It’s common knowledge that the business world is always evolving, but there’s something to be said about our current work culture. We’re in an unprecedented new era of the girlboss, the daily grind and the hustle — all pushes to become more efficient, productive and self-confident versions of ourselves. And those with the entrepreneurial spirit are thinking one step further; they’re using this time to hone their leadership skills.

But in the business of modern day, there isn’t a lot of free time to ruminate on the philosophy of better leadership. Life is busy — and when things are hectic, there’s nothing better a clear, concise plan that’s easy to follow. The authors of these following books understand the struggle and are here to make life easier. Much like a succinct to-do list, these guidebooks lay out an easily understandable method of both personal and professional advancement. Whether you’re looking to inspire others or to improve yourself, these six books are sure to help put you on the path of success.

The Time-Chunking Method: A 10-Step Action Plan for Increasing Your Productivity
by Damon Zahariades

Before you can be a good leader to others, you have to be able to manage yourself. For those of us who struggle with productivity and procrastination, author Damon Zahariades completely gets it. While he’s now the owner of ArtOfProductivity.com, there was once a time where he struggled with keeping himself on-task. With some trial and error, he was able to craft a method that not only built up his own productive mindset, but also created his time-management empire of today.

The Time-Chunking Method is a tried-and-true action plan for those who want to make a change. By forgoing multitasking in lieu of setting structured time for specific tasks, you’re less likely to fall prey to distractions or interruptions. When diligently implemented into daily life, time chunking is proven to work — and with this comprehensive guide, Zahariades is there to help every step of the way.

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10 Leading Tools: Rules, Tools and Habits for Leading Yourself and Leading Others
by K.G. Butler

The traits of good leadership, as abstract concepts, seem to mystify us. It’s a worthy conversation to have, looking to label and compile the specific aspects of what makes a good leader. But that list can quickly become unwieldy and confusing. What good is all that advice, when you’re unsure of how to implement it into daily life?

A self-described scholar of leadership history and theory, entrepreneur and consultant K.G. Butler is here to help. His guidebook seeks to simplify and demystify the idea of leadership, taking it from an intangible concept to an actionable plan. Butler argues that it is not so much about understanding leadership in concept, but instead practicing it. With easily digestible writing, 10 Leading Tools clearly outlines a realistic approach to becoming a great leader in all the parts of daily life. By encouraging self-reflection and action, Butler sets every reader up for success in applying his instruction to the real world.

Read our full review of 10 Leading Tools here.

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People
by Stephen R. Covey, PhD (Simon & Schuster)

A classic in the world of leadership and business manuals, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has been helping readers foster personal growth and success for over thirty years. With a spot on the NYT bestseller list and over 40 million copies sold, Dr. Stephen R. Covey’s book stands as the #1 most influential business book of the 20th century. It’s no wonder that, with credentials like these, this guide is still looked to as a core doctrine of the business world.

A unique aspect of The 7 Habits is its focus not only on the business world, but on the lessons’ application in personal and daily life as well. The manual is built on core tenets of fairness and integrity — traits that are germane to all aspects of life. With key steps like “Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood” and “Think Win/Win,” Covey stresses the importance of coming at problems from a desire to learn. By gaining the knowledge from each new experience, it can be absorbed and used to conquer the next challenge.

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8 Paradoxes of Leadership Agility: How to Lead and Inspire in the Real World
by Yeo Chuen Chuen (ACESENCE)

The business world is turning a new leaf, and with that shift brings a new expectation for what it means to be a good leader. What the workforce of yesterday once considered good direction is being phased out for new ideas — and if you’re not keeping up with the change, you’re liable to fall behind. It’s a phenomenon Yeo Chuen Chuen has studied extensively, and she’s written her guidebook in an effort to help other aspiring leaders stay ahead in competitive workplaces.

Chuen Chuen’s philosophy hinges on “leadership agility” — a technique of quickly adapting to new challenges and approaching new ideas with an open mind. With lessons like “Executing vs. Inspiring,” “Enforcing vs. Empowering” and “Principled vs. Adaptable,” she covers the essential bases of what it means to be an agile leader. Whether you’re a manager looking to improve your administrative skills or an employee looking to climb the executive ladder, this manual will be a crucial tool to help you succeed.

Read our full review of 8 Paradoxes of Leadership Agility here.

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The 9 Types of Leadership: Mastering the Art of People in the 21st Century Workforce
by Beatrice Chestnut, PhD (Post Hill Press)

In the competitive business world, it isn’t enough to only have self-confidence and creative ideas. In order to be a truly great leader, there’s a key aspect that some managers fail to consider — emotional intelligence. Dr. Beatrice Chestnut takes a deep dive into this undervalued facet of good leadership in her sharp, constructive guide. She points out that we often glorify the flashier parts of being a leader — commanding a room, climbing the executive ladder to pursue your ambitions. In doing so, we can forget that being a leader means working closely with other people, fostering connections and working together as a coordinated team. For things to run smoothly under your guidance, it’s essential to be self-aware of your impact on those around you, and the ways those relationships can make or break the workplace dynamic. Luckily, Dr. Chestnut has compiled this comprehensive guide to help, breaking down 9 different and empathetic leadership styles into manageable bites.

Read an excerpt of The 9 Types of Leadership here.

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The ONE Thing: The Surprisingly Simple Truth About Extraordinary Results
by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan (Bard Press)

Sometimes, when it comes to implementing a new change in your life, less is more. Step-by-step instructions help break down the advice into manageable bits — and when you come across a method that has just one overarching rule to carry out, it’s hard to argue with that simplicity. It’s simplicity that Gary Keller and Jay Papasan had in mind when penning The ONE Thing. Recommended by Forbes magazine, this how-to guide spells out the ways that one conscious change can have a ripple effect throughout all aspects of your life.

This method is designed to shift the way you react and adapt to stress, whether that pressure comes from professional or personal life. For readers looking to become leaders in the business world, The ONE Thing fosters a mindset that can help build momentum towards professional goals, helping you achieve long-held ambitions. Its effect can radiate far beyond the workplace, too — leadership is something that can be implemented in every aspect of daily life, whether big or small.

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