Recommended reading

Our bookshelves (and now kindles) are overflowing with good resources – some old favourites, some waiting patiently in the queue to be digested and some great reference works that we return to again and again. Here is a collection of go-to tomes, aimed at both broadening and deepening understanding, learning and interest, and giving you a flavour of our philosophy. It is partial, eclectic and by no means comprehensive but a great showcase of some of the best.


• Harvard Business Review on Teams that Succeed

by Katzenbach & Smith, Durskat & Wolff, Royer, Edmondson, Bohmer & Pisano, Garvin & Roberto, Wenger & Snyder, Meye, Levy
ISBN: 1-59139-502-X
Some great names here and they can with great ideas. This HBR harvest is a rich crop covering a variety of real world research and stories from the front line. Great nourishment.

• Leading Teams, setting the stage for great performances

by J. Richard Hackman
ISBN: 978-1-57851-333-8
Here, Hackman seeks to educate and inform the team leader. A thorough and comprehensive view, taken from his extensive research on the topic.

• Senior Leadership Teams

by Ruth Wageman, Debra Nunes, James Burruss & Richard Hackman
ISBN: 978-1-4221-0336-4
Richard Hackman was a leading psychologist of his time, and in the later years he turned his attention to teams. This well-written comprehensive view of the senior leadership team has both great stories and simple models to help the team discuss and decide how it will lead.

• Leadership Team Coaching

by Peter Hawkins 2012
ISBN-13: 978-0749469702
Turning his talent to the team, Peter shares his perspective on how to help leadership teams succeed. His models and philosophies should be part of any leaders toolkit.

• Reading the Room

by David Kantor
An easy practical read for those interested in group dynamics and a simple way to articulate what might be happening in a team. Great for coaches, good for leaders.


• Leadership – All you need to know

by David Pendleton and Adrian Furnham 2012
ISBN: 978-0-230-31945-5
A fresh addition to the leadership bookshelves written by two leaders in the field. This pragmatic and intelligent view of leadership is a handy point of reference, simplifying and distilling the issue of leadership.

• Leadership in Organizations

by Gary Yukl
ISBN: 978-0-13-814268-1
A more complex, academic volume and yet one we keep on returning to. A rich source of what the research is telling us about leadership and teams.

• Leadership Plain and Simple

by Steve Radcliffe
ISBN: 978-0-273089-7
This neat little volume is an easy read and hits on the nose the most significant element in any leadership endeavour, that of creating a compelling picture of the future for others – and one which is meaningful for you.


• Effective Coaching

by Myles Downey
ISBN-13: 978-158 7991721
Written in the late 90s this is still the best introduction to coaching. Now in a new edition Myles expands his thinking in his usual easy and provocative way.

• Masterful Coaching

by Robert Hargrove
ISBN-13: 978-0470290 354
Another classic on coaching which incorporates ideas from the learning organisation, teamwork, and individual leadership development.

• Coaching, Mentoring and Organizational Consultancy

by Peter Hawkins and Nick Smith
ISBN-13: 978-0335218158
This resource-rich volume expands on how to create, lead and support change at a variety of levels, and and should be standard issue for any consultant.

Leading Change

• Managing Transitions, Making the most of change

by William Bridges
ISBN: 1-85788-1125
In leading and coaching others, we are creating change. Understanding the emotional and cognitive process, which goes on unseen, is critical. In this classic William Bridges guides our thinking and action.

• From Hippos to Gazelles: How leaders create leaders

by Philip Goodwin and Tony Page
ISBN: 978-1-904235-45-3
Our friend and collaborator Tony and his colleague Philip told the story of substantial organizational change and how the leaders involved included others in their quest.


• The Inner Game of Work

by Timothy Gallwey
ISBN-13: 978-1587990472
Written in the early 70s, the inner game of tennis was a best seller. More recently Tim has consolidated his organisational consultancy into this volume – summarising the inner game principles and applying them in a work context.

• Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience

by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
ISBN-13: 978-0060920432
David first read this book on a plane on his way to Chicago, not knowing that Chicago was where this man was a well-known psychologist. It changed his life. A must read for anybody interested in performance and the meaningful life.

Organizational Learning

• The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook

by Peter Senge, Art Kleiner, Charlotte Roberts et al
ISBN-13: 978-0385472562
This book and the fifth discipline series came at a time when systems leadership was in its infancy. Now a well established idea, and practice, this fieldbook is packed with ideas, stories, and processes for leaders and those who support them.

Individual Productivity

• Procrastination: What it is and what to do about it now

by Jane B Burka and Leonora M Yuen
ISBN-13: 978-0738211701
Something many of us suffer from, and on occasions might be at a loss as to know how to tackle. A practical must read for perfectionists, last-minute merchants, and those with a fear of failure – and success.

• Crucial Conversations

by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, Ron McMillan & Switzler
ISBN: 978-0-07-140194-4
David was introduced to this book by a client whose ability to hold what many consider to be tough conversations is at a premium. Practical easy read, full of good ideas and ways through tricky situations.

• Willpower. Rediscovering our greatest strength

by Roy F Baumeister and John Tierney
ISBN-13: 978-1846143502
With all this chat in the press about habits, it’s useful to understand more about what willpower is and how to develop it where it appears to be lacking. Practical take and a fascinating read with stories from well-known and successful individuals including Eric Clapton, David Blaine, and the Victorian Explorer Henry Morton Stanley.