Must-read books for ICT leaders

Take your work and leadership skills to the next level with these informative books. By Priya Prakasan

The beginning of the year is a great time to embark on the pursuit of knowledge and restocking your library is a key step in this direction. Here’s our pick of six books that will help you take your work to the next level, enhance your leadership skills, drive business growth and provide some insights on key trends and strategies.

Capacity by Chris Johnson and Matt Johnson

1. Capacity by Chris Johnson and Matt Johnson
Chris Johnson is the CEO and Founder of On Target Living, a health and performance company, while Matt Johnson is the President. Their book delves into how leaders can build strong teams and bring out the best in them. Capacity provides a solution for organisation by focussing on three main factors— focus, energy and drive. It highlights how leaders can increase the capacity for these three top performance factors within their teams so as to reach another level of productivity. The book also dishes out strategies for expanding capacity to exceed high-performance goals while preventing burnout. Capacity just might be just what you need to drive change in your organisation.

2. The Digital Transformation Playbook by David L Rogers
This book by globally recognised digital expert Rogers will help you keep up with the changed rules of business with constant development of new digital technologies and the transforming business model. It is a guidebook for anyone who has a hard time figuring out a way to adapt and transform to the constantly changing digital scenarios. It helps readers truly understand the phenomenon of digital transformation and find ways to adapt and thrive in this limitless digital world. This book is perfect for someone who wants to discover the next stage of value creation and growth for their business.

Digital to the Core Remastering Leadership for Your Industry, Your Enterprise, and Yourself by Graham Waller and Mark Raskino

3. Digital to the Core: Remastering Leadership for Your Industry, Your Enterprise, and Yourself by Graham Waller and Mark Raskino
For this book authors Graham Waller and Mark Raskino spoke to over 30 noteworthy C-suite executives in some of the top companies around the world. They wanted to better understand the impact of the digital revolution and gather insights on how leaders can integrate it into the centre of their business. Through their book they help leaders identify the key factors of this change/impact and appropriate them to lead in three distinct areas—industry, organisation and self. Those looking to grasp the multidimensional nature of digital change should have this book on their reading list.

4. Work Rules! by Laszlo Bock
A New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller this book has been written by the head of Google’s People Operations Laszlo Bock. It contains insights from Google on how to strike the perfect balance between creativity and structure, and build a better company from within, rather than through a top down approach. Bock also utilises his deep understanding of human psychology and the latest research in behavioural economics to create a leader’s manifesto on how to create a great place to work in this new digital world we inhabit.

Wolf in CIO’s Clothing by Tina Nunno

5. Wolf in CIO’s Clothing by Tina Nunno
Which animal best describes your leadership style? Why does it matter you ask? Because Italian political philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli said the animal you most resemble determines your position on the food chain— you’re either predator or prey. Nunno takes off on this and talks about how leaders can use animals as role models for their behaviour. In particular, she says CIOs should embrace the characteristics of a wolf if they wish to succeed. Wolves are intelligent, social creatures that inspire loyalty, while at the same time have the ruthlessness to command and win in a competitive setting. She discusses strategies and tactics CIOs can employ to deal with sensitive political situations and power struggles, so as to become a significant influencer in their organisation.

A Seat at the Table IT Leadership in the Age of Agility by Mark Schwartz

6. A Seat at the Table: IT Leadership in the Age of Agility by Mark Schwartz
In this book CIO Mark Schwartz explores the changing role of IT leadership and the need to step away from legacy mindsets and conventional dynamics. With practical advice and encouraging, instructive strategies, Schwartz outlines how to become an agile IT leader who is a key part of value creation in the organisation. He uses his own real world experiences to emphasis how CIOs can unlock the full potential of IT to create an agile work environment and drive business outcomes. 

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