Hot Books



Conscious Capitalism
John Mackey, Rajendra Sisodia, Bill George - Harvard Business Review Press, Jan 2013

What do Whole Foods, Starbucks, SouthWest, and Costco all have in common? They all practice ‘conscious capitalism’.

According to the authors, John Mackey (Co-CEO of Whole Foods) and Raj Sisodia (Professor,  Bentley University), conscious capitalism is an evolving paradigm for business that simultaneously creates multiple kinds of value and well-being for all stakeholders: financial, intellectual, physical, ecological, social, cultural, emotional, ethical, and even spiritual.

The book “Conscious Capitalism” promotes a business culture that embodies trust, accountability, caring, transparency, integrity, loyalty, and egalitarianism.

The management ideal of conscious Capitalism contains four key elements:

  • Decentralization
  • Empowerment
  • Innovation
  • Collaboration

However for these ideals to be successful careful attention must be paid to four underlying tenets: 

  • Higher purpose and core values
  • Stakeholder integration
  • Conscious leadership
  • Conscious culture and management

To learn about how the practice of conscious capitalism is creating competitive advantage also check out – Companies that Practice Conscious Capitalism Perform 10x Better (HBR)


Firms of Endearment
Rajendra Sisodia, Jag Sheth, David Wolfe - Pearson FT Press, Feb 2014

Firms of Endearment is a book about the new rules of business which are transforming organizations from the inside out. Today’s greatest companies are fueled by passion and purpose, not cash.

They earn large profits by helping all their stakeholders thrive: customers, investors, employees, partners, communities, and society.

These rare, authentic firms of endearment act in powerfully positive ways that stakeholders recognize, value, admire, and even love.

They make the world better by the way they do business-and the world responds.


The Alliance: Managing Talent in the Networked Age
Reid Hoffman, et al. – Harvard Business Review Press, Jul 2014     

This book is a must read for leaders of organizations struggling to maintain cultures of engagement and trusting relationships with their talent.  In short, the authors state the employer-employee relationship is broken.

The old model of guaranteed long-term employment no longer works in a business environment defined by short-term thinking.  In this modern era it’s no longer about treating colleagues as family, but rather as allies.
Far more than a rant, the author’s blueprint for building lasting relationships with top talent is based on real world examples from LinkedIn, Tesla, and Cisco.
You can also check out an excellent SlideShare summary of the book here!


Flash Boys: A Wall Street Revolt
Michael Lewis - WW Norton, Apr 2014

Flash Boys is about a Canadian hero of sorts who figures out the U.S. stock market’s been rigged for the benefit of insiders and that, post–financial crisis, the markets have become not more free but less, and more controlled by the big Wall Street banks.

The light that Lewis shines into the darkest corners of the financial world may not be good for anyone’s blood pressure as, in fact, this story is NON-fiction (check out this New York Time’s book review to get a flavour of the ongoing real world story).

Suffice to say however this is an uplifting read at heart as here are individuals who maintained their moral compass in the face of greed, and who after experiencing an institutionalized injustice, are willing to go to war to fix it.


The Five Dysfunctions of a Team
Patrick Lencioni - Jossey-Bass, Apr 2002

In this best-selling business fable Patrick Lencioni explores the fundamental causes of organizational politics, leadership team failure, and how CEOs can navigate such complexities.

This gripping tale provides a simple yet profound reminder that effective leadership requires great courage in the face of adversity.  Lencioni highlights the following 5 major dysfunctions that lead to sub-par team performance – and how skillful leadership can be used to address each characteristic:

  1.      Absence of Trust
  2.      Fear of Conflict
  3.      Lack of Commitment
  4.      Avoidance of Accountability
  5.      Inattention to Results


The Happiness Advantage: The Seven Principles of Positive Psychology that Fuel Success and Performance at Work
Shawn Achor - Crown Business, Sep 2010

Conventional wisdom holds that if we work hard we will be more successful, and if we are more successful, then we’ll be happy. If we can just find that great job, win that next promotion, lose those five pounds, happiness will follow. But recent discoveries in the field of positive psychology have shown that this formula is actually backward: Happiness fuels success, not the other way around.

Isolating seven practical, actionable principles that have been tried and tested everywhere from classrooms to boardrooms, stretching from Argentina to Zimbabwe, he shows us how we can capitalize on the Happiness Advantage to improve our performance and maximize our potential.


On Becoming a Leader
Warren Bennis - Addison-Wesley, Mar 2009

This book contains the author's interviews with men and women acknowledged as leaders in many different fields. Looking at the similarities amongst them, Bennis attempts to isolate the qualities it takes to achieve winning management skills.


Capitalism at Risk: Rethinking the Role of Business
Joseph L. Bower, et al. - Harvard Business School Publishing, Oct 2011

Capitalism at Risk draws on discussions with business leaders around the world to identify ten potential disruptors of the global market system. Presenting examples of companies already making a difference, the authors explain how business must serve both as innovator and activist—developing corporate strategies that effect change at the community, national, and international levels.


How Will You Measure Your Life
Clayton M. Christensen, James Allworth, Karen Dillon - Harper Business, May 2012

Christensen’s How Will You Measure Your Life is with a book of lucid observations and penetrating insights designed to help any reader—student or teacher, mid-career professional or retiree, parent or child—forge their own paths to fulfillment


Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck-- Why Some Thrive Despite Them All
Jim Collins and Morten T. Hansen - HarperBusiness, Oct 2011

Jim Collins explores why some companies thrive in uncertainty, even chaos, and others do not. Based on nine years of research, buttressed by rigorous analysis and infused with engaging stories, Collins and his colleague, Morten Hansen, enumerate the principles for building a truly great enterprise in unpredictable, tumultuous and fast-moving times. This book is classic Collins: contrarian, data-driven and uplifting.


How the Mighty Fall: And Why Some Companies Never Give In
Jim Collins - JimCollins, May 2009

"Decline can be avoided. Decline can be detected. Decline can be reversed. Amidst the desolate landscape of fallen great companies, Jim Collins began to wonder- How do the mighty fall? Can decline be detected early and avoided? How far can a company fall before the path toward doom becomes inevitable and unshakable? How can companies reverse course? In How the Mighty Fall, Collins confronts these questions, offering leaders the well-founded hope that they can learn how to stave off decline and, if they find themselves falling, reverse their course.


Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap... And Others Don't
Jim Collins - HarperBusiness, Oct 2001

Can a good company become a great one and, if so, how? After a five-year research project, Collins concludes that good to great can and does happen. In this book, he uncovers the underlying variables that enable any type of organization to make the leap from good to great while other organizations remain only good. Rigorously supported by evidence, his findings are surprising - at times even shocking - to the modern mind.


Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies
by Jim Collins - HarperCollins, Nov 2004

Drawing upon a six-year research project at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, Collins and Porras took eighteen truly exceptional and long-lasting companies -- they have an average age of nearly one hundred years and have outperformed the general stock market by a factor of fifteen since 1926 -- and studied each company in direct comparison to one of its top competitors. They examined the companies from their very beginnings to the present day -- as start-ups, as midsize companies, and as large corporations. Throughout, the authors asked: "What makes the truly exceptional companies different from other companies?"

Filled with hundreds of specific examples and organized into a coherent framework of practical concepts that can be applied by managers and entrepreneurs at all levels, Built to Last provides a master blueprint for building organizations that will prosper long into the twenty-first century and beyond.


The Essential Drucker: The Best Sixty Years of Peter Drucker’s Essential Writings on Management
Peter F. Drucker - HarperBusiness, Jul 2008

The Essential Drucker—an invaluable compilation of essential materials from the works of a management legend. Containing twenty-six core selections, The Essential Drucker covers the basic principles and concerns of management and its problems, challenges, and opportunities, giving managers, executives, and professionals the tools to perform the tasks that the economy and society of tomorrow will demand of them.


Man’s Search for Meaning
Viktor Frankl, Harold S. Kushner and William J. Winslade - Beacon Press, Jun 2006

Psychiatrist Viktor Frankl's memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Between 1942 and 1945 Frankl labored in four different camps, including Auschwitz, while his parents, brother, and pregnant wife perished. Based on his own experience and the experiences of those he treated in his practice, Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. Frankl's theory—known as logotherapy, from the Greek word logos ("meaning")—holds that our primary drive in life is not pleasure, as Freud maintained, but the discovery and pursuit of what we personally find meaningful.


Stakeholder Theory: The State of the Art
R. Edward Freeman, et al. - Cambridge University Press, Apr 2010

In 1984, R. Edward Freeman published his landmark book, Strategic Management: A Stakeholder Approach, a work that set the agenda for what we now call stakeholder theory. In the intervening years, the literature on stakeholder theory has become vast and diverse.

This book examines this body of research and assesses its relevance for our understanding of modern business. Beginning with a discussion of the origins and development of stakeholder theory, it shows how this corpus of theory has influenced a variety of different fields, including strategic management, finance, accounting, management, marketing, law, health care, public policy, and environment. It also features in-depth discussions of two important areas that stakeholder theory has helped to shape and define: business ethics and corporate social responsibility. The book concludes by arguing that we should re-frame capitalism in the terms of stakeholder theory so that we come to see business as creating value for stakeholders.


Strategic Management: A Stakeholder Approach
R. Edward Freeman - Cambridge University Press, Mar 2010

Widely acknowledged as a world leader in business ethics and strategic management, R. Edward Freeman's foundational work continues to inspire scholars and students concerned with a more practical view of how business and capitalism actually work. Business can be understood as a system of how we create value for stakeholders. This worldview connects business and capitalism with ethics once and for all. On the 25th anniversary of publication, Cambridge University Press are delighted to be able to offer a new print-on-demand edition of his work to a new generation of readers.


True North: Discover Your Authentic Leadership
Bill George, David Gergen and Peter Sims - Jossey Bass, Mar 2007

True North shows how anyone who follows their internal compass can become an authentic leader. This leadership tour de force is based on research and first-person interviews with 125 of today’s top leaders - with some surprising results. In this important book, acclaimed former Medtronic CEO Bill George and coauthor Peter Sims share the wisdom of these outstanding leaders and describe how you can develop as an authentic leader. 


FOCUS: The Hidden Driver of Excellence
Daniel Goleman - Harper, Oct 2013

In Focus, Goleman delves into the science of attention in all its varieties, presenting a long overdue discussion of this little-noticed and under-rated mental asset that matters enormously for how we navigate life. 

Goleman boils down attention research into a three parts: inner, other, and outer focus. Goleman shows why high-achievers need all three kinds of focus, as demonstrated by rich case studies from fields as diverse as competitive sports, education, the arts, and business. Those who excel rely on what Goleman calls Smart Practices such as mindfulness meditation, focused preparation and recovery, positive emotions and connections, and mental 'prosthetics' that help them improve habits, add new skills, and sustain excellence. Combining cutting-edge research with practical findings, Focus reveals what distinguishes experts from amateurs and stars from average performers


Leadership: The Power of Emotional Intelligence
Daniel Goleman - More Than Sound, Sep 2011

Daniel Goleman’s Leadership: The Power of Emotional Intelligence is the author’s first comprehensive collection of his key findings on leadership. This often-cited, proven-effective material will help develop stellar management, performance and innovation. The collection makes available his most sought-after writings in one single volume.


Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More than IQ
Daniel Goleman - Bantam, Sep 2005

Everyone knows that high IQ is no guarantee of success, happiness, or virtue, but until Emotional Intelligence, we could only guess why. Daniel Goleman's brilliant report from the frontiers of psychology and neuroscience offers startling new insight into our "two minds"—the rational and the emotional—and how they together shape our destiny.

Through vivid examples, Goleman delineates the five crucial skills of emotional intelligence, and shows how they determine our success in relationships, work, and even our physical well-being. What emerges is an entirely new way to talk about being smart. 


Servant Leadership: A Journey Into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness
Robert K. Greenleaf - Paulist Press, Nov 2002

Greenleaf was among the first to analyze the qualities of leaders and followers - and the necessity for leaders to be attentive to the needs of others. In this respect the leader becomes a follower. Such a leader constantly inquires whether "other people's highest priority needs are being served. Do those served grow as persons? Do they, while being served, become healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous, more likely themselves to become servants?" The true leader is also a seeker, alert to new possibilities, open, listening and ready for whatever develops. True leadership, then, is an inner quality as much as an exercise of authority.


The New Capitalist Manifesto: Building a Disruptively Better Business
Umair Haque - Harvard Business Review Press, Jan 2011

Welcome to the worst decade since the Great Depression. Trillions of dollars of financial assets and shareholder value destroyed; worldwide GDP stalled; new jobs vanishingly scarce. But this isn't just a severe recession. It's evidence that our economic institutions are obsolete--a set of ideas inherited from the industrial age that no longer work for business, people, society, or the future.

In The New Capitalist Manifesto, economic strategist Umair Haque argues that business as usual has outgrown the old paradigm of short-term growth, competition at all costs, adversarial strategy, and pushing costs onto future generations. These outworn assumptions are good for creating only "thin" value--gains that are largely illusory and produce diminishing returns every year.

For "thick" value--enduring, meaningful, sustainable advantage that deeply benefits the larger society-- Haque details five new cornerstones of prosperity in the twenty-first century:

  • Loss advantage: From value chains to value cycles
  • Responsiveness: From value propositions to value conversations
  • Resilience: From strategy to philosophy
  • Creativity: From protecting a marketplace to completing a marketplace
  • Difference: From goods to betters

The New Capitalist Manifesto makes a passionate, razor-sharp economic case that these methods will produce a more enduring prosperity for business as well as society.


Synchronicity: The Inner Path of Leadership
Joseph Jaworski - Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Jan 1996)

Synchronicity is an inspirational guide to developing the most essential leadership capacity for our time: how we can collectively shape our future. Through the telling of his life story, Jaworski posits that a real leader sets the stage on which "predictable miracles, " seemingly synchronistic in nature, can - and do - occur. He shows that this capacity has more to do with our being - our total orientation of character and consciousness - than with what we do. Leadership, he explains, is about creating - day by day - a domain in which human beings continually deepen their understanding of reality and are able to participate in shaping the future. He describes three basic shifts of mind required if we are to create and discover an unfolding future - shifts in how we see the world, how we understand relationships, and how we make commitments - and offers a new definition of leadership that applies to all types of leaders.


The Balanced Scorecard: Translating Strategy into Action
Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton - Harvard Business Review Press, Sep 1996

Here is the book - by the recognized architects of the Balanced Scorecard - that shows how managers can use this revolutionary tool to mobilize their people to fulfill the company's mission. More than just a measurement system, the Balanced Scorecard is a management system that can channel the energies, abilities, and specific knowledge held by people throughout the organization toward achieving long-term strategic goals. Kaplan and Norton demonstrate how senior executives in industries such as banking, oil, insurance, and retailing are using the Balanced Scorecard both to guide current performance and to target future performance. They show how to use measures in four categories - financial performance, customer knowledge, internal business processes, and learning and growth - to align individual, organizational, and cross-departmental initiatives and to identify entirely new processes for meeting customer and shareholder objectives. The authors also reveal how to use the Balanced Scorecard as a robust learning system for testing, gaining feedback on, and updating the organization's strategy. Finally, they walk through the steps that managers in any company can use to build their own Balanced Scorecard. The Balanced Scorecard provides the management system for companies to invest in the long term - in customers, in employees, in new product development, and in systems - rather than managing the bottom line to pump up short-term earnings. It will change the way you measure and manage your business.


Conscious Business: How to Build Value Through Values
Fred Kofman - Sounds True, Oct 2013

Consciousness is the main source of organizational greatness. Conscious business, explains Fred Kofman, means finding your passion and expressing your essential values through your work. A conscious business seeks to promote the intelligent pursuit of happiness in all its stakeholders. It produces sustainable, exceptional performance through the solidarity of its community and the dignity of each member.

Conscious Business presents breakthrough techniques to help you achieve:

  • Unconditional responsibility—how to become the main character of your life
  • Unflinching integrity—how to succeed beyond success
  • Authentic communication—how to speak your truth, and elicit others' truths
  • Impeccable commitments—how to coordinate actions with accountability
  • Right leadership—how being, rather than doing, is the ultimate source of excellence

A conscious business fosters personal fulfillment in the individuals, mutual respect in the community, and success in the organization, teaches Fred Kofman. Conscious Business is the definitive resource for achieving what really matters in the workplace and beyond


The Only Way To Win: How Building Character Drives Higher Achievement and Greater Fulfillment in Business and Life
Jim Loehr - Hachette Books, May 2012

The conditioning begins early in our lives. Great achievements will bring lasting happiness and fulfillment; great achievements form the bedrock of stable self-esteem and strong character; great achievements will become the foundation for a successful life. If these well-intentioned promises are true, why does winning never seem to be enough? 

In The Only Way to Win, Jim Loehr draws upon two decades of work with Fortune 500 executives; world-class athletes such as Monica Seles, Dan Jansen, and Eric Lindros; and other high achievers at the Human Performance Institute (HPI) to reveal surprising insights about achievement motivation. Specifically, Loehr finds that the blind pursuit of external achievement often results in emptiness, addiction, and, ironically, poor performance. It's not really about what you achieve, he argues, it's about who you become as a consequence of the chase. 

As Loehr powerfully demonstrates, success at work and fulfillment in life require a complete re-purposing of achievement, one where value is derived from growth in areas such as integrity, honesty, gratefulness, humility, optimism, and compassion. To help readers start this process, he provides them with the tools they need to develop these character traits, as well as the plan they need to use them effectively.

A compelling, practical, and hopeful read filled with relatable stories and useful exercises, The Only Way to Win will serve as a powerful wake-up call for business leaders, employees, teachers, and coaches. It will also provide inspiration for readers looking to perform better, achieve more, and change both their own lives and those of the people they influence. Jim Loehr is a world-renowned performance psychologist, co-founder of the Human Performance Institute, and author of fifteen books, including his most recent, The Power of Story. He also co-authored the national bestseller The Power of Full Engagement.


Understanding Michael Porter: The Essential Guide to Competition and Strategy
Joan Magretta - Harvard Business Review Press, Dec 2011

Competitive advantage. The value chain. Five forces. Industry structure. Differentiation. Relative cost. If you want to understand how companies achieve and sustain competitive success, Michael Porter's frameworks are the foundation. But while everyone in business may know Porter's name, many managers misunderstand and misuse his concepts.

Understanding Michael Porter sets the record straight, providing the first concise, accessible summary of Porter's revolutionary thinking. Written with Porter's full cooperation by Joan Magretta, his former editor at Harvard Business Review, this new book delivers fresh, clear examples to illustrate and update Porter's ideas.

Magretta uses her wide business experience to translate Porter's powerful insights into practice and to correct the most common misconceptions about them--for instance, that competition is about being unique, not being the best; that it is a contest over profits, not a battle between rivals; that strategy is about choosing to make some customers unhappy, not being all things to all customers.

An added feature is an original Q&A with Porter himself, which includes answers to managers' FAQs.

Eminently readable, this book will enable every manager in your organization to grasp Porter's ideas--and swiftly deploy them to drive your company's success.


Fixing the Game: Bubbles, Crashes, and What Capitalism Can Learn from the NFL
Roger L. Martin - Harvard Business Review Press, May 2011


Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us
Daniel H. Pink - Riverhead Books, Apr 2011


Super Capitalism: The Transformation of Business, Democracy & Everyday Life
Robert B. Reich - Vintage, Sep 2008


The Price of Civilization: Reawakening American Virtue and Prosperity
Jeffrey D. Sachs - Random House Canada, 2012


The Necessary Revolution: How Individuals and Organizations are Working Together to Create a Sustainable World
Peter Senge - US Green Building Council, Jun 2008


Presence: Human Purpose and the Field of the Future
Peter M. Senge, et al. - Doubleday, 2008


The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization
Peter M. Senge - Crown Business, Mar 2006


Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action
Simon Sinek - Portfolio, Oct 2009


Leadership and the New Science: Discovering Order in a Chaotic World
Margaret J. Wheatley - Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Sep 2006