Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Great Reads for School Leaders

Well, the summer is unofficially over and all I can say is that it was one of the most productive breaks I have had in recent memory from a reading standpoint. I made a commitment to set aside time to read, something that I have failed miserably at in the past.  The challenge for me though was to select books that were not only engaging but would push my thinking on educational leadership. For me, that equates to pleasurable reading. Obviously, I am a non-fiction guy. I wanted to read not only for pleasure but also personal and professional growth.  

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After reading five books this past summer, a personal record for me, I can honestly say that I exceeded my goal. Not only was each one inspiring in its own right, but I was able to incorporate some of the principles and takeaways from each book during the first meeting with my staff yesterday.  It is safe to This is a trend that will continue as the year progresses.  It is safe to say that my choices, based in large part on recommendations from my Personal Learning Network (PLN) have had a profound impact.  Below is my reading list that I highly recommend to all school leaders and any educator for that matter:

Linchpin by Seth Godin

Drive by Daniel Pink

The No Complaining Rule by Jon Gordon

Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell

The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

Trust me when I tell you that you will thoroughly enjoy these books and quite possibly rethink how you lead, innovate, and communicate.  What would you add to this list?


  1. Read drive, outliers, and the alchemist. All life changing, mind-changing reads. I read Jon Gordon's blog. I expect the book would be awesome. I need to find linchpin. What is it about?

  2. Linchpin is about making yourself indispensable. Really gets you thinking about the importance and needs to take risks and innovate.

  3. Why we do what we do: Understanding self-motivation, by Edward L. Deci. A must read for all educators, coaches, and anyone interested in human motivation. Much cited by Pink.

  4. "Talent is Overrated" is another great book that reflects back to quality of instruction, similar to "Outliers". Again, a very thought provoking read.

  5. I read and enjoyed Mindset, Brain Rules, and Making thinking visible. All helped me shaped my leadership skills this upcoming year.

  6. Using the experiences and words of seven public school principals who came to the field of administration committed to advancing social justice in their schools, this book presents a framework and 7 "keys" to social justice leadership (SJL). Although facing tremendous barriers, these leaders were ultimately successful in making their schools more equitable and

  7. Loving the list, i wish i can go back to the time where i can read books as much as i want to anytime. Reading books has the academic advantage embedded into it. Wide readers knew it!