15 Books I'd Recommend to Any Aspiring Inbound Leader [+VIDEO]

Chris Duprey

Chief Operating Officer, 10+ Years in Business Development & Leadership, Former Infantry Officer

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15 Books I'd Recommend to Any Aspiring Inbound Leader [+VIDEO] Blog Feature

Published on September 6th, 2018

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I am an evangelist for personal development.

Not striving for perfection or to be the best, but, simply, getting better every day.

This way, you are never satisfied with knowing “enough.” You never feel like you’re done. You keep working at it, making you relevant, all the time.

Personally, I try to do this is through reading.

Books are treasures to me. I read all kinds ranging in topics from leadership, business, philosophy, fiction, and let’s not forget the Harry Potter series…

I read, on average, a little over book a week, which means, some weeks, I finish one book, others, I finish three, but then there are some where I binge on Netflix…

As I continue to work on writing and speaking about Inbound Leadership, I thought I’d share 15 great books that have helped me refine my view on leadership and have helped me get better, one day at a time.

1. Band of Brothers: E Company, 506th Regiment, 101st Airborne from Normandy to Hitler's Eagle's Nest - by Stephen E. Ambrose

My main takeaway - Dick Winters (one of the main officers in the book) was the best example of a leader who led from the front, understood his role as a leader, and truly cared about his people, while still achieving success. I found his story truly inspirational. 

2. Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, by Simon Sinek

My main takeaway - “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” Understanding and being able to articulate your organization’s and your own purpose is a key to truly inspiring your team (and your potential customers).

Check out his TED talk on this topic.

3. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t, by Jim Collins


My main takeaway - Get the right people on the bus and in the right seats.

4. Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter, by Liz Wiseman


My main takeaway - The importance of a growth mindset and how it is ok, as a leader, to acknowledge you’re not always the smartest person in the room. The best thing you can do is figure out how to multiply the intelligence of everyone on the team to achieve success.

5. Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t, by Simon Sinek


My main takeaway - If you are focused on your people and create an environment where they feel valued, you will be on the right track to achieving your long-term goals.

Check out his Ted talk on this topic.

6. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, by Daniel Pink


My main takeaway - Autonomy, mastery, and purpose are what most high-potential people are looking for in their work, not simply money or rewards.

7. Ego is the Enemy, by Ryan Holiday


My main takeaway  - Lose your ego, you’ll get more done.

8. Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success, by Adam Grant


My main takeaway - The importance of being others focused, while knowing you can give too much.

Check out his  Ted Talk on this topic.

9. Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, by Brene Brown


My main takeaway - Being open and vulnerable are generators of trust & relationships.

Check out her Ted talk on this topic.

10. The Culture Code: The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups, by Daniel Coyle


My main takeaway - Building and maintaining a strong culture takes work. You never truly arrive in regards to culture; you’re always working on it.

11. The No Asshole Rule: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn’t, by Robert I. Sutton

My main takeaway - There is no need to be a jerk to be effective.

12. Radical Candor: Be a Kickass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity, by Kim Malone Scott


My main takeaway - You have to put in the work to build a relationship with your team to build trust. Once this is done, challenging them directly to move the ball forward isn’t seen as being mean or tough, but completely honest. Check out the Brie Rangel’s review of this book.

13. The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More, & Change the Way You Lead Forever, by Michael Bungay Scott


My main takeaway - The basic coaching questions laid out in the book: “What’s on your mind?” “What’s the real challenge here for you?” “What Else?”

If you can incorporate these questions into your routine, you’ll better enable and empower your team.

14. Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World, by Stanley McChrystal with Chris Fussell, Tantum Collins, David Silverman


My main takeaway
- The importance of gaining a shared consciousness throughout your organization.

15. One Mission: How Leaders Build a Team of Teams, by Chris Fussell and Charles Goodyear


My main takeaway - Meetings, when effective, are where we come together to gain a shared consciousness, so we can empower people to make decisions and get after it.

Book It!

There you have it.

Each one of these books has a special place in my heart and mind, as they have shaped the way I view leadership. To me, they are prized possessions and some of the most valuable tools you can use to grow.

Let me know your thoughts! Tweet me @chrisduprey82. I’d love to know what you’re reading to help “sharpen the saw,” as Stephen Covey would say.

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