Something inspiring and something for free for the New Year!

Scanning the many ‘Books of the Year’ columns this week (secretly hoping I might have read one of them), I thought I’d start the New Year with my Top 3 business books in 2010, each of them inspiring in a different way…

Coming in at number 1 is: ‘Drive’ by Daniel Pink – The Surprising Truth about What Motivates Us. I’ve been somewhat obsessed about motivation lately, particularly since studying and lecturing about Deci and Ryan’s academic work which Pink elegantly puts into a readable format. Even more acccessible is the 10 minute visual summary here (I promise you it’s worth 10 minutes of your time).


A close second is ‘The Art of Possibility’ by husband and wife team, Benjamin and Rosamund Stone Zander. Benjamin Zander is the conductor of the Boston Philarmonic and talks about leadership, motivation, humanity and creativity (phew, all in one book…). Check out his talks on YouTube. I still laugh at his ‘Rule Number 6’ (“Don’t take yourself so g-damn seriously”).

‘Deep Change’ by Robert Quinn is the book I’ve given to people experiencing significant change, personally and professionally. It’s a beautiful, inspiring and thoughtful read, billed as a survival manual for finding your own inner leadership power. The thrust of the book is how greater self awareness enables you, in a serious period of change, to become a confident agent who feels revitalised rather than victimised. Read it and pass it on.

And now for something free!

I’m a sucker for free and useful psychometrics, particularly when they’re strengths oriented, evidence based and with a good feedback tool. So imagine my excitement (yes, really) with this new leadership questionnaire at Essentially it explores your leadership strengths across 4 different dimensions:

  1. Creating the Future
  2. Enthusing, Growing and Appreciating Others
  3. Clarifying Values, and
  4. Ideas to Action

It takes about 30 minutes to fill in and, interestingly, the tool is administered by the DTI. Surprise, surprise, ‘Ideas to Action’ was my highest leadership strength – let me know how you get on with it.

Happy New Year!