Through my ongoing explorations of the best leadership development resources, I’ve put together some favorites to share with you. Be sure to check back every so often for new additions!
- Balance Wheel
- Guided Reflection: Past, Present, and Future
- “Who Am I?” Self-Reflection Exercise
- Leading through Liminal Space Self-Reflection Tool
- Finding Meaning in the Second Half of Life: How to Finally, Really Grow Up , by James Hollis
- Daring Greatly , by Brene Brown
- What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There, by Marshall Goldsmith and Mark Reiter
- How Will You Measure Your Life?, by Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, and Karen Dillon
- Leadership and Self-deception: Getting Out of the Box, by the Arbinger Institute
- Learning to Lead: A Workbook on Becoming a Leader, by Warren Bennis and Joan Goldsmith
- True North: Discover Your Authentic Leadership, by Bill George, Peter Sims and David Gergen
- Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness, by Robert K. Greenleaf and Larry C. Spears
- Man’s Search for Meaning, by Viktor Frankl
- Now, Discover Your Strengths, by Marcus Buckingham and Donald O. Clifton
- Exploring What You Love to Do with the Calling Cards Guidebook, by Richard J. Leider, Barbara L. Hoese, and John M. Busacker (find “Calling Cards” assessment here)
- “In praise of the Incomplete Leader” by Deborah Ancona, Thomas W. Malone, Wanda J. Orlikowski, and Peter M. Senge, Harvard Business Review
- “Managing Oneself”, by Peter Drucker, Harvard Business Review
- “What Makes a Leader?”, by Daniel Goleman, Harvard Business Review
- “A Survival Guide for Leaders”, by Ronald A. Heifetz and Marty Linsky, Harvard Business Review
- “The Power of Vulnerability,” by Brene Brown, TED Talk
- “Your Body Language Shapes Who You Are, “ by Amy Cuddy, TED Talk
- “The Surprising Science of Happiness, “ by Dan Gilbert, TED Talk (see “Ten years later: Dan Gilbert on life after ‘The surprising science of happiness’” for corrections and updates)
- “The Science of Character” based on the work of the VIA Institute on Character, The Character Lab, and researchers in the field of Positive Psychology such as Martin Seligman, Carol Dweck, Angela Duckworth, David Levin, and many others.
- Master the Matrix , by Susan Finerty
- The Last Word on Power: Executive Reinvention for Leaders Who Must Make the Impossible Happen, by Tracy Goss
- The Speed of Trust – The One Thing that Changes Everything, by Steven M. R. Covey
- Leadership Agility: Five Levels of Mastery for Anticipating and Initiating Change by William B. Joiner and Stephen A. Josephs
- Emotional Vampires at Work: Dealing with Bosses and Coworkers Who Drain You Dry by Albert Bernstein
- Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie
- Primal Leadership, With a New Preface by the Authors: Unleashing the Power of Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis and Annie McKee
- Resolving Conflicts at Work: Ten Strategies for Everyone on the Job by Kenneth Cloke and Joan Goldsmith
- Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler
- Resonant Leadership: Renewing Yourself and Connecting with Others Through Mindfulness, Hope and Compassion, by Richard Boyatzis and Annie McKee
- Working with Emotional Intelligence, by Daniel Goleman
- “Social Intelligence and the Biology of Leadership,” by Daniel Goleman and Richard Boyatzis, Harvard Business Review
- “Getting along at work: A primer on personal intelligence,” by John D. Mayer, Fortune Magazine
Leading An Organization
- Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…And Others Don’t, Good to Great and the Social Sectors: A Monograph to Accompany “Good to Great,” Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies, and How the Mighty Fall: and Why Some Companies Never Give In, by Jim Collins
- Contagious Success: Spreading High Performance Throughout Your Organization by Susan Lucia Annunzio
- The First 90 Days, Updated and Expanded: Proven Strategies for Getting Up to Speed Faster and Smarter by Michael D. Watkins
- Execution: the Discipline of Getting Things Done, by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan
- The Leadership Pipeline: How to Build the Leadership Powered Company , by Ram Charan, Stephen Drotter and James Noel
- The Leadership Challenge: How to Make Extraordinary Things Happen in Organizations, by James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner
- Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin
- Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage, by Alfred Lansing
- “Level 5 Leadership: The Triumph of Humility and Fierce Resolve”, by Jim Collins, Harvard Business Review
- “Building your Company’s Vision”, by Jim Collins and Jerry Porras, Harvard Business Review
- “What You Say, What They Hear”, by Anne Field, Harvard Management Communication Letter
- “One More Time: How Do You Motivate Employees?”, by Frederick Hertzberg, Harvard Business Review
- “The Discipline of Teams”, by Jon R. Katzenbach and Douglas K. Smith, Harvard Business Review
- “Ethical Leadership and the Psychology of Decision-Making”, by David M. Messick and Max H. Bazerman, Sloan Management Review
- Full Catastrophe Living: Using the Wisdom of Your Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness, by Jon Kabat-Zinn and Thich Nhat Hanh
- The HeartMath Solution: The Institute of HeartMath’s Revolutionary Program for Engaging the Power of the Heart’s Intelligence, by Doc Childre, Howard Martin and Donna Beech Chop Wood, Carry Water
- From Chaos to Coherence: Advancing Emotional and Organizational Intelligence Through Inner Quality Management ,by Doc Childre and Bruce Cryer
- The Mindfulness Solution: Everyday Practices for Everyday Problems, by Ronald D. Siegel
- Peace is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Living, by Thich Nhat Hanh
- Headspace, by Headspace Inc.
- Flourish: A Visionary New Understanding of Happiness and Well-being, by Martin E. P. Seligman
- Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience, by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi Flourish (Seligman)
- Happier: Learn the Secrets to Daily Joy and Lasting Fulfillment, by Tal Ben-Shahar
- Love 2.0: How Our Supreme Emotion Affects Everything We Feel, Think, Do, and Become, by Barbara Fredrickson
- Feeling Good: The Science of Well Being, by C. Robert Cloninger
- The Happiness Hypothesis, by Jonathan Haidt
- Stumbling on Happiness, by Dan Gilbert
- “What if the Secret to Success Is Failure?” by Paul Tough, New York Times
- “Happiness 101,” by D. T. Max, New York Times Magazine
- “The New Science of Happiness,” by Claudia Wallace, Time Magazine
- “Positive Psychology: An Introduction” by Martin Seligman and Mihaly Csikzentmihalyi
- Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long by David Rock
- The Brain That Changes Itself: Stories of Personal Triumph from the Frontiers of Brain Science, by Norman Doidge
- FYI: For Your Improvement – For Learners, Managers, Mentors, and Feedback Giversby Michael M. Lombardo
- Switch: How To Change Things When Change Is Hard, by Chip and Dan Heath
- Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion, by Robert Cialdini
- The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg
- Immunity to Change: How to Overcome It and Unlock the Potential in Yourself and Your Organization, by Robert Kegan and Lisa Laskow Lahey
- “Transforming Your Organization”, by John B. McGuire, Charles J. Palus, William Pasmore & Gary B. Rhodes, Global Organizational Development White Paper Series, The Center for Creative Leadership
- “The Neuroscience of Leadership: Breakthroughs in brain research explain how to make organizational transformation succeed,” by David Rock and Jeffrey Schwartz, Strategy + Business
- “Driving Change with Internal Coaching Programs,” by David Rock and Ruth Donde
- “Videos with Parker J. Palmer”, Center for Courage and Renewal.
- The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses, by Eric Ries
- Serial Innovators: How Individuals Create and Deliver Breakthrough Innovations in Mature Firms by Abbie Griffin, Raymond Price and Bruce Vojak
- The Innovator’s Toolkit: 50+ Techniques for Predictable and Sustainable Organic Growth, by David Silverstein, Philip Samuel and Neil DeCarlo
- Six Thinking Hats by Edward de Bono
- Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace by Gordon MacKenzie
- Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration, by Ed Catmull
- The Creative Priority: Driving Innovative Business in the Real World by Jerry Hirshberg and Elina D. Nundelman
- Leading on the Creative Edge: Gaining Competitive Advantage Through the Power of Creative Problem Solving by Roger Firestien
- More Lightning, Less Thunder- How to Energize Innovation Teams by Bob Eckert and Jonathan Vehar
- “True Innovation,” by Jon Gertner, New York Times Magazine
- “Five Ways Leaders Enable Innovation in their Teams,” by Glenn Llopis, Forbes Magazine
- “Making Cross-Enterprise Collaboration Work,” by Yaarit Silverstone, Terrence Wallace, and Craig Mindrum, Accenture Outlook Journal
- “The Innovator’s Question: What Would Fosbury Do?,” by Shane Snow, Harvard Business Review Online
- “Your Elusive Creative Genius,” by Elizabeth Gilbert, TED Talk
(note: not meant to be endorsements of any of these vendors)
- The University of Pennsylvania Positive Psychology assessments – A series of short questionnaires to help you identify your strengths and inclinations with regard to emotions, engagement, flourishing, life satisfaction, and meaning.
- True Tilt Snapshot – Take the True Tilt Snapshot for a quick look at your underlying personality tendencies.
- Your Style Under Stress – A self assessment of your tendencies when trying to have a crucial conversation.
- Assessments of Your Overall Well Being – On the HeartMath website.
- DISC Profile – Available for free on Tony Robbins’ website.
- The SCARF Self Assessment – Test yourself against David Rock’s SCARF model.
- Queendom.com provides numerous self-assessment tests for understanding yourself in the areas of personality, EQ, IQ, relationships, career, lifestyle, and health.
- Good to Great Diagnostic Tool – Assess your organization against Jim Collins’ model.
- Calling Card exercise – An online tool to help you identify your life’s calling.
- Quality of Work Life Assessment – This short survey will help you determine how your workplace experience compares with that of others across five categories: health and well-being; trust and safety; enjoyment and satisfaction; focus and prioritization; and meaning and significance. The visualization you’ll see at the end of the survey is based on your own behaviors, your relationship with your manager, and the organization in which you work.
- The Stanford Business School study on CEOs and executive coaching
- The Sherpa Coaching Survey
- A Korn Ferry study of coaching
- Executive Summary of the 2013 International Coaching Federation Organizational Coaching Study
- “ROI is a poor measure of coaching success,” Coaching: An International Journal of Theory, Research and Practice, 2012
- “Why even the most successful CEO still needs a good coach,” Philadelphia Business Journal, August 4, 2014
- “Why Every CEO Needs a Coach: Executive coaches perform key function for CEOs,” Psychology Today, August 13, 2012
- “5 Things To Look For When Choosing An Executive Coach,” Forbes, August 15, 2013