Why Audio Books?
For me, it’s because in a busy day, it’s often hard to find time to read. However, for those of us that commute or travel or workout where our minds can absorb audio, there is a unique opportunity to expand our horizons. With time, it’s also possible to consume them at higher speeds now that they’ve gotten better at compressing audio. I believe all the books below are of value to a Talent Whisperer; however, I break them out into categories leading with those I would find most valuable to a Talent Whisperer.
Talent Whisperers – for leaders and leaders of leaders
|Adam Grant||Give and Take: A Revolutionary Approach to Success|
|Grant shows that the styles of givers, takers and matchers have a surprising impact on success.|
|Brené Brown||Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead|
|Brown describes how vulnerability can help build connections, but also goes into the downsides of shaming and how to be resilient in the face of organizations and relationships when shaming arises.
|Daniel Coyle||The Culture Code – The Secrets of Highly Successful Groups|
|In The Culture Code, Coyle digs into what makes some teams so much more effective than other and what role the leaders play in that. He opens with an example of a competition between a team of kindergartners and a team of MBAs at Stanford, where the kindergartners come out ahead – fascinating read.|
|Daniel Coyle||The Talent Code – Unlocking the Secret of Skill in Sports, Art, Music, Math, and Just About Anything|
|In The Talent Code, Coyle explains how deep learning can occur through doing multiple short repetitions with immediate feedback to build myelin along the neural pathways as we learn see post Applying the Talent Code|
|Carol S. Dweck||Mindset – The New Psychology of Success|
|Dweck’s Growth Mindset was a concept I was first introduced to by a colleague of hers in 2001 in the context of education and I immediately saw how this also was applicable to engineers. In this book, Dweck dives into what she discovered as to how this plays out in various scenarios since she first coined the term “Growth Mindset.”|
|Daniel H. Pink||Drive – The Surprising Truth about What Motivates Us|
Pink destroys some of our basic misconceptions about how much money motivates us and digs into the research about what actually drive people to accomplish great outcomes. The notion is also summarized in a fun RSA Animation
|Edgar H. Schein||Organizational Culture and Leadership|
Schein helps you appreciate the importance of culture within a business. Two examples he uses are DEC and Ceiber Geigy – and US and a German company – have worked in both countries, the pros and cons of each resonated well with me.
|Gary Klein||Seeing What Others Don’t – The Remarkable Ways We Gain Insights|
|Klein starts with the notion of improving organizations coming with reducing errors and increasing insights. Six Sigma and similar approaches focus on reducing errors often at the expense of innovations. Klein navigates the reader through his research leveraging various examples to arrive at how we can improve insights and ultimately balance with reducing errors.|
|Henry Kimsey-House, Karen Kimsey-House, Phillip Sandahi, Laura Whitworth||
|The founders of the first coaching organization, They dig into what they have learned on how to transform lives and what co-active coaching is that is the core of what The Coaches Institute strives to achieve.|
|John Dickson||Humilitas – A Lost Key to Life, Love, and Leadership|
|Dickson observes that many highly successful leaders also demonstrate humility. He traces the origins and perceptions of humility, but still comes away leaving you feel he sees is as a paradox rather than recognizing humility can come from confidence of needing to prove oneself and openess to receiving critical feedback.|
|Kim Scott||Radical Candor – Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity|
|Scott was an executive at Google and then at Apple, where she developed a class on how to be a good boss. Being honest with individuals on your team is sometimes hard, but tremendously value – see also post: The Room Where it Happens|
|Liz Wiseman||Multipliers – How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter|
|A very insightful look into how leaders can be accidental diminishers in their enthusiasm to help their teams move forward. Wiseman explores why some leaders drain capability and intelligence from their teams while others amplify it to produce better results. It starts out a bit black and white, but I walked away thinking we’re all along a continuum between diminisher and multiplier.|
|Marcus Buckingham||First Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently|
|Buckingham explains how great managers don’t hesitate to break virtually every rule held sacred by conventional wisdom.
||Principles – Life and Work|
|Ray Dalio speaks to his cornerstones of “radical truth” and “radical transparency as the most effective ways for individuals and organizations to make decisions, approach challenges, and build strong teams. He also describes the innovative tools the firm uses to bring an idea meritocracy to life.|
||Boyd – The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War|
|Interesting on various levels – Boyd was inspired to improve the way things work and found interesting ways to fight the establishment to bring his areas to light. Starting with the dynamic of two opposing fighter pilots with the capabilities of two different planes, he came up with strategies and design improvements that lead to the F15 and F16, but then took that to a more generic approach of team work which lead him to come up with the OODA Loop which later had a lot of similarities to the Toyota Products System (TPS)|
|Simon Sinek||Start with Why – How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action|
|Sinek dives into the notion that what unites great teams can come from their leaders finding and communicating a shared objective that everyone can internalize.|
|Tim S. Grover||Relentless – From Good to Great to Unstoppable|
|Grover was the personal trainer/coach of Michael Jordan, Cobbe Bryant, Dwyane Wade and others – His book speaks to pushing individual to the extreme to excel at levels that go well beyond those less driven and committed. It is an interesting contract to Gregg Popovich’s approach to coaching teams as referenced Goyle’s in Culture Code|