Most people who become first-time leaders get the job because they did a good job as a subordinate. Because of this, when you take on a new leadership role, you might face new problems that you haven’t had to deal with before. It used to be that you worked with the same people. Now, they report to you. You now have to go to high-level meetings with managers and executives who you may have only met once or twice before. There are a lot of new people in your life now. You’re now a mentor and coach, and your role has changed from “self” to “team.” Everything is new and the responsibilities seem to go on and on.
As a good thing, Soundview has put together a long list of business books that deal with this exact situation. Here are our top picks for new managers. These are the books that will help you build a successful career and keep growing as a leader.
Welcome to Management:How to Grow from Top Performer to Excellent Leader by Ryan Hawk
Ryan Hawk, the host of a popular podcast about leadership, has interviewed more than 300 forward-thinking leaders and has been a great individual producer. He has also been a great leader. You’ve come to the Management page.
In this guide, you learn how to lead yourself, build a group of people to work with you, and lead your group. Hawk’s research and practical management ideas will help new leaders and people who want to become better leaders.
The Truth About Leadership:The No-Fads, Heart-of-the-Matter Facts You Need to Know by James Kouzes & Barry Posner
Experts in leadership James Kouzes and Barry Posner share 10 well-known truths about leadership and how to be a good leader. Based on more than 30 years of research, the basic truths in this book will stay the same no matter what. The principles in The Truth About Leadership can be very helpful to both new leaders and experienced leaders who are changing jobs.
The First 90 Days:Proven Strategies for Getting Up to Speed Faster and Smarter by Michael Watkins
A Harvard Business School professor called Michael Watkins has written a book called The First 90 Days. In it, he gives a road map for how to take charge in the first 90 days of being in charge. The first few days in a new job are very important because small changes in actions can have a big impact on long-term results. If you’re an exec, the First 90 Days will help you learn how to work faster and get more done more quickly. Watkins talks about how to figure out what’s going on in a situation and how to deal with its problems and opportunities.
From Bud to Boss:Secrets to a Successful Transition to Remarkable Leadership by Kevin Eikenberry & Guy Harris
One of the most difficult things about being a leader is when you get your first promotion. When they start a new job, they have to deal with the change and uncertainty. They also have to learn new skills, and they’ve been promoted from a peer to a leader. This book is for anyone who is a manager, supervisor, or leader. It draws from the best leadership and management ideas, and it focuses on the challenges new leaders face. From Bud to Boss can help new leaders get over their stress and fear so they can start becoming the best leaders they can be right now.
Leading with Gratitude:Eight Leadership Practices for Extraordinary Business Results by Adrian Gostick & Chester Elton
A lot of people don’t use this simple tool well. Gratitude increases employee engagement, reduces turnover, and encourages team members to show more gratitude to each other, which strengthens team bonds. Adrian Gostick and Chester Elton, two of the best-selling authors of the book “Leading with Gratitude,” talk about the myths that make leaders withhold thanks and give eight simple ways for managers to show their employees that they are important. It’s a skill that anyone can quickly learn.
Crucial Conversations:Tools for Talking When Stakes are High by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan & Al Switzler
If you feel stuck in a relationship, at work, or at home, chances are you need to have an important conversation. Crucial Conversations, a New York Times best-seller, will teach you how to deal with critical conversations, which happen when the stakes are high, emotions run high, and opinions aren’t always the same. Using important conversation skills, you’ll be able to: prepare for high-stakes situations with a proven method; transform anger and hurt feelings into powerful dialogue; make it safe to talk about just about anything; be persuasive, not abrasive; improve almost every professional and personal relationship; and make major professional improvements in areas like productivity and quality.
Lead Your Boss:The Subtle Art of Managing Up by John Baldoni
Every manager who is moving wants to be able to get his or her ideas heard and then taken into account. John Baldoni, a well-known leadership expert, has written a book calledLead Your Boss that gives managers new and old ways to get their bosses and their coworkers to follow them. You will learn how to manage up and how to build trust and spheres of influence on your way to the top.
True North:Discover Your Authentic Leadership by Bill George
As a compass points to a magnetic field, yourTrue North pulls you toward the goal of your leadership, just like it does. When you follow your internal compass, your leadership will be real and people will want to be friends with you. True North is based on a lot of research and interviews with 125 top business leaders. It shows you how to make your own Personal Leadership Development Plan.
Unstoppable Teams:The Four Essential Actions of High-Performance Leadership by Alden Mills
Navy SEALs and civilians work in very different places, but the things that make both kinds of teams great are the same: service to others, trust, empathy, and caring.
At every level, Unstoppable Teams shows bosses at both big and small businesses what they need to do to inspire, motivate, and lead the people who work with them. How to build care-based teams that will push people to do more than they thought they could is in this book. It tells you how.
Radical Candor:Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity by Kim Scott
When you have a great boss, you have a good relationship with your workers. It’s easy to build better relationships with your employees if you make things personal, get things done, and understand why they’re important. That’s what author Kim Scott says in her book Radical Candor: The Radical Candor method is all about giving advice mixed with praise and criticism to help people get better results and do better work. Find out why most of the world’s most successful businesses make it a requirement to read this book.
Start with Why:How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek
… but why do some people and businesses come up with better ideas, have more influence, and make more money than others? Simon Sinek looked at the leaders who have had the most impact on the world and found that they all think, act, and communicate in the same way. This is completely different from what everyone else does. Start with Why is based on a lot of real-life stories. It gives a clear picture of what it takes to be a leader and inspire people.