20 Book Recommendations For Women’s Day Gift - FocusU

20 Book Recommendations For Women’s Day Gift

More and more organizations are now taking up the cause of helping women at the workplace to live up to their full potential. One occasion you can use for the same is Women’s Day, every year. Gifting meaningful books to women colleagues during Women’s’ Day or during a Women’s Leadership Program is a brilliant idea! Sharing inspirational stories with them will encourage them to take up new challenges with confidence and flair. Here’s a list of our favourite books in that regard –

1.How Women Rise by Marshall Goldsmith and Sally Helgesen

A collaboration between Leadership expert Sally Helgesen and renowned leadership coach Marshall Goldsmith, this is a must read which addresses 12 traps that women leaders need to be mindful of. It is easy to miss some of these traps unless you are on the watchout. Strongly recommended!

You can order it here.

2. Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg

The book that propelled Sheryl Sandberg into literary stardom, it is definitely worth the hype. Lean in has entered business lexicon as a phrase and is now a global movement thanks in part of the principles espoused in the book. It has great insights and practical tips for navigating careers.

You can order it here.

3. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

Creativity as a topic has so many myths associated with it. Elizabeth Gilbert demystifies this topic in this gem of a book. Her TED Talk on the same topic is an amazing watch too. The stories and elegant writing make it a fascinating read. Highly recommended!

You can buy it here.

4. Exhausted to Energized by Dr. Libby

Being busy continues to be a priority area for organizations today. Many leaders talk about facing a constant sense of exhaustion as part of their normal life. This fascinating read delves into energy and how you can get back to a healthy state of being without feeling exhausted all the time.

You can order it here.

5. The Art of Asking: Amanda Palmer

Asking for help is one of the things leaders struggle with in various aspects of their journey. Amanda Palmer uses stories from her own life to give a powerful way ahead to figure out this crucial skill for leaders. A must read!

You can buy it here.

6. How Remarkable Women Lead by Joanna Barsh

Centred Leadership is the powerful theme of this book. The five principles of meaning, framing, connecting, engaging, and energizing give a simple framework for leaders to follow to bring in purpose and meaning in their lives and organizations. The stories from inspirational leaders make for a meaningful, rich reading experience.

You can buy it here.

7. Becoming by Michelle Obama

Inspiring! That is the one word we would use to describe the story that Michelle Obama shares in her book. From one of the most respected leaders in the world, this reads like a fiction novel because of the personal stories that she shares with readers.  You are left with a feeling that you can achieve great things and that is always the symbol of a great book!

You can buy it here.

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8. Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli

There are so many stereotypes women leaders needs to struggle with in the workplace. If we can take one step to bust some of these early, it would be to ensure parents and daughters read this fascinating book. Filled with inspiring stories of leaders, it is deeply emotional and motivating. 

You can buy it here.

9. Dare To Lead by Brené Brown

Brene Brown is one of our favourite authors. In this powerful read, she breaks down courageous leadership into four easy to understand principles – Rumbling with vulnerability, Living into our values, Braving trust, Learning to Rise. The insights are brilliant and the advice very actionable. Do pick this up!

You can buy it here.

10. Nice Girls Don’t Get The Corner Office by Lois Frankel

We love it for its catchy title and the 100+ traps that women leaders can watch out for in their corporate journeys! Irreverent and direct, it is a powerful read that addresses some questions that leaders sometimes struggle with silently. One of our favourites remain –

“Ask for permission. Not approval.”

You can buy it here.

11. Originals by Adam Grant

Our favourite Academician/Author, Adam Grant produces another page turner in his book Originals. It is a fresh perspective on creativity and being original. And in his inimitable style, the stories are fascinating and reads like fiction. A must read!

You can buy it here.

12. Act Like A Leader, Think Like A Leader by Herminia Ibarra

Herminia Ibarra packs a punch in this interesting read on leadership. Some of the more difficult but practical aspects of networking and building collaborative units are dealt with very skilfully. Filled with practical examples and advice, this is a must read for anyone aspiring for senior leadership positions. Strongly recommended for high potential leaders in organizations. 

You can buy it here.

13. Radical Candor by Kim Scott

It is a simple but powerful framework. As a leader, can you care deeply and challenge directly? Easier said than done! We love this book so much that it has become the basis for our internal feedforward (we don’t call it feedback) conversations. Strongly recommended!

You can buy it here.

14. I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai

As they say, she needs no introduction. From being a young girl who stood up and refused to be silenced, she has become the global symbol for peaceful protest and leadership, so relevant in today’s times. Reads like a fiction thriller and super inspiring at the same time!

You can buy it here.

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15. The Moment Of Lift by Melinda Gates

The work she does with Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has been super inspiring. So this was one book that we were looking forward to read before it got released. It was worth the wait! Drawing upon her personal stories and rich experience interacting with people around the world, this book is a must read and makes you think about how each person can change themselves and thereby the world.

You can buy it here.

16. ‘The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance’ – What Women Should Know by Katty Kay

Confidence is a key aspect of effective leadership. It is also perceived as one of the reasons for the deep gaps that exist in gender diversity in senior leadership roles. This book is a great read with practical tips on how to be more confident at the workplace and work on bridging the gap. Especially recommended for junior and mid-level managers. 

You can buy it here.

17. Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand

This is an outlier in the list. Resilience as a theme however, is relevant more than ever before in today’s times. The story of Louis Zamperini is powerful, moving and a testimony to the grit and tenacity needed in the uncertain world that we live in. A fascinating read!

You can buy it here.

18. Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance by Angela Duckworth

Talent is overrated. What determines success both in life and business is a rare combination of passion and persistence that the author terms as grit. The interviews with some of the best leaders in the world, have many nuggets of leadership wisdom. This is a superb read!

You can buy it here.

19. To Stop A Warlord by Shannon Sedgwick Davis

This is a spellbinding true story of a leader. When faced with a warlord in Africa who forced children to become soldiers of war she refused to take the conventional route. Instead she contracted private military contractors to train an army to take him on! One of the most inspirational books that we have read in recent times, this is unputdownable. 

You can buy it here.

20. Executive Presence by The Missing Link Between Merit and Success: Sylvia Ann Hewlett

You may be the most qualified leader in the world, but if the external world does not perceive you as one, it still does not do you any good. This book breaks down Executive Presence into elements of a skill that can be practiced by anyone to become more effective leaders. Strongly recommended!

You can buy it here.

Do join the conversation and your favourite reads to the list!


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