Byron's Babbles

Best Books Of 2019

Screen Shot 2019-12-29 at 12.48.09 PMI was asked yesterday what the top five books I read in 2019 were. I had to really think about the question, because I do not read to rank them. In fact when I have a book recommended to me I always ask what am I going to learn from it. Reading for me is a way to open my mind to new ideas or hone skills. I hate it when someone reads a book and then wants to somehow miraculously put everything in place. It just doesn’t work that way. It’s why book reads, and there is research that backs this up, are not effective. As I reflected on the question, however, I decided to go back and see which books I read this year were referenced in my blog posts. This is a partial indication of learning from the books being used in the real-time pondering I am doing.

My Best Books Of 2019

So, here’s what I did first: I went back through my over 100 blog posts from this year and flagged every one which referenced a book I read in 2019. There were 22 posts referencing 20 of the books I read. I have those those posts organized in no particular order by four books at a time. Remember, these 20 books should be considered as part of the Best Books In 2019 that I read. If you read the posts you will find what lesson(s) I learned from the book, and there is a link to the book and the author in each post. Here are the posts:

Collaboration and Get Some Sleep and Self-Awareness

When Leaders Go Bad

Cheesecake Talk Triggers

Leading Influence Formula

Overworked and Overwhelmed

Leading By Metaphor

Do Others Like The Vibes You Give Off?

Leading Toward Morale

What We Know, And Don’t Quite Know We Know

Leading Without Kitschy Trinkets

Developing & Supporting Our Students: Future Identity Versus No Future Identity

Joyful and Leading With A Touch Of Quirkiness

Loving America

Benevolent Leadership and The Tigress Of Forli

Think Fast & Answer Quickly

 

Do You Have The Inexhaustible Ability To Just Live?

Are You Setting Precedent?

MacGyver Intersectional Leadership

My Top 5 Books Of 2019

I know what you are thinking; I did not answer the original question of what my top five books of 2019 were. Even though I hate doing it, because I have gained so much value from all the books I read, but I won’t let myself of the hook. After a great deal of reflection here they are:

  1. The Tigress Of Forli: Renaissance Italy’s Most Courageous And Notorious Countess, Caterina Riario Sforza de Medici by Elizabeth Lev
  2. On Grand Strategy by John Lewis Gaddis
  3. The Medici Effect: What Elephants and Epidemics Can Tell Us About Innovation by Frans Johansson
  4. Talk Triggers: The Complete Guide To Creating Customers With Word Of Mouth by Jay Baer and Daniel Lemin
  5. The Pioneers: The Heroic Story Of The Settlers Who Brought The American Ideal West by David McCullough

As you can see, 2019 was quite the year of reading. I am still working on what my reading goal will be for 2020. Remember, leaders are readers! Happy New Year!

 

The Tigress of Forli

Posted in Adaptive Leadership, Educational Leadership, Elizabeth Lev, Leadership, The Tigress Of Forli by Dr. Byron L. Ernest on October 27, 2019

The Tigress of Forlì: Renaissance Italy's Most Courageous and Notorious Countess, Caterina Riario Sforza de MediciThe Tigress of Forlì: Renaissance Italy’s Most Courageous and Notorious Countess, Caterina Riario Sforza de Medici by Elizabeth Lev

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was an incredible and gripping read. Caterina Riario Sforza de’ Medici was, as are all great leaders, controversial. Caterina was bold, brave and a benevolent leader; she was clever and skilled in diplomacy and dynamic on the battlefield. Elizabeth Lev does a masterful and vivid job of bringing to life for the reader the life of this leader who was celebrated and admired, but also reviled and feared. This book caused me to reflect deeply about the dispositions a leader must possess and the ability to adapt (adaptive leadership) that great leaders must develop.

One area that Lev spent time on was the fact that Caterina was a benevolent leader. In other words, making sure the needs of her people and of the greater community were cared for. It’s about, as I wrote about in, Benevolent Leadership, creating greater opportunities for our communities, states, nations, and the world. It’s really about creating different possibilities in the world. It’s about, as Caterina taught us, developing a sustainable future for the world and everyone living in it.

Lev gives us a bird’s eye view into this great leader who won and lost it all. It also prompts reflection into our own leadership actions and maneuvering.

~Dr. Byron L. Ernest

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