Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by Dave Allen.
Still the go-to book for organizing to-do lists and maximizing time-management. You’ll probably not implement all the details of Allen’s system, but you’ll learn principles and practices that you can apply to whatever role you are in – from homemaker to pastor to house-builder to CEO.
2. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change by Steven Covey.
I re-read this book quite regularly and always learn something new from it. Covey starts with personal management before moving on to personnel management, character before conduct and contact – a vital order.
3. The Effective Executive by Peter Drucker.
Some overlap with Getting Things Done, but simpler and more focused on decision-making.
Deals with the unpleasant but vital area of letting people (and plans) go when they are not working out. Some outstanding advice on how to decide who and what is working out or not. Takes a persuasive positive approach by arguing the benefits to everyone of “necessary endings.” I previously summarized chapter 7 in this book in Wise or Foolish? One Simple Test. See also Cloud’s Boundaries: When To Say Yes, How to Say No
5. Digital Leader: 5 Simple Keys to Success and Influence by Erik Qualman
So important for anyone with any leadership role to understand the powerful influence of using digital technology well. Heres A Digital Dictionary For Leaders and 10 Digital Commandments I gleaned from this book.
Might seem like an odd choice for a list of books on leadership, but Shawn Achor makes a compelling (and entertaining) scientific and statistical case for the productivity of happiness.
7. Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman.
So important when interacting with and managing other people. Way more important than IQ, and most encouragingly can be developed and grown. See also Goleman’s Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence.
8. Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality by Scott Belsky.
So many churches could do with a good dose of this book. We usually have plenty of visionaries and dreamers, but how to get there….? This book is about execution, execution, execution.
This book is about managing your space, your desk, your office, your files, etc. Time Management from the Inside Out (also by Morgenstern), applies the same principles to managing and organizing time. And her Never Check Email In The Morning takes a closer look at managing email.
10. View From the Top: An Inside Look at How People in Power See and Shape the World by D. Michael Lindsay.
Servant Leadership by Robert Greenleaf
Leadership 101: What Every Leader Needs to Know by John Maxwell.
The Checklist Manifesto: How to Get Things Right by Atul Gawande.
The Leadership Challenge by Kouzes and Posner.
What would you add to the list and why?