Remarkable leaders possess qualities that inspire their employees to greatness. These qualities include confidence, integrity, patience and focus. According to research by leadership experts at the University of Illinois, two-thirds of the participants in the study developed leadership skills through education and practice.
These findings suggest that most people can sharpen their leadership skills with the right tools, such as books. To help you improve your skills in 2017, here is a list of five well-regarded books on the subject.
1. Managing the Mental Game by Jeff Boss
When everything in your organization is running smoothly, it is easy to effectively manage your employees. But how do you handle the chaotic moments? In this book, Jeff Boss teaches you how to develop mental toughness to manage difficult situations with ease.
Managing the Mental Game teaches you how to:
. Identify and avoid common mental traps that are barriers to effective leadership
. Develop productive thought patterns
. Replace negative thoughts with powerful positive thoughts
. Master change and uncertainty
2. Essentialism by Greg McKeown
There have been thousands of books written about time management and productivity, but this book is not one of them. In this book, Greg McKeown shows you how to prioritize and complete tasks that are essential.
Essentialism teaches you how to:
. Eliminate tasks that are not essential to your team's progress
. Focus on things that truly matter
. Get rid of the clutter and organize your life
3. Getting Things Done by David Allen
Successful leaders understand the difference between busyness and productivity. Although this book was published 15 years ago, it contains timeless principles of leadership success.
Getting Things Done teaches you how to:
. Maximize your efficiency
. Delegate tasks
. Manage multiple workflows
4. Start With Why by Simon Sinek
The premise of this book was inspired by a popular TED talk given by Simon Sinek in 2009. The purpose of this book and his presentation are to help you understand the "why" that drives your actions. Once you are clear about your reasons, you can become an innovative and influential leader.
Start With Why teaches you how to:
. Command loyalty and respect from your employees and customers
. Create a long-term vision for your organization and life
. Think about your organization's goals in a different way
5. Spark: How to Lead Yourself and Others to Greater Success
by Angie Morgan, Courtney Lynch and Sean Lynch
There are many types of leaders within an organization. Some leaders have a title, and other leaders do not. The authors of Spark assert that leadership has more to do with a person's actions and skills than a job title.
Spark teaches you how to:
. Become a catalyst of change in your organization
. Recognize and apply your leadership potential
. Make behavioral changes to reach your leadership potential
Fun facts: Top CEOs read 48 to 60 books per year and earn approximately $14 million per year. The average American adult reads five books per year. The median income of American adults is $78,000 per year. These facts bring new meaning to the adage "readers are leaders."