A stack of the top leadership development books

Strong leadership is essential to any organization. Whether you’re a senior-level executive, mid-level manager, or front-line manager that deals directly with the consumer, for your business to succeed you need to have strong leadership skills at all levels of a company. And though leadership skills don’t always come naturally, there are several different ways to help people learn leadership skills. As you may have figured out, our recommendation is to start with one of these top leadership books.

Some other ways to develop leadership skills are to go to team building seminars, attend a strategic-leadership training program, or even hold a company retreat—but one of the easiest things you can do to get started down the right path is to read a book. Below, CMOE has compiled a list of the 10 top leadership books to help teach your leaders the right skills to better develop your company and interact with their teams. Find a book that sounds good to you and start reading!

The 10 Top Leadership Books to Read:

The Book: The Art of Strategic Leadership

The Art of Strategic Leadership

Author: Stephanie Mead & Steven Stowell

Stephanie Mead and Steven Stowell’s book is all about how to develop the qualities of strategic leadership and become an active contributor to the short-term and long-term success of your organization. Follow the story of Alex as he learns the importance of strategic leadership, and how you can apply the principles of strategic leadership in your career. This book is all about developing the skills needed to create change in a business or organization. This is a great starting point to begin learning valuable leadership skills!

The Book: The Power of Being Yourself. A Game Plan for success.

The Power of Being Yourself

Author: Joe Plumeri

The importance of this book is all in its title, The Power of Being Yourself. Plumeri offers simple yet profound guidance on how to stay positive, motivate yourself, and learn from different types of people. By using his own personal experiences, Plumeri candidly explores some of his high-stakes business decisions as well as his personal triumphs and tragedies. This book will inspire you, help you to be able to trust yourself and to bet on your own future, making it a leadership book to read.

The Book: The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Author: Stephen Covey

This just might be one of the first self-help type books you ever heard of, and there’s a reason it has remained on the top of many lists of best leadership books throughout the years. Covey teaches you a step-by-step path to improve not only your leadership skills but also your view of life and the people around you. This book is all about developing the ability to adapt to change and is crucial reading for all leaders and future leaders alike.

The Book: Dream Big Achieve Bigger

Dream BIG Achieve BIGGER

Author: Tasha Mayberry

Tasha Mayberry’s book teaches you seven steps to help you attract what you want out of life. Mayberry could easily fall under the category of someone who is living the American Dream, but her life wasn’t always like that. By confronting her own problems and addictions, Mayberry turned her life around and learned how to transform tough situations into successes, and her book is all about how you can do the same. Pick up her book and let Mayberry’s story inspire you!

The Book: SuperBosses


Author: Sydney Finkelstein

Superbosses should definitely be near the top of your best leadership development books to read. In his book, Finkelstein explores some of the great “Superbosses” throughout several industries and examines how they were able to transform not only their own organizations but also their entire industry! Through years of research and interviews, Finkelstein compiled this book to help you learn valuable skills to become your own superboss.

The Book: The Excellence Habit

The Excellence Habit

Author: Vlad Zachary

Zachary’s book teaches that being the best you that you can be absolutely matters! He helps you understand the difference between success and excellence—and how to bridge that gap between the two. The Excellence Habit seeks to help you improve your own internal circumstances and then build out from there. Grab this book to help change your attitude and improve your life.

The Book: How To Win Friends & Influence People

How to Win Friends and Influence People

Author: Dale Carnegie

How to Win Friends and Influence People is definitely one of the best leadership books to read, especially if you never have before. In his tried-and-true book, Dale Carnegie explains how to handle people gently, make them like you, win them to your way of thinking, and then change their views without arousing resentment. What’s great about Carnegie’s book is that applies to more than just the business world. Relationships, friendships, and basic human interaction are all improved by implementing the ideas in this book.

You Don’t Need a Title to Be a LeaderThe Book: You Don't Need A Title To Be A Leader

Author: Mark Sanborn

Sanborn’s book teaches you how you can be a leader regardless of your title or position in a company. He teaches that leadership isn’t something that is conferred by a title but is instead shown through your everyday actions and choices. This is a great book to help develop skills to make a positive difference in someone’s life and to learn the skills that will make you attractive in leadership positions. Pick this book up to begin developing the skills necessary to improve your organization from where you are.

The Book: First, Fast, Fearless

First, Fast, Fearless

Author: Brian “Iron Ed” Hiner

As the tagline for this book goes: “Lead Tough – Lead Smart – Lead like a Navy Seal!” Hiner takes you into the mind of a Navy Seal and teaches you how to lead an effective team through volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous conditions and situations. First, Fast, Fearless teaches you how to learn from the way a Navy Seal Team works and then how to apply that to your own organization. This book will help you develop the mental toughness you need to help you through hard times and to see your business succeed.

The Book: A Higher Standard

A Higher Standard

Author: Ann Dunwoody

Ann Dunwoody is the first woman in the United States to achieve the rank of four-star general in the Army. After nearly 40 years serving in the army, General Dunwoody shares what drove her to achieve such a coveted rank and what she learned from it along the way. Learn all about what motivated General Dunwoody and how you can apply it to you and your organization as a whole. This book is a great read and gives you simple but tactical advice to lead yourself to success.

Interested in Taking This List With You? Click Here to Download Your Free PDF Copy

While this certainly isn’t a complete list of all of the top leadership books to read to sharpen your leadership skills, it provides a few stellar options for you to explore and get started. Any of these books would be a good resource to begin developing the leadership skills you want.

Do you have any favorite leadership books that aren’t on this list? We’d love to hear from you.

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About the Author
CMOE’s Design Team is comprised of individuals with diverse and complementary strengths, talents, education, and experience who have come together to bring a unique service to CMOE’s clients. Our team has a rich depth of knowledge, holding advanced degrees in areas such as business management, psychology, communication, human resource management, organizational development, and sociology.

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