Leaders everywhere are constantly striving to become better versions of themselves. We’re always growing, and in my case, I’m always looking for ways to add new skills that can help me personally and professionally.
This is my 2020 Summer Reading List that keeps me inspired, and my Power Skills supercharged.
-Kelley-Steven Waiss, CEO and President, Hitch
(1) The Ride of a Lifetime by Bob Iger. This is a fantastic book on business insights and transformation. Written by a CEO, this book chronicles the challenges of leading. It’s entertaining and informative and relevant for today’s transformative landscape.
Power Skills: Innovation, Creativity and Leadership
(2) The Great Influenza by John M. Barry. This book has so many parallels for today’s society. Examining our past is often a great indicator of our future and this book looks at the 1918 influenza pandemic. The Great Influenza echoes today in many ways and serves as an excellent reminder while society advances, many things stay the same.
Power Skills: Resilience, Communications
(3) Daring Greatly: How the Courage To Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brene Brown. This book examines self introspection and vulnerability, two things that can help all of us become better leaders and better people. This book impacts business and personal relationships to develop a stronger ecosystem through empathy.
Power Skills: Outreach, Community Support and Networking
(4) The Inside Gig: How Sharing Untapped Talent Across Boundaries Unleashes Organizational Capacity by Edie Goldberg, PhD and Kelley Steven-Waiss.. A personal favorite and must-read 😉
Power Skills: Collaboration, Design Thinking, and Innovation
Must-Reads for Women Leaders
(5) The Person You Mean to Be: How Good People Fight Bias by Dolly Chugh: Sexism, inequality, and injustices are the focus of this challenging and enlightening book. This work appeals to anyone who has ever thought about activism and wanted to engage in a movement. The author takes a science based approach and examines the psychological reasoning behind biases. It’s a remarkable self-study that develops leadership and purpose through identifying your own blind spots.
Power Skills: Building Confidence, Raising Awareness
(6) Power Up: How Smart Women Win in the New Economy by Magdalena Yesil. If you’ve ever wanted a glimpse into Silicon Valley life, the author Magdalena has written your book. More than that though, this 25 year Silicon Valley veteran details her experiences in the valley and being the first investor in Salesforce. Her story is relatable, thought provoking and inspiring. It’s a good read for anyone looking to take a moment and evaluate where they are in their career or looking for motivation to chart your course and persevere.
Power Skills: Problem Solving and Strategic Vision
Books to Become a Better “Ally”
Both a noun and a verb, an Ally is someone who understands the privilege they have and uses that privilege to support and protect those without the same privileges as them.
(7) White Fragility: Why It’s So Hard for White People to Talk About Racism by Robin DiAngelo. DiAngelo talks openly about racism and white supremacy in this incredible book that challenges white people to examine their own lives and traditions to highlight racism and make thoughtful changes to breakdown and eliminate racist structures and systems in America. This book is thought-provoking and takes the reader on an incredible journey of self discovery.
Power Skills: Self-Awareness and Authenticity
(8) Becoming by Michelle Obama: The amazing Michelle Obama tells her own story in this autobiographical memoir. Her story takes the reader along for a journey detailing a young girl’s early years in Chicago and how she found the courage to thrive in a racist society. This book is a fascinating and energizing look at finding your own voice and staying on course to achieve self reliance.
Power Skills: Preservation and Self-Reliance
(9) All You Can Ever Know by Nicole Chung: Absolutely moving look into family secrets and finding your place in this world. This book tackles prejudices and finding your identity within society. An Asian American, Nicole Chung allows the reader a glimpse into self discovery, racism, and adoption. Her journey of self discovery and acceptance is relatable on many levels.
Power Skills: Resilience, Inclusiveness, Acceptance