36 books like Span of Control

By Carey D. Lohrenz,

Here are 36 books that Span of Control fans have personally recommended if you like Span of Control. 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 Think Again: The Power of Knowing What You Don't Know

Sharon M. Darmody Author Of Work Your Magic: Create a Better Business Community That Works for Everyone

From my list on how to make work, work again (to make sure that you and your workplace thrive).

Why am I passionate about this?

I think we can all agree we spend a lot of time at work. If we can help people to thrive at work, it makes such a big difference in their lives and it has such a ripple effect for the people around them. When we do well at work we do well at home. I have been working with people and organizations for over 25 years and over that time I have an instinct for the “temperature” of an organization. Work Your Magic helps you to diagnose what might be going wrong and then sets you up with a roadmap to make the changes that will make work, work again for you and your workplace.

Sharon's book list on how to make work, work again (to make sure that you and your workplace thrive)

Sharon M. Darmody Why did Sharon love this book?

If work is going to work again, we need to be curious. The world is moving fast and the issues we are facing are arguably more complex than ever before, so we must avoid at all costs the rigid my way or the highway thinking.

Sometimes it feels good when we lock a solution in quickly because we feel we have solved the problem perhaps ticked the box. I really encourage people to stay in the messy middle and to “think again” to make sure it is not the quick solution, but they stick with the problem solving so they get the best solution.

By Adam Grant,

Why should I read it?

9 authors picked Think Again as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

#1 New York Times Bestseller

"THIS. This is the right book for right now. Yes, learning requires focus. But, unlearning and relearning requires much more-it requires choosing courage over comfort. In Think Again, Adam Grant weaves together research and storytelling to help us build the intellectual and emotional muscle we need to stay curious enough about the world to actually change it. I've never felt so hopeful about what I don't know."
-Brene Brown, Ph.D., #1 New York Times bestselling author of Dare to Lead

The bestselling author of Give and Take and Originals examines the critical art of rethinking:…


Book cover of Big Little Breakthroughs: How Small, Everyday Innovations Drive Oversized Results

Alison Levine Author Of On the Edge: Leadership Lessons from Mount Everest and Other Extreme Environments

From my list on how to tackle life’s mountains.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have firsthand experience in some of the harshest environments on the planet. I’ve survived sub-zero temperatures, hurricane force winds, sudden avalanches…and a career on Wall Street. I served as team captain of the first American Women’s Everest Expedition, climbed the highest peak on every continent (the “7 Summits”), and skied to both the North and South Poles. I spent four years as an adjunct professor at the US Military Academy at West Point. Awarded the 2019 Ellis Island Medal of Honor. I have a beer named after me. I love dogs. Three heart surgeries could not slow me down. NY Times bestselling author of On the Edge. I’ve had some high profile failures and have been the butt of late night talk show opening monologue jokes. Come at me!

Alison's book list on how to tackle life’s mountains

Alison Levine Why did Alison love this book?

So often we get “stuck” because we think we have to come up with a really big idea in order to have an impact and to achieve substantial results. Nope! Linkner explains why it is a mistake to put pressure on ourselves to “Go Big.” It’s often the little ideas that lead to the best, most significant results. This book chronicles all kinds of amazingly accomplished people – Lin Manuel Miranda, Lady Gaga, Steven Spielberg, etc. Linkner’s story-telling will convince you to focus on small things and will help you unlock your creativity.

By Josh Linkner,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A surprisingly simple approach to help everyday people become everyday innovators.

The pressure to generate big ideas can feel overwhelming. We know that bold innovations are critical in these disruptive and competitive times, but when it comes to breakthrough thinking, we often freeze up.

Instead of shooting for a $10-billion payday or a Nobel Prize, the most prolific innovators focus on Big Little Breakthroughs-small creative acts that unlock massive rewards over time. By cultivating daily micro-innovations, individuals and organizations are better equipped to tackle tough challenges and seize transformational opportunities.

How did a convicted drug dealer launch and scale a…


Book cover of 10,000 Nos: How to Overcome Rejection on the Way to Your Yes

Alison Levine Author Of On the Edge: Leadership Lessons from Mount Everest and Other Extreme Environments

From my list on how to tackle life’s mountains.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have firsthand experience in some of the harshest environments on the planet. I’ve survived sub-zero temperatures, hurricane force winds, sudden avalanches…and a career on Wall Street. I served as team captain of the first American Women’s Everest Expedition, climbed the highest peak on every continent (the “7 Summits”), and skied to both the North and South Poles. I spent four years as an adjunct professor at the US Military Academy at West Point. Awarded the 2019 Ellis Island Medal of Honor. I have a beer named after me. I love dogs. Three heart surgeries could not slow me down. NY Times bestselling author of On the Edge. I’ve had some high profile failures and have been the butt of late night talk show opening monologue jokes. Come at me!

Alison's book list on how to tackle life’s mountains

Alison Levine Why did Alison love this book?

Matt is an actor, which means he is constantly jockeying for jobs in what might be the most competitive industry on the planet. He explains that dealing with rejection and coming back after failure is part of the process of getting to the “YES” that you want in life. He shares advice from his interviews with bestselling authors, world-class athletes, successful entrepreneurs, and other actors—all of whom share their stories of rejection and defeat and make us realize that hearing “NO” does not mean you will not achieve your dreams – it just means that you need to try again, from a different angle. 

By Matthew Del Negro,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked 10,000 Nos as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Learn how to persevere and pivot to achieve your goals from a celebrated Hollywood actor

10,000 NOs: How to Overcome Rejection on the Way to Your YES chronicles actor Matthew Del Negro's tough journey from humble beginnings, through a sea of rejections, on the way to his eventual rise to become a recognizable face on some of history's most acclaimed television shows. Along the way, he learned hard lessons about perseverance, persistence, and resilience. Teaching readers how to make it through the tough times and deal with massive uncertainty by retaining the flexibility to change course and pivot to follow…


Book cover of Undaunted: Overcoming Doubts and Doubters

Alison Levine Author Of On the Edge: Leadership Lessons from Mount Everest and Other Extreme Environments

From my list on how to tackle life’s mountains.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have firsthand experience in some of the harshest environments on the planet. I’ve survived sub-zero temperatures, hurricane force winds, sudden avalanches…and a career on Wall Street. I served as team captain of the first American Women’s Everest Expedition, climbed the highest peak on every continent (the “7 Summits”), and skied to both the North and South Poles. I spent four years as an adjunct professor at the US Military Academy at West Point. Awarded the 2019 Ellis Island Medal of Honor. I have a beer named after me. I love dogs. Three heart surgeries could not slow me down. NY Times bestselling author of On the Edge. I’ve had some high profile failures and have been the butt of late night talk show opening monologue jokes. Come at me!

Alison's book list on how to tackle life’s mountains

Alison Levine Why did Alison love this book?

Kara is the founder/CEO of Hint Water, and this book chronicles her rather unconventional career on her way to becoming a successful entrepreneur. She was told time and time again that what she wanted to do could not be done, yet she remained, UNDAUNTED in her pursuits. The book has all kinds of advice for overcoming both career and personal obstacles. Her attitude has always been, “No means maybe and maybe means YES.” This book will change your outlook when it comes to facing challenges.

By Kara Goldin,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Don't let anyone crush your dreams. Undaunted will inspire you to move past your fears and defy the doubters. It doesn't matter whether you feel confident; it matters what you actually do.

A Wall Street Journal bestseller!

CEO of Hint, Inc and author Kara Goldin turned her unsweetened flavored water into one of the most successful beverage businesses of our time. As she started to achieve her goals, Kara found herself being called "fearless", "confident" and even "unstoppable," but nothing could be further from the truth.

In Undaunted, she shares real stories about her own fears and doubts, the challenges…


Book cover of Leora's Letters: The Story of Love and Loss for an Iowa Family During World War II

Paul E. Kotz Author Of Start Late, Finish Happy: Random Encounters - Unexpected Joy

From my list on that capture the magic of seeing everyday good.

Why am I passionate about this?

Every time I see a wonderful episode of life, I want to capture it in writing or tell a compelling story about it. Too often, we let the good memories go, and remember the difficult ones. So, I keep writing books that have a real—yet positive outlook that can ignite a smile out of someone—or a hearty laugh. In 2020, I published Profiles in Kindness—an award-winning CIPA/Reader's Choice Award for motivation & inspirational leadership. In 2018, I first released the CIPA Award-winning Something Happened Today, addressing seeing the goodness in everyday life even in the face of difficulties. 

Paul's book list on that capture the magic of seeing everyday good

Paul E. Kotz Why did Paul love this book?

It is the captivating story of the five Wilson brothers from Iowa. Leora was their motherJoy’s delightful grandmother. All five of these brave young men enlisted. Only two came home. All served their country during WWII, two in the Navy, and three in the Army Air Corps. Kidney provides her readers with a genuine and heartfelt glimpse into the life of an American family during one of our nation's most difficult times. It is so well-crafted, combining letters, photographs, and narratives that touch your heart. Joy Neal Kidney makes you feel like a member of her family. I hoped that all men would make it back safely. Unfortunately, war is never that compassionate and affects many lives in the process. It is an absorbing read and well worth the endeavor.

By Joy Neal Kidney, Robin Grunder,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Leora's Letters as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The day the second atomic bomb was dropped, Clabe and Leora Wilson’s postman brought a telegram to their acreage near Perry, Iowa. One son was already in the U.S. Navy before Pearl Harbor had been attacked. Four more sons worked with their father, tenant farmers near Minburn until, one by one, all five sons were serving their country in the military. The oldest son re-enlisted in the Navy. The younger three became U.S. Army Air Force pilots. As the family optimist, Leora wrote hundreds of letters, among all her regular chores, dispensing news and keeping up the morale of the…


Book cover of A USNA Mom's Journal: Plebe Summer through Commissioning and Beyond: What You Need to Know

Robert Stewart Author Of No Greater Duty

From my list on duty and courage in peace and war.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been fortunate to write and publish three books on America’s service academies: two on the U.S. Naval Academy, and one on the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. The two nonfiction books were appealing photographic and narrative presentations of academy life at Navy and West Point. The third, my debut novel happening at the Naval Academy, is an inspiring tale of moral courage and dedication to duty with war and peacetime conflicts. Each book was a rewarding creative project.

Robert's book list on duty and courage in peace and war

Robert Stewart Why did Robert love this book?

This book is one of the finest resources presenting the unusual experience of midshipmen life at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. In a conversational, informative, and warmly-written style, AN Shine helps parents and family members to learn—and admire—the military, institutional, cultural, academic, and social traditions their midshipmen follow for four years. The author certainly knows. Her father and also two of her children are Naval Academy graduates. This outstanding book about one of America's historic service academies is a pleasure to read. I had the privilege to work with her as a fellow Naval Academy author.

By AN Shine,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A USNA Mom's Journal as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A USNA Mom's Journal - From Appointment through Commissioning and Beyond! What you Need to Know, is an invaluable resource full of up-to-date information, useful tips, insights, and advice that is helpful even for military families that may not be familiar with the inner workings of USNA. This book is a must read for new and not-so-new U.S. Naval Academy parents and families alike.

I have Included everything that our family learned from our many wonderful mentors and our personal experience through our seven year journey with our two Midshipmen, from my Dad (USNA '59), from counseling other parents, as…


Book cover of Perilous Fight: America's Intrepid War with Britain on the High Seas, 1812-1815

Troy Bickham Author Of The Weight of Vengeance: The United States, the British Empire, and the War of 1812

From my list on War of 1812 that were published recently.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a Professor of History at Texas A&M University and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. I find the War of 1812 fascinating because throughout history one would struggle mightily to find a war so small with so many great consequences. Conflict between the U.S. and British Empire could have been averted (and it nearly was) in 1812 just as it had for years, and it ended with neither side recognizing a victor and an agreement to return to a pre-war state of affairs. The bicentennial of the War of 1812 brought fresh perspectives from a wide variety of historians, who as a group asserted the importance of the war to world history and global affairs to our understanding of the war.  Below are some of my favorites.

Troy's book list on War of 1812 that were published recently

Troy Bickham Why did Troy love this book?

While the outcome of the naval war was a foregone conclusion, the United States Navy and a swarm of privateers punched well above their weight, humiliating the world’s preeminent navy early in the conflict and boosting American national morale. There are a number of excellent books on the naval history of the conflict, but, carefully researched and accessibly written, Perilous Fight is my favorite telling of this critical aspect of the War of 1812.

By Stephen Budiansky,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In Perilous Fight, Stephen Budiansky tells the rousing story of the U.S. Navy during the War of 1812, when an upstart American fleet fought off the legendary Royal Navy and established America as a world power for the first time.
 
Through vivid re-creations of riveting and dramatic encounters at sea, Budiansky shows how this underdog coterie of seamen and their visionary secretary of the navy combined bravery and strategic brilliance to defeat the British, who had dominated the seas for more than two centuries.  A gripping and essential hsitory, this is the military and political story of how the U.S.…


Book cover of Sea Power: A Naval History

James G. Stavridis Author Of The Sailor's Bookshelf: Fifty Books to Know the Sea

From my list on to know the sea.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm a retired 4-star Admiral who spent over forty years at sea, rising from Midshipman at the Naval Academy to Supreme Allied Commander at NATO. I studied literature and published eleven books, many dealing with the oceans. My PhD from Tufts University, where I served as Dean of The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, centered on the Law of the Sea Treaty. My father was a seagoing US Marine, my wife grew up in the Navy with a father who was a Navy pilot, and my daughter was a Navy nurse. Finally, my basset hound is named Penelope, after the wife of Ulysses who waited for her husband to return from ten years at sea.

James' book list on to know the sea

James G. Stavridis Why did James love this book?

When I was a first-year student at the U.S. Naval Academy in 1972, every “plebe,” as we were called, was required to take a full-year course called simply Sea Power. It is in a sense four books in one: a history of the United States Navy and of American naval power; a history of the world’s navies; a study of the evolution of naval warfare; and a study of the part that sea power has played in the exercise of national power. It is also full of dozens of maps, charts, and, above all, detailed tactical depictions of individual battles, the latter ranging from the Bay of Salamis, where the Greeks and Persians fought 2,500 years ago, through Trafalgar at the height of the Napoleonic Wars, to the pivotal battles of Midway and Leyte Gulf in World War II.

By E.B. Potter,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A classic work widely acknowledged as the definitive text on its subject. All aspects of over 2,000 years of naval history are covered, from Greek and Roman galley warfare to Vietnam and beyond, with emphasis on the evolution of strategy, tactics, and weapons development.


Book cover of The Bluejackets Manual: United States Navy

William L. McGee Author Of Operation Crossroads - Lest We Forget!: An Eyewitness Account, Bikini Atomic Bomb Tests 1946

From my list on the atomic bomb tests at the Bikini Atoll in 1946.

Why am I passionate about this?

William L. McGee is an award-winning World War II Pacific war historian. His writing career has spanned six decades and his writing style has been described as journalistic and spare. Bill currently has nine titles in print; six with his co-author and wife, Sandra V. McGee.

William's book list on the atomic bomb tests at the Bikini Atoll in 1946

William L. McGee Why did William love this book?

This manual belonged to me. It may seem like an odd recommendation. However, whenever my memory was fuzzy on some detail, such as the various boatswain’s calls, I consulted my well-worn bluejacket’s manual and found the answer.

By Norman Reeve Van Der Veer,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This Is A New Release Of The Original 1917 Edition.


Book cover of No Right To Win: A Continuing Dialogue with Veterans of the Battle of Midway

Kevin Miller Author Of The Silver Waterfall: A Novel of the Battle of Midway

From my list on The Battle of Midway and how it changed the course of WW2.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a retired U.S. Navy carrier pilot, having flown the A-7 Corsair II and F/A-18 Hornet operationally, and formerly the Executive Vice President of the Naval Aviation Museum Foundation. Over 20 years I have spoken about the battle to diverse audiences, and my historical fiction novel The Silver Waterfall was written without changing any facts of the battle and features the real men who fought it. I am also the author of the Raven One trilogy of aircraft carrier techno-thrillers.

Kevin's book list on The Battle of Midway and how it changed the course of WW2

Kevin Miller Why did Kevin love this book?

Russell, moderator of the Battle of Midway Internet Round Table, goes further than Moore in that his interviews with the participants of the battle delve deeper into the Midway narrative and decision matrix. Up there alongside Parshall and Tully as the top experts on Midway, Russell through his first-hand accounts of Midway survivors – and their human perceptions - explores the controversies of Midway, such as the “Flight to Nowhere” and “eyewitness” testimony proved false by realities of geography and photographic evidence.

No Right to Win is highly recommended for advanced students of the battle and is recommended for those who have a baseline knowledge of Midway lore.

By Ronald Russell,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked No Right To Win as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1942, one of the most powerful naval forces in history descended upon the tiny atoll of Midway, 1100 miles northwest of Hawaii. The Japanese intent was to lure America's badly depleted Pacific Fleet into the open where it would be overwhelmed, forcing the U.S. to end the Pacific War on Japanese terms. But it didn't happen that way. Through an amazing combination of skill, courage, and especially luck, U.S. not only prevailed at Midway but delivered to the enemy a crushing defeat that instantly changed the course of the war. No Right to Win is a fresh look at…


5 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in the United States Navy, US Navy SEALs, and World War 1?

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