93 books like Good Company

By Arthur M Blank,

Here are 93 books that Good Company fans have personally recommended if you like Good Company. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable

Sean Lemson Author Of One Drop of Poison: How One Bad Leader Can Slowly Kill Your Company

From my list on avoid being the leader everyone wants to leave.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have worked for some really toxic leaders in my lifetime. Over the decades, I’ve figured out that even well-intentioned people can be toxic leaders without knowing it. As a team and leadership performance coach for the past 15 years, my job has been to help leaders show up as people others want to follow; to help employees feel cared for, and as a result, be intrinsically motivated to care about their company’s mission. These books represent the figurative fuel in my tank for this work, and I hope you find them useful.

Sean's book list on avoid being the leader everyone wants to leave

Sean Lemson Why did Sean love this book?

We’ve heard that trust is a foundational part of high-performing teams for decades, but no one does as good a job connecting the dots between a lack of trust and low performance as Lencioni does in this book.

I continually use his five dysfunctions model in reverse to spot toxic company cultures and then walk leaders backward to see how the root cause is a lack of trust. Once leaders see this with their own eyes, they can’t shake it, and they immediately start to see how detrimental it is when they make their organizations unstable with constant reorganizations and layoffs. An understanding of what’s in this book was foundational for me to help leaders who don’t want to be toxic.

By Patrick M. Lencioni,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The Five Dysfunctions of a Team as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In The Five Dysfunctions of a Team Patrick Lencioni once again offers a leadership fable that is as enthralling and instructive as his first two best-selling books, The Five Temptations of a CEO and The Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive. This time, he turns his keen intellect and storytelling power to the fascinating, complex world of teams. Kathryn Petersen, Decision Tech's CEO, faces the ultimate leadership crisis: Uniting a team in such disarray that it threatens to bring down the entire company. Will she succeed? Will she be fired? Will the company fail? Lencioni's utterly gripping tale serves as…


Book cover of Multipliers: How The Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter

Gary DePaul Author Of Nine Practices of 21st Century Leadership: A Guide for Inspiring Creativity, Innovation, and Engagement

From my list on contemporary leadership books that guide us in the new normal.

Why am I passionate about this?

In 2014, I was laid off from my management role at Lowe’s Home Improvement. Instead of starting another job, I took several months to reflect on my leadership experiences and researched how leadership has evolved in the 21st Century. Based on a detailed analysis of 14 books, including the five I recommend, I wrote my first book that explains how to practice 21st-century leadership (now in its second edition). After publishing, I’ve written another leadership book, several blogs, and have been a keynote speaker. I now host the Unlabeled Leadership Podcast, which helps listeners learn how everyday people practice leadership.

Gary's book list on contemporary leadership books that guide us in the new normal

Gary DePaul Why did Gary love this book?

I discovered Liz Wiseman's book by accident and consider it to be one of my most influential references.

Wiseman writes about two distinct leadership styles: Diminishers, who unintentionally drain employees’ energy and intelligence, and Multipliers, who empower others to excel and engage. Reflecting on my career, the diminisher/multiplier distinction helped me make sense of the negative and positive behaviors of management.

The book can help you adopt multiplier behaviors that enable you to foster an environment where your employees feel challenged, trusted, and valued. What I also value is how Wiseman writes about practical techniques and shares a self-assessment, which can enable you to recognize your own limitations but then empower you to change how you lead.

By Liz Wiseman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A revised and updated edition of the acclaimed Wall Street Journal bestseller that explores why some leaders drain capability and intelligence from their teams while others amplify it to produce better results. We've all had experience with two dramatically different types of leaders. The first type drains intelligence, energy, and capability from the people around them and always needs to be the smartest person in the room. These are the idea killers, the energy sappers, the diminishers of talent and commitment. On the other side of the spectrum are leaders who use their intelligence to amplify the smarts and capabilities…


Book cover of Off Balance: Getting Beyond the Work-Life Balance Myth to Personal and Professional Satisfaction

Brian Unell Author Of Everyday Leadership: You Will Make A Difference

From my list on leadership you can use at home, work, and in life.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a recovering Big 5 consultant and healthcare administrator, while others portray me as a transformational healthcare executive who has a passion for cultivating talent and driving change to enable sustainable results. I am a visionary and collaborative team builder and servant leader who views issues/opportunities from all perspectives, turns data into information, the complex into simple, and chaos into focus. I have led transformational consulting projects, a $180M technology implementation, and a team of 1,500 people. I enjoy serving on non-profit boards, mentoring others, and co-leading a team of four at home with my wife, Hilary.  

Brian's book list on leadership you can use at home, work, and in life

Brian Unell Why did Brian love this book?

Before reading Off Balance, I always felt that my one of my biggest weaknesses was that I took too much personal satisfaction from work. 

In Off Balance, Matthew Kelly shares the differences between personal satisfaction and professional satisfaction (a new concept to me). With these concepts, he provides ideas and tools to improve both types of satisfaction so you can be the best version of yourself at home and work.

By Matthew Kelly,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The prescriptive follow-up to the New York Times bestseller The Dream Manager.

One of the major issues in our lives today is work-life balance. Everyone wants it; no one has it. But Matthew Kelly believes that work- life balance was a mistake from the start. Because we don't really want balance. We want satisfaction.

Kelly lays out the system he uses with his clients, his team, and himself to find deep, long-term satisfaction both personally and professionally. He introduces us to the three philosophies of our age that are dragging us down. He shows us how to cultivate the energy…


Book cover of Chess Not Checkers: Elevate Your Leadership Game

Brian Unell Author Of Everyday Leadership: You Will Make A Difference

From my list on leadership you can use at home, work, and in life.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a recovering Big 5 consultant and healthcare administrator, while others portray me as a transformational healthcare executive who has a passion for cultivating talent and driving change to enable sustainable results. I am a visionary and collaborative team builder and servant leader who views issues/opportunities from all perspectives, turns data into information, the complex into simple, and chaos into focus. I have led transformational consulting projects, a $180M technology implementation, and a team of 1,500 people. I enjoy serving on non-profit boards, mentoring others, and co-leading a team of four at home with my wife, Hilary.  

Brian's book list on leadership you can use at home, work, and in life

Brian Unell Why did Brian love this book?

In Chess Not Checkers, Mark Miller uses fictional storytelling to describe how it is important as a leader to set the pace, grow the leadership team, build a bench of talent, create clarity, surround yourself with talent, affirm the organizations values, build community, share ownership, foster dreams, master the fundamentals, share results, and raise the bar.  

By Mark Miller,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Chess Not Checkers as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

As organizations grow in volume and complexity, the demands on leadership change. The same old moves won’t cut it any more. In Chess Not Checkers, Mark Miller tells the story of Blake Brown, newly appointed CEO of a company troubled by poor performance and low morale. Nothing Blake learned from his previous roles seems to help him deal with the issues he now faces. The problem, his new mentor points out, is Blake is playing the wrong game.

The early days of an organization are like checkers: a quickly played game with mostly interchangeable pieces. Everybody, the leader included, does…


Book cover of It's About Damn Time: How to Turn Being Underestimated into Your Greatest Advantage

Ruchika Tulshyan Author Of Inclusion on Purpose: An Intersectional Approach to Creating a Culture of Belonging at Work

From my list on change your mind about success.

Why am I passionate about this?

I grew up in an immigrant household where success was defined by how much money you made and your individual progress. But I’ve always been fascinated by social change as the measure of collective success. As a former business journalist, I was most inspired by leaders who were creating opportunities for overlooked communities. I now advise organization leaders on how to create more inclusive and diverse organizations by rethinking the measure of success purely from the profit perspective. That’s why I wrote Inclusion on Purpose. These books have helped me transform my definition of success. I hope you’re catalyzed to action by these books!

Ruchika's book list on change your mind about success

Ruchika Tulshyan Why did Ruchika love this book?

How great would the story of an inspiring, successful entrepreneur and venture capitalist be if it was about a Black, gay, formerly unhoused woman who is building the next hundred million dollar company?

That’s exactly who Arlan Hamilton is, and with gems like “I pattern match for grit” about her investing strategy, I couldn’t put this book down. It redefines the idea that successful entrepreneurs only come from elite Ivy League institutions or build legacies in their parents’ garages. 

By Arlan Hamilton, Rachel L. Nelson,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked It's About Damn Time as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

“A hero’s tale of what’s possible when we unlock our potential, continue the search for knowledge, and draw on our lived experiences to guide us through the darkest moments.”—Stacey Abrams

From a Black, gay woman who broke into the boys’ club of Silicon Valley comes an empowering guide to finding your voice, working your way into any room you want to be in, and achieving your own dreams.

NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY FORTUNE

In 2015, Arlan Hamilton was on food stamps and sleeping on the floor of the San Francisco airport, with nothing but…


Book cover of The Monk and the Riddle: The Education of a Silicon Valley Entrepreneur

Kathleen Allen Author Of Entrepreneurship For Dummies

From my list on inspiring you to get off your butt and start a business.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have a real passion for entrepreneurship, so much so that I married an entrepreneur and produced two children who became entrepreneurs. During my 25 years as a professor in the Greif Entrepreneurship Center at the University of Southern California, one of the top programs in the U.S., I had the privilege of inspiring and mentoring hundreds of new entrepreneurs. I found my passion in technology businesses. I had the business skills needed to help scientists and engineers raise funding, bring their inventions to market, and build their companies. I managed to start and run four ventures of my own as well as write several books about entrepreneurship.

Kathleen's book list on inspiring you to get off your butt and start a business

Kathleen Allen Why did Kathleen love this book?

I absolutely love this book! It’s an easy read, reads like a novel, but it’s packed with very valuable lessons on entrepreneurship, venture capital, and leadership.

The story is told through a conversation between a venture capitalist (Komisar) and two young entrepreneurs who are planning to start a business for all the wrong reasons. It’s humorous, touching, and very entertaining. I laughed a lot.

In the end, you learn that a business needs much more than nuts and bolts. It needs heart and soul.

Equally as important as what you learn about startups, the story will teach you how to avoid the Deferred Life Plan, putting off what you want to do, and instead live your life with passion.

By Randy Komisar, Kent Lineback,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Monk and the Riddle as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This book describes how one Silicon Valley insider has blazed a path of professional - and personal - success playing the game by his own rules. Silicon Valley is filled with garage-to-riches stories and hot young entrepreneurs with big ideas. Yet even in this place where the exceptional is common, Randy Komisar is a breed apart. Currently a "Virtual CEO" who provides "leadership on demand" for several renowned companies, Komisar was recently described by the "Washington Post" as a "combined professional mentor, minister without portfolio, in-your-face investor, trouble-shooter and door opener." But even more interesting than what he does is…


Book cover of How to Be a Founder: How Entrepreneurs can Identify, Fund and Launch their Best Ideas

Simon Court Author Of Founder's Legacy: 50 Game-Changing Leadership Lessons for Building a Great Business

From my list on books for founders trying to be in the 10% of businesses that succeed.

Why am I passionate about this?

For the last 25 years, I have been a coach to business founders, leaders, and leadership teams. My work has taken me to every continent from my base in London. A lot of my work is done behind closed doors, but I have been instrumental in building two unicorns in the last decade. I’m a founder myself and have always been fascinated by what it takes to succeed as a founder. I have a powerful conviction that learning to lead is the heart of it. The books I love are either based on real-world research or deeply practical and based on hands-on experience. Practice trumps theory every time in my world!

Simon's book list on books for founders trying to be in the 10% of businesses that succeed

Simon Court Why did Simon love this book?

I know the work that Entrepreneur First does and some young founders who have benefitted from their work and built successful businesses. This book is read by the founders as they talk about entrepreneurship, the start-up phase and co-founding.

I found the sections on understanding and using your ‘edge’ especially interesting, and this leads to some smart thinking about how to choose the right co-founder. The book stops at the point where the business is about to take off; keep that in mind.

By Alice Bentinck, Matt Clifford,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked How to Be a Founder as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

*WINNER OF THE STARTUP/SCALEUP BUSINESS BOOK AWARD 2023* An essential guide to equip the next generation of founders with the mindset and tools they need to take the leap to become globally successful entrepreneurs. Featuring a foreword by Reid Hoffman, founder of LinkedIn, this fascinating handbook inspires potential founders and provides essential guidance and advice for people who want to create their own start-up and build a successful company. This book answers the question "how do I get started?" It takes the reader from making the decision to plunge into entrepreneurship, through the process of choosing and developing an idea…


Book cover of The Soul of an Entrepreneur: Work and Life Beyond the Startup Myth

Derek Lidow Author Of The Entrepreneurs: The Relentless Quest for Value

From my list on most truthful about how entrepreneurship works.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have had the unique experience of having been a successful CEO of a global publicly traded semiconductor company, a founder and CEO of an innovative and valuable startup, and now as a teacher and scholar of entrepreneurship and innovation. I’m a Professor of the Practice at Princeton University where I teach and write about being a successful entrepreneur. My three books on the subject are: Startup Leadership: How Savvy Entrepreneurs Turn Their Ideas Into Successful Enterprises; Building on Bedrock: What Sam Walton, Walt Disney, and Other Great Self-Made Entrepreneurs Can Teach Us About Building Valuable Companies; and THE ENTREPRENEURS: The Relentless Quest for Value

Derek's book list on most truthful about how entrepreneurship works

Derek Lidow Why did Derek love this book?

David Sax spent more than a year on the road, living with a handful of real live entrepreneurs. We get to know these people, what their days are like, what their families are like, their stresses and their joys—ultimately what it feels like to be an entrepreneur. You’ll feel like a voyeur, but you’ll ultimately empathize with what these entrepreneurs do what they do as well as the challenges they constantly face. The book is a page-turner.

By David Sax,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Soul of an Entrepreneur as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

We all know the story of the latest version of the American Dream: a young innovator drops out of college and creates the next big thing, remaking both business and culture in one fell swoop. We are told these stories constantly, always with the idea that we'll be next.But this story masks a lot about what really goes on in our economy. Most new businesses aren't tech startups; they are what we think of as ordinary: restaurants or dry cleaners or freelance writing or accounting or consulting services. And those who are starting new businesses aren't all millennials. In fact,…


Book cover of Invention: A Life

Tom Gilb Author Of Competitive Engineering: A Handbook For Systems Engineering, Requirements Engineering, and Software Engineering Using Planguage

From my list on learning successful invention and business methods.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a self-taught guy, having started in my first job at IBM Oslo, when I was 18 years old, as punched card machine operator, and plug-board ‘programmer'. I did night studies in sociology/philosophy for 10 years at University of Oslo. I read about 30 books a year, and I’m 82 in 2023. I have spent most of my career as an independent international consultant to corporations and governments, while building up my ideas of useful methods to solve problems. In retirement, I love to spread my ideas, and learn more. I also write about 5 new books a year, when at my Oslofjord Summer cabin. They're all digital and free or free samples. 

Tom's book list on learning successful invention and business methods

Tom Gilb Why did Tom love this book?

My father was an inventor. That is what is says on his tombstone. Over 100 patents.

His products today in building supply shops and in real buildings. And some crazy inventions that did not make him famous, but he had fun with.

So I guess I have a born sympathy for the lone inventor, who against many odds, manages to do interesting useful work and industrialise it successfully. This is not about Dyson, but written by himHopefully he will inspire the next generation of inventors.

By James Dyson,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Dyson has become a byword for great design, brilliant invention and global success. Now, James Dyson, the entrepreneur who made it all happen, tells his remarkable and inspirational story in Invention: A Life of Learning through Failure.

'By continually challenging ourselves, investing in the future and experimenting, we can continue to make the future. We must never stop. Never, for one second become comfortable.' James Dyson

In this spirited autobiography, James Dyson interweaves his own life story with a wider exploration of the importance of invention. On the way, the reader encounters challenging and inspirational characters, radical inventions, adventurous engineering,…


Book cover of Invent and Wander: The Collected Writings of Jeff Bezos

Tom Gilb Author Of Competitive Engineering: A Handbook For Systems Engineering, Requirements Engineering, and Software Engineering Using Planguage

From my list on learning successful invention and business methods.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a self-taught guy, having started in my first job at IBM Oslo, when I was 18 years old, as punched card machine operator, and plug-board ‘programmer'. I did night studies in sociology/philosophy for 10 years at University of Oslo. I read about 30 books a year, and I’m 82 in 2023. I have spent most of my career as an independent international consultant to corporations and governments, while building up my ideas of useful methods to solve problems. In retirement, I love to spread my ideas, and learn more. I also write about 5 new books a year, when at my Oslofjord Summer cabin. They're all digital and free or free samples. 

Tom's book list on learning successful invention and business methods

Tom Gilb Why did Tom love this book?

No surprises. Self-made businessperson, with persistence and imagination.

This book is unusual. It is literally written by Bezos over decades of developing Amazon. It is mainly his annual reports to the shareholders! So it gives a continuous picture of the growth of the empire.

My favourite practical tip, is his executive meeting process. Meeting begins with a 6-page (with a 1-page summary) briefing, to reread for the first 20 minutes of as meeting in silence, then discussed. No presentation with slides and pretty pictures, and soothing ambiguous words.

The briefing is the result of hard work, in advance, crafting it to be useful. Wow! 

By Jeff Bezos,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In Jeff Bezos's own words, the core principles and philosophy that have guided him in creating, building, and leading Amazon and Blue Origin.

In this collection of Jeff Bezos's writings&#8212his unique and strikingly original annual shareholder letters, plus numerous speeches and interviews that provide insight into his background, his work, and the evolution of his ideas&#8212you'll gain an insider's view of the why and how of his success. Spanning a range of topics across business and public policy, from innovation and customer obsession to climate change and outer space, this book provides a rare glimpse into how Bezos thinks about…


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