The Association for Talent Development (ATD) asked me a while back to pick 3 of my favorite books and share why. Below is what I shared with them and want to pass on to you all!
Work Is Love Made Visible
Frances Hesselbein, Marshall Goldsmith, Sarah Mcarthur
I loved this collection of essays because they all come from the heart of the writers. Perhaps knowing many of the authors also makes me love it, as well as my respect for Frances who is a role model indeed. I think any reader anywhere can pick this up... turn to any essay and smile. The lessons and insights are not time-bound, so this book can live a nice long life like Frances is doing right now! This book offers insight and commentary from distinguished management gurus, contemporary entrepreneurs and dynamic corporate leaders as they tackle one of life's most difficult treasure hunts: finding purpose and taking action on it. I also know how hard it is to collect all this material, my hat is off to Sarah McArthur for taking on this tremendous task.
On the Brink of Everything: Grace, Gravity and Growing Old
OK, so maybe I selected this because I’m one of those who is “growing old” and the book absolutely jumped out and captured me. I love the title and the subtitle. I know the publisher and he believes that the titles of the books he sends out in the world should capture the essence of the book. This one does. (Steve Piersanti of Berrett Koehler... your stamp is on this!)
I also have been a fan of Parker Palmer for years. I love many of his books but this one is on top of my list. The author tells his own heartfelt story, in his wonderful authentic way. As a reader you will feel like the author is talking directly to you, sharing his life lessons, passing on his wisdom and encouraging each reader to take what best applies. I spent time with a friend talking about the sentences we each highlighted...it was one of the best conversations I have had. Try it!
Safe Enough to Soar: Accelerating Trust, Inclusion, and Collaboration in the Workplace
Frederick A. Miller and Judith H. Katz
I absolutely loved this book. I’ve known the authors for decades and know their dedication to issues of diversity and inclusion. I think this book is their best, and it teaches a lesson that anyone can learn by one quick read. Note...I said learn...not DO. The “do” part takes practice as the authors suggest. I thought I knew a lot about the subject of diversity and inclusion but I had never heard of the words “interaction safety” and I love (yes I use love a lot) the idea. Bottom line it is the foundation of building a diverse and inclusive culture. In an era when a reader’s attention limit is very short...this does the trick. The four levels described in this book are crystal clear and the steps to improve are laid out....with choices! I also loved the artwork and the high level of readability. It made me think of a concept I always knew, believed and tried to live...but never could have actually have articulated. Bravo Fred and Judith.