My Must Read List

Several people commented on yesterday’s blog post about credible reading for young leaders. Some asked me what my list would include for the categories I submitted-so below are a few of my recommendations for each of the four categories.

1. Books on the character of a leader
A Work of Heart: Understanding How God Shapes Spiritual Leaders-Reggie McNeal
In The Name of Jesus: Reflections on Spiritual Leadership-Henry Nowen
Spiritual Leadership: Moving People on to God’s Agenda-Henry & Richard Blackaby
Spiritual Leadership: Principles of Excellence for Every Believer-J. Oswald Sanders
To Be Told: God Invites You to Co-author Your Future-Dan Allender
The Making of a Leader: Recognizing the Lessons and Stages of Leadership Development-Robert Clinton
Leadership as an Identity-Crawford Loritts, Jr.

2. Books on the missional/theological thinking of a leader
The Cross and Christian Ministry: Leadership Lessons from 1 Corinthians-D.A. Carson
The Forgotten Ways: Reactivating the Missional Church-Alan Hirsch
Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine-Wayne Grudem
Organic Church: Growing Faith Where Life Happens-Neil Cole
Basic Christianity-John Stott

3. Books on leading others
Spiritual Leadership: Moving People on to God’s Agenda-Henry & Richard Blackaby
The Ascent of a Leader-Thrall, McNicol, and McElrath (this book could fit under character or leading others-because it emphasizes becoming the person that others want to follow)
The Performance Factor: Unlocking the Secrets of Teamwork-Pat MacMillan (I cringe at some of the terminology-but there are good principles here)

4. Books on managing yourself as a leader
Practicing Greatness: 7 Disciplines of Extraordinary Spiritual Leaders-Reggie McNeal
Courageous Leadership-Bill Hybels
How to Lead and Still Have a Life:The 8 Principles of Less is More Leadership-Dale Burke
Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership-Ruth Barton

Some of these books are worth reading in totality-others contain some good, relevant chapters on a particular topic. I have only listed books I have actually read-obviously there are more that might be quite valuable for each category. Some contain bedrock principles for leadership-some are meant to challenge a young leader’s thinking and should be discussed in community. Some are more technical in their reading-and some are more anecdotal. Obviously #3 is the thinnest of my list-I struggled to recommend certain books that are usually mentioned on teamwork. Some of them feel more contrived or manipulating to me. But overall these are the books I recommend to emerging leaders-or at least one or two from each of the four categories. Please comment and add titles you have found helpful in any of the four categories-with emerging leaders in mind.

One response to “My Must Read List

  1. Thanks for posting this list! I’m working through your other recommendation from a previous blog—“Becoming a Resonant Leader” and it’s got some great stuff in it. My first inclination has been to want to skip the exercises, but that is where it is tying it all together for me. Thanks for that post and for sharing the wealth!

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