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Why Read?

Not enough of us read. At all. This is something that can eventually come back and bite us in the you know what. It is essential for us as leaders to be reading. The more we are getting into books, the more we are able to conceptualize new ways of being able to lead effectively. It can be essential for us to even work towards figuring out ways to engage our followers in dialogue to facilitate departmental growth and organizational growth.

Even if you are not in a leadership position, reading provides a lot of valuable benefits, including:

New information about the workings of the world.
New studies and research can reveal a lot about what is changing. Heck this can be the direction that much of the world is going in.
&tab;New ideas in the field that you have gone into
Business research or scientific research can give you new ideas for your research or your business.
&tab;New research might reveal new things that can easily be implemented in business.
Enhances your vocabulary and can make you sound more intelligent.
&tab;Larger vocabulary is essential if you are looking to make a good impression.
&tab;Leaders that are able to utilize new vocabulary can also work towards improving the vocabulary of their staff (which makes a noticeable impact with clientele).

These are essential if you want to succeed in any area of life. These are important for those individuals that want to be able to move ahead in business.

Why Should Leaders Be Reading More?

Specifically, leader should be reading much more. Leaders that don’t read tend to miss out on new ideas and tend to miss out on new processes. Leaders that don’t read are missing out on new leadership trends or processes that might make them more effective in their sphere of influence.

It is imperative for leaders to be learning something new. Reading just happens to be one new way to learn new ideas. Books are being published all the time-it’s easy to look and choose the books that are going to be interesting and beneficial for your situation and use case.

Books could provide ways to simplify a particular business challenge that your organization faces. This could save countless hours and time for much of your staff and make it easier to be productive. It is important for you as a leader to implement these things (and books might be a way to provide the information as to how to implement these changes).

Leaders that read can ask harder questions of their staff and hopefully get better answers to what they are feeling are the major issues. Books can sometimes be the opening of a leader’s eyes so to speak. This is important for many leaders and this is important for organizations to have some of these difficult conversations with their staff.

Good Readings for Leaders

There are plenty of valuable books that a leader could derive some benefit from:

Tools of the Titans by Timothy Ferris
The 5 Dysfunctions of a Team
Strengths Based Leadership
Start With Why
One Minute Manager
Dare to Lead
Emotional Intelligence 2.0
The Art of War

This is not an exhaustive list but a good starting point for you looking to start reading more. Many of these books serve to provide an idea covering a basic element of leadership and guiding you to explore deeper into other facets of what makes a good leader.

Creating a reading list

One of the things that I would recommend is to create a reading list of everything that you want to read. Make it a priority to do this and regularly buy the next book in your series. It is important to continually getting the next book while you are currently reading the book that you have on your desk.

The list can be tailored to you as a person. Find what is going to be interesting for YOU to read. If you are interested in it, you are much more likely to absorb the information and apply it. Your staff with thank you for trying out new things.

Creating time to read

One of the biggest challenges for leaders is creating the time at work to read. There are a lot of things that need to be done and there often is not enough time that can be carved out for reading more often.

It can make for some rather interesting challenges for many leaders trying to carve out any time for anything other than the core duties that they have been assigned. Leading is often hard work and time consuming work. It is very essential that leaders learn to carve out time away from their duties to be able to read and improve themselves as individuals.

Self-directed learning through reading

Invariably, reading more isn’t enough. You have to be very self-directed with the approach that you use towards this reading process. You have to be invested in learning something new and learning how to retain that information for the future. It is imperative that you utilize that accordingly.

This is where self-directed learning comes into play. You utilize a learning plan for yourself so that you can properly develop your leadership skills and style over time. You look for ways to improve and map out where you want to go with your learning.

Self-directed learning should be focused. It should be beneficial. You don’t want to be jumping around with the information that you are acquiring. This can lead to confusion for you and your staff. It is important that everything that you are studying goes back to the same path that you are undertaking.

Encouraging staff to read themselves

On this journey, you need to integrate your staff into learning. Most leaders and organizations might fight this transition but it is important that you need to encourage and facilitate this transition into reading and learning. It doesn’t matter what the staff chooses to learn and read more about…as long as it can eventually be integrated into processes down the road. Allowing this can make staff more likely to be engaged with the organization later and much more likely to contribute towards overall growth.