Here are 20 of my favorites
I am often asked to recommend books to aspiring and experienced coaches. While there are hundreds, if not thousands, of worthwhile resources, here are 20 of my favorites. I’ve included them for their potential impact on the mindsets and skills of coaching and range of related topics. This selection includes books related to Appreciative Inquiry, change, coaching practices and skills, communication, Gestalt approach, helping relationships, human development, and interpersonal relationships. There are many models and frameworks and dozens of theoretical concepts that inform coaching. I’ve selected the following books because they are a few of my go-to resources:
- Badaracco, J. L. (1997). Defining moments: When managers must choose between right and right. Harvard Business School Press.
- Bennett, J. L., & Bush, M. W. (2014). Coaching for change. Routledge.
- Berger, J. G. (2012). Changing on the job: Developing leaders for a complex world. Stanford University Press.
- Berger, W. (2018). The book of beautiful questions. Bloomsbury Publishing.
- Block, P. (2000). Flawless consulting: A guide to getting your expertise used (Second ed.). Pfeiffer.
- Boyatzis, R., Smith, M., & Oosten, E. V. (2019). Helping people change: Coaching with compassion for lifelong learning and growth. Harvard Business Review Press.
- Clancy, A. L., & Binkert, J. (2017). Pivoting: A coach’s guide to igniting substantial change. Palgrave.
- Cox, E., Bachkirova, T., & Clutterbeck, D. (Eds.). (2014). The complete handbook of coaching (Second ed.).Sage.
- Goleman, D., Boyatzis, R., & McKee, A. (2002). Primal leadership: Learning to lead with emotional intelligence. Harvard Business School Press.
- Johansen, B. (2017). The new leadership literacies: Thriving in a future of extreme disruption and distributed everything. Berrett-Koehler Publishers.
- Johansen, B. (2020). Full-spectrum thinking: How to escape boxes in a post-categorical future. Berrett-Koehler.
- Johns, C. (2009). Becoming a reflective practitioner (Third ed.). Wiley-Blackwell.
- Kegan, R. (1982). The evolving self: Problem and process in human development. Harvard University Press.
- Mann, D. (2021). Gestalt therapy: 100 key points and techniques (Second ed.). Routledge.
- Melnick, J., & Nevis, S. M. (2018). The evolution of the Cape Cod Model: Gestalt conversations, theory and practice. Gestalt International Study Center Press.
- Ruiz, D. M. (1997). The four agreements. Amber-Allen Publishing.
- Schein, E. H. (2009). Helping: How to offer, give, and receive help. Berrett-Koehler.
- Schwarz, R. (2013). Smart leaders, smarter teams: How you and your team get unstuck to get results.Jossey-Bass.
- Tate, C. (2015). Work simply: Embracing the power of your personal productivity style. Penguin.
I encourage everyone to continue to expand their knowledge and develop their skills. The practice of coaching, whether you are an aspiring coach, experienced coach, or a manager who uses a coaching approach, requires continuous learning. Resources like these can support you in your journey.
I’m interested in your thoughts and ideas, along with YOUR book suggestions, so please leave your comments, feedback, and suggestions below.
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