Top 5 Leadership Books Every Woman Must Read


I’ve been stockpiling several books in both paperback form and in Kindle format on building leadership, specifically tackling gender-specific roles in leadership. This recent motivation to delve into the literature of cultivating leadership was kickstarted from a work conference and leadership workshop. Being in the medical field, I find it funny that we weren’t specifically trained in leadership and different types of leadership; speaking to my other friends in the corporate world, it seems as if leadership training is the norm. To help fill the serious gap I feel with my lack of leadership ability, I decided to see what the best books were out there. Here are the top 5 books I’ve found helpful to cultivating my #bossgirl mentality!


Nice Girls (Still) Don’t Get The Corner Office

In this 2nd edition of the first (aptly named the same title but without the word ‘still’), the author goes in depth about what it's like working in the corporate office and describes typical situations that women often encounter. Not only, she gives tips and tricks into how to navigate these situations without compromising your own integrity and making your workplace environment hostile.  


Feminist Fight Club: An Office Survival Manual for a Sexist Workplace

If you’ve ever listed to the podcast Adulthood Made Easy, definitely check it out! I learned of this book from one of their podcasts on how women leaders and how to succeed in a ‘man’s world’ (because let’s face it, men are still the majority leaders in the corporate world). One of the tips it gives you is to create a circle of women in your field that you can trust to talk with about all things workplace related (subtle sexism, co-workers stealing your ideas, etc). It essentially advocates for a ‘feminist fight club’ (if you haven’t seen Fight Club, the actual movie, definitely worth a viewing!). 


Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In

This book came onto my shelf out of a search for how to negotiate, as I'm still in the process of figuring out my first contract. It gives practice tips on how to manage negotiation and asking for what you want and getting it. Negotiating has never been my favorite thing to do (especially when it comes to your salary on the line), but this book has made negotiation a far less mystical area for me. 


See Jane Lead: 99 Ways for Women to Take Charge at Work

This was a book that was suggested for me by one of my mentors. She leads one of the major departmental organizations in a large university and is one of the foremost names in my field of work. She thought this book was a great one in that she is a self-described ‘quite leader,’ and for those leaders, this book speaks volumes! Highly recommend it if you consider yourself more on the introverted side - and believe me, I am a strong advocate for introverted leaders!


The 5 Levels of Leadership: Proven Steps to Maximize Your Potential

John Maxwell has written TONS of books on leadership development. What I like particularly about this book is the pathway and guidance it gives you to develop some of those leadership skills you  may not have realized you possess. In essence, it makes you realize you already have leadership skills and guides you in how to apply those skills to any facet in life. 

Leadership can be developed - and it takes time and practice. I'm still learning and developing my own set of leadership skills. I’d love to hear of any other book suggestions! Check out my Resources page here for more.