Suggested Reading

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  • Topgrading

    How Leading Companies Win by Hiring, Coaching and Keeping the Best People

    by Bradford Smart

    Great companies don't just depend on strategies—they depend on people. But, half of all employment decisions result in a mis-hire: The wrong person ends up in the wrong job. Any mis-hire can be damaging and a key mis-hire can be disastrous. The Topgrading concept is designed to make certain that you have the very best opportunity to add 'A Players' to your team and avoid the high cost of mistakes.Topgrading works for companies large and small in any industry. Dr. Smart spells out his practical approach to finding and managing A-level talent, as well as coaching B players to turn them into A players. The best businesses have clear expectations about what level of talent is acceptable and what isn’t. This book is a tremendous guide if you are serious about evaluating and developing talent.

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  • Execution

    The Discipline of Getting things Done

    by Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan

    A legendary CEO and a top consultant team up to unravel one of the biggest problems in business today: delivering results. Together they've combined their knowledge and experience on how to close the gap between what a company’s leaders want to achieve and actual results. The discipline of execution is an understanding of how to link together people, strategy, and operations, the three core processes of every business. Making these processes work together is the real job of running a business, not formulating a "vision" and leaving the work of carrying it out to others. Execution is a very important reminder that in the end business is about results and the only way you produce results is by executing. It's not rocket science, but on the other hand a lot of business isn't rocket science.

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  • The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

    A Leadership Fable

    by Patrick Lencioni


    In The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, Patrick Lencioni offers a leadership fable that is thought-provoking and instructive. Throughout the story, Lencioni reveals the five dysfunctions, which go to the very heart of why teams, even the best ones, often struggle: absence of trust, fear of conflict, lack of commitment, avoidance of accountability, and inattention to results. He outlines a powerful model and actionable steps that can be used to overcome these common hurdles and build a cohesive, effective team. Every manager or executive will recognize the situations described in this book. Just as with his other works, Lencioni has written a practical and compelling story with a deceptively simple message that has become a must-read guide on how to build and manage successful teams.

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  • Necessary Endings

    The Employees, Businesses, And Relationships That All of Us Have to Give Up in Order to Move Forward

    by Dr. Henry Cloud

    One of the most important abilities a leader can have is knowing when and how to let go when something, or someone isn’t working—an employee, a business relationship, a sacred cow, a losing product or service, a set of assumptions, a poor business model, or even an entire business. Letting go is essential for business success. Getting to the next level in business always requires ending something you are doing today, leaving it behind, and moving on. Necessary Endings gives readers the tools they need to confront the brutal facts, say good-bye to what’s not working and move on.

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  • Leading Change

    by John Kotter

    In Leading Change, John Kotter provides an excellent roadmap for all leaders trying to orchestrate change throughout their organizations. He identifies the most common mistakes leaders and managers make in attempting to create change and offers an eight-step process to become adept at change: establishing a greater sense of urgency, creating the guiding coalition, developing a vision, communicating the change vision, empowering others to act, creating short-term wins, consolidating gains and producing even more change, and anchoring new approaches in the culture. By improving their ability to change, organizations can increase their chances for success, both now and in the future. Every business leader can profit from Kotter’s thinking on change.

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  • Competing for the Future

    Breakthrough Strategies for Seizing Control of Your Industry and Creating Markets of Tomorrow

    by Gary Hamel and C K Prahalad

    This is one of the best books on strategy. Period. Competing for the Future offers a blueprint for what a company must be doing today if it is to exploit the opportunities of tomorrow. The traditional view of strategy is much too static. Hamel and Prahalad contend that smart organizations are able to reshape their industries, they are able to reinvent things and reconceptualize their industries in ways that create a different future. The traditional view of strategy is almost like a Sun Tzu, Art of War, approach: How do we compete given the conditions of the battlefield? Hamel and Prahalad argue that you should change the rules, change the battlefield, and change the game.

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  • The Effective Executive

    The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done

    by Peter Drucker

    There are hundreds of books on the topic of executive effectiveness, but there have been very few things said in the interim that Peter Drucker hadn't already figured out in the 1960s. What makes an effective executive? The measure of the executive, Drucker reminds us, is the ability to "get the right things done." This usually involves doing what other people have overlooked as well as avoiding what is unproductive. Drucker identifies five practices essential to business effectiveness that can, and must, be learned: managing time, choosing what to contribute to the organization, knowing where and how to mobilize strength for best effect, setting the right priorities, and tying all of them together with effective decision-making. When you reduce his ideas down, they seem obvious. But it took this teacher of wisdom to combine these insights into a book.

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  • Leadership is an Art

    by Max De Pree

    Leadership is an Art says more about leadership in clearer, more elegant, and more convincing language than many of the much longer books that have been published on the subject. De Pree looks at leadership as a kind of stewardship, stressing the importance of building relationships, initiating ideas, and creating a lasting value system within an organization. Rather than focusing on the “hows” of leadership, he explains the “whys.” He shows that the first responsibility of a leader is to define reality and the last is to say thank you. Along the way, the artful leader must: stimulate effectiveness by enabling others to reach both their highest potential; take a role in developing, expressing, and defending values; nurture new leaders; and ensure the continuation of the corporate culture. This is a must-read on the topic of leadership and business management.

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  • First, Break All the Rules

    What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently

    by Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman

    No matter how generous its pay or how renowned its training, the company that lacks effective managers will suffer. But the most effective managers seem to have little in common. They differ in sex, age, and race. They employ vastly different styles and focus on different goals. Yet despite their differences, great managers share one common trait: They do not hesitate to break virtually every rule held sacred by conventional wisdom. Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman of the Gallup Organization present the findings of their study of great managers across organizations of all types and sizes. Whatever their situations, the managers who ultimately became the focus of Gallup's research were invariably those who excelled at turning each employee's talent into performance. This book has important lessons for managers at every level of an organization.

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  • The Goal

    A Process of Ongoing Improvement

    by EliyahuGoldratt and Jeff Cox

    The Goal is a story that revolves around saving a manufacturing plant, but the principles used to save it apply to every industry and every kind of business. The Goal contains an important insight, the Theory of Constraints. The theory says that every system, no matter how well it performs, has at least one constraint that limits its performance – this is the system's "weakest link." These are where bottlenecks occur that prevent an organization from maximizing its performance and reaching its goals. Constraints can involve people, supplies, information, equipment, or even policies, and they can be internal or external to an organization. A leader must continually focus on identifying and unlocking the primary constraint of the business. The Goal is a must-have book for any leader with a serious desire to drive real, organizational improvement and change.

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