Top 10 Books for Aspiring Leaders

Top 10 Books For Aspiring Leaders

One of the core values at Y Scouts is “Learning Relentlessly”.

In the spirit of that value, we want to help the aspiring leaders out there level up their skills by publishing an article on some of the best books you can read if you want to improve as a leader.

There are thousands of great leadership books out there, but this list is perfect for anyone who loves to learn and wants to start improving as a leader TODAY.

Some of these books are very well known, and others you might be hearing about for the first time.

You’ll also find that some of these books directly speak to leadership, and others focus on complementary skills that directly align with improving as a leader.

Either way, we feel confident that even if you just read one of these books, you’ll immediately improve your skills as a leader (and learn something new in the process).

Without further ado, let’s jump into the list.

“Leaders Eat Last: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t” by Simon Sinek

This book dives deep into the concept of leadership as a responsibility to care for and prioritize the well-being of team members. Simon Sinek explores the biological and psychological basis for trust and cooperation in organizations, emphasizing the importance of creating a safe and supportive environment. Drawing from real-life examples, Sinek provides insights into building strong, cohesive teams that foster collaboration and inspire greater performance.

“The Five Levels of Leadership: Proven Steps to Maximize Your Potential” by John C. Maxwell

John C. Maxwell outlines a five-step model to guide individuals on their leadership journey. From developing personal leadership qualities to empowering others and leading through influence, each level builds upon the previous one. The book offers practical tools and techniques to help aspiring leaders grow their skills and positively impact those they lead.

“Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ” by Daniel Goleman

Daniel Goleman introduces the concept of emotional intelligence and its significance in leadership success. Exploring how emotions drive behavior, decision-making, and relationships, Goleman emphasizes the value of self-awareness, empathy, and effective communication. The book provides strategies to cultivate emotional intelligence, empowering leaders to handle challenges with empathy and understanding.

“Mindset: The New Psychology of Success” by Carol S. Dweck

In “Mindset,” Carol Dweck explores the power of one’s mindset in shaping success and personal growth. Contrasting fixed and growth mindsets, she reveals how our beliefs about our abilities influence our achievements and responses to setbacks. Dweck offers insights to adopt a growth mindset, fostering resilience, a love for learning, and a willingness to embrace challenges as opportunities for development.

“Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us” by Daniel H. Pink

Daniel Pink challenges conventional notions of motivation, presenting a compelling case for autonomy, mastery, and purpose as the key drivers of performance. Pink discusses how traditional reward-punishment systems may not lead to optimal results in the modern workplace. By understanding the science behind motivation, leaders can create environments that inspire intrinsic drive and unleash creativity.

“Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter” by Liz Wiseman and Greg McKeown

“Multipliers” explores two distinct leadership styles: “Multipliers,” who amplify the intelligence and capabilities of their teams, and “Diminishers,” who unintentionally limit their team’s potential. Liz Wiseman and Greg McKeown provide practical insights for leaders to adopt the “Multiplier” approach, fostering a culture of continuous learning and unlocking the full potential of their team members.

“Radical Candor: Be a Kick-Ass Boss Without Losing Your Humanity” by Kim Scott

Kim Scott advocates for radical candor, a leadership approach that involves caring deeply about employees while challenging them directly to grow and improve. The book emphasizes the importance of honest and compassionate feedback to develop strong working relationships and drive personal and team growth.

“The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business” by Charles Duhigg

Charles Duhigg delves into the science of habit formation, illustrating how habits influence individual and organizational behavior. Understanding the cues, routines, and rewards that shape habits empowers leaders to create positive change, fostering productive and thriving work environments.

“Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance” by Angela Duckworth

Angela Duckworth explores the concept of grit, the combination of passion and perseverance, as a critical factor in achieving long-term success. Drawing on research and personal stories, the book highlights how cultivating grit can lead to higher achievement and resilience in the face of obstacles.

“Hiring on Purpose: How The Y Scouts Method Is Revolutionizing The Search For Leaders” by Max Hansen & Brian Mohr

This book was co-written by our CEO & Co-Founder, and is a must-read for anyone in a leadership position,  It goes deep into the importance of purpose-driven leadership and presents a unique approach to finding and hiring leaders who align with a company’s values and mission. The book outlines practical strategies and insights to identify and attract exceptional leaders who can positively impact organizational culture and drive long-term success.


There you have it. Our top 10 books for anyone who is interested in improving as a leader.

Of course, this list is not all-inclusive and there are many amazing books that were not included on this list.

But we recommend you take this list and pick at least one book to read and then actually TAKE ACTION on what you learned.

You can read every book in the world on leadership…but if you never put any of what you learned into practice, you really aren’t improving at all.

You can’t go wrong with any of these books, so grab a chair, get a nice cup of coffee, select your book, and enjoy the process of learning.