Guest Column | April 12, 2016

Arlin's Suggested Reading List

By Arlin Sorensen, O and Founder of the Heartland Companies which includes HTG Peer Groups

The Core Must Reads

These are the ten books I recommend as the foundation of a strong business library.  While the Bible may seem like a strange first choice, I find that spending time in that book of wisdom each morning grounds me in truth and helps focus me on the things that matter.  The other nine are important books that provide a broad base from which to build a strong business mindset.

  1. The Bible
  1. The Go-Giver – Bob Burg & John David Mann
  1. Make a Difference – Larry Little
  1. Planning for Success – Laurie Sorensen (HTG)
  1. The E-Myth, Revisited – Michael Gerber
  1. Start with Why – Simon Sinek
  1. The Advantage – Patrick Lencioni
  1. Great by Choice – Jim Collins
  1. Rocket Fuel – Gino Wickman and Marc C. Winters
  1. The Five Dysfunctions of a Team – Patrick Lencioni

There are excellent books on the next fifteen list, and depending on what challenges you are facing in your organization, it would not be hard to recommend moving some of these up. But these are great books with exceptional value that should be on your list of books to read at some point.

The next fifteen:

  1. Crucial Conversations - Kerry Patterson
  1. Crucial Accountability - Kerry Patterson
  1. Leaders Eat Last – Simon Sinek
  1. Getting Things Done – David Allen
  1. Seven Habits of Highly Effective People - Stephen Covey
  1. Good to Great – Jim Collins
  1. The Love Dare – A. & S. Kendrick
  1. Developing the Leader Within You - John Maxwell
  1. The One-Minute Manager - Ken Blanchard & Spencer Johnson
  1. The Great Game of Business – Jack Stack
  1. Who Moved My Cheese? - Dr. Spencer Johnson
  1. Fish – Lundin, Paul & Christensen
  1. Raving Fans – Ken Blanchard & Sheldon Bowles
  1. Entre Leadership - Dave Ramsey
  1. Financial Peace - Dave Ramsey

There are hundreds of great business books available today. Of course, it isn’t the book that makes a difference but the application of the ideas and teachings each of these contain. Focus on identifying the one or two actionable learnings you can derive as you read. Take lots of notes, teach what you learn to others as that is always the best way to learn, and then execute and put what you learned into practice.

As Thomas Edison once said, “vision without execution is hallucination”.  You have to execute to make a difference!