100 books like The 12 Week Year

By Brian P. Moran, Michael Lennington,

Here are 100 books that The 12 Week Year fans have personally recommended if you like The 12 Week Year. 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 4-Hour Workweek: Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich

Denise Brinkmeyer Author Of Project Orienteering: A Field Guide For Project Leadership

From my list on servant leaders who get things done.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am the oldest child, and former teacher turned technology innovator. As the only girl, growing up with three brothers gave me the tenacity to overcome limiting beliefs. Information technology has helped me create an environment where I can help a lot of people. At the end of the day, what I love most is helping someone turn an idea into a tangible solution while motivating team members to see the beauty and joy in this type of service.  

Denise's book list on servant leaders who get things done

Denise Brinkmeyer Why did Denise love this book?

This book inspires me to look at how I spend my time at work. I do many things that could be automated so that I can spend more time doing things that machines are not great at. 

While I do not intend to work only 4 hours a week, I use the inspiration for this book to move from 75-hour weeks to a more practical 40-50 hours that allow me to have time for my non-business roles (wife, mother, grandmother, daughter, sister, etc.). Note that some technologies are outdated, but the concepts are golden.

If you like this book, you might like his Tools of Titans, as well.

By Timothy Ferriss,

Why should I read it?

12 authors picked The 4-Hour Workweek as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A new, updated and expanded edition of this New York Times bestseller on how to reconstruct your life so it's not all about work

Forget the old concept of retirement and the rest of the deferred-life plan - there is no need to wait and every reason not to, especially in unpredictable economic times. Whether your dream is escaping the rat race, experiencing high-end world travel, earning a monthly five-figure income with zero management, or just living more and working less, this book is the blueprint.

This step-by step guide to luxury lifestyle design teaches:

* How Tim went from…


Book cover of The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth Behind Extraordinary Results

Curtis Jenkins Author Of Vision to Reality: Stop Working, Start Living

From my list on accelerating your success.

Why am I passionate about this?

During a meeting in Fall 2020, a fellow business owner shared that they were about to lose everything and that no one would help them financially to get over this setback. This struck a chord with me, as I come from North Philadelphia and saw many small business owners struggle and ultimately lose their businesses. Thus, my personal goal is to help 1000 small businesses annually, giving them the gift of time, realizing their vision and mission, and leaving a legacy of prosperity. By supporting small businesses, I hope to make a positive impact on families, friends, and communities, creating a world of successful small business owners.

Curtis' book list on accelerating your success

Curtis Jenkins Why did Curtis love this book?

If you struggle with productivity and want to achieve extraordinary results, The ONE Thing is a must-read.

This book emphasizes the importance of focus and teaches you how to identify the one thing that matters most each day. By choosing the one thing that makes everything else obsolete or unnecessary, you can accomplish more in less time.

The book’s central message is that by focusing on one thing at a time, you can achieve extraordinary results in productivity, achieve your goals, and live a more fulfilling life. 

By Gary Keller, Jay Papasan,

Why should I read it?

6 authors picked The ONE Thing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

YOU WANT LESS. You want fewer distractions and less on your plate. The daily barrage of e-mails, texts, tweets, messages, and meetings distract you and stress you out. The simultaneous demands of work and family are taking a toll. And what's the cost? Second-rate work, missed deadlines, smaller paychecks, fewer promotions-and lots of stress. AND YOU WANT MORE. You want more productivity from your work. More income for a better lifestyle. You want more satisfaction from life, and more time for yourself, your family, and your friends. NOW YOU CAN HAVE BOTH-LESS AND MORE. In The ONE Thing, you'll learn…


Book cover of Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World

Havard Mela Author Of Digital Discipline: Choosing Life in the Digital Age of Excess

From my list on how we get distracted and how to reclaim your attention.

Why am I passionate about this?

As someone who has felt the consequences of spending too much time online on distractions, I am compelled to share how much better life can be when we are conscious of the time we spend online. In my early twenties, I experienced digital addiction. I managed to turn things around by cultivating discipline and finding purpose in life. In the process, I developed a deep interest in neuroscience and psychology. My book explains how you can take conscious control of your life in a practical way based on my experience backed up by research.

Havard's book list on how we get distracted and how to reclaim your attention

Havard Mela Why did Havard love this book?

Deep Work is an excellent book for realizing how detrimental the typical employee’s work habits of checking email every 5 minutes, constant meetings, and other distractions are to their ability to perform high-quality work. Newport also shares good suggestions for reclaiming your focus and doing what he calls “deep work.” 

The book strongly advocates for the importance of having as much time as possible without distractions to achieve flow and perform optimally. This book helped me become much more conscious about how I work.

By Cal Newport,

Why should I read it?

8 authors picked Deep Work as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Many modern knowledge workers now spend most of their brain power battling distraction and interruption, whether because of the incessant pinging of devices, noisy open-plan offices or the difficulty of deciding what deserves your attention the most. When Cal Newport coined the term 'deep work' on his popular blog, Study Hacks, in 2012, he found the concept quickly hit a nerve. Most of us, after all, are excruciatingly familiar with shallow work instead - distractedly skimming the surface of our workload and never getting to the important part. Newport began exploring the methods and mindset that foster a practice of…


Book cover of Lions Don't Need To Roar: Using the Leadership Power of Personal Presence to Stand Out, Fit in and Move Ahead

Curtis Jenkins Author Of Vision to Reality: Stop Working, Start Living

From my list on accelerating your success.

Why am I passionate about this?

During a meeting in Fall 2020, a fellow business owner shared that they were about to lose everything and that no one would help them financially to get over this setback. This struck a chord with me, as I come from North Philadelphia and saw many small business owners struggle and ultimately lose their businesses. Thus, my personal goal is to help 1000 small businesses annually, giving them the gift of time, realizing their vision and mission, and leaving a legacy of prosperity. By supporting small businesses, I hope to make a positive impact on families, friends, and communities, creating a world of successful small business owners.

Curtis' book list on accelerating your success

Curtis Jenkins Why did Curtis love this book?

If you want to improve your leadership presence and ability to command a room, Lions Don’t Need to Roar by D.A. Benton is a must-read.

This book highlights the importance of storytelling as a key component of leadership. Most CEOs are great at telling people stories and using them to convince others to get things done. The book emphasizes that as a leader, you are immediately judged by how you appear, not just by what you say.

After reading this book, you’ll learn how to build a powerful leadership presence that inspires and motivates others.

By D.A. Benton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Lions Don't Need To Roar as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The woman who made self-presentation an art shows how to use professional presence to stand out, fit in and move ahead. Covers the empowering pause, posture, gestures, and more.


Book cover of The Advantage: Why Organizational Health Trumps Everything Else In Business

Marianne Broadbent Author Of The Agile Executive: Embracing Career Risks and Rewards

From my list on aspiring women leaders.

Why am I passionate about this?

My passion for leadership and aspiring women leaders comes from my own leadership experiences and working with women and men executives and aspiring executives, every day. I had to make some difficult work choices in my 20s and 30s (with four young children) and was wonderfully supported by some wise women. Many of my choices were different from my peers and we continue to have to make more difficult choices than our male colleagues. We need to help each other, every day. I lead a blended life co-leading an executive search and leadership advisory firm, while also being a mother, grandmother, wife, mentor, friend, and lover of good music, theatre, food, wine, and curious people. 

Marianne's book list on aspiring women leaders

Marianne Broadbent Why did Marianne love this book?

The Advantage lays out a compelling case that if an organization has strong organizational health it is well placed to succeed in its goals and in its industry.

Good organizational health embraces great teamwork, clear and consistent company culture and goals, and how to have effective meetings. Lencioni brings together many pragmatic and practical perspectives through many years of working with executive teams.

The key element for me is his articulation of the ‘five dysfunctions of teams’ and then how to address these. That one chart has been pivotal to my facilitation of many challenging executive discussions with clients, particularly when paired with Covey’s approach to trust and trust building.

Modelling Trust is the first step in building effective executive teams. 

By Patrick M. Lencioni,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked The Advantage as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

There is a competitive advantage out there, arguably more powerful than any other. Is it superior strategy? Faster innovation? Smarter employees? No, New York Times best-selling author, Patrick Lencioni, argues that the seminal difference between successful companies and mediocre ones has little to do with what they know and how smart they are and more to do with how healthy they are. In this book, Lencioni brings together his vast experience and many of the themes cultivated in his other best-selling books and delivers a first: a cohesive and comprehensive exploration of the unique advantage organizational health provides. Simply put,…


Book cover of The Edge: How Ten CEOs Learned to Lead--And the Lessons for Us All

Ruchira Chaudhary Author Of Coaching: The Secret Code to Uncommon Leadership

From my list on uncommon/exceptional leadership.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm an executive coach, adjunct faculty at several top-tier business schools, and run a boutique firm consulting firm focused on organizational strategy solutions. My diverse and eclectic background in mergers & acquisitions, organization effectiveness, and strategy execution, coupled with two decades of experience in emerging markets in Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa, helps me grasp challenging people issues. I'm passionate about the topic of leaders as coaches having written several papers and columns. My research, and writing led Penguin to commission my book Coaching: The Secret Code to Uncommon Leadership that, released globally in late 2021 to much acclaim, is recommended by several academics as an essential read for aspiring and experienced managers. 

Ruchira's book list on uncommon/exceptional leadership

Ruchira Chaudhary Why did Ruchira love this book?

Prof Useem, who teaches leadership at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, sent me a signed copy of this book through my spouse (a Wharton alum) and I cannot recommend it enough.

He eloquently equates a leader’s job to standing on the cliff edge, getting a grip on unfamiliar landscapes, and acquiring the skills to lead organizations in this constantly evolving, ever-changing business landscape.

I think this book is more relevant than ever given our turbulent times – Prof Useem draws on the experiences of ten bold CEOS to show us how, in a world characterized by unprecedented challenges of global pandemic and economic disruption, leaders need to find the edge for leaping across and breaking new ground on the other side.

An engaging and practical guide to being the ambidextrous leader who constantly propels the organization forward, without letting go of its core.

By Michael Useem,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A leader's job-in a radically changing world-is standing on the cliff edge, getting a grip on unfamiliar landscapes, and acquiring the skills for leading the enterprise into new territory. In a world facing the unprecedented challenges of global pandemic and economic distruption, every leader needs to find the edge for leaping across the breach and breaking new ground on the other side.

Michael Useem provides rare insight into how ten leaders confronted hard realities. He looked close-in at the lide and work of people such as Bill McNabb of Vanguard, Jeffrey Lurie of the Philadelphia Eagles, Alex Gorsky of Johnson…


Book cover of Scaling Up: How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't

Tom Salonek Author Of The 100: Building Blocks for Business Leadership

From my list on practical, hands-on business leadership.

Why am I passionate about this?

I'm the Founder and CEO of Intertech, an IT firm I started over 30 years ago. I've written three books and more than 100 articles on business, leadership, and technology. Intertech has won over 50 awards for growth, workplace best practices, and employee engagement including being named one of the Best 30 Employers in Tech by Fortune Magazine and one of the Top 10 Consulting firms in America by Consulting Magazine.  

Tom's book list on practical, hands-on business leadership

Tom Salonek Why did Tom love this book?

I learned from Verne firsthand at two separate multi-year courses at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology that were held for high-growth entrepreneurs.

In Scaling Up, he lays out what needs to be done at different stages/sizes of an organization to move to the next level. Like the other books I've recommended, he provides candid advice and practical ways to implement the ideas outlined in the book.

By Verne Harnish,

Why should I read it?

3 authors picked Scaling Up as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winner of the International Book Awards for General Business


Winner of the Readers' Favorite International Book Award for Non-Fiction Business



It’s been over a decade since Verne Harnish’s best-selling book Mastering the Rockefeller Habits was first released. Scaling Up (Rockefeller Habits 2.0) is the first major revision of this business classic which details practical tools and techniques for building an industry-dominating business. This book is written so everyone — from frontline employees to senior executives — can get aligned in contributing to the growth of a firm. Scaling Up focuses on the four major decision areas every company must get…


Book cover of Competing in the New World of Work: How Radical Adaptability Separates the Best from the Rest

Nick Sonnenberg Author Of Come Up for Air: How Teams Can Leverage Systems and Tools to Stop Drowning in Work

From my list on growing your business without all the headaches.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’ve always been obsessed with efficiency. Before becoming an entrepreneur, I spent eight years working on Wall Street as a high-frequency trader where I traded billions of dollars in stocks at microsecond speeds. That job showed me the true value of efficiency, which I embraced with my own company, Leverage—an operational efficiency consulting firm that has helped thousands of organizations improve the way they work. My book, Come Up for Air is the culmination of everything I’ve learned and the books in this list have played a huge part in my business education along the way. I’m also a columnist for inc.com and guest lecturer at Columbia University.

Nick's book list on growing your business without all the headaches

Nick Sonnenberg Why did Nick love this book?

This book really struck a chord with me.

Ferrazzi's insights on workplace innovation during the pandemic have helped me reshape my company's practices to remain competitive in a constantly evolving business landscape.

What I appreciated most about this book is that it's based on research from real-life executives, innovators, and changemakers who redefined their strategies and business models to stay ahead of the curve.

By Keith Ferrazzi, Kian Gohar, Noel Weyrich

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Competing in the New World of Work as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A Wall Street Journal bestseller

The #1 New York Times bestselling author on how to use radical adaptability to win in a world of unprecedented change.

You've shed antiquated systems and processes. You went all-in on digital. Your teams settled into new, often better, ways of doing things. But did your organization change enough to stay competitive in the post-pandemic world? Did you fully leverage the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to leap forward and grow stronger? Are you shaping the new environment to your advantage?

If not, it's not too late to learn from the best.

New York Times #1 bestselling author…


Book cover of Designing Organizations: Strategy, Structure, and Process at the Business Unit and Enterprise Levels

Dave Ulrich Author Of Reinventing the Organization: How Companies Can Deliver Radically Greater Value in Fast-Changing Markets

From my list on how to improve organizations.

Why am I passionate about this?

Dave Ulrich is the Rensis Likert Professor at the Ross School of Business and a partner at the RBL Group, a consulting firm focused on helping organizations and leaders deliver value. He has published over 200 articles and book chapters and over 30 books. The organizations where we live, work, play, and worship affect every part of our lives. Organizations turn individual competencies into collective capabilities, isolated events into sustained patterns, and personal values into collective values. In short, organizations matter in our lives. By adapting their answer to “what is an organization,” leaders, employees, customers, and investors will be better able to improve their organization's experiences.

Dave's book list on how to improve organizations

Dave Ulrich Why did Dave love this book?

Jay Galbraith was the godfather of organization design. His work on how to design organizations has been the foundation of future work. He provides a system model with five parts (his star model) to diagnose and improve the organization. He also highlights the importance and role of information that flows from good organization design which was ahead of its time.

By Jay R. Galbraith,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

This Third Edition of the groundbreaking book Designing Organizations offers a guide to the process of creating and managing an organization (no matter how complex) that will be positioned to respond effectively and rapidly to customer demands and have the ability to achieve unique competitive advantage. This latest edition includes fresh illustrative examples and references, while the foundation of the book remains the author s popular and widely used Star Model. * Includes a comprehensive explanation of the basics of organization design * Outlines a strategic approach to design that is based on the Star Model, a holistic framework for…


Book cover of Amp It Up: Leading for Hypergrowth by Raising Expectations, Increasing Urgency, and Elevating Intensity

Jeffrey Engle Author Of All the War They Want: Special Operations Techniques for Winning in Cyber Warfare, Business, and Life

From my list on introducing military tactics into your leadership.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a veteran of the United States Army Special Operations Command, my time in the army will always guide my actions. When I began my career in cybersecurity and later took on the role of President and Chair of Conquest Cyber, I looked to my military experience for guidance. The lessons I learned from leaders were much like those I’ve learned through these books, and they are lessons that will benefit any leader, business owner, or founder. 

Jeffrey's book list on introducing military tactics into your leadership

Jeffrey Engle Why did Jeffrey love this book?

A newer favorite, Amp It Up is a book I wish I could have read as I first took the helm at Conquest Cyber. Even still, it's full of knowledge for anyone looking to lead or grow a company. While it is easy to fall into the mindset that you do not have the resources for rapid growth, it does not necessarily take consultants, added employees, or financial investment to grow a company to its full potential. This book shows you how to maximize the resources you have—eliminating mediocrity from your ranks and relentlessly elevating your mission.  

By Frank Slootman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and Publishers Weekly Bestseller

The secret to leading growth is your mindset

Snowflake CEO Frank Slootman is one of the tech world's most accomplished executives in enterprise growth, having led Snowflake to the largest software IPO ever after leading ServiceNow and Data Domain to exponential growth and the public market before that. In Amp It Up: Leading for Hypergrowth by Raising Expectations, Increasing Urgency, and Elevating Intensity, he shares his leadership approach for the first time.

Amp It Up delivers an authoritative look at what it takes to transform an organization for maximum growth and…


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