Of course, we think you can learn a lot online. But, if you're looking to take a deeper dive, there is often no substitute for the kind of thoughtful analysis you can get from a great book.
Whether you're looking for biographies of great leaders, technical studies, step-by-step guides, or a behind-the-scenes glimpse of how the uber-successful got to the top, there's something for everyone. Here are 10 books—ranging from inspiring to educational that you should look for in the next few months.
1. Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration By Ed Catmull, Amy Wallace
Out April 8
Ed Catmull is one-third of the Pixar team—he co-founded Pixar Animation Studios with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter in 1986. In Creativity, Inc., Catmull pulls back the curtain to reveal how Pixar’s founders created a unique company that prizes creativity and inspires through animation, while providing a safe place to take risks and encourage open communication among employees.
The book espouses such lessons as "if you don't strive to uncover what is unseen and understand its nature, you will be ill prepared to lead" and "the cost of preventing errors is often far greater than the cost of fixing them." Movie buffs will undoubtedly enjoy Catmull's account of the stories behind the blockbuster movies that have won 30 Academy Awards and captured the world's imagination.
Out March 25
In Flex, executive coaches Hyun and Lee demonstrate the importance of "flexing"—incorporating multiple leadership styles to lead employees who are different from you. The book offers tools and strategies to effectively communicate with employees and customers, bridging the gap between culture, age, and gender. Karyn Detje, Chief Talent Officer of Tory Burch, notes the book "provides a way for leaders to re-define how to lead by understanding, embracing and seeking out differences."
3.Mistakes I Made At Work: 25 Influential Women Reflect on What They Got Out of Getting It Wrong By Jessica Bacal
Out April 29
Think leaders never make mistakes on the ladder to success? Think again. In this book, author Jessica Bacal interviews 25 successful women who share their mistakes, and lessons learned, on the job and in their careers. Interviewees include bestselling author Cheryl Strayed, Anna Holmes, founder of Jezebel.com, and Joanna Barsh, Director Emeritus of McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm. Whether you're at the beginning of your career or a little further along, you'll find you're not the only one who made a mistake at work—and you're in good company.
Out February 2
It’s the little things that matter. So says author Pat Williams, Hall of Famer and co-founder of the Orlando Magic, in Coach Wooden's Greatest Secret, as he brings to light stories of legends from sports, business, politics and beyond. With lessons like "Little Things Are Fundamental to Achievement" and "Little Things Produce Consistency," Williams shows how the "little things" can translate to big success.
5.No Greatness Without Goodness: How a Father’s Love Changed a Company and Sparked a Movement By Randy Lewis
Out April 1
Randy Lewis, a former Senior Vice President of Walgreens and father of an autistic son, shares in No Greatness Without Goodness how he helped change the modern workforce by implementing a jobs program at his company’s distribution centers that employs thousands of people with disabilities. In the book, Lewis shares his family's story, and provides lessons learned in the implementation of Walgreens's successful program, which emphasizes the importance of how companies can "do good" in the community, as well as in business.
Out April 1
Biz Stone, co-founder of social media platform Twitter, reflects on his time at Google and Twitter, discusses how creativity and business go hand-in-hand, and shares advice and behind-the-scenes stories from his time as an Internet entrepreneur. The book is described as having something for everyone, whether you seek personal stories or career advice.
Out February 11
Journalist McArdle uses studies and insight gleaned from businesses, doctors, psychologists—even mountaineers—to examine how some companies and individuals fall, and pick themselves up again. "You're not a failure, you're just someone who has failed, just like everyone else who has lived on the planet, from Alexander the Great to Abraham Lincoln. Failure is what makes success possible. It's how we learn what doesn't work—and therefore how we learn that does," McArdle says.
Out April 1
Media coach McGowan, whose client list includes Jack Welch, Kenneth Cole and Kelly Clarkson, shares his tips for communicating the right message, to the right person, at the right time. In the book, McGowan offers readers his tried and true "Principles of Persuasion" which can be used to get your message across, improve your verbal and non-verbal communication, or just be more memorable.
Out March 11
Weekend inventors, listen up! Grenier is the latest shark from ABC's "Shark Tank" to provide entrepreneurs with her book on success. Grenier provides a "nuts and bolts" guide for inventors and would-be entrepreneurs on topics like idea generation, market research, product design, obtaining funding, manufacturing your product, protecting your idea, and how to sell successfully. Wannabe inventors, take note: better read this before entering the tank.
Out March 31
For more than 20 years, Michael Lewis has written about sports and business, with such bestsellers as The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game, Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game, and The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine. Precious little has been written about Lewis’s latest book, which, according to his publisher, "gives readers a ringside seat as the biggest news story in years prepares to hit Wall Street." We can’t wait.
[Image: Flickr user Courtney Emery]