One of the most common traits among the world’s most successful leaders tends to be that they read several books per year. Whether they are picking up a non-fiction book to learn about their industry or a fiction book to learn a different culture or point of view, reading is a key to building a successful career.

Among the top, most recommended books by business leaders include:

  • Who Moved My Cheese? By Spencer Johnson, M.D. – A profound business novel written as a simple parable about four characters who live in a maze in search of cheese.
  • The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team by Patrick Lencioni – Told as a fictional story of a CEO facing the ultimate leadership crisis – uniting a team in disarray.
  • Emotional Intelligence 2.0 by Travis Bradberry – In this book, Bradberry introduces Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and the actionable steps to increase your EQ and become a better leader.
  • Shoe Dog: A Memoir by the Creator of Nike by Phil Knight – Written by the Founder of Nike, Phil Knight tells the story of creating the brand from the ground up, from his humble beginnings to designing the signature Nike swoosh and growing it to a billion-dollar business.
  • Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell – In this book, Gladwell asks the question “what makes high-achievers different?” How do these outliers gain their attention, prestige and success?
  • Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek – This book answers the question: why are some people and organizations more innovative, more influential, and more profitable than others?  
  • The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building a Business When There Are No Easier Answers by Ben Horowitz – Horowitz is the cofounder of Andreessen Horowitz, and in his book, he gives insight on what it takes to start, build, and grow a business.
  • Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t by Jim Collins – What takes a company from good to great? In this best-selling book, Collins dives into what differentiates a good company from a great one.
  • Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy Seals Lead and Win by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin – Written by true U.S. Navy Seals, this book details a compelling narrative with powerful instruction to revolutionize business management and leadership.
  • Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg – This book reignited the conversation around women in the workplace. It offers practical advice and compelling research to show women how to build a powerful career.