100 books like The Culture Solution

By Matthew Kelly,

Here are 100 books that The Culture Solution fans have personally recommended if you like The Culture Solution. 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 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 Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business

Scott Greenberg Author Of Stop the Shift Show: How to Turn Your Struggling Hourly Workers Into a Top-Performing Team

From my list on managing employees and building teams.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m fascinated with the relationship between personal growth and professional performance. Why is it in the same environment, doing the same work, some people can excel while others struggle? Most chalk it up to external circumstances that can’t be controlled. Others focus on tactics. But I’ve learned top-performers are masters at the human side of their work–the way they think, lead and serve–and that’s what gives them their edge. All of my work centers around infusing hard skills with improved soft skills, and getting better results in the process. That’s the stuff I find delicious, and it’s what I speak and write about.

Scott's book list on managing employees and building teams

Scott Greenberg Why did Scott love this book?

What I loved about this book was its very systemized approach to evaluating and improving an organization.

I’m interested in the human elements of business, and this book places great emphasis on aligning the right people with the right roles, totally gelling with my philosophy. It simplifies the process of strategic planning. EOS has become quite common in the business world, and this book spells out exactly how to move through it.

Really good stuff here. 

By Gino Wickman,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Do you have a grip on your business, or does your business have a grip on you? All entrepreneurs and business leaders face similar frustrations--personnel conflict, profit woes, and inadequate growth. Decisions never seem to get made, or, once made, fail to be properly implemented. But there is a solution. It's not complicated or theoretical.The Entrepreneurial Operating System(R) is a practical method for achieving the business success you have always envisioned. More than 2,000 companies have discovered what EOS can do. In Traction, you'll learn the secrets of strengthening the six key components of your business. You'll discover simple yet…


Book cover of Great by Choice

Donald Summers Author Of Scaling Altruism: A Proven Pathway for Accelerating Nonprofit Growth and Impact

From my list on essential reading for nonprofit leaders.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have spent most of my adult life using entrepreneurial business practices and principles to redesign and transform nonprofits. From my very first nonprofit organizational acceleration, I was hooked. The wealth one receives from helping other people is so much richer and more satisfying than money–altruism is truly life's greatest pleasure. You know the movie The Sixth Sense where the little kid sees dead people everywhere? I am the same way, except everywhere I look, I see uncaptured opportunities for social impact. I live and breathe social impact strategy, governance, financing, evaluation, and change management. Because by fixing problems in those areas, organizations are able to do more to make the world a better place.  

Donald's book list on essential reading for nonprofit leaders

Donald Summers Why did Donald love this book?

Good to Great is one of the best business books written, but it doesn't tell the full story. While Collins has other books, the most important companion to my prior recommendation is Great By ChoiceReally, these books should be seen as a Part 1 and a Part 2.

The elements in this book are every bit as important–specifically, the "20 Mile March" piece is one that continues to resonate with me. More battle-tested wisdom from one of the world's greatest business scholars.

By Jim Collins, Morten T. Hansen,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

THE NEW QUESTION
Ten years after the worldwide bestseller Good to Great, Jim Collins returns with another groundbreaking work, this time to ask: Why do some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not? Based on nine years of research, buttressed by rigorous analysis and infused with engaging stories, Collins and his colleague, Morten Hansen, enumerate the principles for building a truly great enterprise in unpredictable, tumultuous, and fast-moving times.

THE NEW STUDY
Great by Choice distinguishes itself from Collins's prior work by its focus not just on performance, but also on the type of unstable environments faced…


Book cover of The 6 Types of Working Genius: A Better Way to Understand Your Gifts, Your Frustrations, and Your Team

Dan Purvis Author Of 28 Days to Save the World: Crafting Your Culture to Be Ready for Anything

From my list on new entrepreneurs and small business leaders.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I went back to school for my MBA, I was looking for a way to apply the passion I’d found for changing lives for a better world. Studying business started my journey toward founding Velentium, a medtech engineering firm, in 2012. The pandemic was a make-or-break season for every industry, medtech included. We were determined to do our part, but were faced with an unprecedented challenge: boost the world’s emergency ventilator production from hundreds per month to thousands per week—in just 28 days. We succeeded—and it was a spiritually moving experience. I wrote 28 Days to Save the World in hopes of inspiring other organizations to punch above their weight class like we did.

Dan's book list on new entrepreneurs and small business leaders

Dan Purvis Why did Dan love this book?

Lencioni’s latest work gave words to inner frustrations that I’ve felt my entire life. Six Types of Working Genius finally gave me permission to admit that I’m not tenacious! As a leader, I need to lean into the geniuses I have and build a leadership team that complements me and shores up my weaker areas. And, I need to do the same at every level of my organization.

This book will be key to leaders for years to come, giving them the tools they need to build and grow teams that will be more enthusiastic, more energetic, and more effective than ever before. 

By Patrick M. Lencioni,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The 6 Types of Working Genius as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

New York Times best-selling author Patrick Lencioni unveils a truly groundbreaking new model that will change the way we think about work and teams forever.

The 6 Types of Working Genius is the fastest way to help people identify the type of work that brings them joy and energy, and avoid work that leads to frustration and burnout.

Beyond the personal discovery and instant relief that Working Genius provides, the model also gives teams a remarkably simple and practical framework for tapping into one another’s natural gifts, which increases productivity and reduces unnecessary judgment.
 
In classic Lencioni fashion, Pat brings…


Book cover of Applied Empathy: The New Language of Leadership

Minter Dial Author Of Heartificial Empathy: Putting Heart into Business and Artificial Intelligence

From my list on artificial intelligence, emotions, and empathy.

Why am I passionate about this?

Having studied literature at university and been a closet nerd, coding at night in a dank basement room, I've always been intrigued by the interface between human and machine. Then, as a senior executive in a large multinational, I was acutely aware of the value of empathy as a leadership skill. In a world that is increasingly divided and divisive, I’ve become an empathy activist. I believe that the business world can be a force for positive change, but as a society we will need to engage in a much more meaningful and rigorous debate about the ethics involved in the opportunities offered by using artificial intelligence and robots in the workplace. 

Minter's book list on artificial intelligence, emotions, and empathy

Minter Dial Why did Minter love this book?

With business conditions and prospects looking so difficult, we will need to be ever more strategic in the use of our resources. In this light, Michael Ventura’s practical approach to inserting empathy into leadership and how businesses should function with a higher degree of empathy is a tremendous read. Ventura uses a host of case studies based on the work he’s done with his company, Sub Rosa. As such, the material is real life and the book is packed with a host of great and practical exercises. While it’s all about empathy in business, the book is also a good reminder of how empathy can be useful in our private lives, our intimate relationships and in society in general. 

By Michael Ventura,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Michael Ventura, entrepreneur and CEO of award-winning strategy and design practice Sub Rosa, shares how empathy - the ability to see the world through someone else's eyes - could be what your business needs to innovate, connect, and grow.

Having built his career working with iconic brands and institutions such as Google and Nike, and also The United Nations and the Obama Administration, Michael Ventura offers entrepreneurs and executives a radical new business book and way forward.

Empathy is not about being nice. It's not about pity or sympathy either. It's about understanding - your consumers, your colleagues, and yourself…


Book cover of Bring Your Human to Work: 10 Surefire Ways to Design a Workplace That Is Good for People, Great for Business, and Just Might Change the World

Bruno R. Cignacco Author Of The Art of Compassionate Business: Main Principles for the Human-Oriented Enterprise

From my list on conscious business.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a consultant, author, and researcher, for several years I have been very passionate about the study of companies that are very successful in the marketplace, but that are also human-oriented. In other words, I am very interested in companies that are profitable, but at the same time, are kind, compassionate, and caring with their main stakeholders. I like that these companies continually aim to foster robust long-term relationships with these stakeholders, and look for win-win agreements with them. What I love about these companies is that they focus on the quantitative aspects of business (e.g., profitability, growth, etc.) but also in its qualitative aspects (empathy, support, gratitude, generosity, etc.).

Bruno's book list on conscious business

Bruno R. Cignacco Why did Bruno love this book?

I really like this book because it provides the reader with very actionable ways to develop a more human-oriented workplace. I found interesting the way this book thoroughly dissects relevant themes related to the work environment, such as: the importance of an authentic voice, employee wellness, the significance of sustainable actions, and the value of giving back, among others. It is very useful that this book includes several examples of companies to illustrate these topics. I found it valuable that each relevant theme discussed in this book is accompanied by a human action plan, with very practical suggestions.  

By Erica Keswin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Bring Your Human to Work as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The secret to business success? Get REAL and be HUMAN!

As human beings, we are built to connect and form relationships. So, it should be no surprise that relationships must also translate into the workplace, where we spend most of our time! Companies that recognize this will retain the most productive, creative, and loyal employees, and invariably seize the competitive edge.

The most successful leaders are those who actively form quality relationships with their employees, who honor fundamental human qualities-authenticity, openness, and basic politeness-and apply them day in and day out. Paying attention and genuinely caring about the effects people…


Book cover of The Leader on the Couch: A Clinical Approach to Changing People and Organisations

Jody Michael Author Of Leading Lightly: Lower Your Stress, Think with Clarity, and Lead with Ease

From my list on leading lightly in organizations and in life.

Why am I passionate about this?

At 29 I was one of the first female traders on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, building my own all-female trading company. I lost everything in 1987, which gave me a stellar opportunity to understand my power to choose how I responded to the turmoil. Now, I’m an internationally credentialed Master Certified Coach, Board Certified Coach, University of Chicago-trained psychotherapist, and Licensed Clinical Social Worker. Over 25 years ago I founded my coaching company, Jody Michael Associates. We focus on building emotional intelligence, executive presence, and mental fitness. When we help our clients learn to lead lightly, they take themselves, their teams, and their organizations to new levels of awareness, discernment, and performance.

Jody's book list on leading lightly in organizations and in life

Jody Michael Why did Jody love this book?

This is an undercelebrated leadership book.

Rarely do we go “under the hood” to understand the drivers that account for 90% of our day-to-day behavior. Understanding the core impetus behind a leader’s behavior and decisions is clearly one of my passions, and this book is an interesting read in that regard. 

In this book, Manfred F. R. Kets de Vries deftly deconstructs the way we believe we make decisions to reveal that, regardless of the veneer of rationality we maintain, our emotional responses to formative events early in life remain our inner compass.

His comparison of disparate paths to self-development exposes unexpected parallels which lend strength to his argument that feelings play an important role in leadership.

By Manfred F. R. Kets de Vries,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

Despite the proven benefits of emotional intelligence, organizational life has typically been hostile to the inner world of feeling. Rationality is deemed superior to feeling, which can contaminate judgment. But without feeling there is no passion, and no action. This book sets out to change people and organizations for the better, by revealing the 'dark side' of leadership behaviour and its impact on performance. Tapping into the startling parallels between the journey to emotional intelligence, the process of psychoanalysis, the practice of leadership coaching and the Zen journey to enlightenment, renowned thinker Manfred Kets de Vries helps executives, consultants, and…


Book cover of Tribal Leadership: Leveraging Natural Groups to Build a Thriving Organization

Scott Greenberg Author Of Stop the Shift Show: How to Turn Your Struggling Hourly Workers Into a Top-Performing Team

From my list on managing employees and building teams.

Why am I passionate about this?

I’m fascinated with the relationship between personal growth and professional performance. Why is it in the same environment, doing the same work, some people can excel while others struggle? Most chalk it up to external circumstances that can’t be controlled. Others focus on tactics. But I’ve learned top-performers are masters at the human side of their work–the way they think, lead and serve–and that’s what gives them their edge. All of my work centers around infusing hard skills with improved soft skills, and getting better results in the process. That’s the stuff I find delicious, and it’s what I speak and write about.

Scott's book list on managing employees and building teams

Scott Greenberg Why did Scott love this book?

Many organizations pay lip service to “culture” without measuring it, managing it, or even knowing what it really is.

This book describes five different levels of culture, and what each one needs to evolve. Once you understand these cultures, you’ll see elements of them all around in other groups you participate in.

Ever since reading this I’ve worked to get any teams I work with to Level 5, and I’m grateful for now having some direction on how to accomplish this. 

By Dave Logan, John King, Halee Fischer-Wright

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

In "Tribal Leadership", management consultants Dave Logan and John King show corporate leaders how they can use tribes - the groups that naturally form within any company - to maximize productivity and profit within their own firms. Based on a rigorous eight-year study that covered more than two dozen companies and 24,000 people, "Tribal Leadership" includes interviews with leading business figures such as Brian France, chairman and CEO of NASCAR, and Dilbert creator Scott Adams, and shows leaders from companies of any size and of any industry that the health and success of their firms ultimately depend on the hundreds…


Book cover of The Leadership Challenge: How to Make Extraordinary Things Happen in Organizations

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?

A colleague of mine introduced me to this book and argued that Kouzes and Posner wrote the gold standard of leadership practices. After reading their research-based stories, I agree.

The authors write in a way that goes beyond theory by offering a practical guide by focusing on the five practices of exemplary leadership. These practices are applicable to anyone’s career! Through inspiring examples and actionable steps, I learned how to lead with integrity, inspire others, and drive higher performance more effectively.

Read the gold standard of leadership development. It can become your call to action!

By James M. Kouzes, Barry Z. Posner,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

The most trusted source of leadership wisdom, updated to address today's realities The Leadership Challenge is the gold-standard manual for effective leadership, grounded in research and written by the premier authorities in the field. With deep insight into the complex interpersonal dynamics of the workplace, this book positions leadership both as a skill to be learned, and as a relationship that must be nurtured to reach its full potential.

This new sixth edition has been revised to address current challenges, and includes more international examples and a laser focus on business issues; you'll learn how extraordinary leaders accomplish extraordinary things,…


Book cover of The Anxious Achiever: Turn Your Biggest Fears into Your Leadership Superpower

Jocelyn Davis Author Of Insubordinate: 12 New Archetypes for Women Who Lead

From my list on women done with leaning in.

Why am I passionate about this?

On Jan 30, 2013, I was sacked for "insubordination." No notice, no severance. My bosses threatened the other employees with dismissal if they talked to me. I'd been at the company for decades, rising from entry level to the executive team; after years of striving, it was a devastating blow. Once I picked myself up, I realized I’d leaned in so far, I’d toppled over. So I set off on a new path. Today, I have a master’s degree in Eastern classics, four leadership books, and one historical novel, and I’m committed to helping high achievers—women, especially—find their own paths to happy success: paths beyond “lean in.”

Jocelyn's book list on women done with leaning in

Jocelyn Davis Why did Jocelyn love this book?

I am an anxious achiever. In fact, I’m an overachiever with a diagnosed anxiety disorder.

The great thing about this book is that, while it’s no substitute for the medications and therapy we anxiety sufferers may need, it helps us see that we’re not alone; moreover, that we can succeed not just despite our anxious personality, but because of it.

Good things happen, says Morra Aarons-Mele, “when we learn to manage anxiety and take advantage of its hidden gifts.” In other words, we can lean in (to our fear) and conquer. If you’re like me, well versed in the ways of an edgy brain, skip straight to Part Two, which offers a powerful toolset for managing anxiety at work.

By Morra Aarons-Mele,

Why should I read it?

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

What is this book about?

A timely and compelling guide to managing the anxiety that comes with succeeding and leading-from entrepreneur, mental health advocate, and top-rated podcaster Morra Aarons-Mele.

Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illnesses in the world. But in our workplaces, anxiety has been a hidden problem-there in plain sight but ignored. Until now.

The Anxious Achiever is a book with a mission: to normalize anxiety and leadership. As leadership expert and self-proclaimed anxious achiever Morra Aarons-Mele argues, anxiety is built into the very nature of leadership. It can-and should-be harnessed into a force for good.

Inspired by the popular podcast of…


5 book lists we think you will like!

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