Management Books

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14 Best Business Management Books [Updated 2021]

Management is perhaps one of the most talked-about modern disciplines but when it comes to outlining successful management techniques, there is any number of views with no idea of their true credibility. Below is the list of books on management to read in 2021 –

  1. Good to Great ( Get this book )
  2. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People ( Get this book )
  3. Leaders Eat Last ( Get this book )
  4. How to Win Friends and Influence People ( Get this book )
  5. The One Thing You Need to Know ( Get this book )
  6. Financial Intelligence ( Get this book )
  7. What Management Is ( Get this book )
  8. The One Minute Manager ( Get this book )
  9. Six thinking hats: An essential approach to business management ( Get this book )
  10. First, break all the rules: What the world’s greatest managers do differently  ( Get this book ) 
  11. The great game of business: The only sensible way to run a company ( Get this book ) 
  12. The Essential Drucker ( Get this book )
  13. The Rules of Management: A Definitive Code for Managerial Success ( Get this book )
  14. High Output Management ( Get this book )

Let us discuss each of the business management books in detail along with its key takeaways and reviews.

Management Books

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#1 – Good to Great

by James C. Collins

Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don't

About the book

The book puts forward many interesting business concepts to explain how good or mediocre companies transform themselves to become great companies over a period.

Book review

The book starts with the question that how good companies transition to become great companies. The author had carried many extensive research projects to figure out what exactly makes some of the companies outperform their peers and this book summarizes the findings of these projects. The author along with his research team spotted a set of companies that produced great results in the market and sustained them for at least 15 years. The book uses many interesting case studies, innovative metaphors and witty catchphrases that help you the business concepts easily and in a fun way. However, one of the shortcomings of the book is that some of the companies that are glorified in it and touted to be the best in the business have failed miserably several years after the publication of the book.

Key Takeaways

  • It is an extremely well-researched book in its timeframe.
  • It is interesting as well as easy-to-read and hence it can be appealing not only to the management people but also to people in general.
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#2 – The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

by Stephen R. Covey

How to win Friends & Influence People

About the book

The book explains how by identifying good habits and then building on them we can differentiate ourselves from an average person. It is an international bestseller and considered one of the best personality development books.

Book review

The book starts with an eye-opener that we all have some good habits, some bad habits and some habits hardly have any impact on our life. The author advises on building on the good habits, while not doing much about the bad ones. In this book, he suggests seven synergistic habits that will help you in taking control of your life, making smart decisions, managing societal relationships, overcoming bad habits, enhancing professional productivity, etc. In short, the book intends to state that by changing your habits you just don’t change the world’s perception of you but it also changes your perception of the world and that what can be the difference between your success and failure.

Key Takeaways

  • It can help you develop your personality, both personal and professional.
  • If you practice the seven synergistic habits, then you may be able to pursue the path of true personal and professional success in life.
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#3 – Leaders Eat Last

by Simon Sinek

Leaders Eat Last

About the book

The book talks about the great leaders who create such an environment within the organization that the employees trust each other, naturally work together and are able to achieve remarkable results.

Book review

The main assumption of the book is that some teams perform well and team members are willing to put their lives on the line for each other as they trust each other very deeply. On the other hand, some other teams remain fragmented and vulnerable to infighting, which impacts their team output adversely. In this book, the author has provided a number of examples to show how great leaders take care of their team members while inspiring them to deliver great results. Essentially, the author intends to demonstrate through numerous case studies if as a leader you take care of your people, then these people will automatically take care of your profits.

Key Takeaways

  • It is a must-read for all leaders who wish to take the leap and become great leader.
  • The examples can be useful for the leaders who face problems with the new generation employees.
  • The essence of the book is very simple – treat your employees well.
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#4 – How to Win Friends and Influence People

by Dale Carnegie

How to Win Friends & Influence People

About the book

It is a self-help book that guides on changing your own behavior so that the world changes how they see and treat you. This book is considered to be one of the most influential guides for business and communication skills.

Book review

This book will teach you how you should market yourself, both personally and professionally. It will help you to become friendlier with people so that they see you as a likeable and positive person. Professionally, it will help you enhance your presentability so that you can win new clients. In the book, the author has shared much useful advice to help you with business relationships and public speaking. It also has some simple techniques that can be very useful for introverts and people with social anxiety. The major flaw with the book is that you might not be able to relate to most of the examples provided in it given that they are from a very old time. Nevertheless, the book is still very good and can increase your earning potential by improving your overall behavior.

Key Takeaways

  • It is an awesome self-help book and if you can follow the suggested principles, then you will become a different person in a good way.
  • If you want to improve your interpersonal skills, either professional or personal, then this book is a must-read for you.
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#5 – The One Thing You Need to Know

by Marcus Buckingham 

One Thing You Need to Know: About Great Managing, Great Leading, and Sustained Individual Success

Book Review

An absorbing management book on what makes great managers and leaders successful at what they do, that is, guide, motivate, and lead people. The author argues that instead of falling prey to the common fallacy that one must identify the weaknesses of employees and work on them, a manager looks for strengths in an individual and focuses on capitalizing on the same.

This work offers a great deal of clarity to readers on the concept and practices of management than most others’ on this topic, where a lot of ideas are afforded without much substance. A wealth of relevant and organized information is provided to the readers in this work and tips on how to develop good management skills beginning with the management of the self. A highly acclaimed work on management that would help you on your path to becoming a good manager.

Key Takeaways

A complete guide to managing people by identifying their strengths and utilizing them to the advantage of the organization at large. Unlike works where a lot of theoretical ideas are forwarded with little practical value, this author adopts a down-to-earth approach in clarifying key concepts and helping readers understand how to acquire critical management skills. A must-read for students as well as professional managers on what it takes to be a good manager.

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#6 – Financial Intelligence

By Karen Berman and Joe Knight 

[1422144119] [9781422144114] Financial Intelligence, Revised Edition: A Manager's Guide to Knowing What the Numbers Really Mean Revised, Expanded Edition-Hardcover

Book Review

A unique work on management that focuses on the significance of financial awareness for a manager to be able to make key decisions in an informed manner. The authors argue that a lot of managers are not properly acquainted with basic financial concepts and know even little about the source of financial information, which makes things even more difficult.

Going a step further, this work details the possible biases in financial information made available to managers and how they can account for these biases—excellent work for nonfinancial managers, which would help them acquire necessary financial skills to enhance their efficiency.

Key Takeaways

If a manager is not financially aware, it will affect the quality of his decisions, and the authors of this work present a reliable approach to filling in this gap. It also argues that a manager needs to be in the know about possible biases in the financial informationFinancial InformationFinancial Information refers to the summarized data of monetary transactions that is helpful to investors in understanding company’s profitability, their assets, and growth prospects. Financial Data about individuals like past Months Bank Statement, Tax return receipts helps banks to understand customer’s credit quality, repayment capacity etc.read more and how to deal with them efficiently. Complete work on the significance of financial intelligence in management.

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#7 – What Management Is

By Joan Magretta

What Management Is: How It Works and Why It's Everyone's Business

Book Review

The author explores some of the oft-ignored aspects of management in this informative volume and offers a complete overview of the core concepts of management. A manager might be good at some of the things he is required to do, but management is all about making all components of an ideal system come together, which is what this work is all about.

Readers would benefit from the incisive insights offered in this work, which would help understand why sometimes small businesses prosper were larger ones do not—a unique work on management which redefines management for students, laymen as well as business managers.

Key Takeaways

An insider’s view on how management principles find application in the real world and what makes organizations perform like nothing else. Instead of focusing on any specific aspect of management, this work discusses the need for a manager to create an efficient system out of various components that work to the advantage of a company. A valuable work on management that asks the right questions and points to the answers most needed.

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#8 – The One Minute Manager

By Kenneth Blanchard and Spencer Johnson  

The New One Minute Manager

Book Review

A highly acclaimed work that offers an effective and highly adaptable approach to management, which has worked well enough for thousands of business managers for years together. Authors have put in commendable effort to prepare a treatise that is easy-to-read, understand and implement in a stepwise manner to help achieve enhanced productivity, professional work satisfaction, and individual growth.

There are three components to this approach, including One Minute Goals, One Minute Praisings, and One Minute Reprimands, which ultimately fit in together, resulting in a near-perfect system of management without much hassle. To make things simpler and demonstrate the efficiency of this system, the authors have quoted from several studies in medicine and behavioral sciences as well. In short, this work offers a wealth of information and strategies which have been put to the test by managers across the world successfully.

Key Takeaways

It is the quintessential work on practical management for business managers overseeing a wide variety of projects in terms of size and scope. It is not without reason that this work has consistently featured on bestseller lists for no less than two decades, providing a highly organized and effective approach to management. A must-read for business managers willing to enhance their understanding of the art and science of management.

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#9 – Six thinking hats: An essential approach to business management 

By Edward De Bono

Six Thinking Hats: An Essential Approach to Business Management

Book Review

An unusual business management book on decision-making by a leading authority on conceptual thinking. Some people might think that management is all about strategies and their effective implementation or knowing how to manage people and resources, but this author stresses again and again that it is all about how one thinks. Most of the time, confusing or contradictory thoughts make it difficult to arrive at the right conclusions and make the right choices based on logical thinking.

The author has identified six typical ways of thinking, which would help better understand the process of thinking and how it affects the decision-making capabilities of a manager. A revolutionary guide to management which can help managers understand how thinking better can lead to managing better.

Key Takeaways

Management is more than just strategizing and managing people and resources; it’s about thinking. This volume helps readers acquire a deeper understanding of our thought processes, which play a crucial role in how decisions in business and other spheres of life are taken. An intelligent and inspiring read for business managers as well as anyone who is interested in finding out how we think and why we think the way we do.

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#10 – First, break all the rules: What the world’s greatest managers do differently

By Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman 

First Break All The Rules

Book Review

Breaking away from conventional wisdom, this best business management book is based on the findings of a massive study conducted by Gallup on what makes a great manager. The results of the study were rather astounding, as it failed to pinpoint any specific strategy adopted by any of these managers except that they threw the rulebook to management out of the window and sought to reconstruct their own unique way of managing talent and resources.

It was found that they tend to disregard the conventional view that almost anyone can be trained to achieve anything and instead identified useful talent and simply ‘knew’ how to turn this raw talent into performance. This work can only be described as an exciting journey into some of the most successful minds in the world of management, and a paying one.

Key Takeaways

An unorthodox view of what makes a manager successful, based on Gallup’s study on some of the best managers of the day. There were little if any, common criteria found among some of the best managers studied, but for one remarkable thing, they did not believe in going by the rulebook. A truly revolutionary view on the right ‘recipe’ to being a great manager and the kind of ‘ingredients’ that go along with it.

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#11 – The great game of business: The only sensible way to run a company 

By Jack Stack 

The Great Game of Business, Expanded and Updated: The Only Sensible Way to Run a Company

Book Review

Unlike most other books, which are all about complex strategies and concepts, this author shares a revolutionary approach to managing a business developed by the employees of a large company when it was in dire straits. Widely acknowledged and praised for its down-to-earth appeal, this work has helped countless businesses find ways to survive and keep growing in some of the most difficult market situations for no less than thirty years.

The author has kept it simple for even a layman to be able to understand and apply the ideas presented. A unique, practical, and highly effective guide to decoding ‘the Great Game of Business’ in an intensely competitive marketplace.

Key Takeaways

A practical guide to open-book management, which has been acknowledged by the industry experts for the kind of success and advantages afforded to businesses. ‘The Great Game of Business’ is all about how to manage things differently and achieve results in a no-nonsense manner without the need to apply any sophisticated management strategies in vogue these days. Complete work on how to uncomplicate management while achieving greater profits and better employee engagement.

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#12 – The Essential Drucker

By Peter F. Drucker 

The Essential Drucker: The Best of Sixty Years of Peter Drucker's Essential Writings on Management (Collins Business Essentials)

Book Review

The Essential Drucker is a compilation of no less than twenty-six selections from the works of this legendary figure, widely acknowledged as the Father of modern management. Peter F. Drucker has been sharing his valuable insights on management and society for nearly six decades, and his acumen shows in the business philosophy espoused by him.

This book offers a complete overview of what business management is all about and how one can overcome some of the most common challenges and turn them into opportunities for growth. An invaluable work for students of management as well as business managers on how to make the most of the available resources and achieve the desired results without breaking a sweat.

Key Takeaways

This business management book presents twenty-six of the finest selections from none other than Peter F. Drucker, the Father of modern management, in one place. Readers would find the answers to a number of commonly asked questions as also solutions to challenges faced in management, which would be of immense practical value. An invaluable resource for managers who are looking to gear up for new challenges emerging every day in the ever-changing business world.

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#13 – The Rules of Management: A Definitive Code for Managerial Success

By Richard Templar

Rules of Management: The Definitive Guide to Managerial Success

Book Review

An ideal management book to help you brush up your management skills and get going on the road to be a better manager. The author offers some valuable tips and advice for managers on getting out of a tight spot and turns challenges on their heads to the advantage of businesses. While most of the advice might not come across as something novel, more importantly, he makes it a point to ask the oft-forgotten question, whether you are following up on what you already know you should? Not only will this work be found extremely useful for new or upcoming managers, but experienced managers would also be able to revisit their strategies and techniques and improve upon the same.

Key Takeaways

A fresh perspective on the basics of management for upcoming managers and a relook at the essentials for experienced ones. This book on management does not offer anything unique or new, to say so, but it does force the readers to sit up and take notice of how they have been managing things and what they can do to make it change for the better. A must-read for both inexperienced and veteran managers to rediscover the art of management.

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#14 – High Output Management

by Andrew S. Grove

High Output Management

Book Review

Authored by former chairman and CEO of Intel, this best business management book details on effective techniques for building businesses from the ground up and managing efficiently. Widening the scope and breadth of management, it methodically tackles the challenges and problems faced in creating highly productive teams and helping them achieve an optimal level of performance, which is essentially the backbone of any business.

Banking on his real-life management experience with some of the best Silicon Valley technology firms, the author offers a high-efficiency management philosophy that lies at the heart of the success of these businesses. A path-breaking approach to management which can work wonders for business managers willing to go the length.

Key Takeaways

A succinct view of the art of entrepreneurship, which outlines a highly efficient approach for business managers to successfully create and manage businesses. As former chairman and CEO of Intel, the author brings aboard his expertise in the field and deals with some of the commonly faced challenges in managing things. An essential read for managers, accountants, consultants, CEOs, and startup founders to help understand the nuances of management.

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