The Best Leadership Books to Read in 2024

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Leadership isn’t just about guiding a team. It’s an art, honed by learning from those who’ve mastered it. But with so much advice out there, digging up leadership books that really make a difference can feel like an endless search. That’s why we’re here to help. In this article, we’re going to cut through the noise and guide you to the gems that promise not just insights but transformation.

The right book at the right time can change your perspective, challenge your thinking, and inspire action that pushes you forward in ways you hadn’t imagined. Whether you’re starting out or looking to level up, these recommended reads are gateways to becoming the leader you aspire to be.

Best Leadership Books to Read in 2024

If you want to become a better leader, it’s important to stay on top of the latest leadership trends, theories, and strategies. Doing so keeps you informed, lets you try out new ideas, and empowers you to synthesize it all into your own unique leadership style.

Plus, telling your boss that you’re currently reading a particular leadership book to hone your skills signals to your employer that you are committed, self-aware, and ready to take the leap into the next dimension of your leadership career.

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Great Leadership Books to Start With

If you’re looking to up your leadership game, it can be hard to know where to begin. That’s what we’re here for. Below, we have listed five leadership books that have stood the test of time. So next time you pick up a book, consider choosing one of these.

  1. The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership by John Maxwell. This classic lays out the essential skills that make great leaders so effective at motivating and inspiring their teams.
  2. Start With Why by Simon Sinek. Sinek’s influential book encourages business leaders to focus on their organization’s purpose and vision to inspire action.
  3. Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin. Written by two former Navy SEALs, this book offers powerful lessons in leadership, decision-making, and accountability.
  4. Dare to Lead by Brené Brown. Brown’s research on vulnerability, courage, and empathy provides a roadmap for leadership development in the modern age.
  5. Good to Great by Jim Collins. This extensively-researched book examines what separates good companies from truly great ones, with insights that any aspiring leader can apply.
  6. Leading Change by John Kotter. If you’re trying to navigate organizational change, Kotter’s 8-step process is for you. Learn how to ramp up the excitement, rally your team around a common goal, paint a picture of where you’re headed and how to get there, and make sure those changes stick.

No matter where you are in your personal leadership journey or your current role, these timeless books offer invaluable wisdom to help you level up your organizational leadership skills. So crack open one of these leadership books and get ready to transform into the leader you were meant to be.

Essential Leadership Skills to Learn from Top Books

When looking for a book on leadership, of course you’ll want to learn how to lead better. In addition to leading, though, there are plenty of other must-have skills for those in authority. Below, we have listed some of these skills, along with leadership books with the valuable insights you need to hone each skill.

  • Emotional intelligence. Author Daniel Goleman argues that emotional intelligence is the key trait that distinguishes good leaders from great leaders. Books like Primal Leadership and Emotional Intelligence dive deep into this crucial skill.
  • Cultivate self-awareness. In order to lead with authentic leadership and build genuine connections, leaders must first be self-aware. Discover Your True North by Bill George encourages deep reflection to find your inner compass.
  • Build trust. If you want to create a high-performing team, you first need to build rapport. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni reveals the behaviors leaders avoid to promote healthy team dynamics.

By absorbing the wisdom in these pages, you’ll gain the skills and mindset needed to lead with greater impact. This holds true whether you’re taking charge of a small team or an entire organization. Implement the strategies from these leadership books and watch your influence soar.

Surprising Truths About Leadership from Must-Read Books

While you may think you know the basics of being a good leader, the best leadership books often reveal unexpected insights that can transform your approach. Get ready for some “aha” moments as you discover:

  • What really drives human motivation, according to Daniel Pink’s fascinating research in Drive. Hint: it’s not just money or perks.
  • Surprising lessons from Navy SEAL leadership in Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, like how to lead when you’re not in charge.
  • How Simon Sinek debunks common leadership myths in Leaders Eat Last, such as the idea that leaders must be extroverted or charismatic.
  • The power of regret and learning from mistakes, as explored by Daniel Kahneman in Thinking, Fast and Slow. Embracing failure is key to growth.

By challenging your assumptions about what makes a great leader, these leadership books will expand your mind and equip you with unconventional strategies for success. So get ready to have some of your beliefs turned upside down—in the best possible way.

Becoming a More Effective Leader Through Personal Growth

Developing leadership skills is not an endeavor that happens overnight. It comes about through consistency, practice, and a steadfast determination to develop in one’s leadership career. The journey of personal growth is beautifully captured in many leadership books, such as:

  • Mindset by Carol Dweck, which shows how to cultivate a growth mindset that embraces challenges and sees failure as an opportunity to learn.
  • Daring Greatly by Brené Brown, which explores how vulnerability and courage are essential to authentic leadership and meaningful connections.
  • Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman, which argues that EQ is more important than IQ for success and offers strategies to boost your emotional skills.

By focusing on your own personal leadership development, you’ll not only become a better leader but also a better person. Jump into these life-changing books and start your adventure of finding yourself and growing like never before. And if you read them all and still want more? Then check out these books here.

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FAQs on Leadership Books

What is the best leadership book to read?

Start With Why by Simon Sinek is a transformative read for leaders. It emphasizes the importance of sparking action and driving change.

What leadership book had the most impact on your leadership?

Extreme Ownership by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin is a book that reshapes one’s thinking. It advocates for taking full responsibility, which can be a game-changer in leadership.

What are CEOs reading in 2024?

In 2024, CEOs are gravitating towards Dare to Lead by Brené Brown. The book’s insights on courage in leadership resonate widely among top executives.

What are the 4 fundamentals of leadership?

The four core fundamentals of leadership are: crafting a vision, demonstrating decision-making prowess, effectively inspiring others, and fostering resilience against setbacks.


If you’re looking for a book on leadership, then know there are plenty of choices out there. In digesting the transformative works on our lists, remember—you aren’t just trying to digest information. Rather, each of the books we mentioned is meant to help you gain more certainty and confidence as a leader. So take a look at one or two and get ready to lead boldly into tomorrow.


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