We, Lillas and Linda, love “summer mode.” It is a time of more space for our creative work, our writing, our design and updates of workshops, and taking radical self care! We love to read and much of what we read informs our leadership work and our lives. Here is what we are reading and enjoying this summer.
Learning Leadership: The Five Fundamentals of Becoming an Exemplary Leader (2016) Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner
There are some real gems in this book in the form of research and quotes to support the leadership development facilitation and coaching I do. Here is one such gem: “. …high quality connections contribute to individual flourishing and to team and organizational effectiveness. People who have high quality connections are healthier, have higher cognitive functioning, broader thinkers, are more resilient, are more committed to the organization, and know better whom to trust and not to trust. They also exhibit more learning behaviours… …the quality of your relationships significantly influences the quality of your learning. P 154”
I also like the self coaching section at the end of each chapter that includes activities and questions to encourage reflection/journaling and the deeper work of being a leader. This book is a great support to leaders on their leadership for life journey!
Tears to Triumph: the spiritual journey from suffering to enlightenment. Marianne Williamson (2016)
This book is a spiritual reflection on human suffering both its cause and its transcendence. Each and every one of us experiences suffering of greater or lesser degree at various points in our lives. It is part of the human journey. Marianne helps us discover or reaffirm the universal teachings and spiritual principles from the world religions and spiritual philosophies that help us deal with and transcend our suffering and move into hope, compassion, love, joy, peace and the gifts of personal transformation.
I have read all of Marianne Williamson’s books – my favourites are: A Woman’s Worth, The Age of Miracles: embracing the new midlife, and Enchanted Love: the mystical power of intimate relationships. Her wisdom speaks to me and supports my personal leadership for life journey.
The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way you Lead Forever Micheal Bungay Stanier (2016)
Do you have a habit of giving advice when a colleague or employee asks for help or when a team is stuck and needs to move forward? What would happen if you changed your habit to asking questions? Taking a coaching approach, even when you only have 10 minutes, can support others in being more focused and self -sufficient.
Bungay Stainier suggests that we listen and ask questions more and that we tame the advice monster. A valuable guide for a ‘stop now and coach approach’, Bungay Stanier presents seven key coaching questions along with resources and background research for why his approach and questions work.
The seven key coaching questions:
- The kick start question – What is on your mind?
- The AWE Question – And what else?
- The focus question – What’s the real challenge here for you?(especially helpful when people are getting stuck)
- The foundation question – What do you want?
- The lazy question – How can I help
- The strategic question – If you’re saying yes to this, what are you saying no to?
- The learning question – What was most useful for you?
Check it out…
Becoming Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living, Krista Tippett (2016)
One of my favourite podcasts is On Being with Krista Tippett. Her conversations with luminaries, scientists, mystics and authors inspire me and help me get clearer about how I want to be in the world. The podcast, as described on her site.. “ opens up the animating questions at the center of human life: What does it mean to be human, and how do we want to live?”
So it is no surprise that I enjoyed listening to Tippett’s book Becoming Wise where she weaves her own perspectives on themes such as words, flesh, love, faith and hope with interview clips. I’d like to think the book has helped me be a little wiser and at the very least has reminded me of the importance of words, inclusion, beauty, hope and community. I’d recommend the audio version so you can hear her conversations with her guests.
“I’m a person who listens for a living. I listen for wisdom, and beauty, and for voices not shouting to be heard. This book chronicles some of what I’ve learned in what has become a conversation across time and generations, across disciplines and denominations.” Krista
Of course we’d love to hear about your summer reads. Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know.
If you are looking for a day of self care this fall, check out our Calgary and Saskatoon workshops.