Top Six Marketing and Leadership Books that Influenced Me

There are a lot of marketing, social media, and leadership books out there, and trust me, they aren’t all good. If you’re getting started in any of these fields, or if you’ve recently been promoted to a leadership role, let me cut through some of the noise for you and recommend some solid books with great, actionable advice.

The nice thing is many of these are available on one of my favorite reading apps, Audible, so if you don’t have time to sit and read you can still take in the information while doing your workout, cooking, driving, working in the yard or doing whatever!

Pike Place Fish Market in Seattle, WA – The business that inspired The Fish Philosophy

Here are my top marketing and leadership books in no particular order, with descriptions taken from reviews or the publisher.

  1. Fish! A Proven Way to Boost Morale and Improve Results: by Stephen C Lundin, Harry Paul and Ken Blanchard. Inspired by the Pike Place Fish Market, FISH! is one of the most popular business parables of all time. People in organizations around the world use its practical lessons to improve customer service, build trust and teamwork, bolster leadership, and increase employee satisfaction.
  2. Known: The handbook for building and unleashing your personal brand in the digital age, by Mark Schaefer. Those who are known in their field get the best jobs, the best customers, and the best invitations. With case studies, exercises, and inspiring stories, KNOWN provides a path to personal business success in the digital age.
  3. The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves: by Matt Ridley – This New York Times bestselling author makes the case for the “economics of hope, arguing that the benefits of commerce, technology, innovation, and change—what Ridley calls cultural evolution—will inevitably increase human prosperity.” 
  4. Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcomb Gladwell – Blink reveals that great decision-makers aren’t those who process the most information or spend the most time deliberating, but those who have perfected the art of filtering the few factors that matter from an overwhelming number of variables.
  5. Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg – Sandberg is chief operating officer of Facebook and the founder of In 2010, she gave a TED talk in which she described how women unintentionally hold themselves back in their careers. In Lean In, Sandberg provides practical advice for women on negotiation techniques, mentorship, and building a satisfying career and describes specific steps women can take to combine professional achievement with personal fulfillment.
  6. Marketing Rebellion: The Most Human Company Wins by Mark Schaefer – Through new research, singular insights, and inspiring case studies, this book challenges your view of what it means to be a marketer today and provides an innovative blueprint for business growth.

There are only a few of the many books that have inspired me, but their lessons come to mind time and again when I’m making difficult decisions. What books have inspired you? Let me know here in the comments or on Twitter or Facebook.

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