Tomorrow is World Book Day—a day to celebrate the power of a good book and the impact it can have on our lives! A book that uplifts, excites, and changes us is also a book that we inevitably want to share with others. So, in recognition of this global event, we asked Anaplan leadership to share titles that have affected them and their professional lives. They offered books on leadership, business, planning, and even sports, and we've collected the results in the reading list below.
While we hope these titles all land on your “to readsomeday” stack, our bigger goal is to offer insights that might inspire and encourage you today. Check out what drives and inspires some of our top leaders, then stick around in the comments to share your thoughts and personal picks!
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg
“The American philosopher William James is credited with the observation that ‘ninety-nine percent of human activity is done out of habit.’ If that is true, then understanding how habits (good and bad) are formed and changed is key to long-term behavior changes for yourself, but they can also be applied to your team’s dynamic and your engagement with your customer/stakeholder. This book explores all these aspects in an easy to read, easy to understand way." ― Heather Matthews, Senior Director, Global University & Business Connect
Ego Is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday
“I read this alongside Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek, and they had a collective impact for me: set yourself aside and make sure the team, the customer, or the result is the important thing; success and rewards will come from focusing on that approach.” ― Mark Sims, Vice President, Customer Success – Central Region
How Will You Measure Your Life? by Clayton M. Christensen
“I thought this book was interesting... Clay is also the author of The Innovator’s Dilemma, which many people know and appreciate in business; this book helps apply those principles to one’s life. It makes you think about what’s important in your own life.” ― Ana Pinczuk, SVP & Chief Transformation Officer
Eleven Rings by Phil Jackson
“This is a book about basketball, but my biggest takeaways from it were all about leadership. There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to leadership. You have to understand your people and then customize your approach to fit the needs of the individual. No two people are the same.
There is also tremendous power in questions; rather than trying to solve problems, it is more empowering (and effective) to ask the right questions of the right people at the right time. This leads others to moments of revelation that help them solve their own problems, inspiring them to leadership and breeding loyalty at the same time.” ― Bhavik Vashi, Vice President, Customer Success – APAC
“This book changed the way that I lead and create strategic directives for new initiatives. It’s in our nature to focus on how something should be done, but really none of that matters if you don’t demonstrate why it should be done in the first place. People follow strong leaders that articulate an understanding of their motivations and desired outcomes, and successful initiatives are driven from a strong sense of purpose rather than a coherent task execution plan.” ― Chris Weiss, Leader, Centers of Excellence
The Reality-Based Rules of the Workplace by Cy Wakeman
“A business book I read back in 2013 that changed the way I reacted to conflict and drama at work. The one question that caught me completely off guard: How have you co-created the situation? Whenever I played the victim or blamed others, I always assumed it was that person I was dealing with. I never thought I had anything to do with it. My ego would be so strong that I would think that the drama being created was just one way.
This question changed everything. When you are self-reflective and think about how you may have created a dramatic situation with someone else, you let your ego go and realize that you had a role to play. It could have been as minor as rolling your eyes when the person spoke, not responding to their email in a timely fashion, or telling someone else that this person was causing you grief. Spreading rumors, telling yourself a story, or simply having negative body language co-creates drama that the other person is going to recognize and retaliate the same way back to you. So, drama ensues versus just going away.” ― Linda Lee, Vice President, Executive Communications & Culture
The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss
“While it may be considered an oldie-but-goodie, The 4-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss can serve as a type of inspirational message for all of us. To me, the biggest takeaway is to live life sooner rather than later. We often push off vacations, PTO, and other work-life balance activities with the plan to enjoy life in retirement. Instead, we should be weaving 'life' into work as much as possible. Time is promised to no one, so take advantage of the now.” ― Anne Cooper, Senior Director, Customer Care
You can help encourage the Community, too! Share your impactful books and takeaways in the comments below. If you’ve read some of the books on our list, let us know what you thought of them. Either way, take advantage of World Book Day to improve yourself and those around you. Remember: readers are leaders!