Top 8 Leadership Books for Women (2023)
Leadership books for women are not just career books. Sure, they’ll give you a few ideas about how to succeed in executive and management roles, but I believe leadership is more than just a professional aspect. You need to lead in your family life as well, not to mention other relationships.
Speaking up, making yourself heard, and getting respect, that's the purpose. No matter what you're after, here are some of the best leadership books for women I've been through lately, excellent for all kinds of situations and circumstances. Let's go.
What Are The Top Leadership Books for Women?
The Future Is Female, by Penny Ferguson (2023)
There’s no doubt about it, equality between genders is a thing these days. Women have been invited to sit down at the table. Female leaders gain more and more notoriety now, grabbing leadership roles in all kinds of businesses and corporations.
Now, think about the idea of a great leader and try to name five people suitable for this title. Most of them will be males. Women have dealt with all kinds of barriers in the past, something similar to discrimination these days.
I’ve been through lots of leadership books and they’re mainly aimed at men. 2023 brought in some excellent options for females. Penny Ferguson’s guide is a practical path to leadership and will help you achieve the success you’re after.
This book will introduce you to the most common challenges women have to go through, as well as various strategies to overcome your competition and become a reputable leader. Learn about emotional intelligence and its role in leadership, as well as the necessity of balance in life.
As if all these were not enough, you’ll learn how to use adversity to your advantage and actually gain from it, rather than see it as a disadvantage.
It’s the type of book that will change your mindset, no doubt. The type of book that will make you see your inner strength and push you to use it to your advantage.
Good Power, by Ginni Rometty (2023)
This is the type of book I’ve learned a lot from. It comes from someone who knows what she’s talking about. After all, Ginni Rometty is a former IBM CEO, so she knows exactly what it takes to be a leader and what you need to do in order to succeed.
The author left an iconic company and explains everything in her book. It’s one of the most motivational leadership books for women, but I also see it as a memoir. It starts with her problematic childhood and all the challenges she went through before becoming the IBM CEO.
With brutal honesty and a unique sense of storytelling, she shares a few milestones from both her career and personal life. She also explains how she has managed to conquer them, offering valuable advice and ideas.
Indeed, we all have different circumstances in life and what works for others may not necessarily work for us. But this book doesn’t just give you facts. Instead, it also shows you how she made decisions or how she planned her life. These are the things we can all learn from and adapt to our unique situations.
In my opinion, her concept of good power is what defined her success and I believe that’s the most important lesson in the process. There are also five principles she used in life, again, another useful and inspiring lesson.
Rising Together, by Sally Helgesen (2023)
This isn’t Sally Helgesen’s first leadership book for women. In fact, I would describe it as a followup to another bestseller of hers, How Women Rise. Sure, it’s not mandatory to read both books, but I believe you should start with the first one.
This book is based on about 30 years of working with various executives from all over the world, leaders from more industries, and managers from different companies. Why? Simple, to create more meaningful and inclusive relationships in work and not only.
Rising Together won’t tell you that diversification is important. It won’t tell you why you need a diverse workforce. We all know why. Instead, it teaches you how to get there. It’s not all about hiring more women, but also about identifying things that hold everyone back and what needs to be done.
It’s a pretty straightforward book. In the beginning, the author goes through the eight most popular triggers responsible for failed collaborations. You’ll also learn more about different backgrounds and how they affect mindsets in terms of ambition and perceptions.
Towards the second part of the book, we learn how to address such triggers. Surprisingly enough, it’s not about massive changes. Instead, some slight behavioral adjustments applied on a daily basis can simply change everything.
All in all, while I feel like it’s aimed at women, I think this book is useful to anyone working in such companies, both men and women looking for a more diverse attitude towards equality.
Something Major, by Randi Braun (2023)
I think Randi Braun’s book is a life changer. In fact, that’s how I’ve seen it described in many reviews before reading it. It aims to change every woman’s life, one at a time.
The book begins with a strong statement. Women are natural leaders. They take the lead when they’re allowed and they do a fairly good job. Unfortunately, many of them have old fashioned mindsets because they plan an ancient game with old rules.
That’s what the book aims to change. It’s written like a playbook and trust me, it does a pretty good job at it.
You'll find out how to take leadership into your own hands and play this modern game by setting the rules yourself, especially in terms of setting goals. It makes no difference what your challenges are. From the lack of validation to your inner critic, this book will change the way you do things in a positive manner.
Everything is well explained and some lessons are more difficult to implement. But then, there’s also some clear information. For example, the author mentions 16 things you should never say at work. Quick, simple, and concise.
I don’t know how you see it, but to me, the whole concept of female leadership is rewritten by modern rules. And to be honest, the concept comes from one of the most sought-after speakers and leaders, so you can leave yourself in good hands.
The Power of Authenticity, by Raja Al Gurg (2023)
I’ll try not to give you too many spoilers regarding this book. But I’ll find it really difficult to describe it otherwise because there’s no fluff.
Everything is crystal clear and the author goes straight into the important stuff, explaining this and that like no other, probably one of my favorite leadership books for women.
Like other similar books, it could be described as a memoir too, as the author shares details from her personal life and not just the good ones, but also the obstacles she has had to overcome. Today, she’s one of the most influential business people in the Arab world.
Don’t get me wrong, you don’t have to live there to read this book, what she aims to teach women applies to women from all geographical areas.
All in all, some of the lessons you’ll learn are based on obstacles and challenges. Some others are given from a more successful perspective, like things she wished she knew before becoming successful, as well as things she learned after getting there.
She defied all conventional standards related to women in the area, but she also tried to see things out of the box in order to succeed. From many points of view, I think this is more like an inspirational book. It will motivate you to push and show you how to assess obstacles in order to get over them.
Encouraging and confident, this is a must-read if you're seeking leadership advice.
Without a Doubt, by Surbhi Sarna (2023)
Once you're done with this book, it's fairly simple to understand the overall concept it's based on. Surbhi Sarna makes it fairly simple. If something looks like an issue or a disadvantage, chances are that's your actual strength. I know it sounds unreal and difficult, but you'll get to the same conclusion.
This book is written from a personal point of view. The author had to face teenage cancer, which looked like the end of the world. It was a weakness at first glance, but that's what inspired her to seek a better world. She reimagined the healthcare system and created a business that helps identify ovarian cancer.
It didn’t start well though. She grew up in a place where brown women had no power at all. She had no medical degree either, not to mention her limited contacts. But as she has always felt underrated, she used that to her advantage.
She has managed to achieve her dreams without an MBA. She has managed to become a world-renowned leader without having the money or contacts to help her out.
She now runs a successful medical team that actually saves lives. Her business venture went further. It was sold for $275 million, pushing her towards a completely different challenge.
I won't give you all the details here, but while it looks like a memoir, this book will teach you how to make as much as possible from your potential weaknesses, and that will change your life.
Goodbye, Perfect, by Homaira Kabir (2023)
If you’re sick and tired of trying to please everyone and being perfect for others, this is one of the best leadership books for women you’ll ever read. It’s just as useful if you’re the type who finds it difficult to say no, regardless of what people ask you for.
We don’t realize it at this point, but this kind of attitude hides something else. We’re afraid of taking opportunities. We don’t like risk and despite being competent, we’re afraid of speaking up. Don’t bother to deny it, it’s not that clear and obvious.
This is a must-read leadership book for women with such toxic behaviors. It's not something you choose, but a black hole you get trapped into. It's the trap of perfectionism. You keep seeking approval and you push even harder when you don't get it. There's no point in doing so.
The book teaches us to reclaim joy and embrace life as it is, gain as much as possible from it, and follow a purpose. After all, that's the essence of living. It's about how you want to live, rather than how others want to see you.
All in all, this book will most likely open your eyes and give you some direct advice to change everything overnight.
Get It Together, by Puja Rios (2023)
I found this title a little unusual. The author isn't a bestseller, a Wall Street Journal specialist, or journalist. No, this book comes from someone who many haven't heard of. Despite all these, it's one of the top recommendations for leadership books for women.
The author is a proven leader in sales, with a dynamic approach and successful results. She has managed to develop her own program, an idea that will change mindsets straight away. Everything for a real definition of success is achieved in no time.
But there’s a catch. Success goes hand in hand with personal development. If you don’t work on yourself, you’ll never taste success. Get It Together starts with your personal growth, which will directly affect your career.
You’ll learn quite a few useful things to drive your focus and find your inspiration. It’s a transformational release that will push you where you want to be. It makes no difference where you are now. The faster you change your mindset, the quicker you’ll reach your goals.
To keep it short, the author teaches you how to achieve goals, shut distractions, create doable goals, fight back, and stand up when needed.
These are by far some of the best leadership books for women released this year, some of them with real potential to become bestsellers and iconic releases for further generations. Take your time, learn, and apply your knowledge and you'll see changes straight away.
Check further reads dedicated for women.
My profession is online marketing and development (10+ years experience), check my latest mobile app called Upcoming or my Chrome extensions for ChatGPT. But my real passion is reading books both fiction and non-fiction. I have several favorite authors like James Redfield or Daniel Keyes. If I read a book I always want to find the best part of it, every book has it's unique value.