Season’s Readings: 9 Must-Have Books for Professional Growth
December 12, 2023
Learning Tips Straight to Your Inbox
Here’s a little secret: there’s no single formula for career success.
There isn’t one thing separating successful people from their counterparts, but instead, the compounding effects of hard work, sacrifice, and continuous learning and improvement.
But the people you surround yourself with (mentors, coaches, and colleagues) and the content and media you consume can positively influence your career trajectory. For example, did you know CEOs read 60 books per year on average?
That doesn’t mean you need to hit that target, but you may want to consider grabbing some of the books successful leaders, business owners, and professionals are reading.
So whether you need a last-minute gift to share the love of learning or some new books for your self-growth journey, here are nine books recommended by the expert guests on our LEARN podcast.
In this post:
Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln
Craig Walker, CEO and Founder of Dialpad, recommends Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln, which inspired the Oscar Award-winning film Lincoln.
This biography explores the former president’s leadership style, philosophies, and experiences, including assembling a diverse cabinet of individuals who were initially his political rivals. The book recounts Lincoln’s strategic decision-making and ability to handle conflicts, demonstrating how he turned adversaries into allies.
Craig also recommends reading Amp It Up: Leading for Hypergrowth by Raising Expectations, Increasing Urgency, and Elevating Intensity by Frank Slootman, CEO, Snowflake.
Slootman shares his leadership approach after leading Snowflake to the largest software IPO ever and demonstrates that leaders can improve organizational performance by aligning on mission-critical priorities and executing with urgency and intensity.
The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers
Horowitz explores the challenges entrepreneurs and business leaders face and shares invaluable insights on navigating the unpredictable landscape of building and managing a successful company.
Grab the book for practical advice on decision-making, crisis management, and fostering a resilient corporate culture.
Kind Folks Finish First
In Kind Folks Finish First: The Considerate Path to Success in Business and Life, Sam shares his perspectives on achieving success, drawing from his experience building a nearly $200-million business prioritizing kindness, reciprocity, and solid values.
Sam’s experience proves you don’t need to be ruthless in your career-growth strategies and that being a good person and helping others can lead to long-term success.
Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art
David Kingsley, Chief People Officer at Illumino, recommends Breath: The New Science of a Lost Art, which explores the fundamental act of breathing and its profound impact on our health and well-being. Discover how our modern lifestyle has led to widespread breathing dysfunction and explore techniques to optimize respiratory health.
Learn how optimal breathing can improve sleep, boost energy, and enhance overall physical and mental performance.
Check out the podcast episode: Building a Feedback Culture with L. David Kinglsey, 3X CPO
Create Your Own Religion: A How-To Book Without Instructions
Jamie also recommended reading Create Your Own Religion: A How-To Book Without Instructions, which challenges conventional thinking about spirituality and belief systems and encourages readers to embark on a personal journey of introspection.
Listen to the podcast for more insights: Time to Retire QBRs? Jamie Davidson, CEO & Co-Founder of Vitally, Weighs In
Cara also shared what she’s reading, Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. In this collection of personal writings, the Roman Emperor shares the Stoic philosophy that guided his life. His reflections explore themes of virtue, self-discipline, and resilience, providing practical wisdom for navigating life’s challenges.
Discover timeless principles for cultivating a resilient mindset, fostering inner peace, and navigating the complexities of the human experience.
Listen to the podcast episode for more: LEARN with Cara Brennan Allamano, CPO at Lattice
Multipliers: How The Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter
John Schoenstein, CRO at Sprout Social, recommends this book that explores the differences between two types of leaders, Multipliers and Diminishers. Multipliers: How The Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter highlights the characteristics that amplify or stifle the intelligence and capabilities of those around them.
The book provides valuable strategies for becoming a Multiplier who inspires and empowers their team to achieve extraordinary results. Discover the behaviors that contribute to effective leadership, fostering a culture of innovation, collaboration, and continuous learning.
Check out the podcast LEARN with John Schoenstein, CRO at Sprout Social
High Output Management
In this book, Andrew S. Grover draws from his experience as the former CEO of Intel to offer practical insights and strategies for enhancing organizational productivity. Grove shares valuable principles on effective management, team dynamics, and operational efficiency.
Come up for Air: How Teams Can Leverage Systems and Tools to Stop Drowning in Work
Come up for Air: How Teams Can Leverage Systems and Tools to Stop Drowning in Work helps teams move away from the hustle culture and old concepts of time management to reduce burnout and get more done.
Nick Sonnenberg, a leading efficiency expert, author, speaker, and Founder and CEO of Leverage, shares his CPR Business Efficiency Framework, a proven system for decreasing busy work, preventing burnout, and increasing efficiency.
Reading for professional growth
Add these books to your wishlist or gift them to a friend and share the love of learning and development.
What are your favorite books that have inspired you in your career or personal endeavors? Follow us on LinkedIn and let us know your top picks.
Happy holidays and happy reading!
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Maile TimonContent Strategist, WorkRamp
Maile Timon is WorkRamp’s Content Strategist. She has over 10 years of experience in content marketing and SEO and has written for several publications and industries, including B2B, marketing, lifestyle, health, and more. When she’s not writing or developing content strategies, she enjoys hiking and spending time with her family.
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