Summer is in full swing, and for many of us, that means vacations or some time away from the office.
What should we do with all of this free time? Members of the Design Leadership Forum have some ideas…
The Forum is a group of 1,800 of the most ambitious and driven design leaders in the world. Members are avid readers and life-long learners. These are their reading recommendations.
The most popular book, hands down
At most of the member dinners and online town halls, we start off by asking a simple question: What piece of inspiring content are you consuming?
Because every member of the Forum is a people manager, it’s no surprise that Radical Candor is the most popular answer.
Dozens of different leaders mention this book as an indispensable must-read. Members praise the actionable frameworks and compelling style of the author, Kim Scott.
As Sheryl Sandberg wrote in her review, “Reading Radical Candor will help you build, lead, and inspire teams to do the best work of their lives.”
Other top reads
While there have been hundreds of endorsed reads by members, there‘s a shortlist of repeat recommendations. These books, blogs, and briefs come up time and time again. Check em’ out.
Non-fiction books about design
- Change by Design
- Org Design For Design Orgs
- Design Leadership Handbook
- Ruined By Design
- Discussing Design: Improving Communication and Collaboration through Critique
- Gridiron Genius
- Trillion Dollar Coach
- Measure What Matters
- Everybody Lies
- Money Makers
- Good to Great
- The Art of Gathering: How We Meet and Why It Matters
- Source Book of Magic
- How Not To Die
- The Subtle Art of not giving a f*ck
- The Servant
- Atomic Habits
- The Song of Achilles
- The Making of a Manager
- Art of Not Falling Apart
- Peak: Secrets from the New Science of Expertise
- 5 Levels Of Leadership
- The Master Algorithm
- The Chimp Paradox
- Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind
- Value Proposition Design
- Business Model Generation
- Getting The Right Work Done
- This Might Get Me Fired
- Leaders Eat Last
- The Business of Expertise
- Tribal Leadership
- Creativity, Inc
- Drive by Daniel Pink
- Made to Stick
Valuable reports on design
- The New Design Frontier
- Design in Tech Report
- Fjord Trends 2019
- 2019 Design Hiring Report
- Total Economic Impact of InVision
- McKinsey’s Business Value of Design
Useful blog articles
- Five Habits Of Design Thinking
- Eight Trends in Leadership and Career Development
- Why User Interviews Fail
- Baking Innovation Into Your Design Process
- Designing For Different States Of UI
- Ready Player One
- The Last Question
- Hitchhiker’s Guide To The Galaxy
- Balling Wire
- Death’s End trilogy
- Under the Tuscan Sun
This list was created by members of the Design Leadership Forum, a global community of about 1800 members (and growing). It’s a place for design leaders to come together, connect, and have honest conversations about some of the most difficult challenges they face in their leadership roles.
Every community member leads others in (or for) teams making digital products. If you want to be part of this community, nominate yourself, and join us at a future member event.
Feature image via Laura Close.
Adam elevates the design community by connecting peers and sharing industry best practices. He currently oversees the DesignBetter.Co workshop program and the Design Leadership Forum.