After the popularity of our blog post earlier this year on 7 seminal Conscious Business Books we decided to do a follow up with another 7!
There are so many we could include, but these are 7 that we rate particularly highly, while also trying to strike a balance between theory and practice.
OK, in no particular order…
Firms of Endearment: How World-Class Companies Profit from Passion and Purpose – Raj Sisodia, Jag Sheth & David B, Wolfe
Ever read Good to Great? It’s one of the classics of business. Firms of Endearment is like a conscious business version of Good to Great. It’s based on in-depth research into 30 companies that are strongly passion and purpose-driven.
Guess what? These companies, like Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Southwest Airlines, and Patagonia, are not just great places to work… they also blow their competition out of the water in terms of their financial performance!
This is one of the foundational books of the Conscious Capitalism movement, and it’s well worth reading if you want to get a real feel for what conscious businesses look and feel like… and how they perform!
Theory U: Leading from the Future as It Emerges – C. Otto Scharmer
For years now, Theory U has been redefining the theory and practice of leadership and transformation. It’s a deep dive into how discovery and transformation unfold at the levels of individuals, groups, and systems.
If you don’t mind the academic prose (Scharmer is a Senior Lecturer at MIT), this book offers a wealth of insight into the process of transformation. And consciousness and presence are at the heart of it.
SQ21: The 21 Skills of Spiritual Intelligence – Cindy Wigglesworth
The idea of IQ and EQ has become well established in today’s world, but, as Cindy argues, it is our spiritual intelligence that is the new frontier of personal growth and organisational leadership.
The first chapter is available for free, and it kicks off in inspiring form asking how can we become fully human in the work we do? Surely there are few more important questions today.
ReWork: Change the Way you Work Forever – Jason Fried & David Heinemeier Hansson
ReWork is a collection of short, punchy and practical chapters each addressing real problems that any entrepreneur or business practitioner will come up against. Gone are the clunky old conventions of how it should be done, and instead we’re served a fresh, energetic and creative roadmap for how to play a new exciting game.
Highly recommended for anyone who wants to practice business in today’s world, and it’s perfect for dipping into whenever you feel like a injection of liberating common sense.
The Way We’re Working Isn’t Working: The Four Forgotten Needs that Energize Great Performance
In this classic, Tony Schwartz, bestselling co-author of The Power of Full Engagement, makes the case that there’s an energy crisis in the workplace. Most of us fail to re-fuel and engage all of our four ‘gas tanks’ at work: physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual.
This is both a rich and practical book, because it covers key aspects of fully engaging all of those four core needs in our work. It includes a passionate case for sleeping in the workplace, cultivating your whole brain, and bringing all of yourself to work. A beautiful book, that will definitely help you wake up the workplace!
Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity – David Allen
Although Getting Things Done (GTD) is an absolute classic, it’s not commonly thought of as ‘conscious business’. We disagree. You may think this book is about time management. It’s not. It’s about how you manage your attention (consciousness), so that you can get to what’s most important.
If you’re going to change one thing about how you work, make it this: empty your head. It’s the source of endless power and creativity. And most of us are clogging it with ‘stuff’. More than anything, this book is a practical walk-through guide from overwhelm to relaxed and conscious productivity. Awesome stuff.
The Lean Startup: How Constant Innovation Creates Radically Successful Businesses – Eric Ries
Lean Startup is a new approach to business that’s centered around becoming conscious of your assumptions, and testing and adapting them continuously (before it’s too late). Although it doesn’t explicitly use the language of conscious business, it’s about ruthlessly facing reality as you build your business. And that’s pretty conscious, don’t you think?