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Mastering Leadership: The Top 5 Must-Read Books for Success

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By John RubenPublished 11 months ago 3 min read
Mastering Leadership: The Top 5 Must-Read Books for Success
Photo by Tom Hermans on Unsplash

Leadership is a skill that can be learned. It's also one of the most important things you can do for yourself and for your organization. The best leaders are always learning, whether it's about themselves or others or how to manage projects effectively. If you're looking to become a master leader, here are five books I recommend reading:

The Leadership Challenge

This book is a classic in leadership literature. It's been translated into more than 20 languages and used in over 2,000 organizations worldwide. The Leadership Challenge was the first book to bring together the best practices of leadership development and has been cited as a major influence on more than 100 other books on leadership.

Burns begins by describing what makes leaders effective, then offers practical advice for becoming an effective leader yourself by focusing on three key areas: motivation, responsibility and renewal (or change).

First, Break all the Rules

The first book on our list is First, Break All the Rules: What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently. This bestseller was written by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman in 1999 and is a must-read for anyone seeking to become a great leader.

The book focuses on how managers can improve their employees' performance by breaking some of the rules commonly associated with management styles. For example, it shows that many managers believe that people should be rewarded based on performance alone--but this isn't always true! Sometimes employees need recognition for simply doing their job well or going above and beyond what was expected of them, even if they don't receive any tangible rewards (like money).

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Stephen Covey's book is a classic, and the 7 habits are:

Be proactive

Begin with the end in mind

Put first things first

Think win/win (instead of win-lose)

Seek first to understand, then be understood

Radical Candor

Radical Candor is a book that's all about how to be a better leader. It's written by Kim Scott, who led teams at Google and Apple before founding her own company.

Scott believes that the best leaders have what she calls "radical candor," which means they can tell you when something isn't working out--and they do it in a way that doesn't make you feel bad about yourself or your work. This kind of feedback is important because it helps you improve as an employee and grow as an individual; without it, we might not learn from our mistakes.

Radical Candor can help anyone who wants to be more direct with their coworkers: leaders looking for ways to improve their management skills; employees who want more honest feedback from their managers; even people who just want better relationships at work!

StrengthsFinder 2.0

StrengthsFinder 2.0 is a framework for understanding your natural talents. It helps you focus on what you do best, build a career that fits your strengths, develop others and create a culture where everyone can thrive by using their strengths every day.

The StrengthsFinder 2.0 assessment consists of 34 questions that measure the top five themes of1:1,000 - Self-Awareness2:75 - Initiative4:50 - Focus6:25 - Perspective8:10 - Empathy

These 5 books if read and applied will help you become a master leader.

If you are looking for a book that will bring out the best in your leadership skills, these five books can help you achieve that.

The Leadership Challenge by James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner

First, Break All The Rules: What The Worlds Greatest Managers Do Differently by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman (1999)

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R Covey (1989)

Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity by Kim Scott ( 2017)

StrengthsFinder 2.0 by Tom Rath


Leadership is an art that can be mastered by anyone. The key to becoming a master leader is to read and apply the books mentioned in this article. These 5 books if read and applied will help you become a master leader

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    JRWritten by John Ruben

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