58 books like Connect

By John Browne, Robin Nuttall, Tommy Stadlen

Here are 58 books that Connect fans have personally recommended if you like Connect. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

Luana Marques Author Of Bold Move: A 3-Step Plan to Transform Anxiety Into Power

From my list on moving through anxiety toward what matters most.

Why am I passionate about this?

Growing up in Brazil facing poverty and adversity, I was helped by my grandmother, who instilled in me a profound lesson: be the water, not the rock. She taught me the significance of adaptability in confronting uncertainty, stress, and discomfort. Later in life, while pursuing my PhD in clinical psychology, I discovered her teachings aligned with leading mental health practices. Today, I'm an associate professor at Harvard, a renowned global speaker, and an author, ardently committed to empowering individuals globally with evidence-based techniques to transform anxiety into power. Every book in this list resonates with my grandmother's wisdom about boldly navigating life and underscores the transformative potential of embracing discomfort. 

Luana's book list on moving through anxiety toward what matters most

Luana Marques Why did Luana love this book?

My journey with Simon Sinek's Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action began during my tenure at Massachusetts General Hospital, where I was tasked with the integration of two research labs.

As I grappled with unifying two distinct cultures, I grabbed with motivating and integrating two distinct teams. On my quest for innovative methods to articulate ideas, I chanced upon Sinek's Golden Circle—a potent formula for inspiring action. This strategy begins with 'why', segues into 'how', and culminates with 'what'.

Since immersing in Start with Why, I've employed the Golden Circle in countless presentations, workshops, and meetings, tapping into the strength of collective values and a sharp sense of purpose. If you find yourself in a leadership role and feeling cornered, my recommendation is: Start with Why.

By Simon Sinek,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Start With Why as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE MILLION-COPY GLOBAL BESTSELLER - BASED ON THE LIFE-CHANGING TED TALK!

WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT START WITH WHY:

'It's amazing how a book can change the course of your life, and this book did that' Reader Review

'Imagine the Ted Talk expanded to 2 hours long, with more depth, intrigue and examples' Reader Review

'What he does brilliantly is demonstrate his own why - to inspire others - throughout' Reader Review

'Wow. Wow. Wow. I cannot rate this book highly enough to take a different, positive approach to life and work' Reader Review

Discover your purpose with one simple…


Book cover of Net Positive: How Courageous Companies Thrive by Giving More Than They Take

Anne Bahr Thompson Author Of Do Good: Embracing Brand Citizenship to Fuel Both Purpose and Profit

From my list on shifting the role business plays in society.

Why am I passionate about this?

I pivoted into brand consulting after working in banking, because I saw a need to align organizational behaviors and actions with purpose and values. So naturally, as a strategist my work has always informally included an element of coaching brands and people to have the courage and confidence to be their best, true selves. To have a broader societal vision and positive social impact. Since the Me-to-We continuum of Brand Citizenship emerged unsolicited in research, I also have been on a larger mission to help business balance how it earns a profit with how it serves individual people, betters society, and regenerates the planet.

Anne's book list on shifting the role business plays in society

Anne Bahr Thompson Why did Anne love this book?

At a time when businesses are targeting net zero carbon emissions, Net Positive is a rallying cry for leaders to embrace a wider definition of sustainability.

As Paul Polman, former CEO of Unilever, who I’ve had the privilege of interviewing, and Andrew Winston explain net positive companies improve the lives of everyone they touch, increasing long-term shareholder returns in the process; take ownership of social and environmental impacts their business models create, viewing these as opportunities to innovate; and partner with competitors, civil society and governments to drive transformative change. 

Although some concepts presented in this book were not new to me, the authors’ examples add meaningful perspective. Net Positive affirmed my belief in purpose-led organizations and the power of business to do more.

By Paul Polman, Andrew Winston,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Net Positive as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Financial Times Best Business Book of the Year

Named one of 10 Best New Management Books for 2022 by Thinkers50

"An advocate of sustainable capitalism explains how it's done" - The Economist

"Polman's new book with the sustainable business expert Andrew Winston...argues that it's profitable to do business with the goal of making the world better." - The New York Times

Named as recommended reading by Fortune's CEO Daily

"...Polman has been one of the most significant chief executives of his era and that his approach to business and its role in society has been both valuable and path-breaking."…


Book cover of Purpose and Profit: How Business Can Lift Up the World

Anne Bahr Thompson Author Of Do Good: Embracing Brand Citizenship to Fuel Both Purpose and Profit

From my list on shifting the role business plays in society.

Why am I passionate about this?

I pivoted into brand consulting after working in banking, because I saw a need to align organizational behaviors and actions with purpose and values. So naturally, as a strategist my work has always informally included an element of coaching brands and people to have the courage and confidence to be their best, true selves. To have a broader societal vision and positive social impact. Since the Me-to-We continuum of Brand Citizenship emerged unsolicited in research, I also have been on a larger mission to help business balance how it earns a profit with how it serves individual people, betters society, and regenerates the planet.

Anne's book list on shifting the role business plays in society

Anne Bahr Thompson Why did Anne love this book?

Although I was familiar with Harvard Business School professor George Serafeim’s research and work on impact weighted accounting before I read this book, I still found it informative and inspiring.

The first half of this book is a primer on ESG and sustainability highlighting societal shifts and why purpose and impact have moved to the forefront. And the second half details how impact and outcomes can be achieved. 

This book is an excellent introduction for people new to purpose – or questioning its real value financially – as well as for those of us who have long been in this space.

Drawing extensively on his research and that of colleagues, Serafeim emphasizes how doing good creates competitive advantage.

By George Serafeim,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Purpose and Profit as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Are purpose and profit in conflict, or can both be achieved simultaneously with the right mindset and tools?

What are the forces that are reshaping the relationship between the two? What can we all do to strengthen the relationship between purpose and profit as entrepreneurs, managers, employees, consumers, and investors? Backed by cutting-edge research, Purpose and Profit provides answers to these fundamental questions that are increasingly defining the business landscape all around the world. Distinguished Harvard Business School Professor George Serafeim takes readers on a research-driven journey to understand:

How and why environmental and social issues are becoming increasingly relevant…


Book cover of Emotional Branding: The New Paradigm for Connecting Brands to People

Anne Bahr Thompson Author Of Do Good: Embracing Brand Citizenship to Fuel Both Purpose and Profit

From my list on shifting the role business plays in society.

Why am I passionate about this?

I pivoted into brand consulting after working in banking, because I saw a need to align organizational behaviors and actions with purpose and values. So naturally, as a strategist my work has always informally included an element of coaching brands and people to have the courage and confidence to be their best, true selves. To have a broader societal vision and positive social impact. Since the Me-to-We continuum of Brand Citizenship emerged unsolicited in research, I also have been on a larger mission to help business balance how it earns a profit with how it serves individual people, betters society, and regenerates the planet.

Anne's book list on shifting the role business plays in society

Anne Bahr Thompson Why did Anne love this book?

First published in 2001, Emotional Branding emphasized a new perspective for marketers and business leaders: the importance of human connections between corporations and people.

I believe an understanding of these connections has always been central to excellent brand strategy and now is critical for business to have positive social impact.

As Marc Gobé aptly states, emotional branding “is a culture and a way of living: a fundamental belief that people are the real force in commerce….” 

Filled with examples of the range of brand expression – from logos to packaging to experiences – Gobé, who I had the pleasure of knowing, inspires readers while also illustrating how many decisions about branding are actually about integrated business strategy and cultivating meaningful connections.

By Marc Gobe,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Emotional Branding as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Emotional Branding is the best selling revolutionary business book that has created a movement in branding circles by shifting the focus from products to people. The “10 Commandments of Emotional Branding” have become a new benchmark for marketing and creative professionals, emotional branding has become a coined term by many top industry experts to express the new dynamic that exists now between brands and people. The emergence of social media, consumer empowerment and interaction were all clearly predicted in this book 10 years ago around the new concept of a consumer democracy. In this updated edition, Marc Gobé covers how…


Book cover of Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman - Including 10 More Years of Business as Usual

Oona Horx Strathern Author Of The Kindness Economy: A new currency for the future of business, work and life

From my list on showing that kindness is profitable (and not boring).

Why am I passionate about this?

I am passionate about looking for new ways to see our future. As a futurist and trend researcher for over 30 years, I am drawn to books, ideas, and people that lead us away from narrow black-and-white thinking. With the help of these mavericks, outliers, and new systemic thinking, we can shift from a naive, optimistic, or miserable pessimistic mindset to what I call a “possibilistic” outlook on society and business. We all need purpose, and mine is to show that more things are possible than we think; sometimes, we just need to look in unusual places and into unusual minds and books to find new solutions for a better future.

Oona's book list on showing that kindness is profitable (and not boring)

Oona Horx Strathern Why did Oona love this book?

Yvon is a very cool surfing maverick, someone who dared to do business differently back in the 1970s.

His legacy and success as a multi billion dollar company inspires us to think again about the whole principle of kindness in relation to the economy–most importantly to show how you don’t have to be a nasty bully of a boss to make money and also do something good for the planet.

By Yvon Chouinard,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Let My People Go Surfing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"Wonderful . . . a moving autobiography, the story of a unique business, and a detailed blueprint for hope." —Jared Diamond, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Guns, Germs, and Steel

In this 10th anniversary edition, Yvon Chouinard—legendary climber, businessman, environmentalist, and founder of Patagonia, Inc.—shares the persistence and courage that have gone into being head of one of the most respected and environmentally responsible companies on earth.

From his youth as the son of a French Canadian handyman to the thrilling, ambitious climbing expeditions that inspired his innovative designs for the sport's equipment, Let My People Go Surfing is the story…


Book cover of Better Business: How the B Corp Movement Is Remaking Capitalism

John Montgomery Author Of Net Zero Business Models: Winning in the Global Net Zero Economy

From my list on creating a sustainable economy for our children.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a corporate lawyer, I saw first-hand that corporations lack a comprehensive social and environmental conscience. I had begun to experiment with articles and bylaws when I met one of the founders of B-Lab, the creator of the B-Corp and architect behind the benefit corporation, in 2008. I have been working to upgrade the operating principles of the economy ever since. I was the co-chair of the legal working group for California’s benefit corporation legislation and my former law firm was one of the first law firms to become a B Corp. I’m highly motivated to leave a habitable planet to our children and grandchildren.

John's book list on creating a sustainable economy for our children

John Montgomery Why did John love this book?

The prevailing corporate form renders corporations prone to anti-social and environmentally destructive behavior because they are designed to maximize profits for shareholders without considering the consequences to society and the environment.

I love Better Business because it tells the story of the creation of an emergent alternative corporate form, the B-Corp with benefit corporation governance, that provides a material positive benefit to society and the environment in addition to making profits for shareholders.  

A sustainable economy not only requires new economic principles, but also new corporate forms that are endowed with a social and environmental conscience in addition to the usual pecuniary one. Better Business introduces you to these new corporate forms without bogging you down in legalese.

By Christopher Marquis,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Better Business as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A compelling look at the B Corp movement and why socially and environmentally responsible companies are vital for everyone's future-"a valuable guide to an important force" (Financial Times)

"An important blueprint for how businesses can and should be both successful and a force for good."-Rose Marcario, President and CEO, Patagonia

"Better Business is the book to read if you want to put values and purpose at the center of your company. It's an inspiring book with great insights to share."-Jerry Greenfield, co-founder, Ben & Jerry's

Gold Medalist in the Business Ethics category, 2021 Axiom Business Book Awards and longlisted for…


Book cover of Bee Fearless: Dream Like a Kid

Heather Alexander Author Of Project Startup

From my list on kids starting businesses.

Why am I passionate about this?

I write both fiction and nonfiction for kids and with Eat Bugs, I got to combine both loves. The book was inspired by two real-life female entrepreneurs, who literally cooked up an edible bug business in their college dorm room. After I watched them land a deal on Shark Tank, we met and I reimagined their story as if they’d started their business in sixth grade. I’ve always been fascinated by entrepreneurs who have the courage and tenacity to follow their dreams–no matter how wacky the idea may seem.

Heather's book list on kids starting businesses

Heather Alexander Why did Heather love this book?

I had so many lemonade stands when I was a kid but mine never became a million-dollar business (not even close!)!  If only I’d had Mikaela’s book (and determination) back then... I loved her story of being a kid entrepreneur and her relatable advice for building a purpose-driven, bug-based company. Like the women my book Eat Bugs is based upon, Mikaela got a deal on Shark Tank too.

By Mikaila Ulmer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bee Fearless as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 10, 11, 12, and 13.

What is this book about?

A business memoir from lemonade entrepreneur and one of TIME Magazine's Top 30 Most Influential Teens, Mikaila Ulmer, and her advice for life and business--now in paperback!

When Mikaila Ulmer was four, she was stung by a bee--twice in one week. She was terrified of going outside, so her parents encouraged her to learn more about bees so she wouldn't be afraid. It worked. Mikaila didn't just learn what an important role bees play in our ecosystem, but she also learned bees are endangered, and set out to save them. She started by selling cups of lemonade in front of…


Book cover of Rebuild: How to thrive in the new Kindness Economy

Oona Horx Strathern Author Of The Kindness Economy: A new currency for the future of business, work and life

From my list on showing that kindness is profitable (and not boring).

Why am I passionate about this?

I am passionate about looking for new ways to see our future. As a futurist and trend researcher for over 30 years, I am drawn to books, ideas, and people that lead us away from narrow black-and-white thinking. With the help of these mavericks, outliers, and new systemic thinking, we can shift from a naive, optimistic, or miserable pessimistic mindset to what I call a “possibilistic” outlook on society and business. We all need purpose, and mine is to show that more things are possible than we think; sometimes, we just need to look in unusual places and into unusual minds and books to find new solutions for a better future.

Oona's book list on showing that kindness is profitable (and not boring)

Oona Horx Strathern Why did Oona love this book?

This book was a revelation. It gives positive examples of why we can be optimistic about the future while not shying away from uncomfortable truths about business and consumerism.

Her enthusiasm for a kinder economy and her personal stories and journey are inspiring and provide great lessons about change in society and business.

By Mary Portas,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Rebuild as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

As seen on THE ONE SHOW, and heard on WOMAN'S HOUR and THE ZOE BALL BREAKFAST SHOW on Radio 2

'Challenges all the things we thought we knew about business.' Sam Baker
__________

How we live, buy and sell is changing, and it's changing for good. Rebuild is a vital guide to how we reset post-pandemic and build back better.

Retail and brand expert Mary Portas argues that over the past thirty years the business of what we buy has been dominated by the biggest, fastest and cheapest. But those values no longer resonate. We've come to realize that more…


Book cover of The Social Entrepreneur’s Handbook: How to Start, Build, and Run a Business That Improves the World

Alex Counts Author Of Changing the World Without Losing Your Mind: Leadership Lessons from Three Decades of Social Entrepreneurship

From my list on social entrepreneurship and why it is so important.

Why am I passionate about this?

Alex Counts founded Grameen Foundation and became its President and CEO in 1997. A Cornell University graduate, Counts’s commitment to poverty eradication deepened as a Fulbright scholar in Bangladesh, where he trained under Professor Muhammad Yunus, the founder and managing director of Grameen Bank, and co-recipient of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. Since its modest beginnings, Grameen Foundation has grown to become a leading international humanitarian organization. Today he is an independent consultant to mission-driven organizations, a prolific writer, and an adjunct faculty member at the University of Maryland who loves to teach nonprofit leadership and related subjects. 

Alex's book list on social entrepreneurship and why it is so important

Alex Counts Why did Alex love this book?

This guidebook in the form of a memoir, or memoir in the form of a guidebook, is both highly entertaining and profoundly useful.  Through brutally honest stories from his years leading FINCA, the global microfinance network, Scofield shows how social change happens: one mistake, one insight, and one breakthrough at a time.  By laying them out so clearly and in such a reader-friendly format, he has provided a valuable gift to a new generation of changemakers.

By Rupert Scofield,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Social Entrepreneur’s Handbook as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

"The reader gains an insightful view of the author's personal journey and the processes involved when setting up a social enterprise. Its distinctive style makes it useful for readers who are looking for a thorough account of setting up a not-for-profit organisation or social enterprise" Phoenix, Jan 2012


Book cover of Lean Impact: How to Innovate for Radically Greater Social Good

Jacob Harold Author Of The Toolbox: Strategies for Crafting Social Impact

From my list on social change strategy.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I was eight years old, my family went for a hike on Mount Mitchell, the tallest peak in my home state of North Carolina. We stumbled on a horror scene: most of the trees on the mountain were scarred skeletons; we were witnesses to mass death from acid rain. Since then, I’ve devoted myself to trying to nudge human action towards good. At Greenpeace I chained myself to fences, at the Hewlett Foundation I oversaw millions of dollars in grants, as GuideStar CEO I helped lead a technology platform used by millions of donors and do-gooders. I’ve been blessed to work with some of the best thinkers and doers in business, philanthropy, and government.

Jacob's book list on social change strategy

Jacob Harold Why did Jacob love this book?

In social change, it’s easy enough to think you can look at a problem, map out a plan, and execute it. But reality always gets in the way.

In Lean Impact, Ann Mei Chang Shows how to bring an iterative approach to doing good in the world. Translating the “Lean Startup” methodology to social change, Chang shows that it is possible to listen, to learn, and to get results.  

By Ann Mei Chang,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Lean Impact as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Despite enormous investments of time and money, are we making a dent on the social and environmental challenges of our time? What if we could exponentially increase our impact?

Around the world, a new generation is looking beyond greater profits, for meaningful purpose. But, unlike business, few social interventions have achieved significant impact at scale. Inspired by the modern innovation practices, popularized by bestseller The Lean Startup, that have fueled technology breakthroughs touching every aspect of our lives, Lean Impact turns our attention to a new goal - radically greater social good.

Social change is far more complicated than building…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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