Project Management

Library—Great Books on Strategy Execution

From the Change Whisperer on Blog
This is a blog about Strategy Execution, about implementing change and driving ROI to the bottom line. It is intended for: Leaders and for Program, Project and Change Management practitioners trying to manage the weather systems of change raining inside the organization.

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We all have a “library” of resources we’ve read that have shaped our thinking and practice, which we reference. These are the books I reference. There are (many) more on my bookshelves but these are ones I recommend. My top four are in bold. (I couldn’t narrow it down to three.)  If you don’t see your favorites please share them in the comments section.

Business Planning:

  • “Corporate Canaries: Avoid Business Disasters with a Coal Miner’s Secrets,” Gary Sutton, Thomas Nelson, Inc., Nashville, Tennessee, 2005
  • “The Definitive Business Plan,” Richard Stutely, Prentice Hall, Great Britain, Revised Edition 2007

Change Execution:

  • “Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done,” Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan, Crown Business, NY, 2002
  • “How Organizations Work: Taking a Holistic Approach to Enterprise Health,” Alan P. Brache, John Wiley & Sons, New York, 2002

Change Management:

  • “ADKAR: A Model for Change in Business, Government and Our Community,” Jeffrey M. Hiatt, Prosci Research Inc., Loveland, CO, 2006
  • “Beyond Change Management: Advanced Strategies for Today’s Transformational Leaders,” Dean Anderson and Linda Ackerman Anderson, Pfeiffer, San Francisco, CA, 2001
  • “The Change Leader’s Roadmap: How to Navigate Your Organization’s Transformation,” Dean Anderson and Linda S. Ackerman Anderson, Pfeiffer, San Francisco, CA, 2001
  • “Change the Way You Lead Change,” David M. Herold and Donald B. Fedor, Stanford University Press, Stanford, CA, 2008
  • “The Dance of Change,” Peter Senge, Random House Inc., NY, NY, 1999
  • “It Starts with One,” J. Stewart Black and Hal Gregersen, Wharton School Publishing, New Jersey, 2008
  • “Leading Change,” John P. Kotter, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, MA, 1996
  • “Managing at the Speed of Change: How Resilient Managers Succeed and Prosper Where Others Fail,” Daryl Conner, Random House, New York, 1992, 2006
  • “Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change,” William Bridges, Da Capo Press, USA, 2003
  • “Project Change Management: Applying Change Management to Improvement Projects,” H. James Harrington, Daryl R. Conner, Nicholas L. Horney, McGraw-Hill, New York, 2000
  • “Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard,” Chip and Dan Heath, Random House, Canada, 2010

Corporate Governance:

  • “What Directors Need to Know: Corporate Governance 2003,” Carol Hansell, Thomson Carswell, Toronto, Canada, 2003


  • “The Back of the Napkin,” Dan Roam, Penguin Group, New York, 2008
  • “Fierce Conversations: Achieving Success at Work and in Life, One Conversation at a Time,” Susan Scott, Berkley Books, NY, 2004
  • “Mind Maps at Work,” Tony Buzan, HarperCollins Publishers Inc., London, UK, 2004
  • “Resonate: Present Visual Stories that Transform Audiences,” Nancy Duarte, John Wiley and Sons, Inc., NJ, 2010


  • “As One: Individual Action, Collective Power,” Mehrdad Baghai and James Quigley, Penguin Group, NY, 2011
  • “Diagnosing and Changing Organizational Culture: Based on the Competing Values Framework,” Kim S. Cameron and Robert E. Quinn, John Wiley & Sons Inc., New York, 2006

Decision Support:

  • “The Opposable Mind: How Successful Leaders Win Through Integrative Thinking,” Roger Martin, Harvard Business School Press, USA, 2007


  • “How to Become a Great Boss: The Rules for Getting and Keeping the Best Employees,” Jeffery J. Fox, Hyperion, New York, 2002
  • “Mastery: The Keys to Success and Long-Term Fulfillment,” George Leonard, Penguin Books USA, Inc. New York, 1992


  • “Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In,” Roger Fisher and William Ury, Penguin Books, New York, 1991
  • “How to Get What you Want: The Negotiating Game,” Chester L. Karrass, Karrass Ltd., USA, 1992 

Organization Design and Development:

  • “Leading at the Edge of Chaos: How to Create the Nimble Organization,” Daryl R. Conner, John Wiley & Sons Inc., New York, 1998

Project Management:

  • Project Management Body of Knowledge, Third Edition, Project Management Institute, 2004


  • “Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking,” Malcolm Gladwell, Little Brown and Company, New York, 2005
  • “Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything,” Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, HarperCollins Publishers Inc. New York, 2005
  • “Krakatoa: The Day the World Exploded: August 27, 1883,” Simon Winchester, Perennial Classics, NY, 2005
  • “The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference,” Malcolm Gladwell, Little Brown and Company, New York, 2000
  • “The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century,” Thomas L. Friedman, Farrar, Straus and Giroux, New York, 2005

Strategic Marketing:

  • “The Innovator’s Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth,” Clayton M. Christensen and Michael E. Raynor, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, Mass., 2003
  • “The PDMA Handbook of New Product Development,” Milton D. Rosenau, Jr., Abbie Griffin, George A. Castellion, Ned F. Anschuetz, John Wiley & Sons, Inc. New York, 1995

Strategic Planning:

  • “Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant,” W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, Mass, 2005
  • “Competing for the Future,” Gary Hamel and C.K. Pralahad, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, Mass, 1996
  • “Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap…and Others Don’t,” Jim Collins, HarperCollins Publishers Inc. New York, 2001
  • “The Future of Management,” Gary Hamel, McGraw-Hill Ryerson Agency, 2007
  • “Re-Imagine!: Business Excellence in a Disruptive Age,” Tom Peters, Dorling Kindersley Limited, USA, 2003
  • “Strategy Maps: Converting Intangible Assets into Tangible Outcomes,” Robert P. Kaplan and David P. Norton, Harvard Business School Press, Boston, Mass., 2004

What’s on your bookshelf?

Posted on: February 02, 2012 10:16 PM | Permalink

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Necessity is the mother of taking chances.

- Mark Twain