My current backlog 😃
I don’t have a big enough ego to tell you that the following books will change your life. In fact, what I probably want to do with this page is to curate a collection of resources that I personally have found extremely useful… just encase you find them useful too.
I have no doubt that all of these books have helped me grow professionally in some shape or form. Infact, some of these books have led me so far down rabbit holes or brand new topics that I would forget to come up for air… bursting for someone to talk to about this ‘thing’ I’d just discovered.
In short, I wish someone gave me this list when I first started…
The Phoenix Project by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr and George Spalford This one changed everything for me. It was like a gateway drug to so many concepts that I had never heard of before, written into a fantastically gripping storyline. I’ve recommended this book more than anything in my career and will continue to do so for a long time to come.
Lean from the Trenches From one of the minds that helped put the Spotify model into Spotify, I found a ton of fantastic tips from this book about how to run agile teams. Henrik has a ton of resources online to learn from, Google him.
Managing Humans by Michael Lopp I can’t remember the exact order which I found out about Michael Lopp. It may have been through his twitter handle, @Rands or through his really successful blog Rands In Repose or it could have been from the Rands Leadership Slack. Either way, of all the fantastic tech writers on the web, I’ve learned the most about being an effective leader from Rands.
Resilient Management by Lara Hogan A collection of fantastic posts; mainly from her blog or newsletter. The tools and tactics included in this book are really actionable and can be used by the experienced leaders or new budding managers. This book introduced me to the BICEPS model as well 👍
The Managers Path by Camille Fournier This book is a treasure trove of awesome insights. I found the overall path in this book to be very resonating with my own career. I still have it on my desk to this day, as it’s a fantastic reference book for a number of situations.
Drive by Dan Pink At Skyscanner, this is our recommended book for new leaders coming into the new role. Why? It frames this brand new thing called management into a pretty simple recipe; mastery, autonomy and purpose.
Work Rules! By Laszlo Bock As a new leader, I used this book to figure out how companies like Google were doing things and it blew my mind. I pretty much lifted and shifted parts of their hiring process into my org at the time, which really made us 10x fairer in how we hired.
The Nature of Software Development by Ron Jefferies Cheaper, sooner and better. The mantra from this small little book which packs a lot of punches. Filled with a bunch of learnings on how best to use agile, this book is something I try to go back to all the time.
It Doesn’t Have to Be Crazy at Work by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson I’ve followed the Basecamp founders for such a long time that it feels alien to me that folks haven’t read anything from them. Their older book, Rework, is a fantastic resource to figure out how we can change the way people work.
The Lean Startup by Eric Ries Learning about successful startups without actually working for one is an interesting bit of escapism. This book helped me understand how smaller companies would take the suggested approach and change the way products are launched in companies.
Creativity Inc by Ed Catmull I’m a Disney nerd… even before the Marvel stuff. So to be able to get insight into how Pixar worked in the very beginning to later on in their journey is a really interesting story.
The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni A brilliant story about a female CEO who begins her leadership facing a crisis in her org. It provides a powerful model, which I’ve recommended tons of times to leaders all shapes and sizes.
I intend to add to this list over the coming months with new resources.