Archives For Books

good books on leadership

December 7, 2017

If you are like me, I thoroughly enjoy learning from others about leadership and I have found one of the best ways to learn from them is to read their books.

On the site, I have listed many of my favorites. Check out my Leadership Books.

I would also appreciate your suggestions as to others I need to add!

Do You Read Good Books?

August 17, 2012

If you are a leader of people, then you must read in order to truly grow as a leader and you need to read widely. As a Christian, the Bible is of course the first book you must be intimately acquainted with, but you must also read in many other areas. Even great literature.

Check out this Harvard Business Review article about the importance of reading – very interesting.

There is an old, somewhat trite saying that “Leaders are readers”, but it is very, very true.

Grab a good book this weekend and start growing!

Work Less, Do More

June 8, 2012

Good Friday morning to you! It is simply an incredibly beautiful morning here in southwest Michigan.  It almost makes up for those days in February.

I have been reading a book called The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferriss.  Now I am not completely a fan of the book in that I am not endorsing some of his motivations / attitudes, but some of the methodology he recommends is intriguing to me.

One thing in particular impresses me – the relentless drive to cut out things that don’t matter and that are actually hindering progress or that are distractions to progress. TV, email clutter, surfing the Internet, busy work type tasks and so on.

One thing he recommended is a free piece of software called RescueTime that monitors how you use your computer time.  It allows you to categorize your computer related activities and then gives you a “dashboard’ that shows just how you are using your time.  It breaks it down into two levels of productivity and two levels of non-productive time.  Believe me – you are probably spending more time in the unproductive categories than you imagine.  I know I wasn’t impressed with my usage.

Back to the book – it is a good read in my opinion, if you run it through the right grid and look for the ways to make yourself more effective in what the Lord has called you to do. As I said, there are several aspects of the book I disagree with, especially some of the attitudinal ones, but    some of the methodology is very interesting to me.

So – are you being relentless about cutting away the things that hinder you?  Seems there might be a Scripture that speaks to that!

Have a great weekend!

If you have to give presentations, this is a good article in Forbes about Nancy Duarte’s book – Resonate.

Here is a summary – The conclusions are: Don’t be too cerebral. Tell stories. Figure out what the audience cares about. Create common ground with them. Move back and forth between opposing ideas to create energy. Deliver facts but put them in context and make them shocking if possible. Find inspiration anywhere you can.

Check out Duarte’s site as well – very interesting.


Reading books – I am very much a bibliophile and often searching for ways to get more out of my reading.  Michael Hyatt, in his post “How To Retain more of What You Read”, shares a method by which he captures what is important to him as he reads a book.

He develops a “Net Out” for each book, which is a one page document although he has also added an optional second page.  His Net Out has four primary sections with an optional fifth section.

  1. Bibliographic Heading. This includes the title of the book, the author(s), my name, and the date of my review.
  2. Quick Summary. This is a one-paragraph summary. It’s like an “elevator pitch.”
  3. Key Insights. As I am reading the book, I highlight it as usual. I usually find something worth highlighting every few pages. Then, when I am finished, I go back through the book, and record in my own words those items that particularly struck me.
  4. Personal Application. This is the key.  I try to list two or three things I am going to do differently as a result of what I learned in the book. (I try to list no more than three.)
  5. Meaningful Quotes. In almost every book, the author says things in a way that are worth remembering. I like to identify these with the letter “Q” in the margin as I am reading and then and include them on second page of the Net Out.

If you are a reader, this is a great method for getting more out of what you are reading.  Go to his article for more detail and for an example of his “Net Out”.

How do you get the most out of what you are reading?

Blessings on your week – BG