Hemingway's Books and Records

Hemingway's Books and Records

Discover the Best Strategic Planning Books in the 2024 Updated Edition

Looking for the top books on strategic planning to take your business or organization to the next level? Whether you’re a seasoned strategist or just starting out, these 20 must-read books will provide you with the knowledge and insights you need to develop and implement effective strategic plans. From classic titles to modern bestsellers, this curated list covers all aspects of strategic planning, making it a valuable resource for anyone looking to sharpen their strategic thinking skills. Let’s dive in and discover the best books about strategic planning!

  • 1 20 Best Books About Strategic Planning
  • 2 Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters
  • 3 The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life
  • 4 Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant
  • 5 Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors
  • 6 The Strategy Paradox: Why Committing to Success Leads to Failure (And What to Do About It)
  • 7 The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail
  • 8 The Strategy Pathfinder: Core Concepts and Live Cases
  • 9 The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing: A Guide to Profitable Decision Making
  • 10 The Strategy of Conflict
  • 11 The Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World
  • 12 Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters
  • 13 The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life
  • 14 Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works
  • 15 Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant
  • 16 Strategy Safari: A Guided Tour Through The Wilds of Strategic Management
  • 17 The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses
  • 18 Thinking, Fast and Slow
  • 19 HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy
  • 20 Strategy: A History
  • 21 Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works
  • 22 Conclusion

20 Best Books About Strategic Planning

best books about Strategic Planning Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters

See Best Deals

Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters

By richard rumelt.

Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard Rumelt is a highly acclaimed book on strategic planning. Rumelt, a renowned strategist, delves into the art of crafting effective strategies and identifies the key differences between good and bad strategies. He emphasizes the importance of clear, focused, and actionable strategies that can lead to success. The book provides insightful analysis and real-world examples to illustrate the principles of good strategy, making it a valuable resource for business leaders, managers, and anyone interested in achieving their goals. With its practical advice and engaging writing, Good Strategy/Bad Strategy is a must-read for anyone seeking to understand the intricacies of strategic planning and how it can drive organizational success.

best books about Strategic Planning The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist's Guide to Success in Business and Life

The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life

By avinash k. dixit and barry j. nalebuff.

The Art of Strategy is a fascinating book about strategic planning, written by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff. This insightful guide offers a game theorist’s perspective on achieving success in both business and life. The authors draw from a range of real-world examples to illustrate the principles of strategic thinking, making it an engaging and practical read for anyone looking to enhance their decision-making skills.

Through a combination of clear explanations and thought-provoking scenarios, the book provides valuable insights into the art of making strategic choices. Whether you’re a business professional seeking to improve your competitive edge or an individual looking to navigate life’s challenges more effectively, The Art of Strategy offers valuable lessons and actionable strategies for achieving success. With its engaging approach and practical advice, this book is a must-read for anyone interested in mastering the art of strategic planning.

best books about Strategic Planning Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant

Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant

By w. chan kim and renée mauborgne.

Blue Ocean Strategy is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning that challenges traditional business thinking. W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne propose that instead of competing in overcrowded markets (red oceans), companies should seek out uncontested market space (blue oceans) to create new demand and make the competition irrelevant. The authors provide a framework for identifying and capturing these blue oceans by focusing on value innovation, which is the simultaneous pursuit of differentiation and low cost. Using real-world examples, the book illustrates how companies like Cirque du Soleil and Southwest Airlines have successfully implemented blue ocean strategies to achieve unprecedented growth and profitability. Blue Ocean Strategy is a must-read for anyone looking to break away from the competition and chart a new path for their business.

best books about Strategic Planning Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors

Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors

By michael e. porter.

Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors by Michael E. Porter is a renowned book on strategic planning. It provides a comprehensive framework for analyzing industries and competitors, offering valuable insights for businesses looking to gain a competitive advantage. Porter’s five forces model and generic strategies are central to the book, providing readers with practical tools for understanding the dynamics of competition and making strategic decisions. With its clear, actionable advice, this book about strategic planning is a must-read for anyone looking to navigate the complexities of the business world and achieve long-term success.

best books about Strategic Planning The Strategy Paradox: Why Committing to Success Leads to Failure (And What to Do About It)

The Strategy Paradox: Why Committing to Success Leads to Failure (And What to Do About It)

By michael e. raynor.

The Strategy Paradox by Michael E. Raynor is a thought-provoking book on strategic planning that challenges traditional business wisdom. Raynor argues that the very strategies that lead to success can ultimately lead to failure, creating a paradox for organizations. He uses real-world examples to illustrate how companies fall into the trap of overcommitting to successful strategies, leading to complacency and vulnerability. Raynor offers practical insights on how to navigate this paradox, emphasizing the importance of adaptability and flexibility in strategic decision-making. This book about strategic planning provides valuable lessons for leaders and managers seeking to avoid the pitfalls of rigid strategic thinking and remain competitive in a rapidly changing business environment.

best books about Strategic Planning The Innovator's Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail

The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail

By clayton m. christensen.

The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton M. Christensen is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning that explores why successful companies often fail when faced with disruptive innovation. Christensen argues that companies can become too focused on sustaining their current business models and overlook the potential of emerging technologies. This book about strategic planning explains the concept of disruptive innovation and provides insightful examples of how industry leaders have faltered by not adapting to new market trends. Christensen offers practical advice for businesses to navigate these challenges, emphasizing the importance of being open to change and willing to invest in new opportunities. The Innovator’s Dilemma is a must-read for anyone interested in understanding the dynamics of innovation and strategic decision-making in the business world.

best books about Strategic Planning The Strategy Pathfinder: Core Concepts and Live Cases

The Strategy Pathfinder: Core Concepts and Live Cases

By duncan angwin and stephen cummings.

The Strategy Pathfinder: Core Concepts and Live Cases by Duncan Angwin and Stephen Cummings is a comprehensive and engaging book on strategic planning. It provides a practical and accessible guide to the key concepts, frameworks, and tools essential for understanding and implementing effective strategic planning. The book offers a unique combination of core theoretical concepts and real-life case studies, making it a valuable resource for students, professionals, and anyone interested in gaining a deeper understanding of strategic planning. With its clear and insightful approach, this book about strategic planning equips readers with the knowledge and skills needed to tackle the complex challenges of strategic management. Whether you’re new to the field or looking to enhance your existing knowledge, The Strategy Pathfinder is an indispensable resource for mastering the art of strategic planning.

best books about Strategic Planning The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing: A Guide to Profitable Decision Making

The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing: A Guide to Profitable Decision Making

By thomas nagle and john hogan.

The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing is a comprehensive book on strategic planning, written by Thomas Nagle and John Hogan. This book provides a thorough guide to pricing strategies and how they can be used to make profitable decisions. It covers various tactics and techniques for setting prices, managing pricing in different industries, and understanding customer psychology in relation to pricing. The authors delve into the importance of pricing in the overall business strategy and provide real-world examples and case studies to illustrate their points. Whether you’re a business owner, marketer, or pricing manager, this book about strategic planning is essential reading for anyone looking to gain a deeper understanding of pricing and its impact on business success.

best books about Strategic Planning The Strategy of Conflict

The Strategy of Conflict

By thomas c. schelling.

The Strategy of Conflict by Thomas C. Schelling is a classic book on strategic planning that offers a fascinating exploration of the dynamics of conflict and cooperation. Schelling, a Nobel Prize-winning economist, delves into the complexities of decision-making in competitive situations, shedding light on the strategies and tactics employed by individuals and nations in their pursuit of advantage. Through compelling examples and insightful analysis, the book provides valuable insights into the psychology of conflict, the role of communication, and the manipulation of expectations. Schelling’s work has had a profound influence on fields such as game theory and international relations, making it an essential read for anyone interested in understanding the intricacies of strategic planning and decision-making.

best books about Strategic Planning The Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World

The Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World

By dudley lynch and paul l. kordis.

The Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning by Dudley Lynch and Paul L. Kordis. This insightful guide offers a fresh perspective on navigating the unpredictable and turbulent waters of the modern business world. By drawing parallels between the strategic behaviors of sharks, carps, and dolphins, the authors provide a compelling framework for success in today’s chaotic environment. With its emphasis on flexibility, creativity, and emotional intelligence, this book about strategic planning encourages leaders to adopt a more agile and adaptive approach to decision-making. Whether you’re a business professional, entrepreneur, or leader looking to thrive in an ever-changing landscape, The Strategy of the Dolphin offers a roadmap for achieving success in the face of uncertainty.

Recommended for you:

business strategy books. books on business strategy

by Richard P. Rumelt

Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard P. Rumelt is a compelling book on strategic planning that delves into the essential elements of effective strategy. Rumelt distinguishes between good and bad strategies, highlighting the importance of clear and focused strategic thinking. He emphasizes the need for a coherent and actionable plan that addresses the critical challenges facing an organization. The book provides insightful case studies and practical examples to illustrate the concepts, making it a valuable resource for business leaders, managers, and anyone interested in understanding the fundamentals of successful strategic planning. Rumelt’s straightforward and engaging writing style makes this strategic planning book a must-read for anyone looking to enhance their strategic thinking skills and achieve meaningful results.

by Avinash K. Dixit, Barry J. Nalebuff

The Art of Strategy is a compelling book on strategic planning that offers valuable insights from game theory to help readers succeed in both business and life. Written by renowned economists Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff, this book provides a comprehensive guide on making strategic decisions by analyzing the choices and interactions of various parties. Through real-life examples and engaging anecdotes, the authors demonstrate how to apply game theory principles to negotiate, compete, and make rational decisions in a variety of situations. Whether you’re a business professional, entrepreneur, or simply interested in the dynamics of decision-making, The Art of Strategy offers practical wisdom and strategic thinking that can be applied to achieve success in all aspects of life.

best books about Strategic Planning Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works

Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works

By a.g. lafley, roger l. martin.

Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works is a compelling book on strategic planning, written by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin. The authors draw on their extensive experience to provide practical insights into the world of business strategy. Through real-world examples and case studies, they illustrate the importance of making strategic choices that set a company apart from its competitors. The book offers a clear framework for developing and executing effective strategies, emphasizing the importance of making deliberate choices and focusing on what it takes to win in the marketplace. Whether you’re a business leader, entrepreneur, or student of business, this strategic planning book offers valuable lessons that will help you navigate the complexities of strategic decision-making and achieve sustainable success.

by W. Chan Kim, Renée Mauborgne

Blue Ocean Strategy is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning that challenges the traditional competitive mindset by introducing the concept of creating uncontested market space. Authors W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne argue that companies should focus on innovation and creating new demand in untapped market areas, rather than competing in overcrowded and cutthroat industries. Through real-life examples and practical frameworks, the book offers a step-by-step guide on how to identify and capture these “blue oceans” of opportunity, making the competition irrelevant. This strategic planning book provides a fresh perspective on business strategy, encouraging businesses to break free from the confines of competition and chart their own course to success.

best books about Strategic Planning Strategy Safari: A Guided Tour Through The Wilds of Strategic Management

Strategy Safari: A Guided Tour Through The Wilds of Strategic Management

By henry mintzberg, bruce ahlstrand, joseph lampel.

Strategy Safari: A Guided Tour Through The Wilds of Strategic Management is a fascinating book on strategic planning written by Henry Mintzberg, Bruce Ahlstrand, and Joseph Lampel. The authors take readers on a captivating journey through the world of strategic management, exploring the various schools of thought and approaches to strategy. Using the metaphor of a safari, the book guides readers through the “wilds” of strategic planning, offering valuable insights and perspectives along the way. With its engaging and informative style, Strategy Safari provides a comprehensive overview of the different ways in which organizations can approach strategic planning, making it a must-read for anyone interested in understanding the complexities of strategic management. Whether you’re a student, business professional, or simply curious about the world of strategy, this book about strategic planning is sure to leave a lasting impression.

best books about Strategic Planning The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

By eric ries.

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning for entrepreneurs. Ries introduces the concept of the lean startup, which emphasizes continuous innovation and rapid iteration to create successful businesses. He presents a methodology for developing and managing startups in an uncertain environment, allowing entrepreneurs to test their vision continuously and adapt to changes. The book offers practical advice and real-world examples to help entrepreneurs build sustainable and scalable businesses. Ries’s approach to strategic planning encourages entrepreneurs to focus on creating value for customers while minimizing waste, ultimately leading to radically successful businesses. The Lean Startup is a must-read for anyone looking to launch a startup or innovate within an existing organization.

best books about Strategic Planning Thinking, Fast and Slow

Thinking, Fast and Slow

By daniel kahneman.

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning that delves into the complexities of the human mind. Kahneman, a Nobel Prize-winning psychologist, explores the two systems that drive the way we think: the fast, intuitive and emotional system, and the slow, deliberate and logical system. Through engaging anecdotes and compelling research, he reveals the cognitive biases and errors that affect our decision-making processes. This strategic planning book offers valuable insights into how our minds work, and provides practical strategies for making better choices in both personal and professional settings. Whether you’re a business leader, a decision-maker, or simply interested in understanding human behavior, this book about strategic planning is a must-read for anyone seeking to enhance their critical thinking skills.

best books about Strategic Planning HBR's 10 Must Reads on Strategy

HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy

By harvard business review.

HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy is a comprehensive collection of articles that provides valuable insights and practical advice on the art of crafting and executing successful business strategies. This book on strategic planning covers a wide range of topics including competitive advantage, business model innovation, blue ocean strategy, and creating a strategic vision. Each article is written by renowned business experts and thought leaders, making it a valuable resource for anyone looking to enhance their strategic planning skills. Whether you’re a seasoned executive or a budding entrepreneur, this book about strategic planning offers timeless wisdom and proven strategies to help you navigate the complexities of the business world and achieve sustainable growth and success.

best books about Strategic Planning Strategy: A History

Strategy: A History

By lawrence freedman.

Strategy: A History by Lawrence Freedman is a comprehensive exploration of the evolution of strategic planning throughout human history. This captivating book delves into the origins of strategic thinking, examining its development in various contexts, from military tactics to business strategies and political maneuvers. Freedman’s insightful analysis offers a deep understanding of the complexities and intricacies of strategic planning, making it a must-read for anyone interested in the art of devising and implementing effective strategies. With its engaging narrative and wealth of historical examples, Strategy: A History provides a thought-provoking journey through the ages, shedding light on the timeless principles and enduring relevance of strategic planning. Whether you’re a student of history, business professional, or military strategist, this book about strategic planning will undoubtedly expand your knowledge and perspective on the subject.

best books about Strategic Planning Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works

by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin

Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin is a groundbreaking book on strategic planning that offers a practical and insightful guide to creating a winning strategy. The authors, with their extensive experience in business and consulting, provide a framework for developing a clear and effective strategy that can drive success in any organization. They emphasize the importance of making strategic choices and making trade-offs to achieve long-term success. This book about strategic planning is filled with real-world examples from well-known companies, making it a valuable resource for anyone looking to understand the fundamentals of strategic planning and how to apply them in their own business or organization. It’s a must-read for anyone seeking to gain a competitive edge and achieve sustainable growth.

Strategic Planning is crucial in today’s rapidly evolving business world, and these 20 books about strategic planning offer valuable insights and practical advice for organizations of all sizes. Whether you’re a business leader looking to overhaul your strategy or a student eager to learn about effective planning techniques, these books provide a wealth of knowledge to help you succeed. From classic works to modern bestsellers, this curated list covers all aspects of strategic planning, making it an essential resource for anyone interested in mastering this critical business skill.

Which Strategic Planning book is best?

The best book on Strategic Planning can vary with personal preference, but three widely recommended titles are:

  • Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard Rumelt ,
  • The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff ,
  • Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne .

Each offers valuable insights and could be a great starting point.

What are the best books to learn about Strategic Planning?

For those looking to learn about Strategic Planning, there is a wealth of literature that can provide a comprehensive understanding of the subject. Some of the most highly recommended books include:

  • Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne ,
  • Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors by Michael E. Porter ,
  • The Strategy Paradox: Why Committing to Success Leads to Failure (And What to Do About It) by Michael E. Raynor ,
  • The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail by Clayton M. Christensen ,
  • The Strategy Pathfinder: Core Concepts and Live Cases by Duncan Angwin and Stephen Cummings ,
  • The Strategy and Tactics of Pricing: A Guide to Profitable Decision Making by Thomas Nagle and John Hogan ,
  • The Strategy of Conflict by Thomas C. Schelling ,
  • The Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World by Dudley Lynch and Paul L. Kordis

These books offer a range of perspectives on Strategic Planning, covering various aspects and approaches to the subject.

What are the best books on Strategic Planning?

The best books on Strategic Planning include:

  • Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard P. Rumelt ,
  • The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit, Barry J. Nalebuff ,
  • The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail by Clayton M. Christensen .

Each offers unique insights into the subject. While these books on the topic of Strategic Planning are highly regarded, it’s important to note that any list of ‘best’ books is subjective and reflects a range of opinions.

What are the best Strategic Planning books of all time?

Choosing the best Strategic Planning books of all time can vary depending on who you ask, but seven titles that are often celebrated include

  • The Strategy of the Dolphin: Scoring a Win in a Chaotic World by Dudley Lynch and Paul L. Kordis ,
  • and Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard P. Rumelt .

Each of these books has made a significant impact in the field of Strategic Planning and continues to be influential today.

Related posts:

  • Social Calendar [New]
  • Browse Team Building Experiences

16 Best Business Strategy Books to Read in 2024

You discovered our list of the best business strategy books .

Business strategy books are guides to developing strategic corporate plans. These books cover topics like scaling operating, marketing growth, outpacing competitors, and achieving longevity. People read these books for insights on how to create and improve businesses.

These books are a type of business books and are similar to CEO books,   project management books , marketing books and books on startups .

This post contains:

  • the best business strategy books of all time
  • top books on business strategy
  • strategic management books
  • corporate strategy books
  • strategic planning books

Let’s get to it!

List of business strategy books

Here is a list of some of the best books about business strategy, with both new releases and best sellers.

1. Your Next Five Moves: Master the Art of Business Strategy by Patrick Bet-David and Greg Dinkin

Your Next Five Moves

Your Next Five Moves is one of the best new strategic planning books. The book challenges readers to think like chess grandmasters and anticipate chains of events. The author urges business strategists to plan their next moves in succession instead of treating each as an individual decision. The book also gives advice on clarifying company missions, developing team building skills , and gaining the upper hand against powerful players.

Notable Quote: “Those who have a system for making better decisions win. Some decisions are quick, while others take time. You need a specific methodology to attack any issue, the same way a chess master knows how to play any opening or defend against one once the match starts.”

Buy Your Next Five Moves .

2. Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard Rumelt

Good Strategy Bad Strategy

Good Strategy Bad Strategy is one of the best books on strategic thinking. Richard Rumelt dissects effective strategies and points out qualities that make these plans succeed. The author also identifies the markings of poor plans, and gives tips for spotting bad strategies. The book also covers topics such as leverage, proximate objectives, and chain link systems. Each section contains stories from companies like Apple, Wal-Mart, Toyota, and Roche to serve as examples. Good Strategy Bad Strategy is a field guide for crafting and evaluating strategic systems. The book helps readers see past the fluff and draw up better gameplans.

Notable Quote: “Good strategy works by focusing energy and resources on one, or a very few, pivotal objectives whose accomplishment will lead to a cascade of favorable outcomes.”

Buy Good Strategy Bad Strategy .

Want some free team building tools?

$49 value (100% free).

  • 100+ fully tested icebreaker questions
  • 24+ themed Bingo generators
  • 5+ PDFs (including the 8% Rule)
  • 2024 team building calendar
  • and more...

Tool Box

Enter your email for instant access

3. Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works by by A. G. Lafley, Roger L. Martin et al

Playing to Win

Playing to Win describes how A. G. Lafley drastically improved Procter & Gamble’s sales and profitability by basing operational strategy on five key questions:

  • What is our winning aspiration?
  • Where will we play?
  • How will we win?
  • What capabilities must we have in place to win?
  • What management systems are required to support our choices?

The book shows how this repeatable method can benefit other companies and business leaders. Playing to Win provides a practical formula for strengthening your band and organization through a series of educated and deliberate choices.

Notable Quote: “Strategy needn’t be mysterious. Conceptually, it is simple and straightforward. It requires clear and hard thinking, real creativity, courage, and personal leadership.”

Buy Playing to Win .

4. Built to Last: Successful Habits of Visionary Companies by Jim Collins and Jerry I Porras

Built to Last

Built to Last examines the characteristics and behaviors of innovative and long-lasting companies. Drawing on extensive research, the authors analyze the factors that lead companies to survive and thrive through tough times and competitive landscapes. The book compares companies like Procter & Gamble, Walt Disney, and Marriott with lesser competitors and outlines the keys to industry leaders’ success and longevity. Built to Last covers topics such as setting goals, building a cult-like culture, and managing change, and lays out a framework for creating enduring enterprises.

Notable Quote: “Visionary companies pursue a cluster of objectives, of which making money is only one—and not necessarily the primary one.”

Buy Built to Last .

5. Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap and Others Don’t by Jim Collins

Good to Great

Good to Great is one of the most popular books on business strategy. A companion to Built to Last, this bestseller examines what qualities differentiate mediocre companies from industry legends. The book hones in on concepts like leadership competencies, cultures of discipline, and technology, and shows how each factor helps organizations excel. Good to Great is a lesson on how to not only survive in the business world, but dominate it for extended periods of time.

Notable Quote: “Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness, it turns out, is largely a matter of conscious choice, and discipline.”

Buy Good to Great .

6. Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make Competition Irrelevant by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne

Blue Ocean Strategy

While many business strategy books explain how to dominate crowded markets, Blue Ocean Strategy takes the opposite approach. The book advocates for finding and seizing untapped opportunities. In other words, the best way to eliminate competition is to pursue a lesser-traveled path. The authors demonstrate how to identify previously neglected needs and generate new demand. Blue Ocean Strategy lays out a system for achieving this result, complete with frameworks and analytical tools.

Notable Quote: “Value innovation requires companies to orient the whole system toward achieving a leap in value for both buyers and themselves.”

Buy Blue Ocean Strategy .

7. The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff

The Art of Strategy

The Art of Strategy is one of the best business strategy books for beginners. Drawing on the principles of game theory , the book explains how to guess and prepare for competitors’ next moves. Through mathematical and scientific logic, the authors show how to find patterns in seemingly random occurrences and illogical behavior. The book is rich with case studies and concrete examples that make game theory easy to understand and applicable to a wide range of situations.

Notable Quote: “It may not be enough to play a game well—you must also be sure you are playing the right game.”

Buy The Art of Strategy .

8. Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors by Michael E. Porter

Competitive Strategy

Two decades after its initial publication, Competitive Strategy is still relevant. Michael E. Porter shows readers how to sum up and surpass rivals by performing in-depth industry analyses and taking appropriate actions. The book consists of three sections: General Analytical Techniques, Generic Industry Environments, and Strategic Decisions. Each chapter examines a different aspect of studying and challenging opposition. The prose is dense, but the exploration of the topic is exhaustive. Competitive Strategy reads like a market advantage encyclopedia.

Notable Quote: “From my examination of many declining industries, the firms that seem to be the most objective about managing the decline process are those that also participate in the substitute industry. They have a clearer perception concerning the prospects of the substitute product and the threat of decline.”

Buy Competitive Strategy .

9. Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs by John Doerr

Measure What Matters

Measure What Matters shows how businesses can achieve impressive growth by selecting smart objectives and key results, or OKRs. The book breaks down the process of choosing, tracking, and accomplishing goals through best practices like committing to priorities, aligning teams, and monitoring progress. Chapters illustrate these principles with examples from leading organizations like Google, The Gates Foundation, and Intel.

Notable Quote: “Ideas are easy. Execution is everything.”

Buy Measure What Matters .

10. The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change the Way You Do Business by Clayton M. Christensen

The Innovators Dilemna

The Innovator’s Dilemma offers a new approach to business strategy. Instead of advocating for following tried-and-tested formulas, the book insists that experimentation is often the best strategy. Clayton Christensen argues that organizations cannot always rely on proven methods. Companies need to forge new paths to remain relevant and competitive. The Innovator’s Dilemma illustrates this concept by sharing anecdotes of triumphant and tragic companies while offering advice for navigating disruptive change.

Notable Quote: “To succeed consistently, good managers need to be skilled not just in choosing, training, and motivating the right people for the right job, but in choosing, building, and preparing the right organization for the job as well.”

Buy The Innovator’s Dilemma .

11. HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy by Harvard Business Review

HBR Business Strategy

HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy collects the ten best Harvard Business Reviews essays on business strategy into one helpful anthology. The book explores topics such as clarifying the company mission, standing out amongst competitors, and measuring strategies with Balanced Scorecards. This collection contains valuable insight from industry experts, including the authors of top selling business strategy books.

Notable Quote: “Operational effectiveness and strategy are both essential to superior performance, which, after all, is the primary goal of any enterprise. But they work in very different ways.”

Buy HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy .

12. Seeing Around Corners: How to Spot Inflection Points in Business Before They Happen by Rita McGrath

Seeing Around Corners

Seeing Around Corners concentrates on inflection points, or major shifts in industry. Rita McGrath explains how to predict these changes and prepare for them. Changes in customer needs or expectations, competitor evolution, and technological advancement can shake up market rankings. Smart companies expect these challenges and are ready to adapt. The book outlines techniques for anticipating and overcoming industry curveballs. Seeing Around Corners is a guide to disruption-proofing your business.

Notable Quote: “The very concept of “industry” is an artificial categorization. Often the most important competition any business will face is from entrants who are not hamstrung by assumptions about what their “industry” expects of them.”

Buy Seeing Around Corners .

13. Your Strategy Needs a Strategy: How to Choose and Execute the Right Approach by Martin Reeves, Knut Haanaes, et al

Your Strategy Needs a Strategy

Your Strategy Needs a Strategy is a masterclass in business plan execution. The book gives readers advice on how to select the best course of action and bring plans to fruition.

It breaks strategy down into five main categories:

  • Be the Orchestrator

The book analyzes the advantages and disadvantages of these methods and recommends the ideal circumstances and conditions for each. Your Strategy Needs a Strategy shows readers how to align strategy with the business environment and choose the best-suited approach.

Notable Quote: “Strategy is, in essence, problem solving, and the best approach depends upon the specific problem at hand. Your environment dictates your approach to strategy.”

Buy Your Strategy Needs a Strategy .

14. The Invincible Company: How to Constantly Reinvent Your Organization with Inspiration From the World’s Best Business Models by Alexander Osterwalder, Yves Pigneur, et al

The Invincible Company

The Invincible Company analyzes how winning corporations are able to disrupt industries and dominate markets. The authors examine the practices of leading companies like Microsoft, IKEA, and Amazon and explore successful business models throughout history. The book includes many visuals and charts, as well as tools like strategy frameworks, innovation metrics, and culture maps. The Invincible Company is a blueprint for becoming an industry titan.

Notable Quote: “The Invincible Company explores the future, while excelling at exploiting the present.”

Buy The Invincible Company .

15. Competing in the Age of AI: Strategy and Leadership When Algorithms and Networks Run the World by Marco Iansiti and Karim R. Lakhani

Competing in the Age of AI

Competing in the Age of AI asserts that artificial intelligence is rapidly transforming the business landscape. To keep up with the algorithm revolution, business leaders must employ new approaches. This book outlines techniques to incorporate AI into operational strategy. Competing in the Age of AI shows businesses how to come out ahead in a world where machine learning increasingly affects business’ bottom lines.

Notable Quote: “We are moving from an era of core competencies, differing from firm to firm and embedded deep in each organization, to an age shaped by data and analytics, powered by algorithms and hosted in the computing cloud for anyone to use.”

Buy Competing in the Age of AI .

16. Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal

Hooked

Hooked lays out strategies for generating market popularity and user loyalty. The book explains how to design products that consumers will use repeatedly. Nir Eyal relies on case studies and scientific research to explore the nature of habit. Hooked suggests steps to make customers return, remain active, and keep singing product praises.

Notable Quote: “To change behavior, products must ensure the user feels in control. People must want to use the service, not feel they have to.”

Buy Hooked .

Books on business strategy provide a roadmap for achieving goals and favorable results. Devising a foolproof plan is not easy, and there are many factors to consider. Luckily, there is no shortage of experts willing to share experiences and observations to help current and future leaders pick smart and sustainable paths.

For more reading suggestions, check out our lists of books on innovation , books on creativity , leadership books , small business books and  management books .

We also have a list of books on product design , books on growth hacking and customer service books .

FAQ: Business strategy books

Here are answers to common questions about business strategy books.

What are business strategy books?

Business strategy books are guides that help leaders form actionable plans. These books cover topics like analyzing competition, scaling growth, and overcoming industry disruption. The purpose of these books is to help leaders prepare for likely developments.

What are the best business strategy books of all time?

Some of the best business strategy books of all time include Good Strategy Bad Strategy by Richard Rumelt, Blue Ocean Strategy by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne, and Competitive Strategy by Michael E. Porter.

Why should you read books on business strategy?

Books on business strategy help companies anticipate potential challenges and take reasonable precautions. These books examine corporate operations from multiple standpoints and enable leaders to make smart choices that lead to sustained success.

Author avatar

Author: Angela Robinson

Marketing Coordinator at teambuilding.com. Team building content expert. Angela has a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and worked as a community manager with Yelp to plan events for businesses.

Get our free team building tool box

$49 value at no cost. may as well check it out.

19 Best Books on Strategic Planning

f you need a roadmap to success, then strategic planning is something that you should know about. Planning out your future and your business is a great way to save time and money, as well as boost productivity. In this post, we’ll go over some of the best books on strategic planning. We’ll start with what it means to be strategic, before going into each book in detail. Each book will have an overview, why it’s good for you, who it’s for, and other important details

Table of Contents

Best Books on Strategic Planning: THE LIST

1. good strategy/bad strategy | by richard rumelt.

the best strategic planning books

Developing and implementing a strategy is  the  central task of a leader. A good strategy is a specific and coherent response to – and approach for – overcoming the obstacles to progress. A good strategy works by harnessing and applying power where it will have the greatest effect. Yet, Rumelt shows that there has been a growing and unfortunate tendency to equate Mom-and-apple-pie values, fluffy packages of buzzwords, motivational slogans, and financial goals with “strategy”.

In  Good Strategy/Bad Strategy , he debunks these elements of “bad strategy” and awakens an understanding of the power of a “good strategy”. He introduces nine sources of power – ranging from using leverage to effectively focusing on growth – that are eye-opening yet pragmatic tools that can easily be put to work on Monday morning and uses fascinating examples from business, nonprofit, and military affairs to bring its original and pragmatic ideas to life. The detailed examples range from Apple to General Motors, from the two Iraq wars to Afghanistan, from a small local market to Wal-Mart, from Nvidia to Silicon Graphics, from the Getty Trust to the Los Angeles Unified School District, from Cisco Systems to Paccar, and from Global Crossing to the 2007-08 financial crisis.

Reflecting an astonishing grasp and integration of economics, finance, technology, history, and the brilliance and foibles of the human character,  Good Strategy/Bad Strategy  stems from Rumelt’s decades of digging beyond the superficial to address hard questions with honesty and integrity.

2. Blue Ocean Strategy | By W. Chan Kim

the best strategic planning books

Blue Ocean Strategy  presents a systematic approach to making the competition irrelevant and outlines principles and tools any organization can use to create and capture its own blue oceans. This expanded edition includes a new preface by the authors: “Help! My Ocean Is Turning Red”; updates on all cases and examples in the book; and two new chapters and an expanded third one – “Alignment, Renewal, and Red Ocean Traps” – that address some of the most pressing questions listeners and readers have asked over the years.

3. Playing to Win | By Alan Lafley

Are you just playing—or playing to  win ?

the best strategic planning books

Now two of today’s best-known business thinkers get to the heart of strategy—explaining what it’s for, how to think about it, why you need it, and how to get it done. And they use one of the most successful corporate turnarounds of the past century, which they achieved together, to prove their point.

A.G. Lafley, former CEO of Procter & Gamble, in close partnership with strategic adviser Roger Martin, doubled P&G’s sales, quadrupled its profits, and increased its market value by more than $100 billion in just ten years. Now, drawn from their years of experience at P&G and the Rotman School of Management, where Martin is dean, this book shows how leaders in organizations of all sizes can guide everyday actions with larger strategic goals built around the clear, essential elements that determine business success— where to play  and  how to win .

The result is a playbook for winning. Lafley and Martin have created a set of five essential strategic choices that, when addressed in an integrated way, will move you ahead of your competitors. They are:

• What is our winning aspiration? • Where will we play? • How will we win? • What capabilities must we have in place to win? • What management systems are required to support our choices?

The stories of how P&G repeatedly won by applying this method to iconic brands such as Olay, Bounty, Gillette, Swiffer, and Febreze clearly illustrate how  deciding  on a strategic approach—and then making the right choices to support it—makes the difference between just playing the game and actually winning.

4. Competitive Strategy | By Michael Porter

the best strategic planning books

Electrifying in its simplicity – like all great breakthroughs – Porter’s analysis of industries captures the complexity of industry competition in five underlying forces. Porter introduces one of the most powerful competitive tools yet developed: his three generic strategies – lowest cost, differentiation, and focus – which bring structure to the task of strategic positioning. He reveals how competitive advantage can be defined in terms of relative cost and relative prices, thus linking it directly to profitability and presents a whole new perspective on how profit is created and divided. In the almost two decades since publication, Porter’s framework for predicting competitor behavior has transformed the way in which companies look at their rivals and has given rise to the new discipline of competitor assessment.

More than a million managers in both large and small companies, investment analysts, consultants, students, and scholars throughout the world have internalized Porter’s ideas and applied them to assess industries, understand competitors, and choose competitive positions. The ideas in the audiobook address the underlying fundamentals of competition in a way that is independent of the specifics of the ways companies go about competing.

Competitive Strategy  has filled a void in management thinking. It provides an enduring foundation and grounding point on which all subsequent work can be built. By bringing a disciplined structure to the question of how firms achieve superior profitability, Porter’s rich frameworks and deep insights comprise a sophisticated view of competition unsurpassed in the last quarter-century.  Competitive Strategy  is skillfully narrated by Scott R. Pollak.

5. Good to Great | By Jim Collins

the best strategic planning books

But what about companies that are not born with great DNA? How can good companies, mediocre companies, even bad companies achieve enduring greatness? Are there those that convert long-term mediocrity or worse into long-term superiority? If so, what are the distinguishing characteristics that cause a company to go from good to great?

Over five years, Jim Collins and his research team have analyzed the histories of 28 companies, discovering why some companies make the leap and others don’t. The findings include:

  • Level 5 Leadership: A surprising style, required for greatness
  • The Hedgehog Concept: Finding your three circles, to transcend the curse of competence
  • A Culture of Discipline: The alchemy of great results
  • Technology Accelerators: How good-to-great companies think differently about technology
  • The Flywheel and the Doom Loop: Why those who do frequent restructuring fail to make the leap

6. The Art of Strategy | By Avinash Dixit

the best strategic planning books

7. The 4 Disciplines of Execution | By Sean Covey

For fans of  Good to Great  and  The First 90 Days ,  The Four Disciplines of Execution  is the book “every leader should read” (Clayton Christensen, Professor, Harvard Business School, and author of  The Innovator’s Dilemma ) for creating lasting organizational change. A number-one  Wall Street Journal  best seller with more than 500,000 copies sold,  The Four Disciplines of Execution  will radically change your business.

the best strategic planning books

The second edition provides more than 30 percent new content, including insight on topics such as:

  • How 4DX impacts leaders of leaders
  • The one metric that sustains execution for the long term
  • Three leadership mindsets required for strategic commitment
  • Utilizing technology for compelling executive scoreboards

The  4 Disciplines of Execution  are used by more than 100,000 teams around the world in business, government, and education, and are changing how teams and organizations achieve their most important goals.

The 4 Disciplines of Execution  (4DX) is a simple, repeatable, and proven formula for executing your most important strategic priorities in the midst of the whirlwind. By following the 4 Disciplines – Focus on the Wildly Important; Act on Lead Measures; Keep a Compelling Scoreboard; Create a Cadence of Accountability – leaders can produce breakthrough results, even when executing the strategy requires a significant change in behavior from their teams.

8. The Art of War | By Sun Tzu

the best strategic planning books

This unabridged edition of  The Art of War  includes only the most essential translator’s notes so that the words and thoughts of Sun Tzu may be easily understood.

9. HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy | By Michael Porter

the best strategic planning books

HBR’s 10 Must Reads series focuses on the core topics that every ambitious manager needs to know: leadership, strategy, change, managing people, and managing yourself.  Harvard Business Review  has sorted through hundreds of articles and selected only the most essential ones on each topic. Each title includes timeless advice that will be relevant regardless of an ever-changing business environment.

Classic ideas, enduring advice, the best thinkers: HBR’s 10 Must Reads.

Is your company spending too much time on strategy development – with too little to show for it?

If you listen to nothing else on strategy, you should at least hear these 10 articles. We’ve combed through hundreds of  Harvard Business Review  articles and selected the most important ones to help you catalyze your organization’s strategy development and execution.

HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy  will inspire you to:

  • Distinguish your company from rivals
  • Clarify what your company will and won’t do
  • Craft a vision for an uncertain future
  • Create blue oceans of uncontested market space
  • Use the Balanced Scorecard to measure your strategy
  • Capture your strategy in a memorable phrase
  • Make priorities explicit
  • Allocate resources early
  • Clarify decision rights for faster decision making

10. Strategic Planning | By Keith Simerson

the best strategic planning books

The guide focuses on two major aspects of the planning process: the multitude of factors contributing to an effective strategic planning framework and the multitude of drivers and enablers of successful execution. Armed with concrete information, readers will learn to create and execute a business strategy, a personal strategic action plan, or strategies for any kind of for-profit or nonprofit organization. Specific methodologies, tools, and techniques will guide readers to successful strategy formation―and execution.

11. The Innovator’s Dilemma | By Clayton Christensen

the best strategic planning books

12. Strategy Safari | By Henry Minzberg

the best strategic planning books

No other book synthesizes the entire history and evolution of strategic management in so lively and entertaining a fashion. Since the initial publication of  Strategy Safari , managers, consultants, and academics all over the world have found this book an indispensable and delightful tool—it has been translated into more than ten languages, including Chinese, Russian, and French, and has been used in top MBA programs worldwide.

Strategy Safari  makes sense of a field that often seems to make no sense. Mintzberg, Ahlstrand, and Lampel pair their sweeping vision of strategy making with an authoritative catalog in which they identify ten schools of strategy that have emerged over the past four decades.

Why struggle through the vast, confusing terrain of strategy formation? With clarity and depth,  Strategy Safari  maps the strategic landscape and facilitates intelligent, informed strategy formation.

13. Business Model Generation | By Alexander Osterwalder

the best strategic planning books

Co-created by 470 “Business Model Canvas” practitioners from 45 countries, the book features a beautiful, highly visual, 4-color design that takes powerful strategic ideas and tools and makes them easy to implement in your organization. It explains the most common Business Model patterns, based on concepts from leading business thinkers, and helps you reinterpret them for your own context. You will learn how to systematically understand, design, and implement a game-changing business model–or analyze and renovate an old one. Along the way, you’ll understand at a much deeper level your customers, distribution channels, partners, revenue streams, costs, and your core value proposition.

Business Model Generation  features practical innovation techniques used today by leading consultants and companies worldwide, including 3M, Ericsson, Capgemini, Deloitte, and others. Designed for doers, it is for those ready to abandon outmoded thinking and embrace new models of value creation: for executives, consultants, entrepreneurs, and leaders of all organizations. If you’re ready to change the rules, you belong to “the business model generation!”

14. Measure What Matters | By John Doerr

the best strategic planning books

In the fall of 1999, John Doerr met with the founders of a start-up for whom he’d just given $12.5 million, the biggest investment of his career. Larry Page and Sergey Brin had amazing technology, entrepreneurial energy, and sky-high ambitions, but no real business plan. For Google to change the world (or even to survive), Page and Brin had to learn how to make tough choices on priorities while keeping their team on track. They’d have to know when to pull the plug on losing propositions, to fail fast. And they needed timely, relevant data to track their progress – to measure what mattered.

Doerr taught them about a proven approach to operating excellence: Objectives and Key Results. He had first discovered OKRs in the 1970s as an engineer at Intel, where the legendary Andy Grove (“the greatest manager of his or any era”) drove the best-run company Doerr had ever seen. Later, as a venture capitalist, Doerr shared Grove’s brainchild with more than 50 companies. Wherever the process was faithfully practiced, it worked.

In this goal-setting system, objectives define what we seek to achieve; key results are how those top-priority goals will be attained with specific, measurable actions within a set time frame. Everyone’s goals, from entry-level to CEO, are transparent to the entire organization.

The benefits are profound. OKRs surface an organization’s most important work. They focus effort and foster coordination. They keep employees on track. They link objectives across silos to unify and strengthen the entire company. Along the way, OKRs enhance workplace satisfaction and boost retention.

In  Measure What Matters , Doerr shares a broad range of first-person, behind-the-scenes case studies, with narrators including Bono and Bill Gates, to demonstrate the focus, agility, and explosive growth that OKRs have spurred at so many great organizations. This book will help a new generation of leaders capture the same magic.

15. Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies | By Erica Olsen

the best strategic planning books

In today’s business environment, strategic planning stresses the importance of making decisions that will ensure an organization’s ability to successfully respond to changes in the environment and plan for sustainable viability. Providing practical, field-tested techniques and a complete 6-phase plan,  Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies  shows you how to make strategy a habit for all organizations, no matter the size, type, or resource constraints.

Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies is for companies of all types and sizes looking to build and sustain a competitive edge, set up an ongoing process for market assessment and trend analysis, and develop a vision for future growth. This revised edition includes new and updated content on planning for both the short and the long-term; crucial information on succession planning; help to prepare for the unexpected using scenario planning and agile strategy; strategies for implementing change and integrating strategic plans successfully by involving all staff members; and more.

  • The supplementary CD lays out a comprehensive, 6-phase, step-by-step program, complete with downloadable spreadsheets, charts, checklists, video links, and more
  • Provides value for any business or entrepreneur looking to improve efficiency, focus, and competitive edge
  • Includes practical, field-tested techniques

Strategic Planning Kit For Dummies  gives today’s business owners and upper-level management the tools and information they need to think and act strategically in order to more effectively weather current economic storms while planning for future growth.

16. Strategic Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations | By John Bryson

The essential planning resource and framework for nonprofit leaders

the best strategic planning books

Innovation and creativity produce great ideas, but these ideas must be collected and organized into an actionable plan supported by a coalition of support to make your organization great. This book provides expert guidance and perspective to help you bring everything together into a workable organizational strategy.

  • Discover an effective approach to the strategic planning process
  • Identify issues, establish a vision, clarify mandates, and implement plans
  • Manage the process with continual learning and revising
  • Link unique assets and abilities to better accomplish the central mission

Public and nonprofit leaders are forever striving to do more with less, and great strategic planning can help you build efficiency and effectiveness into your organization’s everyday operations.  Strategic Planning for Public and Nonprofit Organizations  provides the framework and tools you need to start planning for tomorrow today.

17. The Lords of Strategy | By Walter Kiechel

the best strategic planning books

The Lords of Strategy recounts the birth and evolution of strategy — arguably the most influential business paradigm of the past half-century — and the trials and triumphs of the surprising disruptors who invented it. Principal among them were four men: Bruce Henderson, found of the Boston Consulting Group; Bill Bain, creator of Bain & Company; Fred Gluck, longtime managing director of McKinsey & Company; and Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter. Each was obsessed with pinpointing how companies achieve a competitive advantage over others. This insider account reveals these industry’s pioneers as “idea junkies” – a new breed of intellectuals who wielded concepts as weapons for fighting business battles. Their relentless efforts to plumb the depths of competition exploded much of the prevailing wisdom, galvanized executives into action, and forced companies to understand themselves as never before.

An important book by one of management’s keenest observers,  The Lords of Strategy  provides listeners with a deeper understanding of the world they compete in and a sharper eye for what works — and what doesn’t — when forging strategy.

18. The Anxiety Journal | By Corinne Sweet

the best strategic planning books

Hooked  is a guide to building products people use because they want to, not because they have to. Written for product managers, designers, marketers, startup founders, and people eager to learn more about the things that control our behaviors, this audiobook gives listeners:

  • Practical insights to create user habits that stick.
  • Actionable steps for building products people love.
  • Behavioral techniques used by Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and other habit-forming products.
  • New  for the second edition! An additional case study for building healthy habits.

Nir Eyal distilled years of research, consulting, and practical experience to write a manual for creating habit-forming products. Nir has taught at the Stanford Graduate School of Business and Hasso Plattner Institute of Design. His writing on technology, psychology, and business appears in the  Harvard Business Review ,  The Atlantic ,  TechCrunch , and  Psychology Today . He is also the author of  Indistractable: How to Control Your Attention and Choose Your Life .

r journey to a peaceful mind.

19. Your Next Five Moves | By Patrick Bet-David

the best strategic planning books

Both successful entrepreneurs and chess grandmasters have the vision to look at the pieces in front of them and anticipate their next five moves. In this book, Patrick Bet-David “helps entrepreneurs understand exactly what they need to do next” (Brian Tracy, author of  Eat That Frog! ) by translating this skill into a valuable methodology. Whether you feel like you’ve hit a wall, lost your fire, or are looking for innovative strategies to take your business to the next level,  Your Next Five Moves  has the answers.

You will gain: CLARITY  on what you want and who you want to be. STRATEGY  to help you reason in the war room and the board room. GROWTH TACTICS  for good times and bad. SKILLS  for building the right team based on strong values. INSIGHT  on power plays and the art of applying leverage.

Combining these principles and revelations drawn from Patrick’s own rise to successful CEO,  Your Next Five Moves  is a must-listen for any serious executive, strategist, or entrepreneur.

Final Thoughts on the Best Books on Strategic Planning

It is important to have a strategic plan for your business. A good plan will enable you to move forward with increased confidence and allow you to make better decisions about where your business is going. Strategic planning can help you envision the future of your company and will let you know how to get there—it’s a roadmap for success. The following books are some of the best books on strategic planning that offer some insights on how to design a successful plan, as well as how it builds momentum, increases profitability, and boosts morale.

Happy reading!

Do you see a book that you think should be on the list? Let us know your feedback here .

Meet Maurice, a staff editor at Bigger Investing. He’s an accomplished entrepreneur who owns multiple successful websites and a thriving merch shop. When he’s not busy with work, Maurice indulges in his passion for kayaking, climbing, and his family. As a savvy investor, Maurice loves putting his money to work and seeking out new opportunities. With his expertise and passion for finance, he’s dedicated to helping readers achieve their financial goals through Bigger Investing.

This page may contain affiliate links. This website may contain content that comes from Amazon.  This website and its pages are not intended to constitute legal, financial, or tax advice. The information on this website and its pages are not intended to constitute investment advice and all content are the views and opinions of the author(s), contributors, or administrators. Please read our disclaimer for more info.

BiggerInvesting.com may contain affiliate links. We may earn a commission if you click on these links and make a purchase, at no additional cost to you. However, we cannot be held responsible for any fraudulent or misleading products or services promoted through these links. It is important to exercise due diligence and research before making any purchase.

What is FedNow Service?

What is FedNow Service?

Federal Reserve , Finance

What is FedNow? In today's fast-paced digital age, where instant communication and on-demand services have become the norm, the Federal Reserve is stepping up to revolutionize how we make payments. Enter FedNow, a cutting-edge real-time payment system with the aim of...

What is Career Development Stages?

What is Career Development Stages?

Career Development

areer development is the process by which employees grow and reach their potential over time. It can be challenging to maintain peak performance, especially as an employee navigates different projects and milestones in their career. Career...

What are Career Development Skills?

What are Career Development Skills?

veryone wants to land a job they love and is passionate about. But most people find it challenging to get a job that aligns with their career goals. In fact, the skills gap is one of the biggest issues when it comes to hiring and retaining quality...

What Is Needed for Career Development?

What Is Needed for Career Development?

oday’s world of work is about constant personal growth, rapid learning, and the ability to pivot when needed. Individuals who understand how to pivot their careers for the future, learn new skills, and embrace new opportunities are the ones that...

What is Career Development and Why is it Important?

What is Career Development and Why is it Important?

Career Change

n the fast-paced world of tech, it’s not uncommon for employees to switch roles or even companies. Even if you’re happy in your current role and with your company, it’s still a good idea to keep an eye on your career development. Having a strong...

What are the Types of Career Development?

What are the Types of Career Development?

o you feel like your career has stalled? Do you feel like there are no opportunities for advancement at your current company? Or maybe you’re just not sure what the best way is to develop a meaningful and successful career. Whatever stage of your...

What are the 5 Areas of Career Development?

What are the 5 Areas of Career Development?

ou’ve just been promoted or you see an opportunity to grow in your organization. But now what? How do you take your career to the next level? With career development, of course. Career development encompasses a variety of activities that help...

What Job Makes the Most Money With the Least Education?

What Job Makes the Most Money With the Least Education?

ven though the job market is challenging, it's still a great time to be looking for work. You have more options than ever before, and you may be surprised by the number of jobs that can pay a decent wage without requiring a bachelor's degree. Even...

How Can I Make 6 Figures Without a Degree?

How Can I Make 6 Figures Without a Degree?

f you’re a high school or college student researching ways to make money without a college degree, you’ve probably heard that "no degree, no job" phrase again and again. While it is true that not having a four-year degree limits your career...

What Jobs Make 80k a Year Without a Degree?

What Jobs Make 80k a Year Without a Degree?

ollege costs are rising and student loan debt has ballooned to over 1.5 trillion dollars. With these mind-boggling stats, it’s no wonder many people are hesitant to take on the expense of a college education. Fortunately, there are plenty of jobs...

What is the Hardest Job on Earth?

What is the Hardest Job on Earth?

verybody has to work at some point in their life. It is fair to say that some jobs are harder than others, but which ones exactly? There are many different fields of work, from healthcare and education to sales and construction. Each job will have...

What Easy Jobs Make 100K a Year?

What Easy Jobs Make 100K a Year?

ne of the most common questions about jobs that pay well is “How can I get a job like that?” But what you may not realize is that getting a job like that isn’t always as easy as it seems. Becoming an engineer or a surgeon, for example, takes years...

What is a Fun Career?

What is a Fun Career?

here are so many career options out there, that it can be hard to know where to start. When looking for a new job, you might find yourself asking things like “What kind of career should I have?” or “What is a fun job?” But what exactly makes a...

What Is The Easiest Well-Paying Job?

What Is The Easiest Well-Paying Job?

here are plenty of jobs that pay well, but many of them require extensive training, education, and experience. Unless you have a group of specialized skills or a lot of time to invest in training, it can be difficult to find a well-paying job...

What are Good Careers to Change?

What are Good Careers to Change?

hile there are people who lead happy and fulfilling lives without ever changing their jobs, there are others who feel an itch that needs to be scratched. They may love the work they do, but they’re not satisfied with where they are in their...

What is the Best Career to Retrain For?

What is the Best Career to Retrain For?

ou’ve passed 35 and decided to re-train. But what do you do next? You’re not fresh out of high school, nor are you able to go back to college again. That leaves you with a limited set of options when it comes to retraining. So, what should you do...

How Do I Start a New Career at 35?

How Do I Start a New Career at 35?

eing in your mid-30s and feeling stuck in your career is a very common problem. You might have been waiting for the perfect opportunity to come along, or you might have felt like something was missing from your life for a while. Whatever the case...

What are the 3 E’s of Sustainability?

What are the 3 E’s of Sustainability?

Sustainable Development

he concept of sustainability has been around for a long time, but it’s only over the last several decades that it has started to gain traction in the sustainable development community. The phrase itself was coined in the 1980s by the United...

What is World Without Waste?

What is World Without Waste?

FDA, or the Council of Fashion Designers of America, is the main organization representing and supporting the fashion industry in the United States. Every year, they host the CFDA Awards. The CFDA Awards are the fashion industry’s top accolade....

Is Zara Greenwashing?

Is Zara Greenwashing?

What Does Environmentalist Stand For?

What Does Environmentalist Stand For?

he word 'environmentalist' can be confusing, especially if you’re new to the world of green living. There are so many different people who call themselves ‘environmentalists’ and so many different meanings to their actions, words, and beliefs....

What’s Another Word for Sustainability?

What’s Another Word for Sustainability?

hen it comes to discussing the challenges and opportunities of achieving a sustainable future, most everyone agrees that the topic is not pleasant. Many researchers have dedicated their careers to studying how to make the process of making and...

What is the Opposite of Environmentally Friendly?

What is the Opposite of Environmentally Friendly?

o you ever get the sense that some people are confused about what it means to be environmentally friendly? Maybe you’ve even been caught in the crosshairs of a green-washing scandal. After all, it’s not a secret that there’s a lot of talk about...

Is Greenwashing a Crime?

Is Greenwashing a Crime?

he term “greenwash” refers to the efforts of companies to appear environmentally friendly without actually doing anything to improve the environmental sustainability of their operations. That’s not the sort of thing that a company would want the...

Is Coca Cola a Greenwashing Company?

Is Coca Cola a Greenwashing Company?

reenwashing is the use of marketing and advertising to sell products that are not actually environmentally friendly. Of course, companies aren’t going to advertise the worst aspects of their products. If they did, they’d likely lose a great deal...

Who Created Greenwashing?

Who Created Greenwashing?

reenwashing is the act of a company marketing itself as environmentally friendly when in reality, it is not. It is often a method used by companies to hide the negative effects their products have on the environment. It’s a deceptive practice that...

What are the 17 Goals to Transform the World?

What are the 17 Goals to Transform the World?

‍s the world enters its sixth mass extinction, it is more important than ever to develop sustainable solutions to reduce our collective impact. The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a globally accepted framework to guide sustainable...

What Makes a Lifestyle Sustainable?

What Makes a Lifestyle Sustainable?

Why Do Companies Greenwash?

Why Do Companies Greenwash?

‍he concept of a sustainable lifestyle is all the rage these days. Virtually every article, blog post, and news story you’ll read about sustainable living inevitably touches on the topic of sustainability. And with good reason. A...

What Do You Call Someone Who is Eco-Friendly?

What Do You Call Someone Who is Eco-Friendly?

his is a term you've probably heard before. It seems like everyone is talking about being eco-friendly now. And with good reason. The world is in bad shape. Just look at any of the natural disasters that have struck the planet in recent months....

Is Eco-Friendly?

Is Eco-Friendly?

he past few years have witnessed a sea change in the global consciousness about the environment. People are now more conscious of the impact of their actions and choices on the environment. At the same time, the green movement has also become a...

Why is Going Green So Expensive?

Why is Going Green So Expensive?

‍‍here’s a reason why the most popular way to go green is not to drive a hybrid car, buy solar panels, or eat organic food. It’s because going green is expensive. It costs money. A lot of it. In many cases, it’s more expensive than...

What are the 17 Sustainable Development?

What are the 17 Sustainable Development?

‍he UN’s ‘Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are a global initiative that seeks to help achieve the United Nations’ Agenda 2030 by setting out a plan of action to end poverty and end all forms of discrimination. They were launched at the...

What are the 3 Pillars of Sustainable Development?

What are the 3 Pillars of Sustainable Development?

ustainable development is a broad concept that can apply to many different things. It can mean different things to different people. Lately, it has become a buzzword. What does it mean, and how can you implement sustainable development in your own...

Which country is the Least Environmentally Friendly?

Which country is the Least Environmentally Friendly?

ou might assume that the most environmentally friendly country in the world is somewhere in the Nordics, with their love of clean air and water, and their progressive policies to protect the natural world. But you’d be wrong. In fact, the country...

Do You Need to Be Rich to Be Sustainable?

Do You Need to Be Rich to Be Sustainable?

ustainability is a critical component of any organization. Organizations of all types are striving for sustainability to ensure they have long-term viability and are able to continue operating for the long term. There are a number of ways to...

What Is The Biggest Obstacle To Sustainability?

What Is The Biggest Obstacle To Sustainability?

here are so many challenges in the world of sustainability and environmentalism. It can be frustrating and feel like a never-ending process. However, there are also so many amazing opportunities and places to look for inspiration. When you look...

What is the Main Aim of Agenda 2030?

What is the Main Aim of Agenda 2030?

he 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development was launched in September 2016 by UN member states as a ten-year plan to end poverty and protect the environment by 2030. The 2030 Agenda is a universal plan of action for the next fifteen years, with...

What are the 3 Pillars of Sustainability?

What are the 3 Pillars of Sustainability?

n its most basic sense, sustainability is the ability of an ecosystem to continue to produce the goods and services it provides year after year. In other words, sustainability is about ensuring that the earth’s natural resources — such as soil,...

What are the 5 Components of Sustainable Development?

What are the 5 Components of Sustainable Development?

What are the 5 Components of Sustainable Development? he term sustainable development has been making its way into the general consciousness of the world over the past few years, and for good reason. It’s not every day that a new concept is...

Where Can I Read Sustainability?

Where Can I Read Sustainability?

nterest in sustainability is higher than ever. That’s because it is becoming a more common topic of conversation. More people are joining the movement to live more sustainable, green lifestyles. With this increase in interest, you can find almost...

What are 4 Types of Sustainable Development?

What are 4 Types of Sustainable Development?

‍ustainability is the practice of delivering services and goods without compromising the environment or future generations. Sustainable development is an umbrella term that encompasses many different types of sustainable practices. With...

What Does Sustainability Mean to You?

What Does Sustainability Mean to You?

Sustainable Living

nderstanding the world around us is essential if we want to live responsibly and positively impact it. The first step is to understand what sustainability means to you. This means that if we want to make changes in order to better protect our data...

What are the 3 Principles of Sustainability?

What are the 3 Principles of Sustainability?

ustainability, also known as sustainable development, is a philosophy that encompasses all of society's activities in an attempt to maintain the environment. It's about reducing waste and conserving resources so that the planet can continue to...

What Does Sustainable Living Look Like?

What Does Sustainable Living Look Like?

t’s a term often used to describe ways of life that are based on the principles of ecology, social justice, and community. There are many different sustainable living practices out there, and it can be hard to decide which is right for you. Here,...

Why is Sustainable Living Important?

Why is Sustainable Living Important?

ccording to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, sustainability is the ability to provide for the needs and wants of current and future generations. Living sustainably is a concept that’s gaining more and more popularity and acceptance across...

What does it Mean to be Living Sustainably?

What does it Mean to be Living Sustainably?

iving sustainably doesn't have to mean huge, life-changing decisions. It's more about what you eat, what kind of toiletries you use, and how you waste your time. All those things are important to you, and they have a big impact on your life and...

What Are Some Examples of Sustainable Living?

What Are Some Examples of Sustainable Living?

he term “sustainable living” is commonly used in the media. It’s a buzzword that has been adopted by many companies and organizations who are looking for ways to save money and still maintain a high quality of life. The idea of sustainable living...

What are the Steps in the System Selection Process?

What are the Steps in the System Selection Process?

Systems and Planning

hether you need a commercially packaged warehouse management system, a point of sale system, an inventory control system, or a direct-to-customer order management system, selecting the right system is a major undertaking. Best Books on Systems and...

What are the 4 types of Strategies Under Strategic Analysis?

What are the 4 types of Strategies Under Strategic Analysis?

s a business owner, you know that you need to make strategic decisions in order to succeed. But how do you know what type of decisions to make? And how do you determine the best strategy for your business? There are four types of strategies—and...

What are System Planning and Initial Investigation?

What are System Planning and Initial Investigation?

n the system planning and initial investigation, the main objective is to identify the most important requirements for the system. It is an important step to identify the relevant system requirements for the system as a whole, for the subsystems,...

What is Planning in System Development?

What is Planning in System Development?

lanning in system development is the process of designing, planning, and testing a software system. It can be used to develop automotive systems, healthcare systems, social networking platforms, and other digital systems. The goal is to create a...

What is a Strategic Planning System?

What is a Strategic Planning System?

 strategic planning system is a tool used by business owners and managers to plan, manage, and monitor their businesses. A SPS helps you understand your business and its potential threats, opportunities, and performance. It also helps you choose...

What are the Three Types of Planning?

What are the Three Types of Planning?

lanning is the process of designing, plotting, and executing an action or event to achieve the desired outcome. The three types of planning are: strategic, tactical, and operational. Tactical planning is an overarching plan that defines the...

What are the 4 types of Planning?

What are the 4 types of Planning?

he first step to business success is to decide how to define success for the company. In many cases, businesses aren't clear on what exactly they want to achieve, and this can lead to confusion as well as frustration when goals are not met....

What do you Mean Planning?

What do you Mean Planning?

lanning is all about decisions. There are lots of them, they happen every day, and each one has the potential to affect the future in some way. We should be good at making good decisions and we can't always be good at that. Planning helps us get...

What are Some Types of Systems?

What are Some Types of Systems?

 system is a collection of parts that work together to achieve a common goal. Systems can be physical or open, probabilistic or deterministic, and man-made or natural systems. Best Books on Systems and Planning What is a system? The term ‘system’...

What is the Difference Between MIS and Computer Systems?

What is the Difference Between MIS and Computer Systems?

IS is a software system that helps organizations manage their information. Computer systems are a set of hardware and software that allow an organization to process and store data. Computer systems are used for various purposes such as managing...

What is a System Selection Report?

What is a System Selection Report?

 system selection report (SSR) is a graphical report that helps you select the best systems for your business. An SSR is a vital tool for system administrators and decision-makers. It provides a snapshot of the state of your system, including the...

What is Strategic Planning Analysis?

What is Strategic Planning Analysis?

ou probably have an idea of what your business or organization should do in the near future. But how do you know if you’re doing it the right way? And how can you make sure that your plans are accurate and up to date? A strategic planning analysis...

What do you Mean by System Analysis?

What do you Mean by System Analysis?

ystem analysis is the study of how a system works. It is a subset of system design, but there are many applications where system analysis is used to determine how a system should be designed. The most common usage of system analysis is in the...

What is a System Plan?

What is a System Plan?

 system plan is a critical input to the design phase, which focuses on selecting the right hardware and software components, determining how they will be configured, and identifying security and management requirements. Best Books on Systems and...

What is Sustainability in Farming?

What is Sustainability in Farming?

ustainability is an approach to the environment that seeks to meet human needs without depleting or degrading the environment. It’s a process of caring for and making choices that are sustainable from a human and environmental perspective. The...

What Makes Something Sustainable?

What Makes Something Sustainable?

ustainability is a term used to describe something that is able to provide for its own needs and keep going without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. That’s a lot to think about! If you want to know if...

What are 10 Facts About Sustainability?

What are 10 Facts About Sustainability?

n recent years, the concepts of sustainability and environmentalism have become increasingly popular. With the looming threat of climate change, the need for sustainable living has never been more urgent. In order to address this issue, it is...

What is Towards a Sustainable World?

What is Towards a Sustainable World?

n order to build a sustainable world, it is important to take the right steps. This article will cover those steps and why they are important. It will also cover the importance of sustainability and humanity’s destructive behaviors. Best Books on...

What Does it Mean to be a Sustainable Society?

What Does it Mean to be a Sustainable Society?

 sustainable society is one that makes sure the health and vitality of humans and culture as well as the health and vitality of nature’s capital is preserved for present and future generations. It is a society's responsibility to act to stop the...

What Makes a Sustainable Future?

What Makes a Sustainable Future?

hat does a sustainable future look like? It's hard to predict the future, but we can make educated guesses. A sustainable future will include a combination of social and environmental factors that are not detrimental to the next generation. Best...

What is Social Innovation for a Sustainable Living?

What is Social Innovation for a Sustainable Living?

ocial innovation is the new buzzword in today’s society. It is used to describe many things, but the most popular definition is that it is a solution to a problem by utilizing innovation and creativity. The concept of social innovation has grown...

Is Sustainable Living Expensive?

Is Sustainable Living Expensive?

any people think sustainable living is expensive. However, there are many things that can be done to save money while living sustainably. Organic produce and using cloth diapers are two examples that are less expensive than buying the same item in...

How Do You Live a Greener More Sustainable Lifestyle?

How Do You Live a Greener More Sustainable Lifestyle?

iving green and being eco-friendly isn’t always easy. There are a lot of steps you can take to make your life more sustainable. But with so many options, it’s hard to know where to start. You may wonder what is the most environmentally friendly...

What is System Planning?

What is System Planning?

Task Management

What Is System Planning?  system plan is a planning tool that helps you understand your business and its parts. By creating a system plan, you can improve efficiency and effectiveness in your business. In addition, a system plan can help you...

What is System Planning in MIS?

What is System Planning in MIS?

n this comprehensive guide, you will learn about the different aspects of system planning in MIS, how it can be used to improve your organization's performance, and how it can be used to understand your data and assets. Best Books on Task...

What is System Selection and Planning?

What is System Selection and Planning?

ystem selection is about choosing the best-suited hardware and software for your needs. It is the process of picking out the right combination of hardware and software. This process is not an easy task and it requires a lot of research and...

How Big is Systems Planning and Analysis?

How Big is Systems Planning and Analysis?

he size of the system, and the amount of money involved, determine the size of the planning effort. The more complex the system, the more planning is required. In some cases, it may be possible to develop a comprehensive plan for a system, which...

What is the Role of System Planning?

What is the Role of System Planning?

ask management tools are a type of software used to manage and track tasks. They can be used for any purpose, such as scheduling and tracking work, but they are most commonly used in the business world. Task management tools come in different...

How Do You Track Tasks at Work?

How Do You Track Tasks at Work?

racking tasks at work is a great way to get things done. Not only does it help you stay organized, but it also helps you identify potential problems and solutions early on. In this guide, we’ll discuss the best ways to track tasks and get started....

How Do You Manage a Team Task?

How Do You Manage a Team Task?

Managing a team is one of the most important skills you can have as an entrepreneur. When it comes to managing a team, there are a few things that you should keep in mind. Here are some tips on how to manage a team task successfully: Best Books on...

How Do You Handle Tasks?

How Do You Handle Tasks?

andling tasks better are important for both personal and professional success. It can help you get things done more quickly, and it can help you feel more satisfied with your work. However, there are a few key things to keep in mind when handling...

How do you Approach a Task Manager?

How do you Approach a Task Manager?

o one likes a hassle. That’s why it’s important to find the right task manager before you even start working on your project. Task managers make it simple and efficient for you to complete your projects, without having to worry about tedious or...

What are the 3 Project Control Methods?

What are the 3 Project Control Methods?

n order to achieve great results, it’s important to have a clear goal. Whether it’s getting into shape, increasing your productivity, or becoming more successful in life, setting goals is key. However, setting goals can be difficult. There are so...

What are the 4 Elements of Task Management?

What are the 4 Elements of Task Management?

hen it comes to managing your work, having a good workflow is key. However, sometimes it can be difficult to figure out what goes into a good workflow. That’s where task management comes in. Task management is the process of organizing and...

Is Wind Energy Sustainable?

Is Wind Energy Sustainable?

Sustainable Energy

ind energy is often touted as a sustainable energy source. It’s efficient and cheap, and it doesn’t produce any emissions. But can wind energy really be sustainable? In this comprehensive guide, we answer the question: Is wind a sustainable energy...

Why Green Energy is Sustainable?

Why Green Energy is Sustainable?

reen energy is sustainable because it’s cost-effective, it emits no pollutants, and it’s environmentally friendly. To be sustainable, green energy needs to be affordable, reliable, and clean. Here are some of the reasons why green energy is a...

What is Sustainable But Not Renewable?

What is Sustainable But Not Renewable?

f a certain resource is being used up rapidly then it can renew or regenerate, it will eventually become completely depleted despite its renewability. Contrariwise, a non-renewable resource can become sustainable if it is being used moderately....

Which Type of Energy is Least Harmful to the Environment?

Which Type of Energy is Least Harmful to the Environment?

enewable energy sources have some important environmental impacts. For example, the production of wind and solar power may have some impact on the environment, and in some places, it may be more harmful than the burning of fossil fuels. The...

What is the Cheapest and Cleanest Energy Source?

What is the Cheapest and Cleanest Energy Source?

here are a lot of different types of energy sources, and the most affordable one may be solar power. Solar energy is incredibly clean, as it doesn’t produce any emissions. It’s also very efficient, as it produces more electricity than traditional...

What is the Best Power Source for Your Home?

What is the Best Power Source for Your Home?

hoosing the right power source is important for your home. From checking to make sure you have an appropriate breaker to ensuring your appliances are compatible, it’s important to make sure you have the right power for your home. But what if you...

What is the Greenest Energy Source?

What is the Greenest Energy Source?

he term “green energy” has become a popular catchphrase, especially in recent years. However, when you actually think about it, most people would probably answer that wind or solar power is the greenest form of energy. After all, these are...

Is Self-Sustaining Energy Possible?

Is Self-Sustaining Energy Possible?

ave you ever heard of self-sustaining energy? It’s a phrase that’s been around for a while, but it recently got a lot of attention because of Tesla’s new car. In order for a car to run on its own power, it needs to be fueled by something other...

What is the Idea of Sustainability?

What is the Idea of Sustainability?

ustainability isn't just a big word that everybody likes to use. It's about making sure you're doing things right in a sustainable way. Starting from a pure eco-systems concept in the 1970s and in the World Conservation Strategy, it transformed...

What is the Difference Between Renewable Energy and Sustainable energy?

What is the Difference Between Renewable Energy and Sustainable energy?

enewable energy is a sustainable form of energy production, and many countries around the world are moving towards these sustainable energy sources in order to reduce their dependence on fossil fuels. Many are using these alternative energy...

Is Electricity a Sustainable Resource?

Is Electricity a Sustainable Resource?

lectricity is one of the most common sources of heat and light. It’s also a natural resource that can be sustainable. However, as we learn more about electricity, we may find that it isn’t as sustainable as we thought. In this blog post, we’ll...

How Will Sustainable Energy Impact the Future?

How Will Sustainable Energy Impact the Future?

he past has shown that energy is a vital factor in the modern world. While it can be said that we have been using energy for many years, our dependence on fossil fuels is growing. So, what will the future look like? And what are the most important...

How Sustainable is Renewable?

How Sustainable is Renewable?

t's a good question as to whether renewable energy is sustainable. In fact, many people don't realize that many of our modern conveniences, like the computer and phone you're reading this on, are powered by fossil fuels. These are often not even...

What is the Cleanest Form of Energy?

What is the Cleanest Form of Energy?

he sources of clean energy are considered to be green power (solar, wind, biomass, and geothermal). While green power is still viewed as clean and renewable, it is not considered to be “pure” in its source – which can pose problems if it is...

What are the 7 Alternative Sources of Energy?

What are the 7 Alternative Sources of Energy?

f you’re looking for a way to reduce your environmental impact, you may be thinking of energy sources such as solar or wind power. However, there are other options that can provide you with the same level of energy without the negative effects of...

How Can Energy be Sustainable?

How Can Energy be Sustainable?

There are so many ways to be energy efficient, but one of the most important ways is to use renewable energy. Renewable energy is the power that comes from natural resources, like water, wind, and solar. It's a more sustainable way to generate...

Why Is Sustainable Energy So Important?

Why Is Sustainable Energy So Important?

here are many reasons why sustainable energy is important. Using energy from renewable sources is far less expensive, and can make a huge impact on the money we pay for energy. I like to think that with a little hard work, we might eventually be...

What is the Most Sustainable Form of Energy?

What is the Most Sustainable Form of Energy?

t's time to ask ourselves: What is the most sustainable form of energy? Most people seem to think that solar and wind are the only options. But there are other options that have been shown to be more sustainable, even when compared to wind and...

What are Three Types of Sustainable Energy?

What are Three Types of Sustainable Energy?

here are many types of sustainable energy, but three of the most popular are solar, wind, and water. Each type of sustainable energy has its own advantages and disadvantages. Solar is the most popular type of sustainable energy because it’s easy...

What is Meant by Sustainable Energy?

What is Meant by Sustainable Energy?

ustainable energy is a growing area of study as we try to understand how to best use our planet's natural resources. This includes energy sources that do not harm our environment and that are still available. Renewable energy is one of the best...

How Can I Improve My Task Management Skills?

How Can I Improve My Task Management Skills?

his can help you see the big picture and keep you on track to reach deadlines. "Task management skills are typically grouped into three categories: Time management, prioritizing projects, and keeping track of what is accomplished," says Stacia...

How Do You Manage Daily Tasks?

How Do You Manage Daily Tasks?

asks are a necessary part of our lives, but they can be difficult to manage. If you’re trying to get things done in an efficient and effective way, here are eleven tips to help you manage your tasks better. Best Books on Task Management Find a...

Why is Task Management Important?

Why is Task Management Important?

here are so many demands on our time, and managing them all can be difficult. But task management is a crucial part of any successful business. Without a good task management system, it can be hard to stay organized and ensure that your work is...

How Can You Improve Productivity?

How Can You Improve Productivity?

ask management is really just the ability to identify, organize, and complete tasks, in whatever form they may take. This can include planning and strategizing, tracking and checking tasks, prioritizing and delegating tasks. Beyond the tasks...

What is Total Float?

What is Total Float?

he total float is the amount of work that can be delayed without delaying the project completion date. If the total float extends too far into the future, the project completion date is pushed out beyond the time when the project must be...

How Do You Plan Tasks?

How Do You Plan Tasks?

asks are one of the most important aspects of life. Without a well-planned out system, it can be hard to get anything done. This is especially true when it comes to tasks that need more than one person’s participation. A task management system can...

What are Task Management Skills?

What are Task Management Skills?

What Are Task Management Tools?

What Are Task Management Tools?

What are the 3 Project Control Methods?

What is the Best Way to Manage Tasks?

ome people prefer to make lists and check them off, others use software, while still others can effectively manage their tasks by simply keeping them in their heads. The best approach is the one that works for you. If you find you’re crossing...

What Are the 4 Elements of Task Management?

What Are the 4 Elements of Task Management?

hen it comes to managing your work, having a good workflow is key. However, sometimes it can be difficult to figure out what goes into a good workflow. That’s where task management comes in. Best Books on Task Management  Task management is the...

Best Books on Strategic Planning and Management

Best Books on Strategic Planning and Management

Strategic Planning and Management

o you want to know how to plan and manage your business? Do you want to learn about the different types of strategic planning and how they can be used in your business? Do you want to find out what makes good strategic planning and management...

Best Books on Strategic Management

Best Books on Strategic Management

Strategic Management

hat do you do when business and management seem to be opposing each other? You try to find a common ground. That's where books come in. There are many different books on strategic management, but they all have one common goal: to help you make...

Best Books on Subliminal Advertising

Best Books on Subliminal Advertising

Subliminal Advertising

re you aware of the power of subliminal messages? There is no denying that they exist and can be powerful. Research has shown that subliminal messages can affect your behavior, emotions, and attitudes. For example, if someone were to show you a...

Will Gold Be Confiscated Again?

Will Gold Be Confiscated Again?

t’s clear that government confiscation of gold has occurred throughout history. It’s also clear that the opportunities for future confiscation are much greater today. The government has not done this since 1933. However, if faced with a major...

Is It Better To Have Cash or Gold?

Is It Better To Have Cash or Gold?

n the modern world, people often debate whether cash or gold is the best currency. Some believe that cash is more efficient because it’s not subject to inflation. Others argue that gold is more efficient because it doesn’t corrode and can be...

Do Banks Buy Gold Coins?

Do Banks Buy Gold Coins?

o banks buy gold coins? This is a question that has been asked by many people in the past. There are a few reasons why banks might want to buy gold coins. The most common reason is to store the gold in a safe place. Another reason for banks to buy...

How Do You Convert Gold Into Cash?

How Do You Convert Gold Into Cash?

Grant Cardone

ith so many people now living in economic climates where money is tight, it's important to have a way of converting gold into cash. This guide will show you how to do just that. You'll learn about the different ways to turn gold into cash, and how...

How Can I Get 10X Growth?

How Can I Get 10X Growth?

hese days, many businesses are facing the same challenge: how can I double, grow at 10X, or even 100X? We’ve all been there. But how do you create your 10X growth? You’ll probably just start with a few extra dollars in your bank account, a few...

  • Personal Finance Accounts Best Credit Cards Best Financial Advisors Best Savings Accounts Apps Best Banking Apps Best Stock Trading Software Robinhood Alternatives TurboTax Alternatives Brokers Brokerage Account Taxes Brokers for Bonds Brokers for Index Funds Brokers for Options Trading Brokers for Short Selling Compare Online Brokers Forex Brokers Futures Brokers High-Leverage Forex Brokers MetaTrader 5 Brokers Stock Brokers Stock Brokers For Beginners
  • Insurance Car Best Car Insurance Rental Car Insurance Motorcycle Best Motorcycle Insurance Seasonal Insurance Vision Best Vision Insurance Types of Vision Insurance Vision Insurance For Kids Vision Insurance For Seniors Health Affordable Health Insurance Best Health Insurance Companies Individual Health Insurance Self-employed Health Insurance House Earthquake Insurance Flood Insurance Homeowners Insurance Mobile Homes Moving Insurance Renters Insurance Sewer Line Dental Affordable Dental Insurance Best Dental Insurance Dental Insurance With No Annual Maximum Dental Insurance With No Waiting Period Kids Dental Insurance Medicare Compare Medicare Plans Cost of Hospital Stays Life Term Life Insurance Business Best Business Insurance Pet Best Pet Insurance
  • Investing Penny Stocks Best EV Penny Stocks Best Penny Stocks Penny Stocks Under 10 Cents Penny Stocks With Dividends Futures Best Futures Trading Software Futures to Trade Futures Trading Courses Strategies Trading Platforms for E-Mini Futures Stocks Best Stock Charts Best Stocks Under $50 Best Stocks Under $100 Best Swing Trade Stocks Best Time to Trade Cash App Stocks How to Invest Stock Market Scanners Stock Market Simulators Stocks to Day Trade Forex Forex Demo Accounts Forex Robots Forex Signals Forex Trading Apps Forex Trading Software How to Trade Forex Making Money Trading Forex Trading Courses Trading Strategies Options Options to Buy Options Trading Apps Options Trading Books Options Trading Courses Paper Trading Swing Trading Options Trading Examples Trading Simulators Trading Software Trading Day Trading Apps Day Trading Books Day Trading Courses Day Trading Software Day Trading Taxes Prop Trading Firms Trading Chat Rooms Trading Strategies Alternative investing Alternative Investment Platforms Best REITs Best Alternative Investments Best Cards to Collect Best Gold IRAs Investing in Precious Metals Investing in Startups Real Estate Crowdfunding ETFs Commercial Real Estate ETFs International ETFs Monthly Dividing ETFs
  • Mortgage Best Mortgage Companies FHA Lenders First Time Buyers HELOC & Refinancing Lenders for Self-Employed People Lenders That Do Not Require Tax Returns Online Mortgage Lenders
  • Crypto Best Crypto Apps Business Crypto Accounts Crypto Day Trading Crypto Exchanges Crypto Scanners Crypto Screeners Earning Interest on Crypto Get Free Crypto How to Trade Crypto Is Bitcoin a Good Investment?

The Best Strategy Books

Get Access to Thousands of Strategy Books with Kindle Unlimited

A strong business strategy can help you achieve your goals at work. If you want to grow your career or bridge a gap in your team, the right strategy book can offer solutions.

There are many such books to choose from, but the right one for you will be applicable to your situation. It’ll contain ideas that you can use in real life as you’re working on a game plan.

  • The Best Strategy Books To Read Right Now:
  • Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant, Expanded Ed. by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne - Get this book
  • Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard Rumelt - Get this book
  • Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin - Get this book
  • The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff - Get this book
  • Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors by Michael E. Porter - Get this book
  • Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio - Get this book
  • The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow a Remarkable Business in Any Field by Mike Michalowicz - Get this book
  • HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy  by Harvard Business Review - Get this book
  • Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business by Gino Wickman - Get this book
  • Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World by General Stanley McChrystal, Tantum Collins, David Silverman, Chris Fussell - Get this book

What You Should Look for in a Strategy Book

Our picks for the best strategy books, finding the best strategy books.

Business books cover a wide range of topics. From entrepreneur books to management and leadership, there’s a book for virtually any need. However, these vary in quality and accuracy.

You want a strategy book to rely on, so take these factors into consideration before you make a purchase.

Author Experience

Who is the author? Are they qualified to talk about strategy? You want someone who has experience in the field.

Business leaders can relay strategies that helped them in their career. Their insights and experiences can help you avoid some of the mistakes they made in the past.

On the other hand, experts and analysts devote their lives to watching business trends. So their advice is invaluable when you need an objective approach to strategy.

Depth of Strategy Covered

Creating a successful business strategy is a gradual process. Books that only tell a part of the story aren’t going to give you the comprehensive knowledge you need. Instead, go for books that look at all the moving pieces which affect goal completion.

Insightful narration and personal anecdotes may help give you a better perspective on why certain steps are necessary, and they’ll also help implementation.

Practicality of Advice

You can find inspiration and clarity when you read other business leaders’ strategies. However, it’s usually best to start with books that offer actionable plans. If it’s not realistic for you to execute the advice, it may not be the book for you.

In addition, some strategy books are meant for a certain audience. Leadership concerns depend on many variables, such as industry and size. There are no strategy solutions that work across the board.

For example, books tailored to entrepreneurs may focus on starting a business . But if you are in a leadership position in an established company, you need different strategy-related advice.

The best strategies for you depend on your situation, but we hope this list of recommendations will help you get started.

1. Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant, Expanded Ed. by W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.01.26 PM

  • Who’s it for? All levels
  • Price : On sale

If you want a fresh strategic perspective , this may be the book to you. This international best-seller focuses on building strategies that tap into new markets instead of going head-to-head against competitors.

This is an updated version of their previously published book. It contains a 4-action framework to help you achieve your goals . Note that this isn’t a competitive strategy book, and it offers alternative approaches.

Get this book

2. Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters by Richard Rumelt

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.03.21 PM

  • Who’s it for? Beginners

Many readers will find this book a good starting place to learn about strategy. However, you don’t have to be a newbie to appreciate this book by Richard Rumelt.

Lauded as a guru of strategy, he lays down the basics very clearly, and he tells you how to spot the most common mistakes. The tone of the book is informal and straightforward, which makes it easy to read.

3. Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.04.08 PM

Are you flailing under an avalanche of competition? Learn how to navigate brand building with five strategic choices.

The former CEO of Procter & Gamble and his advisor lay out how they increased market value by $100 billion in just a decade.

Their book is rich in examples and it applies their five choices to famous brands such as Gillette, Olay, and more.

4. The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist’s Guide to Success in Business and Life by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.06.34 PM

This book focuses on strategic decision making and critical strategic thinking. It may not give you step-by-step examples of how to create a successful brand.

Learning about game theory can help you shape your career , as well as your personal life. The Art of Strategy teaches you the mindset you’ll need to tackle each, unique situation. You will more about how to deal with strategy in general rather than specific situations.

5. Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors by Michael E. Porter

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.08.16 PM

  • Who’s it for? Intermediate learners

Written by competitive strategy powerhouse Michael E. Porter, this book is a must-read for anyone in a leadership position.

Porter provides frameworks for important considerations like competitor analysis and assessing the competitive structure of your business.

However, this book is for people who have some experience with business strategy. Beginners may find it challenging to dive into the jargon and concepts covered in this book.

6. Principles: Life and Work by Ray Dalio

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.10.18 PM

If you need a roadmap to accomplishing your goals in life, this may be the one for you. Dalio provides you with tools to create the necessary framework for success. He also lets the reader in on the principles that guided him on his life journey from poverty to becoming a billionaire.

Topics that Dalio covers include decision-making as an individual and an organization, team building, and approaching challenges.

If you want a strategy book that’s short and light , you may need to look elsewhere. But if you’re interested in strategy tips from the creator of one of the biggest hedge funds in history, this is the one to choose.

7. The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow a Remarkable Business in Any Field by Mike Michalowicz

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.15.29 PM

Can you grow your business using a farmer’s strategy ? This author believes so, and he tested it with positive results. Michalowicz describes the 3 steps to this unconventional strategy: planting the right seeds, weeding out losers, and nurturing winners.

This is a customer-oriented strategy. So if your industry doesn’t have much contact with customers, this one may not be the book for you.

But if you’re planning to grow a customer-centric business, it will give you some much-needed inspiration and guidance.

8. HBR’s 10 Must Reads on Strategy by Harvard Business Review

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.16.08 PM

This book contains ten must-read articles previously published by the Harvard Business Review. It includes Michael E. Porter’s article, “What Is Strategy?”, as well as nine others.

It can help you create an actionable plan, and article topics include :

  • Creating uncontested market space
  • Business principles
  • Distinguishing your brand
  • Decision making
  • Crafting a vision

Leadership situations can be circumstantial. So this compilation of articles is a good way to cover different perspectives on developing a leadership strategy.

9. Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business by Gino Wickman

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.22.14 PM

Do you want an actionable plan to implement? This book has one for you. This trademark strategy was implemented successfully in over 100 companies.

It has 6 main components, explained in detail. The author also includes tools to turn the suggestions into action.

Keep in mind, however, that this framework uses traditional management methods, and it may not be appropriate for some small business environments.

10. Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World by General Stanley McChrystal, Tantum Collins, David Silverman, Chris Fussell

Screen Shot 2019-05-03 at 3.24.39 PM

  • Who’s it for? Advanced students

If you want an alternative action plan for your team, this book may be an interesting read.

Written by General Stanley McChrystal, former commander of the Joint Special Operations Task Force , this book stresses the importance of small cohesive units in any organization.

But the author recognizes that organizations may not always have the luxury of having small intimate teams. So he offers insights and techniques to expand trust and transparency models to larger organizations.

Your business needs are very individual, and strategy solutions shouldn’t be applied using a cookie-cutter approach. Like in the case of personal finance books , not every principle or approach works for every reader.

However, you may find that you can take points from several well-written strategy books and apply them to your own framework. Having an actionable framework can help you increase productivity and reach those long-term business goals.

Best Books on Strategic Thinking

Sharpen your competitive edge with the top books on strategic thinking. chosen for their innovative approaches and expert advice, these books are regularly highlighted by leading figures and publications..

Good Strategy Bad Strategy book cover

Everything you need to deliver your plans, manage strategy and report progress.

  • Customizable plan structure
  • Automated and on-demand progress reports
  • Auto-reminders and checklists

Centralize, analyze and visualize your performance data. Align performance measures with plans.

  • Centralized performance data
  • Scorecards and interactive dashboards
  • Slice and dice for new insights

Manage, deliver, and communicate projects. Align projects with plans for end-to-end visibility and reporting.

  • Gantt view of projects, tasks and dependencies
  • Interactive maps and dashboards
  • Plan alignment and reporting

Share your strategy story with external stakeholders via customizable public dashboards.

  • Progress dashboards with roll-up reporting
  • Matched to your branding
  • Fully ADA Compliant

Strategy and Performance Management Integrations Learn More

Strategy Execution

9 of the best strategy books to read in 2022.

the best strategic planning books

By Josh Elyea

14 january 2022.

Photo of a stack of books

“Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary.” – Jim Rohn

“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller

We’re big fans of books at Envisio (in fact, we just recently started our very own book club), and quotes like the ones above can give you some small insight as to why. Reading is a common throughline of success at both an individual and an organizational level, noted for its benefits to memory, concentration, and strategic thinking. And with a new year upon us and resolutions in tow, there’s no better time to load up on books that can help you move from planning to action in 2022.

Over the years, there have been many wonderful texts that teach us how to plan strategically and why it’s important to do so. From W. Chan Kim & Renée Mauborgne’s Blue Ocean Strategy to Geoffrey Moore’s Crossing the Chasm , we’ve learned so much about the value of strategic thinking and, perhaps more importantly, executing on that strategy.

At Envisio, we are fortunate enough to work with some of the most engaged, insightful and inspirational leaders in local government. We’re consistently humbled by their efforts to make the world a brighter place, so it should come as little surprise that they are the first people we turn to when we’re looking to source some recommended reading (and trust us when we say we’ll be reading them right alongside you!).

So without further ado, here are some of the books that our customers and partners suggest to level up your strategic execution and performance management for 2022.

Recommended Reading From Local Government Leaders

Craig Rapp – President, Rapp Consulting Group

I’ve been a long-time fan and follower of Stacey Barr. She is one of the preeminent authorities on performance management and evidence-based leadership, and her PuMP© methodology is a great process for strategy and organizational improvement. Her book, Prove It! How to Create A High-Performance Culture and Measurable Success , was one of my favorites that I read this year. In line with her overall philosophy, this book exposes the limitations of jargon and “weasel” words. It reinforces the value of measuring what matters, and how mindful, rigorous attention to evidence, and measurements tied to critical outcomes, is what moves an organization forward and leverages change.

Dr. Chalonda Smith – Chief Strategy Officer, Clayton County Board of Commissioners, Georgia

By being a part of Envisio’s Inspirational Women in Local Government series this year, I discovered a new read! My colleague, Dr. Lizely Madrigal from El Paso, Texas, recommended Municipal Benchmarks: Assessing Local Performance and Establishing Community Standards by David N. Ammons in her dedicated blog post, and I love the book. It offers leaders in local government a valuable resource for understanding performance management, and it has been a key tool for our newly developed office as we look to understand each department and help them develop their operating plans. These operating plans ultimately work to support the County’s Strategic Plan. We’ve even used methods from the book to help our departments develop their benchmarking processes!

Dr. Lizely Madrigal – Strategic Performance Manager, El Paso, Texas

My recommended strategy read this year is The Logic Model Guidebook: Better Strategies for Great Results by Lisa Wyatt Knowlton and Cynthia C. Phillips. I’d recommend this book to anyone working on performance management. Logic Models are the perfect tool for a disciplined process in establishing meaningful key performance indicators. In addition, it’s the antecedent to Municipal Benchmarks – the book I mentioned previously in my discussions with Envisio. I stumbled upon the book while doing some research on how to develop sound logic models, because my theory is to always research . “Research is what I’m doing when I don’t know what I’m doing,” said Wernher von Braun.

Douglas Shontz – Assistant to the Manager, Borough of State College, Pennsylvania

I’ve got not one, not two, but three recommendations for strategy books in 2022! First up, Good to Great by Jim Collins. This isn’t specifically about performance management, but it does provide a great foundation on management strategies and how performance management fits into that architecture. Our Borough Manager, Tom Fountaine, gave me a copy when I first started at the Borough of State College in 2017. In the same vein, I’d recommend the Harvard Business Review Guide to Performance Management , as this short eBook was given to me during the development of our strategic plan and provides a good high-level guide for anyone wanting to understand performance management. And while it may seem strange, I’d also like to recommend Yes, And: How Improvisation Reverses “No, But” Thinking and Improves Creativity and Collaboration—Lessons from The Second City by Kelly Leonard and Tom Yorton. I recommend this book to anyone in a leadership position. Improv teaches us to listen and adapt, and since performance management is not a “one-size-fits-all” approach, these skills are invaluable to anyone looking to start up a performance management program.

Kevin Knutson – Assistant County Administrator, Pinellas County, Florida

I’ve been really excited as of late about Rick Davis and Dan Griffiths’ book Elevating Trust in Local Government. This book not only fills a gap that has been sorely absent from bookshelves (local government strategic planning hasn’t been written about in book length since 1998), but also rightly links the development and execution of those strategic plans with the amount of trust people have in their local government. Transparency and accountability, two foundational trust enablers, are products of implementing a strategic planning process. Because of this, plans can be a tool to promote confidence in local government’s competence and efficacy. As the authors point out, “A strategic plan provides policy makers with the discipline and will to say yes to those opportunities that align with community priorities and the discipline and will to say no to those that don’t.”

Aimee Kaslik – Chief Innovation and Performance Officer, City of Irving, Texas

When I read for work, it’s usually when I’m building new programs. For example, I recently read Peak Performance: How Denver’s Peak Academy is Saving Money, Boosting Morale and Just Maybe Changing the World , by Brian Elms. I came across the book when we were creating our first iteration of the Irving Innovation Academy. I have no doubt that it was Google that led me there originally, but I actually met Brian at a conference and one of my team members was able to visit with him and see his academy from behind the scenes. He’s definitely an inspiration.

Similarly, I’m a big Disney fan as well, and I read Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration by Ed Catmull. I loved reading about the backstories and lessons that the Pixar team learned along the way, and there were a few that stuck out to me: leadership is about bringing out the best in others, keeping the lines of communication open, and embracing the fact that good ideas come from everywhere. I also think there is something to be said about surrounding yourself with smart people. I’ve really taken that to heart, and we’ve got a great team at Irving. After reading the book, I ended up watching Inside Pixar , and loved seeing the book’s lessons come to life onscreen. They clearly demonstrate the power of collaboration and I love that everyone has and knows their role in making Pixar a success.

— There you have it, folks! A huge thank you to Craig, Chalonda, Lizely, Douglas, Kevin and Aimee for sharing the books that have helped them level up their strategy and performance management programs.

From all of us at Envisio, we wish you a safe, successful and well-read new year!

Based in Toronto, Josh Elyea has been writing professionally for over a decade. His experience bridges the space between the corporate and the creative, and his portfolio includes everything from journalism and copy to fiction and screenplays. Josh has a Master’s Degree in Literature with a specific focus on postwar American literature–a subject which has left him with a keen interest in the intersection between the stories we tell and the social, political, and economic consequences they grow from. He began his career with Enviso because he believes that the institutions that shape our society matter, and he’s excited to help build better and more trustworthy public sector organizations across North America. In his spare time, Josh is a multi-instrumentalist, a Blue Jays fan, and an avid reader of fiction.

KEEP READING

Related articles you might like.

Screenshot of local government reporting framework

June 2, 2023

How to Build a Local Government Performance Reporting Framework (with examples)

Whether or not you use Envisio, we hope these examples can provide some insight, inspiration, and structure for your reporting success.

Photo of three cups of tea and a teapot

March 25, 2021

3 Leadership Roles Key to Successfully Implementing Your Strategic Plan

There are three key leadership roles that contribute to the successful implementation of a strategic plan. Learn about these roles and who should fill them.

The Heart of All Strategic Planning Models

March 11, 2020

The Heart of All Strategic Planning Models

The purpose of developing a strategic planning process is to align organizational resources to achieve...

Psst! Join 10,000+ of your peers and get the best from our blog direct to your inbox.

Roughly once a week, we’ll send you the very best from our blog and other Envisio resources. We’ll be respectful of your inbox and you can unsubscribe anytime.

  • First Name *
  • Last Name *
  • Comments This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

100 Best Strategy Books of All Time

We've researched and ranked the best strategy books in the world, based on recommendations from world experts, sales data, and millions of reader ratings. Learn more

the best strategic planning books

The Art of War

Sun Tzu | 5.00

the best strategic planning books

Reid Hoffman Reid read Carl von Clausewitz and Sun Tzu as a boy, which informed his strategic thinking. (Source)

Neil deGrasse Tyson Which books should be read by every single intelligent person on planet? [...] The Art of War (Sun Tsu) [to learn that the act of killing fellow humans can be raised to an art]. If you read all of the above works you will glean profound insight into most of what has driven the history of the western world. (Source)

Evan Spiegel After meeting Mark Zuckerberg, [Evan Spiegel] immediately bought every [Snapchat] employee a copy of 'The Art Of War'. (Source)

See more recommendations for this book...

the best strategic planning books

Blue Ocean Strategy

How To Create Uncontested Market Space And Make The Competition Irrelevant

W. Chan Kim | 4.78

the best strategic planning books

Daymond John There are the normal ones that everybody loves. There would be "Rich Dad Poor Dad," "Who Moved My Cheese?;" I love all the Dale Carnegie books; "The One Minute Manager." I love newer ones like "Blue Ocean Strategy" and all the "Freaknomics" books. (Source)

Ryan Holiday I don’t remember who originally told me to read Blue Ocean Strategy but I’m glad they did because this simple recommendation would substantially shape the course of my life and my career. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Santiago Basulto It’s hard to pick a favorite business book, they all have a lot of insight spread among different publications. But if I’d need to choose one, it’d be The Blue Ocean Strategy. It completely changed my way of seeing business when I was just getting started. It’s filled with amazing stories and insights. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The 48 Laws of Power

Robert Greene | 4.73

the best strategic planning books

Charlamagne Tha God These are the books I recommend people to listen to on @applebooks. (Source)

Marvin Liao My list would be (besides the ones I mentioned in answer to the previous question) both business & Fiction/Sci-Fi and ones I personally found helpful to myself. The business books explain just exactly how business, work & investing are in reality & how to think properly & differentiate yourself. On the non-business side, a mix of History & classic fiction to understand people, philosophy to make... (Source)

Ryan Holiday There is no living writer (or person) who has been more influential to me than Robert Greene. I met him when I was 19 years old and he’s shaped me as a person, as a writer, as a thinker. You MUST read his books. His work on power and strategy are critical for anyone trying to accomplish anything. In life, power is force we are constantly bumping up against. People have power of over us, we seek... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Good Strategy Bad Strategy

The Difference and Why It Matters

Richard Rumelt | 4.67

the best strategic planning books

John Kay It’s very well written and I see I am quoted on the back cover saying, ‘This is the only book about business strategy which I didn’t want to put down.' (Source)

Stephen Kinsella Good Strategy/Bad Strategy, by Richard Rummelt. The kindle edition has thousands of highlights for the first 2 chapters, then almost none thereafter. I find that telling. This a great, non-bullshit book on a topic usually full of bullshit. https://t.co/2xyeoZ4e7R (Source)

Louis Grenier If you want to think about strategy, the proper strategy, how to understand what to do, what not to do, read: “Good Strategy, Bad Strategy”, “Good to Great” and “Blue Ocean Strategy”. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Innovator's Dilemma

When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail

Clayton M. Christensen | 4.66

the best strategic planning books

Jeff Bezos Brad Stone's new book, The Everything Store, describes how Bezos developed this strategy after reading another book called The Innovator's Dilemma by Harvard professor Clayton Christensen. (Source)

Steve Jobs It's important that we make this transformation, because of what Clayton Christensen calls "the innovator's dilemma," where people who invent something are usually the last ones to see past it, and we certainly don't want to be left behind. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Max Levchin [Max Levchin recommended this book as an answer to "What business books would you advise young entrepreneurs read?"] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Thinking, Fast and Slow

Kahneman | 4.57

the best strategic planning books

Barack Obama A few months ago, Mr. Obama read “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” by Daniel Kahneman, about how people make decisions — quick, instinctive thinking versus slower, contemplative deliberation. For Mr. Obama, a deliberator in an instinctive business, this may be as instructive as any political science text. (Source)

Bill Gates [On Bill Gates's reading list in 2012.] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Marc Andreessen Captivating dive into human decision making, marred by inclusion of several/many? psychology studies that fail to replicate. Will stand as a cautionary tale? (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Prince [with Biographical Introduction]

Nicollo Machiavelli, Tim Parks | 4.56

the best strategic planning books

Eric Ripert A fascinating study and still wholly relevant. (Source)

Neil deGrasse Tyson Which books should be read by every single intelligent person on planet? [...] The Prince (Machiavelli) [to learn that people not in power will do all they can to acquire it, and people in power will do all they can to keep it]. If you read all of the above works you will glean profound insight into most of what has driven the history of the western world. (Source)

Ryan Holiday Of course, this is a must read. Machiavelli is one of those figures and writers who is tragically overrated and underrated at the same time. Unfortunately that means that many people who read him miss the point and other people avoid him and miss out altogether. Take Machiavelli slow, and really read him. Also understand the man behind the book–not just as a masterful writer but a man who... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Zero to One

Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future

Peter Thiel; Blake Masters | 4.56

the best strategic planning books

Elon Musk Peter Thiel has built multiple breakthrough companies, and Zero to One shows how.” - Elon Mus (Source)

Mark Zuckerberg This book delivers completely new and refreshing ideas on how to create value in the world. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Eric Weinstein If you really understand something that the rest of the world is confused about, and it’s an important truth, [this book] says here are all the ways you might want to make that work. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Lean Startup

How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses

Eric Ries | 4.54

the best strategic planning books

Sheryl Sandberg Provides a great inside look at how the tech industry approaches building products and businesses. (Source)

Ben Horowitz Great. (Source)

Dustin Moskovitz At Asana, we've been lucky to benefit from [the author]'s advice firsthand; this book will enable him to help many more entrepreneurs answer the tough questions about their business. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Tipping Point

How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference

Malcolm Gladwell | 4.52

the best strategic planning books

Kevin Rose Bunch of really good information in here on how to make ideas go viral. This could be good to apply to any kind of products or ideas you may have. Definitely, check out The Tipping Point, which is one of my favorites. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Seth Godin Malcolm Gladwell's breakthrough insight was to focus on the micro-relationships between individuals, which helped organizations realize that it's not about the big ads and the huge charity balls... it's about setting the stage for the buzz to start. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Andy Stern I think that when we talk about making change, it is much more about macro change, like in policy. This book reminds you that at times when you're building big movements, or trying to elect significant decision-makers in politics, sometimes it's the little things that make a difference. Ever since the book was written, we've become very used to the idea of things going viral unexpectedly and then... (Source)

Don't have time to read the top Strategy books of all time? Read Shortform summaries.

Shortform summaries help you learn 10x faster by:

  • Being comprehensive: you learn the most important points in the book
  • Cutting out the fluff: you focus your time on what's important to know
  • Interactive exercises: apply the book's ideas to your own life with our educators' guidance.

the best strategic planning books

The Book of Five Rings

Miyamoto Musashi | 4.51

the best strategic planning books

Ryan Holiday Widely held as a classic, this book is much more than a manifesto and manual on swordsmanship and martial arts. It’s about the mindset, the discipline, and the perception necessary to win in life or death situations. As a swordsman, Musashi fought mostly by himself, for himself. His wisdom, therefore, is mostly internal. He tells you how to out-think and out-move your enemies. He tells you how to... (Source)

Zach Even Esh Love this book & should have re-read long ago. . It only takes a page or 2 to change your life IF YOU FOLLOW THROUGH. . #musashi #samurai #undergroundstrengthgym #undergroundstrengthcoach #undergroundstrengthbook… https://t.co/zL8zxUwCJG (Source)

Stephane Grand I do not believe there are business and non-business books. Business is life, you do business like the man or woman you excavate from the person you are told you are. Hence, the most potent business books are not about business, in my opinion. What makes a great business book is that it is a book that helps you find a better version of yourself. Therefore, I would say that my favorite business... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Good to Great

Why Some Companies Make the Leap... and Others Don't

Jim Collins | 4.51

Jeff Bezos "Collins briefed Amazon executives on his seminal management book before its publication. Companies must confront the brutal facts of their business, find out what they are uniquely good at, and master their fly wheel, in which each part of the business reinforces and accelerates the other parts," Stone writes. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Dave Ramsey [Dave Ramsey recommended this book on his website.] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

How to Win Friends & Influence People

Dale Carnegie | 4.48

the best strategic planning books

Dustin Moskovitz Seek to be understood. (Source)

Scott Adams [Scott Adams recommends this book on his "Persuasion Reading List."] (Source)

Daymond John I love all the Dale Carnegie books. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Lawrence Freedman | 4.48

the best strategic planning books

Antulio Echevarria II He lays out quite nicely how complex and convoluted that history is. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Carl von Clausewitz, Michael Eliot Howard, Peter Paret | 4.47

About the Author Except for a brief stint in 1812 when he served in the Russian army, Clausewitz spent his whole career, from the age of...

About the Author Except for a brief stint in 1812 when he served in the Russian army, Clausewitz spent his whole career, from the age of twelve until his death in 1831, in the Prussian army. He fought in all the major Prussian campaigns against France, and his most fateful experience - the 1806 Battle of Jena-Auerstedt, in which Napoleon destroyed the Prussian army - inspired him to write On War.

the best strategic planning books

Ryan Holiday I know this will offend many strategy purists, but for most audiences I recommend these two books only with a pretty strong disclaimer. While both are clearly full of strategic wisdom, they are hard to separate from their respective eras and brands of warfare. As budding strategists in business and in life, most of us are really looking for advice that can help us with our own problems. The... (Source)

Mary Kaldor This is the sort of Bible of military strategists. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Psychology of Persuasion

Robert B. Cialdini | 4.47

the best strategic planning books

Charles T. Munger Robert Cialdini has had a greater impact on my thinking on this topic than any other scientist. (Source)

Dan Ariely It covers a range of ways in which we end up doing things, and how we don’t understand why we’re doing them. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The 33 Strategies of War

Robert Greene | 4.47

the best strategic planning books

B. H. Liddell Hart | 4.43

Ryan Holiday These are two very short books but will help you understand the topics more than thousands of pages on the same topic by countless other writers. In my view, Hart is unquestionably the best writer on military strategy and history. Better than von Clausewitz, that’s for sure (who for all the talk is basically useless unless you are planning on fighting Napoleon). His theories on the indirect... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness

Richard H. Thaler | 4.42

the best strategic planning books

Dan Ariely Nudge is a very important book. One of the reasons Nudge is so important is because it’s taking these ideas and applying them to the policy domain. Here are the mistakes we make. Here are the ways marketers are trying to influence us. Here’s the way we might be able to fight back. If policymakers understood these principles, what could they do? The other important thing about the book is that it... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Eric Ries A pioneer in behavioral economics and just recently awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics, his classic book on how to make better decisions. (Source)

Ryan Holiday This might feel like a weird book to include, but I think it presents another side of strategy that is too often forgotten. It’s not always about bold actors and strategic thrusts. Sometimes strategy is about subtle influence. Sometimes it is framing and small tweaks that change behavior. We can have big aims, but get there with little moves. This book has excellent examples of that kind of... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Start with Why

How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

Simon Sinek | 4.42

the best strategic planning books

Tony Robbins The basis of this book is so important to anyone looking to increase their influence, profits or impact. People won't truly buy into a product, service, movement, or idea until they understand the WHY behind it. When you start with the why, everything else falls into place. This book is so impactful, I consider it required reading. (Source)

Richard Branson Today is World Book Day, a wonderful opportunity to address this #ChallengeRichard sent in by Mike Gonzalez of New Jersey: Make a list of your top 65 books to read in a lifetime. (Source)

Tony Hsieh Over the years he’s [] recommended well over 20 business books — including his own, the 2010 bestseller Delivering Happiness and you can always find what he’s currently reading atop his cluttered desk. Start with Why is amogst those titles. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Understanding Michael Porter

The Essential Guide to Competition and Strategy

Joan Magretta | 4.41

HBR's 10 Must Reads on Strategy (including featured article “What Is Strategy?” by Michael E. Porter)

Harvard Business Review, Michael E. Porter, W. Chan Kim, Renée A. Mauborgne | 4.41

the best strategic planning books

The Story of Success

Malcolm Gladwell | 4.41

the best strategic planning books

Bill Gates [On Bill Gates's reading list in 2011.] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

James Altucher Gladwell is not the first person to come up with the 10,000 hour rule. Nor is he the first person to document what it takes to become the best in the world at something. But his stories are so great as he explains these deep concepts. How did the Beatles become the best? Why are professional hockey players born in January, February and March? And so on. (Source)

Cat Williams-Treloar The books that I've talked the most about with friends and colleagues over the years are the Malcolm Gladwell series of novels. Glorious stories that mix science, behaviours and insight. You can't go wrong with the "The Tipping Point", "Outliers", "Blink" or "David & Goliath". (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Playing to Win

How Strategy Really Works

A.G. Lafley, Roger L. Martin | 4.40

the best strategic planning books

Meg Whitman The entire company has organized around "Playing to Win" which is a book written by A.G. Lafley and a colleague of his. Listen, there are many ways to deploy strategy in companies. This is one I found to be particularly helpful because organizations have a lot of trouble making decisions, particularly at our scale. So this notion of where to play, what countries, what market segments, what... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Measure What Matters

How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs

John Doerr, Larry Page | 4.39

Reid Hoffman Whether you're a seasoned CEO or a first-time entrepreneur, you'll find valuable lessons, tools, and inspiration in the pages of Measure What Matters. I'm glad John invested the time to share these ideas with the world. (Source)

Walter Isaacson In this indispensable book, the most important venture capitalist of our era reveals a key to business innovation and success. This crisp and colorful book combines fascinating case studies with insightful personal stories to show how OKRs can add magic to organizations of any size. (Source)

Bill Gates John explains how OKRs [Objectives and Key Results] work and shows how you can apply them in all sorts of situations. I’d recommend John’s book for anyone interested in becoming a better manager (and I’d say that even if I hadn’t been interviewed for a super-nice chapter about the Gates Foundation). (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Black Swan

The Impact of the Highly Improbable

Nassim Nicholas Taleb | 4.39

Jeff Bezos [From the book "The Everything Store: and the Age of Amazon"] “The scholar argues that people are wired to see patterns in chaos while remaining blind to unpredictable events, with massive consequences. Experimentation and empiricism trumps the easy and obvious narrative,” Stone writes. (Source)

James Altucher And throw in “The Black Swan” and “Fooled by Randomness”. “Fragile” means if you hit something might break. “Resilient” means if you hit something, it will stay the same. On my podcast Nassim discusses “Antifragility” – building a system, even on that works for you on a personal level, where you if you harm your self in some way it becomes stronger. That podcast changed my life He discusses... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Art of Winning an Unfair Game

Michael Lewis | 4.38

the best strategic planning books

Carol Dweck You would think that the relationship between training and skill would be utterly obvious in sports, but apparently it isn’t. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

David Papineau It’s a parable of the disinclination of people in general to base their practices on evidence, a parable for evidence-based policy in general. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Ed Smith This is about a guy using econometrics to predict which baseball players will do better in advancing wins, a remarkable use of economic thinking. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Never Split the Difference

Chris Voss, Tahl Raz | 4.37

the best strategic planning books

Dustin Moskovitz [Dustin Moskovitz recommended this book on Twitter.] (Source)

Daniel Pink Emphasizes the importance of emotional intelligence without sacrificing deal-making power. From the pen of a former hostage negotiator—someone who couldn’t take no for an answer—which makes it fascinating reading. But it’s also eminently practical. In these pages, you will find the techniques for getting the deal you want. (Source)

Adam Grant eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'theceolibrary_com-large-mobile-banner-2','ezslot_6',164,'0','1'])); This book blew my mind. It’s a riveting read, full of instantly actionable advice—not just for high-stakes negotiations, but also for handling everyday conflicts at work and at home. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

Powerful Lessons in Personal Change

Stephen R. Covey | 4.37

the best strategic planning books

Dustin Moskovitz [I] was surprised at how familiar the topics felt. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Kishore Biyani Immensely helpful and influential during my early years, it explained some of the basic mindsets required to succeed in any profession. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Life and Work

Ray Dalio | 4.36

the best strategic planning books

Mark Cuban The book I wish I had as a young entrepreneur. (Source)

Tony Robbins I found it to be truly extraordinary. Every page is full of so many principles of distinction and insights—and I love how Ray incorporates his history and his life in such an elegant way. (Source)

Bill Gates Ray Dalio has provided me with invaluable guidance and insights that are now available to you in Principles. (Source)

Competitive Strategy

Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors

Michael E. Porter | 4.36

More than a million managers in both large and small companies, investment analysts, consultants, students, and scholars throughout the world have internalized Porter's ideas and applied them to assess industries, understand competitors,, and choose competitive positions. The ideas in the book address the underlying fundamentals of competition in a way that is independent of the specifics of the ways companies go about competing.

Competitive Strategy has filled a void in management thinking. It provides an enduring foundation and grounding point on which all subsequent work can be built. By bringing a disciplined structure to the question of how firms achieve superior profitability, Porter's rich frameworks and deep insights comprise a sophisticated view of competition unsurpassed in the last quarter-century.

Denise Morris Kipnis Question: What five books would you recommend to young people interested in your career path & why? Answer: In addition to Built to Change, Process Consultation, and Flawless Consulting, I would add: The Wisdom of Teams by Katzenbach & Smith Diagnosing and Changing Organizational Culture by Cameron & Quinn Designing Organizations by Galbraith Understanding Research Methods by Patten Competitive... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Hard Thing About Hard Things

Building a Business When There Are No Easy Answers

Ben Horowitz | 4.35

Larry Page Ben's book is a great read - with uncomfortable truths about entrepreneurship and how to lead to a company. It's also an inspiring story of a business rebirth through sheer willpower. (Source)

Mark Zuckerberg Ben's experience and expertise make him one of the most important leaders not just in Silicon Valley but also in the global knowledge economy. For anyone interested in building, growing or leading a great company, this book is an incredibly valuable resource - and a funny and insightful read. (Source)

Dustin Moskovitz [Dustin Moskovitz recommended this book during a Stanford lecture.] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Made to Stick

Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die

Chip Heath, Dan Heath | 4.34

the best strategic planning books

Cristian-Dragos Baciu I highly recommend all the books written by the Heath brothers, especially Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive And Others Die. This one's a must-read for marketers. The reason I enjoyed their work so much is because they offer real-life stories and insights that makes it so much easier for the reader to imprint that information in his mind (Source)

Tudor Mihailescu First thing first, finance people need to be decent communicators, ideally awesome communicators. There is an art in building a case or in delivering a presentation and we need to treat this step as seriously as we have treated the other steps. I do believe this is a top priority for an aspiring or practicing CFO - There are plenty of books on this topic, I would recommend the works of Chip and... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Steve Lance Made to Stick is about what makes a message memorable. Why is it that we can all say ‘Call me Ishmael’ and remember this opening line to Moby Dick, and yet none of us can say the second sentence. Made to Stick is a thoughtful, fact-based empirical study about this idea of stickiness. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

A Memoir by the Creator of NIKE

Phil Knight | 4.30

Bill Gates This memoir, by the co-founder of Nike, is a refreshingly honest reminder of what the path to business success really looks like: messy, precarious, and riddled with mistakes. I’ve met Knight a few times over the years. He’s super nice, but he’s also quiet and difficult to get to know. Here Knight opens up in a way few CEOs are willing to do. I don’t think Knight sets out to teach the reader... (Source)

Warren Buffett The best book I read last year. Phil is... a gifted storyteller. (Source)

Andre Agassi I've known Phil Knight since I was a kid, but I didn't really know him until I opened this beautiful, startling, intimate book. And the same goes for Nike. I've worn the gear with pride, but I didn't realize the remarkable saga of innovation and survival and triumph that stood behind every swoosh. Candid, funny, suspenseful, literary - this is a memoir for people who love sport, but above all... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Art of Strategy

A Game Theorist's Guide to Success in Business and Life

Avinash K. Dixit, Barry J. Nalebuff | 4.30

Kimberly Gloria Choi I am curious of how strategy can apply on all kinds of industries. By reading this book, I want to find out things I might not have known before, or maybe I have been played by this strategy mind game (As a customer, consumer). And I want to see if this book could drastically change my logical thinking in my daily life. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

A Process of Ongoing Improvement

Eliyahu M. Goldratt, Jeff Cox | 4.30

the best strategic planning books

Jeff Bezos Encourages companies to identify the biggest constraints in their operations and then structure their organizations to get the most out of those constraints. (Source)

Kevin Systrom About basically manufacturing and supply chain management. It sounds really boring, but I promise you it’s really good. (Source)

Chris Goward Here are some of the books that have been very impactful for me, or taught me a new way of thinking: [...] The Goal. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Business Model Generation

A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers

Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneu | 4.29

the best strategic planning books

Kaci Lambe Kai This was a great book, because it opened up the idea of what a business model is supposed to be vs what it can be. It doesn't have to be a stuffy, boring document. (Source)

Alexandra Stroe [I'd recommend] The Lean Startup by Eric Ries, Business Model Generation by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur and Zero to One by Peter Thiel when they are in the starting phase of a business that needs to validate its business model. (Source)

Ashley Hathaway I could probably name a dozen books here, but I’ll point out The Business Model Generation and Value Prop Design from Strategyzer. I steal from these constantly and are engrained in my work process. These books put into practice really taught me how to think. As soon as I saw that everything should have a foundation of empathy, what good user-testing looks like, how to test and iterate it changed... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Thinking in Systems

Donella H. Meadows, Diana Wright | 4.29

the best strategic planning books

Tobi Lütke [Tobi Lütke recommended this book on the podcast "The Knowledge Project".] (Source)

Kate Raworth It was a real revelation for me to discover such a different approach to thinking and analysing challenges. (Source)

Mira Kirshenbaum A nice overview of how initial conditions lead to patterns that determine what the relationship feels like to the people in it (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Extreme Ownership

How U.S. Navy Seals Lead and Win

Jocko Willink, Leif Babin | 4.28

the best strategic planning books

Casey Neistat My favorite Jocko book. (Source)

Timothy Ferriss Jocko is also the co-author of Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win — which I loved. (Source)

Roger Ailes This is the SEAL Leadership book we have been waiting for. Poignant, powerful, practical. A must read for every leader. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Built to Last

Successful Habits of Visionary Companies

Jim Collins, Jerry I. Porras | 4.28

the best strategic planning books

Jeff Bezos recommends this book because it shows how to create a long lasting company. (Source)

Tim O'Reilly Built to Last, by James Collins and Jerry Porras. The idea here is that great companies aren't afraid to have strong values. In fact, their cult-like values are what make them stand out from the norm. (Source)

Alden Mills Built to Last focused my daydreaming mind into what it takes to build truly great companies. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Crossing the Chasm

Marketing and Selling Disruptive Products to Mainstream Customers

Geoffrey A Moore | 4.27

the best strategic planning books

Drew Houston It’s [about] how do technology products make their way from early adopters t the mainstream. (Source)

Ron Conway Bestselling guide that created a new game plan for marketing in high-tech industries. (Source)

Seth Godin This is a key component in my Purple Cow thinking, but with a twist. I'm not as worried about the chasm as I am about the desire of marketers to go for the big middle. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The 4-Hour Workweek

Escape 9-5, Live Anywhere, and Join the New Rich

Timothy Ferriss, Ray Porter | 4.27

Eric Weinstein [Eric Weinstein recommended this book on Twitter.] (Source)

Tim Draper With this kind of time management and focus on the important things in life, people should be able to get 15 times as much done in a normal work week. (Source)

Marvin Liao SUCH a hard question to answer because there are so MANY favorite books of mine. For Business, i'd say either 80/20 Principle (Koch) or 4 Hour Work Week (Ferriss) for the principles it teaches on how to optimize work & life. (Source)

Competitive Advantage

Creating and Sustaining Superior Performance

Michael E. Porter | 4.26

the best strategic planning books

Robert Greene | 4.25

the best strategic planning books

James Altucher What better way to learn about success then the minute paths taken by 100s or 1000s of successful people.It feels like Robert takes everyone in history and dissects the exact moments and decisions that led to their great success. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Tobias S @Oliver_Rankin @Ashthorp Great book, read it twice! (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The E-Myth Revisited

Why Most Small Businesses Don't Work and What to Do About It

Michael E. Gerber | 4.25

Timothy Ferriss After reading The E-Myth Revisited by Michael Gerber and The 80/20 Principle by Richard Koch, I decided that extreme questions were the forcing function I needed. (Source)

Brian Scudamore The book that’s had the biggest impact on me is The E-Myth by Michael Gerber (I even wrote about it in my own book). I read it front to back, then reread it right away. Gerber takes you through every step of a running a business from start to finish, and shows you what you need to make it successful. I read it when I was looking to take 1-800-GOT-JUNK? to the next level, and I had an epiphany:... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Walter Isaacson | 4.24

the best strategic planning books

Elon Musk Quite interesting. (Source)

Gary Vaynerchuk I've read 3 business books in my life. If you call [this book] a business book. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War

Robert Coram | 4.24

Ryan Holiday Boyd was probably the greatest post-WWII military strategist; he developed the F-15 and F-16, revolutionized ground tactics in war and covertly designed the US battle plans for the Gulf War. He shunned wealth, fame, and power all to accomplish what he felt needed to be accomplished. Coram captures his essence in a way that no other author has touched. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Getting to Yes

Negotiating Agreement Without Giving in

Roger Fisher, William L. Ury, Bruce Patton | 4.24

Charles T. Munger recommends this title in the book "Poor Charlie's Almanack: The Wit and Wisdom of Charles T. Munger". (Source)

Drew Houston About principled negotiation, and I still think about and apply a lot of those concepts today. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Power of Habit

Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business

Charles Duhigg | 4.24

the best strategic planning books

Naval Ravikant I also recently finished The Power of Habit, or close to finish as I get. That one was interesting, not because of its content necessarily, but because it’s good for me to always keep on top of mind how powerful my habits are. [...] I think learning how to break habits is a very important meta-skill that can serve you better in life than almost anything else. Although you can read tons of books... (Source)

Blake Irving You know, there's a book called The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg. Simple read book about just how to build positive habits that can be I think I what I'd call you know whether in your personal life or whether in your business life to help you build you know, have a loop that can build your success and that's one I mean there are so many great books out there. (Source)

Santiago Basulto Another book with great impact was “The power of habit”. But to be honest, I read only a couple of pages. It’s a good book, with many interesting stories. But to be honest, the idea it tries to communicate is simple and after a couple of pages you’ve pretty much understood all of it. Happens the same thing with those types of books (Getting things done, crossing the chasm, etc.) (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Power Broker

Robert Moses and the Fall of New York

Robert A. Caro | 4.24

the best strategic planning books

Barack Obama He may have the country’s finest experts at his fingertips, but it still doesn’t hurt to read up on environmental and economic issues. (Source)

Ryan Holiday It took me 15 days to read all 1,165 pages of this monstrosity that chronicles the rise of Robert Moses. I was 20 years old. It was one of the most magnificent books I’ve ever read. Moses built just about every other major modern construction project in New York City. The public couldn’t stop him, the mayor couldn’t stop him, the governor couldn’t stop him, and only once could the President of... (Source)

Ben Greenman Well, if you look at a picture of a place, you can normally get a sense of what it’s like. But hopefully what books do, or what thinking does, is to show you what that place is like underneath. The Power Broker is the definitive history of how, in modern America, cities get built, power gets thrown around, neighbourhoods are overpowered by developers and politicians. It’s gigantic and it’s a... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Freakonomics

A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

Stephen J. Levitt, Steven D.; Dubner | 4.22

Malcolm Gladwell I don’t need to say much here. This book invented an entire genre. Economics was never supposed to be this entertaining. (Source)

Daymond John I love newer books like [this book]. (Source)

James Altucher [James Altucher recommended this book on the podcast "The Tim Ferriss Show".] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Checklist Manifesto

How to Get Things Right

Atul Gawande | 4.21

The New York Times bestselling author of Better and Complications reveals the surprising power of the ordinary checklist

We live in a world of great and increasing complexity, where even the most expert professionals struggle to master the tasks they face. Longer training, ever more advanced technologies‚neither seems to prevent grievous errors. But in a hopeful turn, acclaimed surgeon and writer Atul Gawande finds a remedy in the humblest and simplest of techniques: the checklist. First introduced decades ago by the U.S. Air Force, checklists...

We live in a world of great and increasing complexity, where even the most expert professionals struggle to master the tasks they face. Longer training, ever more advanced technologies‚neither seems to prevent grievous errors. But in a hopeful turn, acclaimed surgeon and writer Atul Gawande finds a remedy in the humblest and simplest of techniques: the checklist. First introduced decades ago by the U.S. Air Force, checklists have enabled pilots to fly aircraft of mind-boggling sophistication. Now innovative checklists are being adopted in hospitals around the world, helping doctors and nurses respond to everything from flu epidemics to avalanches. Even in the immensely complex world of surgery, a simple ninety-second variant has cut the rate of fatalities by more than a third. In riveting stories, Gawande takes us from Austria, where an emergency checklist saved a drowning victim who had spent half an hour underwater, to Michigan, where a cleanliness checklist in intensive care units virtually eliminated a type of deadly hospital infection. He explains how checklists actually work to prompt striking and immediate improvements. And he follows the checklist revolution into fields well beyond medicine, from homeland security to investment banking, skyscraper construction, and businesses of all kinds. An intellectual adventure in which lives are lost and saved and one simple idea makes a tremendous difference, The Checklist Manifesto is essential reading for anyone working to get things right.

the best strategic planning books

Bill Gates A great read. (Source)

David Allen Atul is really talking about how absolutely powerful checklists are, and I think he makes a very creative point: that checklist are not just some static, boring thing. They actually allow you to do excellent work and free up your brain by not having to keep remembering what you need to do when. That then allows your brain to be a lot more creative about whatever it is you’re doing. (Source)

Timothy Ferriss Ramit and I are both obsessed with checklists and love a book by Atul Gawande titled The Checklist Manifesto. I have this book on a shelf in my living room, cover out, as a constant reminder. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Essentialism

The Disciplined Pursuit of Less

Greg McKeown | 4.21

the best strategic planning books

Casey Neistat This is a great book. I've read it, I've bought it for a friend. (Source)

Noah Kagan [Noah Kagan recommended this book in the book "Tools of Titans".] (Source)

Gilles Bernhard Essentialism is a mindset. It is a combination of discipline, long term thinking, identifying goals and the pursuit of less. This is a book I will definitely read again and again, until mastered, because it resonated very much with me. It is also an easy to read book. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Getting Things Done

The Art of Stress-Free Productivity

David Allen, James Fallows | 4.20

Dustin Moskovitz Put first things first. (Source)

Tony Hsieh Getting Things Done by David Allen. He recently spoke at our Zappos all-hands meeting and gave me a signed copy of his book. (Source)

Eric Rose When I'm flat-out stressed about the volume and complexity of my work, I open this book and find immediate ways to gain a sense of control. That's really a critical need for decision making. David made me what I am today: headstrong and proud of it. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Outsiders

Eight Unconventional CEOs and Their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success

William N. Thorndike | 4.20

Warren Buffett In his 2012 shareholder letter, Buffett praises The Outsiders as "an outstanding book about CEOs who excelled at capital allocation." Berkshire Hathaway plays a major role in the book. One chapter is on director Tom Murphy, who Buffett says is "overall the best business manager I've ever met." (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Michael Dell Thorndike explores the importance of thoughtful capital allocation through the stories of eight successful CEOs. A good read for any business leader but especially those willing to chart their own course (Source)

Mason Hawkins The Outsiders is a must-read for leaders—and aspiring leaders—striving to become exceptional CEOs, and for investors interested in partnering with exceptional stewards of corporate capital. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Everything Store

Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon

Brad Stone | 4.20

the best strategic planning books

Doug McMillon [I read and give this book because] you need to understand what you’re up against. (Source)

Santiago Basulto I love to read biographies and stories of companies. Hatching Twitter is a really good book, and if you’re into that sort of books, bios of Steve Jobs (by Isaacson) or Jeff Bezos are great too. (Source)

Tracy DiNunzio It's a great book and especially for people starting out. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

History of the Peloponnesian War

R. Warner Thucydides,M. I. Finley | 4.19

the best strategic planning books

Ryan Holiday This book – of a long forgotten war – really functions as a biography and strategic analysis of some of the greatest minds in the history of war. We have Pericles, Brasidas, Alcibiades and many others. The anecdotes and the stories in this book are timeless. If you make your way all the way through it, I promise you will not forget it. Because the war was so long, involved so many different... (Source)

Steven Pressfield It is loaded with hardcore, timeless truths and the story it tells ought to be required reading for every citizen in a democracy. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

How to Build Habit-Forming Products

Nir Eyal, Ryan Hoover | 4.19

the best strategic planning books

Matt Mullenweg Hooked gives you the blueprint for the next generation of products. Read Hooked or the company that replaces you will. (Source)

Tee-Ming Chew Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal. It changed the way I think about product and helps you to be hyper focused on what matters rather than what is cool for your users. (Source)

Irina Marinescu Already a classic about how to build successful products. Also, retention is a priority goal for any Product Manager, but you can't have retention if you are not setting a good engagement rate. It was a great starting point for me as part of my first startup and continues to help me today as acquired knowledge about user behavior. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Antifragile

Things That Gain from Disorder

Nassim Nicholas Taleb | 4.18

James Altucher You ask about success. To be successful you have to avoid being “fragile” – the idea that if something hurts you, you let collapse completely. You also have to avoid simply being resilient. Bouncing back is not enough. Antifragile is when something tries to hurt you and you come back stronger. That is real life business. That is real life success. Nassim focuses on the economy. But when I read... (Source)

Marvin Liao eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'theceolibrary_com-leader-2','ezslot_7',164,'0','1'])); My list would be (besides the ones I mentioned in answer to the previous question) both business & Fiction/Sci-Fi and ones I personally found helpful to myself. The business books explain just exactly how business, work & investing are in reality & how to think properly & differentiate yourself. On... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Vlad Tenev The general concept is applicable to many fields beyond biology, for instance finance, economics and monetary policy. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Power of Thinking Without Thinking

Malcolm Gladwell | 4.17

the best strategic planning books

Mike Shinoda I know most of the guys in the band read [this book]. (Source)

Marillyn Hewson CEO Marilyn Hewson recommends this book because it helped her to trust her instincts in business. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

David and Goliath

Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants

the best strategic planning books

Catalina Penciu Business-wise, my goal for this year is to improve my collection and my mindset, but my favorite so far has been David and Goliath by Malcolm Gladwell. (Source)

Robert Katai Buy Malcolm Gladwell’s book “David and Goliath” and read the interesting stories about how the Davids of that moments have defeated the Goliaths. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Thinking Strategically

The Competitive Edge in Business, Politics, and Everyday Life

Avinash K. Dixit, Barry J. Nalebuff | 4.16

The international bestseller — don't compete without it! A major bestseller in Japan, Financial Times Top Ten book of the year, Book-of-the-Month Club bestseller, and required reading at the best business schools, Thinking Strategically is a crash course in outmaneauvering any rival. This entertaining guide builds on scores of case studies taken from business, sports, the movies, politics, and gambling. It outlines the basics of good strategy making and then shows how you can apply them in any area of your life.

the best strategic planning books

Tim Harford This guide to game theory is the book that first made me fall in love with economics. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Art of Seduction

Robert Greene | 4.14

the best strategic planning books

Makers of Modern Strategy from Machiavelli to the Nuclear Age

Peter Paret, Gordon A. Craig, et al. | 4.14

the best strategic planning books

The 4 Disciplines of Execution

Achieving Your Wildly Important Goals

Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, Jim Huling | 4.14

the best strategic planning books

Team of Rivals

The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln

Doris Kearns Goodwin | 4.13

Bill Gates I loved Goodwin’s Team of Rivals and highly recommend this one too. (Source)

Barack Obama The Oval office can be a lonely place, so reading about your forefather’s experience could only help. “The biographies have been useful, because I do think that there’s a tendency, understandable, to think that whatever’s going on right now is uniquely disastrous or amazing or difficult,” said President Obama in an interview. (Source)

Kobe Bryant I loved Team of Rivals, and Leadership really built on the things I had taken away from that book. Moving from basketball to building a company, I needed to learn new and different leadership skills, and Goodwin outlines the different skill-sets of Lincoln, both Roosevelts, and Lyndon Johnson, accessibly. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Only the Paranoid Survive

Andrew S. Grove | 4.13

Charles T. Munger In my whole life, I have known no wise people (over a broad subject matter area) who didn't read all the time -- none, zero. You'd be amazed at how much Warren reads -- and at how much I read. My children laugh at me. They think I'm a book with a couple of legs sticking out. (Source)

Steve Jobs This book is about one super-important concept. You must learn about Strategic Inflection Points, because sooner or later you are going to live through one. (Source)

Ben Horowitz Andy Grove's Only the Paranoid Survive is a great book on strategy. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Innovator's Solution

Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth

Clayton M. Christensen, Michael E. Raynor | 4.12

the best strategic planning books

Ashley Hathaway When it comes to work books I definitely like to ask my leaders what their favorite books are. There are lots of repeats (Crossing the Chasm, Innovator's Dilemma & Solution, Lean Startup, etc), but every now and then someone will have a really unique one that I’ll read. I always read those right away. I’ve also taken book recommendations & then not read the book for like a year. I’ll go back and... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

On Grand Strategy

John Lewis Gaddis | 4.12

the best strategic planning books

Rules for Radicals

A Practical Primer for Realistic Radicals

Saul David Alinsky | 4.11

First published in 1971, Rules for Radicals is Saul Alinsky's impassioned counsel to young radicals on how to effect constructive social change and know “the difference between being a realistic radical and being a rhetorical one.” Written in the midst of radical political developments whose direction Alinsky was one of the first to question, this volume exhibits his style at its best. Like Thomas Paine before him, Alinsky was able to combine, both in his person and his writing, the intensity of political engagement with an absolute insistence on rational political discourse and...

First published in 1971, Rules for Radicals is Saul Alinsky's impassioned counsel to young radicals on how to effect constructive social change and know “the difference between being a realistic radical and being a rhetorical one.” Written in the midst of radical political developments whose direction Alinsky was one of the first to question, this volume exhibits his style at its best. Like Thomas Paine before him, Alinsky was able to combine, both in his person and his writing, the intensity of political engagement with an absolute insistence on rational political discourse and adherence to the American democratic tradition.

the best strategic planning books

Ryan Holiday This is the 48 Laws of Power written in more of an idealist, activist tone. Alinsky was the liaison for many civil rights, union and student causes in the late 50’s and 60’s. He teaches how to implement your radical agenda without using radical tactics, how to disarm with words and media as opposed to arms and Utopian rhetoric. (Source)

Mad Bitcoins I just read this fantastic book by Saul Alinsky and I tell you what, I think @AOC has read it as well. Trump should be very afraid. https://t.co/n7rlmetqzW (Source)

Michael Coudrey If you want to know the tactics of the Democrats, you must read this book. If you understand their tactics, you'll be less likely to fall into their traps & better able to defeat them in conversation, in communication, in appearance, in reputation, in policy, & frankly, in life. https://t.co/L4gfuwZ6a3 (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Predictably Irrational

The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Dan Ariely | 4.11

the best strategic planning books

Nick Harkaway Predictably Irrational is an examination of the way in which we make decisions irrationally, and how that irrationality can be predicted. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Jonah Lehrer Dan Ariely is a very creative guy and was able to take this basic idea, that humans are irrational, and mine it in a million different directions. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Jason Fried, David Heinemeier Hansson | 4.10

Jeff Bezos Unperturbed by conventional wisdom, [the authors] start fresh and rewrite the rules of business. Their approach turns out to be as successful as it is counter-intuitive. (Source)

Mark Cuban If given a choice between investing in someone who has read Rework or has an MBA, I'm investing in Rework every time. This is a must read for every entrepreneur. (Source)

Tony Hsieh The wisdom in these pages is edgy yet simple, straightforward, and proven. Read this book multiple times to help give you the courage you need to get out there and make something great. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Creativity, Inc.

Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration

Ed Catmull, Amy Wallace | 4.09

the best strategic planning books

Mark Zuckerberg This book is written by the founder of Pixar and is about his experience building a culture that fosters creativity. His theory is that people are fundamentally creative, but many forces stand in the way of people being able to do their best work. I love reading first-hand accounts about how people build great companies like Pixar and nurture innovation and creativity. This should be inspiring to... (Source)

Timothy Ferriss No matter your circumstances, storytelling and creativity are two 'meta-skills' that can take your business and life to the next level. Ed is a master. (Source)

Ezra Klein An amazing, amazing book. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Strategy Safari

A Guided Tour Through The Wilds of Strategic Management

Henry Mintzberg, Joseph Lampel, Bruce Ahlstrand | 4.09

the best strategic planning books

Get a Grip on Your Business

Gino Wickman | 4.09

the best strategic planning books

Meditations

Marcus Aurelius | 4.08

the best strategic planning books

Arianna Huffington I find [this book] so inspirational and instructive, it lives on my nightstand. (Source)

Chip Conley I have given [this book] away to a number of people. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Value Proposition Design

How to Create Products and Services Customers Want

Alexander Osterwalder, Yves Pigneur, Gregory Bernarda, Alan Smith, Trish Papadakos | 4.07

Chandini Jain [One of the five books Chandini would you recommend to young people interested in her career path.] (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Niccolò Machiavelli, Ellis Farneworth | 4.07

the best strategic planning books

How a Few Companies Make It...and Why the Rest Don't (Rockefeller Habits 2.0)

Verne Harnish | 4.06

the best strategic planning books

Patrick Lencioni Verne Harnish is more committed to helping companies grow than any other person on the planet. Really. He's also radically practical in his approach and that is reflected throughout this terrific book. (Source)

Graham Weston Fast-growing companies - not small ones or big ones - create almost all the jobs and innovation in our economy, and Verne has been an invaluable guide to leaders of such companies, like me. Scaling Up helps us put in place the disciplines critical to building a significant business. (Source)

Alexandra Stroe [I'd recommend] Scaling Up by Verne Harnish, The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz and Measure what Matters by John Doerr for scaling and managing the business. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Your Strategy Needs a Strategy

How to Choose and Execute the Right Approach

Martin Reeves, Knut Haanaes, Janmejaya Sinha | 4.06

the best strategic planning books

The First 90 Days

Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels

Michael D. Watkins | 4.06

The Decision Book

Fifty Models for Strategic Thinking

Mikael Krogerus, Roman Tschäppeler, Jenny Piening | 4.06

the best strategic planning books

Emma Gannon It’s an amazing book. If you are confused by how to get through the day with multiple projects, it tells you how to prioritise your day. It’s incredible. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Strategy Paradox

Why committing to success leads to failure (and what to do about it)

Michael E. Raynor | 4.05

Ryan Holiday I don’t have a lot of modern books on this list, but this is an excellent one. We tend to wrongly think that strategy is about coming up with a genius plan and then committing to it. In fact, this is often a recipe for disaster, particularly in business. Though success often requires a total investment in a particular strategy, this is also the recipe for extreme failure. It’s a paradox. ... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Black Hawk Down

A Story of Modern War

Mark Bowden | 4.05

the best strategic planning books

Toby Young As a journalist who rarely leaves my desk, I don’t get an opportunity to do much reportage – but I get a vicarious thrill from reading it. Some of my favourite journalism books are examples of sustained reporting about a single subject – The Studio by John Gregory Dunne, for instance, and American Ground by William Langewiesche – but I don’t think I’ve enjoyed a book of reportage more than Black... (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Effective Executive

The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done

Peter F. Drucker, Zachary First, Jim Collins | 4.04

Drew Houston I think one of the most valuable concepts from [this book] is measuring your time. (Source)

Timothy Ferriss I think it's much more valuable than 99% of the so-called time management books out there. (Source)

Matt Mullenweg We're both big fans of Peter Drucker and his book The Effective Executive, as well as Alain de Botton's How Proust Can Change your Life. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Science, Strategy and War

The Strategic Theory of John Boyd

Frans P.B. Osinga | 4.04

the best strategic planning books

How to Change Things When Change Is Hard

Chip Heath and Dan Heath | 4.04

the best strategic planning books

Africa Mentor 6 fine summer reads | London Business School  London Business School Review A good book is the best travel companion – wherever you are. By the pool or on your commute, be transported with these titles chos... https://t.co/Wo9NYOrwqG via @theafricamentor #entrepreneur #africabiz (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The 10x Rule

The Only Difference Between Success and Failure

Grant Cardone | 4.03

Mark Struczewski I love what Grant Cardone writes in The 10X Rule, "wouldn't coming up short on a 10X target accomplish more than coming up short on one-tenth of that goal?" In other words, he says it's better to fall short of a one million dollar goal than a $100,000 goal. (Source)

Haris Siddique I would say because it influenced me and created an imperial impact on my career path. An amazing book to read as it teaches you How to reprogram your mind in minutes to eliminate fears and phobia. Being a sales and marketing professional. I adopted many great changes in me and used some of the best techniques which are explained very well in this book by Grant Cardone. I would definitely... (Source)

The Foundations of Business Strategy

Hamilton Helmer | 4.03

The 50th Law

Robert Greene | 4.03

Ryan Holiday I also recommend The 50th Law, which while not technically a biography tells the stories of many such individuals and will stick with you just as long. (Source)

Great by Choice

Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck--Why Some Thrive Despite Them All

Jim Collins, Morten T. Hansen | 4.03

Mark Moses [ listing the books that had the biggest impact on him] (Source)

Joseph Liu I love this book because it provides some practical case studies about the behaviors that allow certain individuals, teams, and companies to excel that you can then apply to your own personal life and career. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Ron Chernow | 4.03

Barack Obama The president also released a list of his summer favorites back in 2015: All That Is, James Salter The Sixth Extinction, Elizabeth Kolbert The Lowland, Jhumpa Lahiri Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates Washington: A Life, Ron Chernow All the Light We Cannot See, Anthony Doerr (Source)

Ryan Holiday In terms of big biographies, Ron Chernow’s biography of Washington, Eric Romm’s biography of Seneca Dying Every Day (LOVED THIS) and Edmund Morris’ final biography of Theodore Roosevelt, Col. Roosevelt were all worth every page. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Four Steps to the Epiphany

Successful Strategies for Products That Win

Steve Blank | 4.02

Ryan Hoover Too much (good) info but thankfully there's a summary in the Appendix. (Source)

Matthieu David-Experton Question: What books would you recommend to young people interested in your career path? Answer: I would recommend the following ones: The Hard Thing About Hard Things Who? How to recruit A players Les Cles du futur by Jean Staune (in French) All the books written by Peter Drucker (The Essentials of Drucker) The 4 steps to the Epiphany by Steve Blank Freakonomics The books by Jack Welsh... (Source)

Craig Pearce If you are reading to learn skills that can be implemented in your startup, I’d recommend The Lean Startup: How Today's Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful by Eric Reis and actually avoid its predecessor The Four Steps to the Epiphany: Successful Strategies for Products That Win by Steve Blank until later in your career. (Source)

Competition Demystified

A Radically Simplified Approach to Business Strategy

Bruce Greenwald, Judd Kahn | 4.02

the best strategic planning books

The Complete Strategy Guide to go from Starter Kit to Silver

Sarah Harnisch | 4.02

the best strategic planning books

Positioning

The Battle for Your Mind

Al Ries, Jack Trout | 4.02

Tim O'Reilly Positioning, and The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing by Al Ries and Jack Trout. Anyone who wants to start a business with impact needs to read these books. (Source)

Seth Godin This book is built around the brilliant insight that your prospect doesn't care nearly as much about what you do as you do, and thus you must boil down your offering into a unique slot that repositions the competition. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Obstacle Is the Way

The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph

Ryan Holiday | 4.01

the best strategic planning books

James Altucher My life has been beset with obstacles. It takes practice (and pain) to surmount them and achieve success. [This author]’s book is a how-to guide for just that. (Source)

George Raveling [One of] the books that I’ve given away the most lately. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

The Lords of Strategy

The Secret Intellectual History of the New Corporate World

Walter Kiechel | 4.00

the best strategic planning books

Superforecasting

The Art and Science of Prediction

Philip E. Tetlock, Dan Gardner | 4.00

the best strategic planning books

Sheil Kapadia Read the book Superforecasting, had a great conversation with @bcmassey and came up with seven ideas for how NFL teams can try to find small edges during the draft process. Would love to hear feedback on this one. https://t.co/PdN1fKCagl (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Julia Galef [Has] some good advice on how to improve your ability to make accurate predictions. (Source)

the best strategic planning books

Eleven Rings

The Soul of Success

Phil Jackson, Hugh Delehanty | 4.00

Ryan Holiday Favorite business or leadership book in a long time. (Source)

Adam Lawrence Question: What’s your favorite book and why? Answer: [...] Eleven Rings by Phil Jackson [...] (Source)

Fupping

Master Strategy: 10 Best Books On Strategic Planning

the best strategic planning books

No matter what you do, whether you’re running a dog walking company or a multi billion tech company, you need to have a stratergy . Here are the 10 books you should read to master strategic planning.

Each of the books on this list is suggested by a Fupping contributor.

Navigate the article

#1 Leadership For Introverts by Ty Belknap

the best strategic planning books

The book Leadership For Introverts includes a section on Planning for Success. The planning process includes: Finding your why, determining your core values, creating a mission statement or Edict, developing your strategic vision and determining your strategy. Each part includes hints and tips for introverts to capitalize on their quiet nature.

Want to read more reviews of this book or buy it? Check out the links below:

  • For readers in the USA
  • For readers in the UK

Contributors : Ty Belknap from Port Bell

the best strategic planning books

#2 Traction by Gino Wickman

No Title No Description (function($){var $self=$('.adace-loader-65da7e44f09e8');var $wrapper=$self.closest('.adace-slot-wrapper');"use strict";var adace_load_65da7e44f09e8=function(){var viewport=$(window).width();var tabletStart=601;var landscapeStart=801;var tabletEnd=961;var content='%3Cdiv%20class%3D%22adace_adsense_65da7e44f09c1%22%3E%3Cscript%20async%20src%3D%22%2F%2Fpagead2.googlesyndication.com%2Fpagead%2Fjs%2Fadsbygoogle.js%22%3E%3C%2Fscript%3E%0A%09%09%3Cins%20class%3D%22adsbygoogle%22%0A%09%09style%3D%22display%3Ablock%3B%22%0A%09%09data-ad-client%3D%22ca-pub-4575699250410047%22%0A%09%09data-ad-slot%3D%221284858835%22%0A%09%09data-ad-format%3D%22auto%22%0A%09%09%3E%3C%2Fins%3E%0A%09%09%3Cscript%3E%28adsbygoogle%20%3D%20window.adsbygoogle%20%7C%7C%20%5B%5D%29.push%28%7B%7D%29%3B%3C%2Fscript%3E%3C%2Fdiv%3E';var unpack=true;if(viewport =tabletStart&&viewport =landscapeStart&&viewport =tabletStart&&viewport =tabletEnd){if($wrapper.hasClass('.adace-hide-on-desktop')){$wrapper.remove();}}if(unpack){$self.replaceWith(decodeURIComponent(content));}} if($wrapper.css('visibility')==='visible'){adace_load_65da7e44f09e8();}else{var refreshIntervalId=setInterval(function(){if($wrapper.css('visibility')==='visible'){adace_load_65da7e44f09e8();clearInterval(refreshIntervalId);}},999);}})(jQuery);

This book is perfect for any business who finds themselves in the chasm of building revenue and trying to keep up with expansion in the business, yet caught in that limbo of growing pains. Whether it’s trying to build that strategy plan for that new hire, or coming up for air to even THINK about what’s the next most efficient move for the business to keep the model sustainable and preventing your team from burn out, Traction is a no-frills big drink of water for anyone who’s famished for guidance.

Contributors : Eric Hobbs from Technology Associates

This books one of my staples!

#3 Strategic Planning Unleashed by Ronald J. Recardo & Tim Toterhi

No Title No Description

The methodology [in this book] is scalable to different organizations of various sizes and complexities and includes many strategic planning tools that are not in the public domain. It can help leaders in any organization analyze its external environment, reach consensus on your sources of competitive advantage, identify a business strategy, and execute it seamlessly.

Contributors : Tim Toterhi from Plotline Leadership

#4 The Ultimate Sales Machine by Chet Holmes

the best strategic planning books

Touted by business giants such as Brian Tracy and Michael Gerber, this book is perfect for budding professionals, business owners and seasoned executives with Fortune 500 corporations. Written in a fast paced and engaging manner, Holmes shares 12 key strategies that any company or person can use to accelerate sales and profits, double or triple productivity and lock in business for years to come.

Contributors : Richard Villasana from Forever Homes for Foster Kids

#5 Good strategy/Bad Strategy by Richard Rumelt

the best strategic planning books

A critical error I see constantly in strategic planning is not having a definition what strategy is. This may seem simple, but in practice, people think they are taking about the same thing, but they aren’t. And soon conflict and issues emerge. Good Strategy/Bad Strategy takes you through an easy to use definition of what strategy is and applies it to may situations so you can quickly understand what you should building through your planning process.

Contributors : Gary Romano from Civitas Strategies, LLC

#6 Leaders Eat Last by Simon Sinek

the best strategic planning books

Today's employees need leaders who are willing to put their employees' interest ahead of theirs. It's definitely not easy, but Simon Sinek shares some great anecdotes from all different settings to help you understand why this matters so much.

Contributors : Joshua Feinberg from Data Center Sales & Marketing Institute

#7 Remote by David Heinemeier Hansson and Jason Fried

the best strategic planning books

Digital transformation -- and the rise of mobile devices and cloud computing -- have completely changed the notion of traditional offices and workplaces on their heads. Learn from the founders of legendary SaaS company Basecamp how to successfully build and manage a remote team.

#8 Purple Cow by Seth Godin

the best strategic planning books

With increasing globalization, it's harder than ever for companies to stand out from the crowd. But what if you truly brought something so special and unique that your target market couldnt't help but be attracted to your brand? Seth Godin helps you see why your opinions on your own differentiation don't matter and how to rethink what it takes to compete and win today.

#9 The Competitive Strategy by Michael Porter

the best strategic planning books

I took his class in business school and this is a classic. It takes you through all the steps with frameworks, rules and tools to be successful.

Contributors : Paige Arnof-Fenn from Mavens & Moguls

#10 The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg

the best strategic planning books

This is not a book about the strategic planning process. Rather, it is a book that explores how habits are created by individuals and by organizations and how these resulting habits influence results and future success. This is a great book from which to glean fundamental processes and then direct towards implementing them in our personal and organizational lives. It explains how the leader of a business, in one case Alcoa, uses a simple “keystone habit” to focus the entire organization in a way that had an outsized impact on corporate success.

Contributors : Partner Mike McQuiston from The Connor Group

This post was created with our nice and easy submission form. Create your post!

the best strategic planning books

Written by Taegan Lion

Leave a reply cancel reply.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed .

© 2024 by Hassan Ahmed and Nathaniel Fried.

Username or Email Address

Remember Me

Don't have an account? Register

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Privacy policy.

To use social login you have to agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.

Add to Collection

Public collection title

Private collection title

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.

Intrafocus

Strategy Resources

Let us help you demystify strategic planning

Top 10 Books on Strategy

What are the top 10 strategy books for 2024?  We’ve taken a really good look and come up with the list below. The list is in two parts, first, are the books published recently, not neccessarily in 2024, and second, the all-time greats that every strategist should take the time to read. Oh, we added an eleventh bonus book as well!

One-Hour Strategy

The One-Hour Strategy

The One-Hour Strategy is an inspiring read with a refreshingly different outlook compared to other strategy books. Kraaijenbrink offers a practical and powerful approach to engage the entire organisation in strategy and help bridge the gap between strategy and execution.

One-Hour Strategy

The Geek Way

A new model is being pioneered by geeks; a radical new mindset that has shifted the paradigm entirely on what a business can – and should – be. They do not follow the rules of the Industrial era, with their hierarchies and bureaucratic ways of thinking. They do not follow the principles preached in business schools since the dawn of time.

The Metaverse

The Metaverse

What, exactly, is the metaverse? As pioneering theorist and venture capitalist Matthew Ball explains, it is the successor to the mobile internet that has defined the last two decades. The metaverse is a persistent, 3D, virtual world―a network of interconnected experiences and devices, tools and infrastructure, far beyond mere virtual reality.

the best strategic planning books

Reality Check

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are part of a new wave of immersive technologies that offer huge opportunities for businesses, across industries and regardless of their size. Most people think of AR or VR as a new development in video gaming like Pokémon GO, or an expensive marketing campaign by the Nikes of the world. The truth is, businesses of any size can put these new technologies to immediate use.

Lead from the Future

Lead from the Future

Mark W. Johnson and Josh Suskewicz introduce a new way of thinking and managing, called “future-back,” that enables any manager to become a practical visionary. Addressing the many barriers to change that exist in established organizations, they present a systematic approach to overcoming them

the best strategic planning books

HBR’s 10 Must Reads

Strictly speaking, this is not a book, it is a collection of articles from the Harvard Business Review including authors from Satya Nadella to Lynda Gratton and company examples from Nestlé to TikTok, this volume brings the most current and important management conversations right to your fingertips.

The All Time Greats…

the best strategic planning books

  • Search Search Search …
  • Search Search …

The Best 21 Books on Strategic Thinking

Best 20 Books on Strategic Thinking

Strategic thinking is a critical skill for leaders and managers in today’s complex and rapidly changing business environment. To develop effective strategies, one needs to have a deep understanding of the organization’s goals, resources, and competitive landscape, as well as the ability to think creatively and adapt to new challenges. Fortunately, there are many books that provide insights into the art and science of strategic thinking. In this article, we have compiled a list of the 21 best books on strategic thinking, based on recommendations from experts in the field and reviews from readers. Whether you are a seasoned executive, an aspiring entrepreneur, or a student of business, these books will provide you with practical tools, inspiring stories, and timeless wisdom to help you develop and implement effective strategies that drive success.

  • “ Good Strategy Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters” by Richard Rumelt – This book explains the difference between good and bad strategies and provides insights into how to develop effective strategies.
  • “The Art of War” by Sun Tzu – This ancient Chinese text provides timeless advice on strategy and leadership.
  • “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman – This book explores the two modes of thinking, and how they affect decision-making and strategic thinking.
  • “Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant” by W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne – This book introduces the concept of creating new market spaces instead of competing in existing ones.
  • “Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors” by Michael E. Porter – This book provides a framework for analyzing industries and competitors to develop effective strategies.
  • “Strategic Thinking: A Nine Step Approach to Strategy and Leadership for Managers and Marketers” by Simon Wootton and Terry Horne – This book provides a practical approach to strategic thinking and leadership.
  • “ Strategy: A History” by Lawrence Freedman – This book provides a comprehensive history of strategic thinking and its evolution over time.
  • “The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail” by Clayton M. Christensen – This book explores why established companies often fail to innovate and how to avoid the “innovator’s dilemma.”
  • “ The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses ” by Eric Ries – This book introduces the concept of lean startup methodology and provides insights into how to create successful businesses through continuous innovation.
  • “The Strategy Paradox: Why Committing to Success Leads to Failure (And What to Do About It)” by Michael E. Raynor – This book explores why committing to a successful strategy can lead to failure and provides insights into how to avoid the strategy paradox.
  • “Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works” by A.G. Lafley and Roger L. Martin – This book provides a practical approach to strategy development and implementation.
  • “The Fifth Discipline: The Art and Practice of the Learning Organization” by Peter M. Senge – This book introduces the concept of the learning organization
  • “The Balanced Scorecard: Translating Strategy into Action” by Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton – This book introduces the balanced scorecard framework, which aligns an organization’s strategy with its objectives, measures, targets, and initiatives.
  • “The Strategist: Be the Leader Your Business Needs” by Cynthia Montgomery – This book provides insights into the mindset and skills required to be a successful strategist and leader.
  • “The Strategy Book: How to Think and Act Strategically to Deliver Outstanding Results” by Max Mckeown – This book provides a practical guide to strategic thinking and action, with tips and tools for developing and implementing effective strategies.
  • “Business Model Generation: A Handbook for Visionaries, Game Changers, and Challengers” by Alexander Osterwalder and Yves Pigneur – This book introduces the business model canvas, a visual tool for designing and testing business models.
  • “The Power of Intentional Leadership: How to Think and Act Strategically to Accomplish Your Goals” by Michael Hyatt – This book provides insights into the mindset and skills required to be an intentional leader, and how to align your actions with your goals.
  • “The Innovator’s Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth” by Clayton M. Christensen and Michael E. Raynor – This book provides insights into how to create and sustain successful growth through innovation, with case studies and practical tools.
  • “The Strategy-Focused Organization: How Balanced Scorecard Companies Thrive in the New Business Environment” by Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton – This book provides case studies and practical insights into how organizations can use the balanced scorecard framework to align their strategy with their operations and achieve success.
  • “The Lean Product Playbook: How to Innovate with Minimum Viable Products and Rapid Customer Feedback” by Dan Olsen – This book provides a practical guide to lean product development, with tips and tools for creating and testing minimum viable products and getting rapid customer feedback.
  • The Balanced Scorecard: Translating Strategy into Action” by Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton is a seminal book that introduced the balanced scorecard framework, a strategic management tool that helps organizations align their strategy with their objectives, measures, targets, and initiatives. The book provides a step-by-step guide to developing and implementing a balanced scorecard, with case studies and practical insights from companies that have successfully used the framework. The balanced scorecard helps organizations to focus on the key drivers of success, communicate their strategy to all stakeholders, and monitor progress towards their goals. The framework has become widely adopted in many industries and has been credited with improving organizational performance and decision-making.

The books on this list provide a wealth of knowledge and insights into the art and science of strategic thinking, from the timeless wisdom of Sun Tzu’s “The Art of War” to the practical tools of Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton’s “The Balanced Scorecard.” Whether you are looking to develop a new business model, create a culture of innovation, or lead your organization through a period of change, these books will provide you with the inspiration and guidance you need to succeed. We hope that this list has been helpful in your quest for knowledge and that you will find these books to be valuable resources in your journey towards becoming a strategic thinker and leader.

You may also like

Strategic Thinking vs Systems Thinking

Strategic Thinking vs Systems Thinking: Understanding the Differences and Benefits

Strategic thinking and systems thinking are two distinct approaches to problem-solving and planning, essential in organizational management and personal decision-making. Strategic thinking […]

Strategic Thinking and Goal Setting

Strategic Thinking and Goal Setting: A Clear Path to Success

Strategic thinking and goal setting are crucial skills in today’s fast-paced business world. The ability to look at the big picture, analyze […]

strategic thinking practices

Best TED Talks on Strategic Thinking: Essential Insights for Leaders

Strategic thinking is an essential skill that enables individuals and organizations to plan effectively, anticipate challenges, and navigate the complexities of the […]

Strategic Thinking vs Operational Thinking

Strategic Thinking vs Operational Thinking: Understanding Key Business Mindsets

In the realm of business management and leadership, there exists a fundamental dichotomy between strategic thinking and operational thinking. Strategic thinking involves […]

Paul Finch Unofficial Author Website

20 best books on planning – 2023 reading list & recommendations

If you’re a planner at heart, you know there’s nothing quite like diving into a book on planning to satisfy your organizational cravings. Whether you’re looking to enhance your productivity, streamline your daily routine, or simply gain a deeper understanding of the art of planning, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ve compiled a list of the 20 best books about planning that are sure to inspire and empower you. From classic titles to modern gems, these planning books are a must-have for anyone seeking to master the art of organization.

  • 1 The Art of Strategy
  • 2 Thinking, Fast and Slow
  • 3 The Lean Startup
  • 4 The Power of Habit
  • 6 The Innovator’s Dilemma
  • 7 Predictably Irrational
  • 8 Made to Stick
  • 9 Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion
  • 10 The Checklist Manifesto
  • 11 Thinking in Systems
  • 12 The Design of Everyday Things
  • 13 The Goal
  • 14 The Innovator’s Solution
  • 15 The Black Swan
  • 16 The Fifth Discipline
  • 17 The Strategy Book
  • 18 The Paradox of Choice
  • 19 The Art of Thinking Clearly
  • 20 The Strategy Paradox
  • 21 Conclusion

best books about planning The Art of Strategy

Buy the book

The Art of Strategy

By avinash k. dixit and barry j. nalebuff.

The Art of Strategy is a captivating book on planning, written by Avinash K. Dixit and Barry J. Nalebuff. This dynamic duo takes readers on an intellectual journey, exploring the intricate world of decision-making and strategic thinking. With their insightful and engaging writing style, they break down complex concepts into easily understandable terms, making this book about planning a must-read for anyone seeking to enhance their strategic skills.

best books about planning Thinking, Fast and Slow

Thinking, Fast and Slow

By daniel kahneman.

Thinking, Fast and Slow is a captivating book on the intricacies of the human mind. Authored by the brilliant Daniel Kahneman, this groundbreaking work delves into the fascinating world of decision-making, offering insights that challenge our conventional understanding of how we plan and navigate through life.

With an abundance of real-life examples and thought-provoking experiments, Kahneman takes us on a journey through two systems of thinking that shape our choices: System 1, which operates quickly and intuitively, and System 2, which is slow and deliberate. Through his meticulous research, he reveals the often surprising and irrational tendencies that govern our thought processes.

What sets this planning book apart is its ability to shed light on the hidden biases and cognitive illusions that influence our everyday decisions. By unraveling the intricacies of our minds, Kahneman equips us with the knowledge to recognize and overcome these biases, ultimately empowering us to make better, more informed choices.

Whether you are a psychology enthusiast, a curious thinker, or simply someone seeking to improve their decision-making skills, Thinking, Fast and Slow is a must-read. Prepare to embark on a captivating journey that will challenge your assumptions and transform the way you approach planning and decision-making.

best books about planning The Lean Startup

The Lean Startup

By eric ries.

The Lean Startup by Eric Ries is not your typical book on planning. It’s a game-changer in the world of entrepreneurship and innovation. This book about planning takes a fresh perspective on how to build successful businesses in an unpredictable and ever-changing market.

Ries introduces the concept of the “lean startup,” which is a methodology designed to help entrepreneurs create and grow sustainable businesses. The key idea is to continuously test and iterate ideas through a scientific approach, rather than relying on traditional planning methods.

This planning book challenges the notion of spending months or even years creating a detailed business plan before launching a product. Instead, Ries encourages entrepreneurs to build a minimum viable product (MVP) and gather feedback from customers as early as possible. This allows for rapid experimentation and learning, leading to better decision-making and a higher chance of success.

The Lean Startup is filled with practical advice, real-life examples, and actionable strategies to help entrepreneurs navigate the uncertain waters of startup life. Ries emphasizes the importance of being adaptable, learning from failure, and embracing a culture of innovation.

If you’re tired of traditional planning methods that often lead to wasted time and resources, this book is a must-read. It will challenge your beliefs about how to start and grow a business, and provide you with a framework to test, learn, and iterate your way to success.

best books about planning The Power of Habit

The Power of Habit

By charles duhigg.

The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg is not your typical book on planning. It delves deep into the science behind our habits and how they shape our lives. Duhigg explores the fascinating world of habits, from personal habits to organizational habits, and how they can be changed to create positive outcomes.

This captivating book about planning takes readers on a journey through case studies, scientific experiments, and real-life examples to uncover the power of habits. Duhigg examines how habits are formed, why they exist, and how they can be modified to achieve personal and professional success.

Throughout the book, Duhigg introduces readers to the habit loop, which consists of a cue, a routine, and a reward. He explains how understanding this loop can help us identify and change our habits effectively. Whether you want to break a bad habit or establish a new one, this planning book provides practical strategies and actionable advice.

The Power of Habit also explores the impact of habits on organizations and societies. Duhigg delves into the concept of “keystone habits,” which are habits that have a ripple effect, influencing other behaviors and creating a domino effect of positive change. By understanding how keystone habits work, individuals and organizations can harness their power to transform lives and achieve remarkable results.

Overall, The Power of Habit is a thought-provoking and enlightening read. It challenges readers to examine their own habits and empowers them to take control of their lives. Whether you’re interested in personal development, organizational change, or simply understanding the psychology behind our behaviors, this book is a must-read.

best books about planning Nudge

by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein

Nudge is a captivating book on planning by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein that will revolutionize the way you think about decision-making. This book about planning introduces the concept of “choice architecture,” which explores how the way choices are presented can significantly influence our decisions.

Thaler and Sunstein argue that by understanding the principles of choice architecture, we can create subtle yet powerful nudges that guide people towards making better choices. These nudges can be used to improve various aspects of our lives, from personal finance and healthcare to public policy and environmental sustainability.

Through engaging examples and thought-provoking insights, the authors demonstrate how nudges can help individuals and society as a whole make smarter decisions without imposing restrictive regulations or removing personal freedom. They emphasize the importance of preserving choice while gently steering people towards more beneficial outcomes.

This planning book challenges conventional wisdom and encourages readers to reconsider how choices are presented in various contexts. With its accessible writing style and intriguing anecdotes, Nudge is a must-read for anyone interested in understanding human behavior, improving decision-making, and creating positive change.

best books about planning The Innovator's Dilemma

The Innovator’s Dilemma

By clayton m. christensen.

The Innovator’s Dilemma by Clayton M. Christensen is a groundbreaking book on strategic decision-making and disruptive innovation. It’s not just any book about planning; it’s a planning book that challenges conventional wisdom and offers a fresh perspective on how businesses can stay ahead in a rapidly changing world.

best books about planning Predictably Irrational

Predictably Irrational

By dan ariely.

Predictably Irrational is not your typical book on planning. In fact, it’s far from it. Dan Ariely, a behavioral economist, takes us on a fascinating journey into the depths of human decision-making and shows us just how unpredictable and irrational we can be.

Through a series of eye-opening experiments and real-life examples, Ariely challenges the traditional notion that we are rational beings who carefully weigh the pros and cons before making decisions. Instead, he reveals that our decisions are often influenced by various biases, emotions, and social pressures that we are completely unaware of.

This book about planning uncovers the hidden forces that shape our choices, whether it’s buying a car, choosing a partner, or even planning for retirement. Ariely’s engaging writing style and relatable anecdotes make this planning book a joy to read, as he delves into topics like the power of freebies, the allure of discounts, and the irrationality of our self-control.

So, if you’re looking for a captivating and thought-provoking read that will challenge your assumptions about decision-making, then Predictably Irrational is the perfect planning book for you. Get ready to have your mind blown and gain a whole new perspective on how we plan and make choices in our lives.

best books about planning Made to Stick

Made to Stick

By chip heath and dan heath.

Made to Stick is a captivating book on planning that takes you on a mind-bending journey through the art of communication. Written by Chip Heath and Dan Heath, this page-turner unravels the secrets behind crafting ideas that are not only memorable but also have the power to inspire action.

Within the pages of this planning book, the authors delve into the six key principles that make ideas stick: simplicity, unexpectedness, concreteness, credibility, emotions, and stories. Through vivid storytelling and real-world examples, Chip and Dan Heath illustrate how these principles can transform even the most complex concepts into something that resonates with people on a deep level.

The book about planning is filled with eye-opening anecdotes and practical strategies that can be applied to various aspects of life, from marketing campaigns to personal conversations. Made to Stick challenges conventional wisdom and offers a refreshing perspective on how to break through the noise and make your ideas stand out.

Whether you’re a planner, an entrepreneur, a teacher, or simply someone looking to enhance their communication skills, this planning book is a must-read. It will empower you to create ideas that are not only memorable but also have the potential to change the world. So dive into Made to Stick and unlock the secrets of making your ideas stick in the minds of others.

best books about planning Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion

By robert b. cialdini.

Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion by Robert B. Cialdini is not just any ordinary book on planning, it is a captivating exploration into the fascinating world of human psychology and the art of persuasion. Cialdini takes us on a thrilling journey through the intricate mechanisms that influence our decision-making processes, revealing the secrets behind why we say “yes” to certain things and “no” to others.

best books about planning The Checklist Manifesto

The Checklist Manifesto

By atul gawande.

The Checklist Manifesto by Atul Gawande is a game-changing book on the power of organization. In this captivating book about planning, Gawande takes us on a journey through the world of medicine, aviation, and construction to highlight the phenomenal impact that checklists can have on our lives.

With his engaging storytelling and real-life anecdotes, Gawande reveals the surprising truth that even the most skilled professionals can make mistakes or overlook crucial steps. This eye-opening planning book explores how checklists can prevent errors, improve efficiency, and ultimately save lives.

Gawande’s research showcases the incredible benefits of using checklists in various professions. Whether it’s a surgical team performing a complex operation or a pilot navigating a challenging flight, the implementation of a well-designed checklist can be the difference between success and failure.

But The Checklist Manifesto isn’t just about checklists. It’s about the power of collaboration, communication, and the human ability to learn from our mistakes. Gawande emphasizes that checklists should not be rigid protocols but rather flexible tools that adapt to different situations and allow professionals to think critically and creatively.

This book on planning is a wake-up call for anyone who thinks they have it all figured out. It challenges our assumptions and reveals the hidden potential of simple yet effective tools. Whether you’re a healthcare professional, a project manager, or simply someone who wants to improve their daily routines, The Checklist Manifesto offers invaluable insights and practical strategies to enhance your planning skills and achieve outstanding results.

best books about planning Thinking in Systems

Thinking in Systems

By donella h. meadows.

Thinking in Systems by Donella H. Meadows is a thought-provoking book about the art of understanding and navigating complex systems. It is a captivating exploration of how various elements interact and influence each other, providing valuable insights into the interconnectedness of our world. This book is not just a planning book; it is a valuable tool for anyone interested in unraveling the complexities of our modern society. Meadows skillfully illustrates the power of systems thinking and offers practical strategies for creating sustainable solutions. Whether you are a planner, strategist, or simply curious about the intricate workings of the world around you, this book is a must-read.

best books about planning The Design of Everyday Things

The Design of Everyday Things

By don norman.

The Design of Everyday Things Overview

Welcome to the fascinating world of design and human psychology! If you’ve ever wondered why some things work effortlessly while others frustrate us to no end, then “The Design of Everyday Things” by Don Norman is the book for you. This captivating book on planning delves into the intricate relationship between design and human behavior, revealing the secrets behind well-designed products and the pitfalls of poorly thought-out ones.

Don Norman, a renowned cognitive scientist and usability engineer, takes us on a journey through our everyday interactions with objects, from doors and switches to smartphones and cars. His powerful insights and real-life examples demonstrate how design can profoundly impact our experiences, both positively and negatively.

Norman highlights the importance of planning and foresight in creating user-friendly designs. He introduces the concept of “affordances,” which refers to the perceived possibilities and actions that an object suggests to its user. By understanding affordances, designers can create intuitive products that anticipate users’ needs and guide them effortlessly through their interactions.

Moreover, Norman explores the concept of “mapping” – the relationship between a control and its effect. A well-designed product should provide clear and logical mappings, allowing users to easily understand how to operate it. When mappings are confusing or misleading, frustration ensues. By studying these principles, designers can avoid common pitfalls and create products that enhance our daily lives.

Throughout the book, Norman shares amusing anecdotes and thought-provoking stories that illustrate the impact of design on our well-being. He challenges conventional wisdom and invites us to question our assumptions about how things should work. By doing so, he empowers us to be more conscious consumers and advocates for better design in our environment.

So, whether you’re a designer, engineer, or simply someone curious about the world around you, “The Design of Everyday Things” is a captivating book about planning that will forever change the way you view the objects you interact with daily. Dive into this eye-opening journey and discover the fascinating world of design that surrounds us all!

best books about planning The Goal

by Eliyahu M. Goldratt

The Goal by Eliyahu M. Goldratt is a groundbreaking business novel that will completely change the way you think about planning and efficiency. This book is not your typical dry and boring book about planning, but rather a captivating story that will keep you hooked from start to finish.

best books about planning The Innovator's Solution

The Innovator’s Solution

By clayton m. christensen and michael e. raynor.

The Innovator’s Solution is a game-changing book on strategic thinking and business planning. Written by Clayton M. Christensen and Michael E. Raynor, this thought-provoking masterpiece challenges conventional wisdom and provides a fresh perspective on how to succeed in today’s rapidly evolving business landscape.

Unlike any other book about planning, The Innovator’s Solution explores the concept of disruptive innovation and its impact on established companies. It delves deep into the idea that successful organizations often fail not because of incompetence, but because they adhere too closely to traditional planning methods and fail to adapt to disruptive forces.

By combining insightful analysis, real-life case studies, and practical strategies, this planning book offers a roadmap for navigating the unpredictable waters of innovation. It emphasizes the importance of staying agile, embracing uncertainty, and continuously experimenting to stay ahead of the curve.

Whether you’re an aspiring entrepreneur, a seasoned executive, or simply someone with a passion for business, The Innovator’s Solution is a must-read. It will challenge your thinking, inspire your creativity, and revolutionize the way you approach planning for success.

best books about planning The Black Swan

The Black Swan

By nassim nicholas taleb.

The Black Swan by Nassim Nicholas Taleb is not your typical planning book. It is a mind-bending journey into the world of unpredictability and randomness. Taleb challenges the conventional wisdom that we can accurately predict and plan for the future, arguing that rare and unforeseen events, or “black swans,” have a profound impact on our lives.

best books about planning The Fifth Discipline

The Fifth Discipline

By peter m. senge.

The Fifth Discipline by Peter M. Senge is not just another book on planning, it is a transformative journey into the art and science of organizational learning. This groundbreaking book about planning takes a holistic approach to understanding and improving the way we think, act, and learn in a complex world.

Senge introduces the concept of the learning organization, where individuals and teams collaborate to create a shared vision and continuously learn and adapt to changing circumstances. He argues that traditional planning approaches fall short in today’s fast-paced and interconnected world, and proposes a new way of thinking that embraces systems thinking, personal mastery, mental models, shared vision, and team learning.

Through captivating stories and real-life examples, Senge challenges us to question our assumptions, transcend our mental models, and develop the skills necessary to navigate the complexities of modern organizations. He provides practical tools and frameworks that can be applied to any industry or sector, enabling individuals and organizations to thrive in an ever-changing world.

The Fifth Discipline is not just a planning book, it is a guide to transforming the way we think, learn, and shape our organizations. It offers a roadmap to becoming a learning organization, where planning becomes a dynamic and ongoing process of collective intelligence and continuous improvement. Whether you are a manager, leader, or aspiring change agent, this book is a must-read for anyone seeking to create lasting impact and success in today’s complex and unpredictable world.

best books about planning The Strategy Book

The Strategy Book

By max mckeown.

The Strategy Book by Max Mckeown is not just another ordinary book on planning. It is a captivating and enlightening journey into the world of strategy and how to create successful plans. Mckeown’s expertise shines through as he skillfully navigates the reader through the intricacies of strategic thinking and decision-making.

Unlike any other book about planning, The Strategy Book explores the various facets of strategy, from understanding the competitive landscape to developing a clear vision for the future. Mckeown’s writing style is engaging and accessible, making it easy for both beginners and experienced strategists to grasp the concepts and apply them effectively.

This planning book delves deep into the art and science of strategy, providing practical tools and techniques that can be implemented in any organization or personal endeavor. Mckeown’s emphasis on adaptability and agility resonates throughout the book, reminding us that successful planning requires constant evaluation and adjustment.

Whether you are a business professional looking to enhance your strategic thinking skills or an aspiring entrepreneur seeking guidance on creating a solid business plan, The Strategy Book is a must-read. Its insightful content and thought-provoking exercises will challenge your current approach to planning and inspire you to think outside the box.

So, if you’re ready to embark on a transformative journey and unlock the secrets of successful planning, dive into The Strategy Book and discover a world of strategic possibilities.

best books about planning The Paradox of Choice

The Paradox of Choice

By barry schwartz.

The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz is a captivating book on planning that delves into the fascinating world of decision-making. With a thought-provoking narrative, Schwartz explores the idea that having too many options can actually make us less happy.

best books about planning The Art of Thinking Clearly

The Art of Thinking Clearly

By rolf dobelli.

The Art of Thinking Clearly by Rolf Dobelli is a captivating book on the art of making wise decisions. It is not just another book about planning, but rather a guide that will help you master the art of thinking clearly.

best books about planning The Strategy Paradox

The Strategy Paradox

By michael e. raynor.

The Strategy Paradox by Michael E. Raynor is a captivating book on planning that challenges conventional wisdom and presents a fresh perspective on strategic decision-making. Raynor delves into the heart of the planning paradox, highlighting the unpredictable nature of the business world and the inherent risks involved in formulating long-term strategies.

Unlike any other book about planning, The Strategy Paradox urges readers to question the traditional notion that careful planning and analysis can guarantee success. Instead, Raynor argues that planning must adapt to the ever-changing landscape of business, embracing uncertainty and embracing a flexible approach.

Raynor introduces the concept of ‘strategic flexibility,’ which emphasizes the importance of continuously adjusting strategies based on real-time feedback and market dynamics. He presents compelling case studies of companies that have successfully navigated the strategy paradox, demonstrating how they have thrived by embracing uncertainty and adopting a more adaptive mindset.

Throughout the planning book, Raynor challenges readers to think critically about their own strategic decision-making processes and provides practical frameworks for developing more flexible and effective strategies. He encourages leaders to embrace ambiguity, experiment with different approaches, and learn from both successes and failures.

With its thought-provoking insights and real-world examples, The Strategy Paradox is a must-read for anyone seeking to navigate the complexities of strategic planning. Whether you’re a seasoned executive or an aspiring entrepreneur, this book will challenge your assumptions and equip you with the tools to thrive in an unpredictable business environment.

In conclusion, these 20 books about planning are essential resources for anyone looking to enhance their skills and knowledge in the field. Whether you are a professional planner seeking new strategies or an individual interested in urban development, these books offer valuable insights and practical advice. From classic works to contemporary publications, this list covers a wide range of topics and perspectives, ensuring there is something for everyone. So, grab a copy and dive into the fascinating world of planning!

Related posts:

  • 20 best books on workplace – 2023 reading list & recommendations
  • 20 best books on company culture – 2023 reading list & recommendations
  • 20 best books on goal setting – 2023 reading list & recommendations
  • 20 best books on successful people – 2023 reading list & recommendations

In today’s complex global business environment, effective supply chain management (SCM) is crucial for maintaining a competitive advantage. The pandemic and its aftermath highlighted the importance of having a robust supply chain strategy , with many companies facing disruptions due to shortages in raw materials and fluctuations in customer demand. The challenges continue: one 2023 survey found 44% of companies had to make changes in the past year due to issues with their supply chain footprint, and 49% said supply chain disruptions had caused planning problems.

But with the right tools and priorities, each step in the process can run smoothly. Here’s how companies are using different strategies to address supply chain management and meet their business goals.

Why supply chain management matters

Supply chain management involves coordinating and managing all the activities involved in sourcing , procurement, conversion and logistics . It includes everything from product development and strategic decision-making to information systems and new technologies. But perhaps most relevant today are the capabilities within SCM to help mitigate disruption.

Supply chain disruptions are caused by a variety of factors, from pandemics, natural disasters and political instability to supplier bankruptcy and IT failures. To mitigate these risks , companies need the resources and technology to develop robust contingency plans.

On top of disruption, companies with global supply chains must also deal with different regulatory environments, cultural norms and market conditions. They need strong SCM practices to help work out the logistics of transporting goods across long distances and through multiple countries without creating longer lead times or delays.

Effective SCM initiatives offer several benefits:

  • Lower operational costs : By optimizing inventory levels , improving warehousing efficiency and streamlining order fulfillment processes, companies can save on storage, labor and transportation expenses.
  • Better customer satisfaction : An optimized supply chain allows businesses to make sure products are available when and where people want them—which can improve relationships and loyalty with customers.
  • Fewer disruptions : A healthy supply chain mitigates risks and protects against inevitable disruption. By developing contingency plans and resilient supply chains, companies can continue to operate even when unexpected events occur.

Key strategies for effective supply chain management

There are a number of ways that companies can better optimize and manage their supply chains. Here are the areas some businesses are focusing on as they refine their overall approach:

Forecasting and demand planning

Companies can reduce storage costs and avoid stockouts or overstock with help from accurate demand forecasting , which uses historical sales data, market research and economic trends to predict future market demand for products or services.

Big data and predictive analytics are increasingly being used to improve forecasting accuracy, allowing businesses to respond more effectively to changes in customer needs. Advanced software tools can automate some parts of forecasting, providing real-time updates and alerts when inventory levels are too high or low.

Automation can streamline supply chain operations, from order fulfillment to inventory tracking. It can take many forms, from automated warehouse systems that pick and pack orders, to blockchain-based smart contracts to software that automates purchasing and invoicing processes . These technologies can significantly reduce manual labor, minimize errors and speed up processes, leading to increased efficiency and cost savings.

Technology-driven visibility

AI and machine learning can be used to analyze large amounts of data quickly and accurately, providing insights that can improve forecasting, inventory management, and customer service. A 2023 survey found that a third of businesses are using artificial intelligence (AI) to improve resource and supply chain planning, and more than a third said using digital tools for inventory management was the most effective strategy in cutting overall supply chain costs.

Real-time tracking systems, often enabled by Internet of Things (IoT) devices, help companies monitor their supply chain accurately and immediately. Having visibility into the status and location of goods as they move through the supply chain helps companies monitor supplier performance, identify bottlenecks and respond quickly to disruptions. A supply chain control tower can connect many sources of data-driven information and improve end-to-end visibility.

Moreover, enterprise resource planning (ERP) software can integrate different aspects of a business into one system, providing a holistic view of operations and the metrics needed to streamline supply chain processes. Integrated supply chain analytics software, such as IBM Planning Analytics , connect complex data sets for more insightful analytics and scenario analysis that can help avoid demand-and-supply mismatches or fulfillment delays.

Sustainable and ethical sourcing

Companies are trying to ensure that every stage of their supply chains is adhering to responsible practices. This not only helps satisfy customer desire for sustainability and ethical products but also helps mitigate risks, such as regulatory penalties or reputational damage.

Ethical sourcing involves ensuring that the products and services a company procures are produced under fair, safe and environmentally friendly conditions. This may involve conducting audits of suppliers, implementing codes of conduct and using certification schemes to verify compliance. Sustainable sourcing, meanwhile, focuses on minimizing the environmental impact of the supply chain. This might involve partnering with suppliers who use renewable energy , reducing packaging or implementing recycling programs.

Blockchain technologies can increase transparency and traceability in the supply chain, helping to prevent fraud and ensure product authenticity. For example, IBM Food Trust® , a collaborative network of growers, processors, wholesalers, distributors, manufacturers, retailers and others, uses blockchain technology to improve visibility and accountability across the food supply chain.

Building strong partnerships

Strong relationships are a key part of any business strategy. When it comes to supply chains, strong connections with providers, distributors and other key stakeholders in the supply network can help companies improve resilience. Partnerships can facilitate better communication, collaboration and responsiveness, particularly in times of disruption. They can also provide access to new markets, technologies, and expertise, offering a competitive advantage.

Because finding the right suppliers can be challenging, some businesses turn to technology to help. For example, IBM® Trust Your Supplier , a supply chain risk management software solution, helps ensure suppliers and other partners in the supply chain meet global and industry standards, provides continuous monitoring and risk assessment and uses blockchain-based information management to ensure transparency and traceability.

Effective supply chain strategy for the future

Whether it’s through forecasting, automation, sustainable sourcing, strong partnerships or new technologies, there are numerous strategies companies can employ to optimize supply chain planning and execution. By doing so, they can improve profitability, meet customer demand and ensure their business is resilient in the face of disruptions.

To learn more about how a technology-enabled supply chain can support your business goals, explore the IBM Sterling® Supply Chain Intelligence Suite.

More from Sustainability

Climate change predictions: anticipating and adapting to a warming world.

6 min read - In an era of accelerating climate change, predicting the near-future can yield major benefits. For instance, when utility officials are aware that a heat wave is on its way, they can plan energy procurement to prevent power outages. When farmers in drought-prone regions are able to predict which crops are susceptible to failure, they can deploy additional irrigation. These proactive measures are made possible by evolving technologies designed to help people adapt to the effects of climate change today. But…

Climate change examples

4 min read - What do global climate change and global warming look like? Surface temperature statistics paint a compelling picture of the changing climate: 2023, according to the European Union climate monitor Copernicus, was the warmest year on record—nearly 1.5 degrees Celsius warmer than pre-industrial levels. To gain a holistic understanding of the current climate crisis and future climate implications, however, it’s important to look beyond global average temperature records. The impacts of climate change may be organized into three categories: Intensifying extreme…

How Kubota is changing the status quo in agriculture and sustainability with technology

2 min read - Kubota, a Japanese-based services and technology provider within the agriculture, water and environmental industries, has a keen focus on innovation and sustainability. A few years ago, Kubota aimed to tackle operational efficiency challenges, water and sewage systems maintenance issues, and staff shortages that many local companies faced. Simultaneously, it attempted to commit to its zero carbon city declaration, which aims to virtually eliminate carbon dioxide emissions by 2050. Kubota consulted with IBM® to create a system that uses AI and…

IBM Newsletters

Home

Detection of the First Soviet Nuclear Test, September 1949

 Photo from Peter Curan’s film "Trinity and Beyond: The Atomic Bomb Movie

Joe-1, 29 August 1949. Photo from Peter Kuran’s film "Trinity and Beyond: The Atomic Bomb Movie," as displayed on nuclearweaponsarchive.org, and used with permission of Peter Kuran.

Newly Declassified Documents Trace Beginnings of Superpower Nuclear Arms Race

Soviet Atomic Project Posed Major Challenge to U.S. Intelligence

Records Expand Knowledge of the Role of German Scientists in Advancing the Soviet Nuclear Program

Washington, D.C., September 9, 2019 – Seventy years ago, on 9 September 1949, Director of Central Intelligence Admiral Roscoe Hillenkoetter handed President Harry Truman a carefully worded report of “an abnormal radio-active contamination" in the Northern Pacific that greatly exceeded normal levels in the atmosphere.  While uncertain as to the cause, the DCI’s first hypothesis was “An atomic explosion on the continent of Asia.”  This proved to be accurate – it was the first Soviet test of a nuclear device.

Moscow’s success in building a nuclear bomb was a monumental development made all the more alarming for U.S. strategists by the fact that it occurred one-to-four years sooner than analysts had expected.  The White House chose to preempt possible Kremlin triumphalism by announcing the finding to the world on 23 September 1949, a move that evidently came as a shock to the Soviets who had no idea the U.S. had the capability to isolate and identify the signs of a nuclear blast.

Hillenkoetter’s memo, never before published, is at the core of a new posting today by the National Security Archive offering previously classified information and context surrounding the U.S. discovery of the landmark Soviet test.  The documents are an update to an earlier Archive compilation and focus on the state of U.S. intelligence about the Soviet nuclear program before and after the test.  They help address lingering questions about the unexpected abilities of U.S. nuclear detection technology but also about the disturbing failure to predict the Soviet atomic breakthrough more accurately.

_____________________________________________

Seventy years ago, on 9 September 1949, Director of Central Intelligence Admiral Roscoe Hillenkoetter handed to President Harry Truman a report that “samples of air masses” collected in the Northern Pacific included evidence of “abnormal radioactive contamination.” According to the report, published for the first time today by the National Security Archive, the intelligence community was not sure whether the contamination was evidence of a Soviet nuclear test or a nuclear accident or something else altogether, but by 21 September it advised Truman that the Soviet Union had staged a nuclear test. Two days later, on 23 September 1949 , Truman made headlines with an announcement that the Soviet Union had tested a nuclear device several weeks earlier.

The White House did not explain how the United States had detected the test, which had occurred on 29 August 1949 at Semipalatinsk, in northeastern Kazakhstan. What made the detection possible was that an Air Weather Service plane controlled by the secret U.S. Air Force organization, Air Force Office of Atomic Energy/1 [AFOAT/1], had collected radiological debris produced by the test and that an Air Force contractor confirmed that the material was from an atomic test.

Today’s publication on the detection of “Joe I”, as U.S. intelligence analysts dubbed it, is an update of a National Security Archive posting published ten years ago. [1] That posting drew on previously unpublished declassified material, documenting how the U.S. Air Force and other organizations collaborated to detect a nuclear event that intelligence analysts had not expected for another year or longer. This update includes recently declassified information on the intelligence picture prior to and after Joe 1, including:

  • An intelligence report from 1948 on East German production of calcium metal of such high purity that intelligence analysts believed “beyond any shadow of a doubt” that it was “intended for an atomic energy project.” Calcium metal helped produce the uranium reactor fuel that generated plutonium for Moscow’s first bomb.
  • A State Department memorandum from July 1949 reporting the existence of “evidence indicating that a chemical extraction plant [with] the earmarks of a plutonium extraction plant has been completed in the USSR,” but no evidence of a nuclear reactor.
  • A CIA report from 1957 on the role of German scientists at a Soviet factory that produced uranium metal (used for reactor fuel) of sufficient purity that they “may have advanced the Soviet atomic energy program by about 6 months.”

Detecting Joe 1

The White House announcement on 23 September may have stunned Stalin and the Soviet Politburo; they did not know that the U.S. had a surveillance system geared to detect the tell-tale signs of nuclear activities and they wanted to avoid giving Washington an incentive to accelerate its own nuclear weapons activities. [2] The Soviet test was also a jolt to U.S. intelligence analysts who had estimated that Moscow was unlikely to have the bomb before mid-1953, although they had deemed mid-1950 as a possibility. A few weeks after the test, CIA Director Roscoe Hillenkoetter argued that "I don't think we were taken by surprise" because of an error of only a "few months," but not all of his Congressional overseers accepted that.

How did the Truman administration discover Moscow’s secret? Why had U.S. intelligence been so mistaken?

A few days after the Soviet test, on 3 September 1949, a WB-29 ["W" for weather reconnaissance] operated by the Air Force's Weather Service undertook a routine flight from Misawa Air Force Base (Japan) to Eilson Air Force Base (Alaska) on behalf of the secretive Air Force Office of Atomic Energy-1 [AFOAT-1] [later renamed the Air Force Technical Applications Center, or AFTAC ]. The plane carried special filters designed to pick up the radiological debris that an atmospheric atomic test would inevitably create. So far none of the flights in the Northern Pacific had picked up such debris, but after this flight returned to Eilson and a huge Geiger counter checked the filters, the technicians detected radioactive traces. This was the 112th alert of the Atomic Energy Detection System (the previous 111 had been caused by natural occurrences, such as earthquakes).

After a complex chain of events, involving additional flights to collect more air samples, consultations among U.S. government scientists, consultants, and contractors, including radiological analysis by the AFOAT/1 contractor, Tracerlab, and consultations with the British government, the U.S. intelligence community concluded that Moscow had indeed conducted a nuclear test. The test data was codenamed “Vermont.” On 23 September 1949, the White House announced that "We have evidence that within recent weeks an atomic explosion occurred in the U.S.S.R." [3]

That the U.S. government had a system for spotting overseas nuclear activities was a deep secret. During and after World War II, the possibility of detecting radioactive particles and emissions (as well as seismic and acoustic signals) became the subject of protracted research and development work, including the collection of radioactive samples from U.S. atomic tests. In September 1947, Army Chief of Staff Dwight D. Eisenhower assigned the Army Air Force, not yet an independent service, with responsibility for establishing an Atomic Energy Detection System (AEDS). Later that year, the Air Force created what would later become known as AFOAT-1, with responsibility for the surveillance program. AFOAT/1 began to operate an "Interim Surveillance Research Net" that was functional by the spring of 1949. A more comprehensive surveillance system integrating radiochemical, seismic, acoustic, and other methods was not yet in place. [4]

Atomic Energy Commissioner Lewis Strauss sought detection capabilities to avoid an "atomic Pearl Harbor," but U.S. intelligence analysts did not see a Soviet test as a near-term likelihood. Thus, estimates during the years before Joe-1 projected mid-1953 as "the most probable date," although conceding that mid-1950 was also possible. No one in U.S. intelligence realized how quickly the Soviets were moving ahead, or that intelligence gathered by Soviet spies in the U.S. and the United Kingdom would save Moscow a year or two in building its own bomb. [5]

Tight security measures in the Soviet Union made it difficult to produce accurate estimates, but British and U.S. intelligence had collected information that had implications not fully considered by analysts Especially relevant was intelligence on the production in an East German factory of metallic calcium, integral for the production of the uranium metal used to fuel Soviet reactors. Apparently, no one in the intelligence establishment asked why so much metallic calcium was being produced, although it was at levels that suggested that the Soviets could be producing significant quantities of reactor fuel. [6] One of the major analytic units, CIA’s Office of Research and Estimates (ORE), was so disengaged from scientific intelligence that several weeks after the detection of the Soviet test and three days before the White House announcement it produced a paper repeating the estimate of mid-1953 "as the most probable date." [7]

The US Announcement

Once senior scientific advisers confirmed AFOAT/1’s findings, a U.S. announcement was by no means automatic. President Truman was not entirely convinced that a test had taken place and top officials debated whether to announce, with some (AEC Chairman David Lilienthal) arguing that the public had a right to know, while others (Secretary of State Acheson) were more reluctant. Moreover, another important announcement was pending – devaluation of the British pound, and Truman thought two shocks were too many. Yet, he feared that the information would leak (hundreds of U.S. government officials were already in the know), and concluded that an official U.S. announcement was better than a Soviet one. [8]

After Truman’s press secretary handed out the mimeographed announcement, no further information about the discovery was made available, even the estimated date of the test. The U.S. government kept the details secret, although that did not stop informed speculation by journalists and academics about how the test was detected, with some correctly deducing that the U.S. had used radiological analysis. Senator Edwin Johnson (D-CO) inadvertently released an important clue when, during a television interview, he said that the Soviet bomb contained "plutonium," indicating that the United States had acquired traces of the device that it could analyze. [9]

It took years before the fuller story became publicly available. Doyle Northrup, one of the leading officials at AFOAT-1/AFTAC, wrote several narratives that were eventually declassified (with excisions). It was not until the 1990s, however, that two anthropologists at Brandeis University, Charles A. Ziegler and David Jacobson, pieced together the declassified archival record to produce an authoritative and accomplished account of the early history of AFOAT-1 and the detection of Joe-1: Spying Without Spies: Origin of America's Secret Nuclear Intelligence Surveillance System (Praeger, 1995). [10]

Implications

The discovery that the United States had lost its nuclear monopoly created alarm about falling behind Moscow and a resolve to stay ahead. Among the measures that reinforced a spiraling nuclear competition were Truman’s decision to approve a Joint Chiefs of Staff proposal to expand fissile material production and his 31 January decision to authorize a thermonuclear weapons program. Moreover, the Soviet test gave impetus to a major policy report, NSC 68 (14 April 1950) calling for massive military spending to offset the political and military impact of Stalin's bomb. [11]

Stalin may have hoped that secrecy could prevent such U.S. reactions or even a war. Indeed, when the Soviets made a counter-statement on 25 September, they did not acknowledge a weapons test, claiming (preposterously) that the U.S. must have detected “blasting” caused by construction work. Moscow also tried to put a damper on U.S. preventive action by suggesting that it had possessed the bomb since 1947. In any event, the Soviet Union's entrance into the nuclear club may have had a direct impact of an entirely unexpected kind – emboldening Stalin to support Kim Il-sung's plan for a North Korean invasion of the South. As Evgueni Bajanov put it, when Stalin approved Kim's proposal, he was "more confident of the Communist bloc's strength." [12]

Notwithstanding all of the significant declassifications, a complete picture of the role of U.S. intelligence in the events of September 1949 is not yet possible. The part played by AFOAT/1 in detecting the test is well documented, but more needs to be learned about the role of the CIA, which played a central part in coordinating intelligence about the test. Moreover, reports that were of the nature of post-mortems on the intelligence failure remain largely unavailable, such as one by the Office of Scientific Intelligence for which only the conclusions have been declassified. Moreover, in response to a National Security Archive request, the CIA recently denied an unspecified number of documents concerning the detection of Joe I.

Read the Documents

Part i: overview of the discovery.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-01-Document-13

Document 01

American Institute of Physics, Neils Bohr Library, R.C. Williams Papers, box 3, Letters/Interviews (copy courtesy of Michael Goodman)

Thirteen years after the event, Doyle Northrup, who was a key player at AFOAT/1, wrote what may have been the first detailed account of the detection of Joe I, providing a narrative of the creation of the Atomic Energy Detection System and the analytic effort that followed Alert No. 112. He also showed how U.S. intelligence was able to develop a more accurate estimate of the date and location of the test. While acoustic records were analyzed, they did not immediately provide useful information. "On subsequent review these records revealed weak signals at two stations. These acoustic signals were very useful because they helped after the fact to establish the location, time, and size of Joe-1 with greater precision than was possible otherwise." (See page 17). Although this report provides no further information, apparently U.S. intelligence was able to determine the site of Joe-1 to "within 100 miles and the time to within 10 minutes." [13]

National-Security-Archive-Doc-02-Document-14

Document 02

This version of the Northrup-Rock study, written for an audience in the intelligence establishment, included additional details. The authors recalled that what precipitated the White House announcement was news that the Associated Press had picked up rumors of the test. The actual decision was more complex, but fear of leaks did influence the announcement. The authors also provided details of the contribution of acoustic intelligence to determining the time, date, and location of the test: 0100 GMT, Semipalatinsk, 29 August 1949, Moreover, the yield of the device was 20 kilotons.

Part II: Estimates, Analysis, and Information on the Soviet Nuclear Program

National-Security-Archive-Doc-03-Document-2

Document 03

Lowenhaupt, who was involved in the Manhattan Project and was present at the creation of the CIA's nuclear intelligence work, elucidates the painstaking and complex effort to learn about Soviet progress in the nuclear field during the 1940s. Through such methods as opening mail and acquiring bills of lading, CIA scientific intelligence acquired insight into the Soviet nuclear program even if most of it was beyond the Agency's ken.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-04-Calcium

Document 04

National Archives, Record Group 59 (hereinafter RG 59), Records of the Special Assistant to the Secretary of State for Atomic Energy, General Records Relating to Atomic Energy Matters, 1948-1962, box 83, 21.91 Country File USSR c. Estimates of the Russian Bomb 1947-1952

The archival file that includes this scientific intelligence report provides no clues on its provenance. So far it is only available primary source in U.S. archives concerning the results of a secret U.S.-British intelligence operation: to glean information on an industrial plant in the Soviet Zone of Germany that produced large quantities of distilled calcium, an important input into the Soviet nuclear program. Apparently, MI-6 sources at the plant provided most of the intelligence and this report may be derived from British information. [14] Early in the Soviet Union’s occupation of East Germany at the close of World War II, the Soviets took over a huge I.G. Farben complex at Bitterfeld (southeast of Berlin) that produced calcium products, including calcium metal. One of the plant’s products, metallic calcium, can be used for processing uranium ore into uranium metal, the fuel for a nuclear reactor. U.S. and British intelligence learned that the plant’s Soviet director had demanded high levels of purity for distilled calcium. That demand informed the report’s principal conclusion: “on the basis of the analytical specifications presented by the Russians to the German Directorate of the plant … the calcium is intended for an atomic energy project beyond any shadow of a doubt.” During 1946-1947, Bitterfeld produced 112 tons of distilled calcium, about half of which had the desired purity. The product went directly to the Soviet Union, either by air or by rail. One of the forwarding addresses was “Elektrostalwork Moskau, Bisonbahn Bozirk.Kursk:Postfach 3” The reference to Elektrostal was a good clue for the possible location of the Soviet uranium metal plant. Elektrostal, an industrial town near Moscow, was the site of factory 12, the plant designed by the German scientist Nikolaus Riehl [See document 27] Besides supplying distilled calcium, the report indicates that the Germans provided the Soviets with designs for a similar plant to be built at Dzherzhinsk. The plant at Bitterfeld and the Soviet plant produced enough calcium metal to help the Soviets produce up to 60 tons of metallic uranium per month, far more than CIA intelligence analysts were estimating. The Soviets had enough uranium metal to start their nuclear reactor operations and to produce enough plutonium to fuel a nuclear device.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-05-Document-3

Document 05

Harry S. Truman Library, Presidents Secretary's File, box 249, Central Intelligence-Memoranda 1945-1948 (copy courtesy of Jeffrey Richelson)

CIA director Hillenkoetter reaffirmed a 1947 estimate: while it was "remotely possible" that the Soviets would test a weapon by mid-1950, the "most probable date" was mid-1953.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-06-Untitled

Document 06

RG 59, Records of the Special Assistant to the Secretary of State for Atomic Energy, General Records Relating to Atomic Energy Matters, 1948-1962, box 83, 21.91 Country File USSR c. Estimates of the Russian Bomb 1947-1952

Probably written as an input for a yet to be identified report, this memo included estimates of output ofU 3 O 8 (triuranium octoxide), a form of yellowcake, and low-grade uranium.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-07-Memorandum-from

Document 07

RG 59, Records of the Special Assistant to the Secretary of State for Atomic Energy, General Records Relating to Atomic Energy Matters, 1948-1962, box 54, 21.91 USSR General 1947-1952

In this memorandum to State Department intelligence, Gordon Arneson, special assistant to the secretary of state for atomic energy matters, asked for information on possible graphite production facilities in the Soviet Union. By making this request, he demonstrated his understanding of a basic issue: that the Soviets could possibly develop an atomic reactor moderated by graphite, along the same lines as the U.S.’s Hanford, Washington plant. While suggesting some possible locations for graphite production, Arneson did not know about the prime source, the Moscow Electrode Factory. [15]

National-Security-Archive-Doc-08-Untitled

Document 08

Apparently, a draft for a 1 January 1949 estimate of the USSR atomic energy program, this memorandum restated the findings of the July 1948 estimate about mid-1950 and mid-1953 (see document 4). It made a special point that new intelligence on Soviet uranium mining from “well-placed sources” surpassed early appraisals based on “geological theory and low-grade intelligence reports on uranium mining.” Nevertheless, the reliability of the sources had to be tested

National-Security-Archive-Doc-09-Untitled

Document 09

Another draft for the 1 January 1949 estimate (not yet declassified), this memorandum cited unspecified “fragmentary” evidence on a plutonium bomb and other information furnishing a “picture of the organization of the Soviet atomic energy program and certain localities involved.” Whether such sites as Elektrostal had been identified as one of the relevant “localities” remains to be learned. According to this estimate, the Soviets had enough uranium to operate one reactor (“production pile”). Moreover, the quantity of uranium could be “considerably higher than that previously estimated.”

National-Security-Archive-Doc-10-Document-4

Document 10

National Archives, Record Group 341, Records of Headquarters, United States Air Force (Air Staff), Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Directorate of Intelligence Top Secret Control & Cables Section, July 1945-Dec 1954, box 45, folder "2-8100 to 2-8199."

A highly compressed report by the recently created Joint Nuclear Energy Intelligence Committee [JNEIC], produced only weeks before the Soviet test, reached the same basic conclusion as the earlier reports. Thus, it generally upheld the mid-1950 and mid-1953 dates, except for one modification: if the Soviets were using only "one method” for fissile material production, then mid-1951 was the earliest possible date for an atomic bomb. “One method” was probably a reference to a heavy water reactor.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-11-Memorandum-for

Document 11

Gordon Arneson provided Secretary of State Dean Acheson with an explanation of the intelligence information (or lack of information) that shaped the JNEIC’s recent assessment. U.S. intelligence concluded that before mid-1951 Moscow would not have enough heavy water at hand to operate a reactor for producing plutonium. As for a graphite pile reactor Arneson’s earlier efforts to collection information on Soviet graphite production had failed: “There are not even low grade rumors of Soviet manufacture within, or acquisition outside the USSR, of pile grade graphite.” Nevertheless, Arneson could not dismiss the possibility of a “uranium-graphite pile,” which is what the Soviets already had, a copy of the U.S. reactor at Hanford. U.S. intelligence had assigned a mid-1950 date as the “earliest possible date” for a Soviet bomb because it had “evidence indicating that a chemical extraction plant [with] the earmarks of a plutonium extraction plant has been completed in the USSR.” Arneson acknowledged that the evidence might be incorrectly interpreted and noted that the “Soviets, as we did during the war, have built a ‘flexible’ extraction plant before they had anything to extract.” Arneson cited estimates for Soviet stocks of U 3 O 8 that were significantly lower than the August 1948 estimate: in the range of 1324 to 2150 tons, “the lower figure being the most probable.” The estimate for Soviet bloc production of U 3 O 8 in tons was 570-850, as 1 July 1949, with “470-700 coming from outside the USSR--Saxony (250-400), Czechoslovakia (200-250), and small quantities from Poland and Bulgaria.” Arneson made a technical point about the rate of plutonium production by noting that intelligence analysts had assumed that by the 1950s, the Soviets would compensate for a postulated shortage of uranium by extracting “twice the amount or plutonium that we have been extracting to date.” The United States was seeking to achieve a “higher rate by keeping the slugs longer in the pile, after a recalculation of the risks involved in such a procedure.” The “risk” may have been a reference to the greater probability that the plutonium could have a higher fraction of spontaneously fissioning Pu-240; that could cause the weapon to fail by detonating prematurely before reaching maximum criticality.

Part III: The Discovery

National-Security-Archive-Doc-12-Memorandum-from

Document 12

Harry S. Truman Library, President's Secretary's Files, Intelligence File, Central Intelligence, Memoranda-1949 folder

In this closely held memorandum, DCI Hillenkoetter notified the White House of the detection of radioactive materials in the Northern Pacific but cautioned that the intelligence community was still trying to determine whether it had found evidence of “an atomic explosion” or of some other phenomenon (volcanic activities, effluents from the Hanford production reactor, or an atomic accident in Russia). According to George Elsey’s interview with NSC Executive Secretary Sidney Souers [See document 16B], the latter showed this document to President Truman.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-13-Air-Force-Chief

Document 13

President Truman had been doubtful that the Soviets had tested the bomb, but on 21 September 1949, he, his aide Steven Early, and Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson saw this memorandum and the supporting documents. Air Force Chief of Staff Vandenberg had written that that "I believe an atomic bomb has been detonated over the Asiatic land mass during the period 26 August 1949 to 29 August 1949. Drawing on the findings of Tracerlab, the AFOAT-1 report concluded that an atomic bomb had been detonated, that the “fission products resulted … from the fission of plutonium” and that the “observed phenomena are all consistent with the view that the origin of the fission products was the explosion of an atomic bomb whose nuclear composition was similar to the Alamogordo bomb.,” with the test occurring between 27 and 30 August. Vandenberg noted that "[c]onclusions by our scientists based on physical and radiochemical analyses of collected data have been confirmed by scientists of the AEC, United Kingdom and Office of Naval Research" [See documents that follow], In one of the attached memoranda, top scientific and military experts on nuclear weapons, including J. Robert Oppenheimer and Vannevar Bush, endorsed AFOAT/1’s findings. [16] Presumably, this dispelled Truman’s doubts. The excisions on PDF pages 3 and 5 may be references to the role of the Air Weather Service in providing the aircraft used for the collection of fallout samples.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-14-Document-6-U-S

Document 14

Harry S. Truman Library, President's Secretary's Files, box 199, NSC-Atomic

When Washington alerted the British government that an air mass containing radioactive particles was going to pass north of Scotland, London ordered special air sampling flights to collect more traces of the Soviet test. While the British had their own routine air sampling flight program, the next one was not scheduled until 14 September so important evidence could have been missed had it not been for the U.S. alert.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-15-Document-7-U-S

Document 15

Harry S. Truman Library, President's Secretary's Files, box 200, NSC-Atomic

Some months before the Soviet test, in April 1949, the U.S. Navy began "Project Rain Barrel" to analyze debris from nuclear weapons tests that might show up in rain water collected secretly at stations in Kodiak, Alaska, and Washington, D.C. "Rain Barrel" information described in this report was critically important to forming the scientific consensus about the nature of the Joe-1 test. [17]

National-Security-Archive-Doc-16-Document-8-U-S

Document 16

This detailed report shows how U.S. analysts back-tracked the radioactive samples collected in early September to a nuclear detonation that occurred sometime between 27 and 29 August 1949.

Part IV: Whether to Announce the Discovery

National-Security-Archive-Doc-17-Statement-by

Document 17

Harry S. Truman Library, George Elsey Papers, box 88, National Defense- Atomic Energy – Announcement of Russian Atomic Bomb – September 23, 1949

White House staffer George Elsey had been involved in foreign policy issues, but as he wrote on the first page of this document, the intelligence on the Soviet test was so secret that he knew nothing of it until the time of the announcement. A trained historian, he wanted to know about the decision-making process and interviewed Truman and NSC executive secretary Sidney Souers to find out who knew what when, how it was decided that a statement would be made, and what problems had to be resolved before President Truman was willing to approve one. According to Elsey’s notes, Truman wanted to hold up the announcement because of the impending devaluation of the British pound (two shocks were “too much”) and he wanted to be “sure” that the Soviets had tested a device.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-18-Elsey-notes-of

Document 18

Souers was as close as anyone to the discussions and decisions concerning the intelligence on the Soviet test and he provided Elsey with detailed information on the considerations behind the decision to make a public announcement, including the timing of the statement. While some, such as the Joint Chiefs of Staff and top civilian defense officials, wanted an early announcement to prevent a leak, as Truman had told Elsey, concern about the devaluation of the pound sterling led to some delay of the announcement. Indeed, these notes demonstrate that Secretary of State Dean Acheson, in New York for the UN General Assembly meetings, closely coordinated the timing and the language of the announcement with British Foreign Secretary Ernest Bevin. Just as important was concern about a leak to the press. That concern increased when the White House became aware that the news had already reached Senator Brian McMahon, chairman of the Joint Committee on Atomic Energy. Moreover, by the morning of 23 September, White House officials and others had learned that Soviet Foreign Minister Andrei Vyshynsky would be giving a speech at the United Nations that afternoon. Perhaps they hoped that an announcement would force Vyshynsky to respond to the U.S. statement.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-19-George-W-Elsey

Document 19

The chronology in this draft is off (the Soviet test had not been detected on 28 August) but it includes an interesting account of how Deputy Secretary of Defense Steven Early tried to find out whether Truman knew about the early intelligence on the Soviet test. He asked if Truman knew about the “dust storm.”

Part V. Some Implications

National-Security-Archive-Doc-20-Memorandum-by

Document 20

RG 59, Policy Planning Council Subject Files, 1947-1962, box 2, Atomic Energy-Armaments 1949

Once senior State Department officials, including Policy Planning Staff director George F. Kennan, were read into “Vermont” intelligence, Kennan tasked several staff members to prepare a questions-and-answers document [See following item] that could be used to brief officials “in the field” after a White House announcement had been made. Here, Savage recounts how the document was prepared and what he learned about the White House decision-making on the announcement.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-21-Policy-Planning

Document 21

RG 59, Policy Planning Council Chronological Files, 1947-1962, box 1, Chronological 1949

This is the questions-answers document mentioned above. . Much of the text was incorporated into a confidential telegram sent to all U.S. embassies and consulates on 23 September 1949 as background information. The document conveyed great optimism that the Soviet Union had not benefitted from purloined intelligence information. But it also posited that the Soviet bomb did not make war more likely and U.S. policy was directed at policies designed to avoid war. The documents raised the possibility that “consciousness of possessing this terrible and destructive weapon will bring to [Soviet] leaders something of that same sense of responsibility to [the] peoples of world” that President Truman had previously acknowledged.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-22-Joint-Nuclear

Document 22

Taking into account the “Vermont” findings, the latest assessment by the JNEIC tried to put the best face on things by noting that the test confirmed previous estimates that the Soviets were working on a plutonium bomb (but not mentioning the mistaken estimates of mid-1950 and mid-1953). Nevertheless, the claim that the test occurred in Siberia suggested that acoustic and seismic data, which later indicated that the test had occurred at Semipalatinsk, had not yet been analyzed. Taking into account the plutonium findings, the report estimated that the Soviets had one or possibly two “graphite-moderated production piles in operation since October 1948” [only one pile, operating since July 1948]. On that basis, the committee estimated that the Soviets would have a stockpile of ten weapons by the end of 1949 and 25 by mid-1950, an overestimate because Moscow had only a handful of deliverable weapons in 1951 and did not produce them in quantity until 1953. [18]

National-Security-Archive-Doc-23-Document-9-R-W

Document 23

Roderick Spence, who had worked at the Manhattan Project’s Metallurgical Laboratory during World War II, directed Los Alamos Laboratory's Radiochemistry Group. AFOAT-1 sent Spence a sample of the radioactive material for independent analysis. Spence's report, written up several weeks after the analytical work had occurred, concluded that the "samples supplied to us contained radioactive isotopes and that the bulk of the activity was due to fission products of fairly recent origin, their age probably being one month or less.” [19]

National-Security-Archive-Doc-24-Document-10

Document 24

Record Group 341. Records of Headquarters, United States Air Force (Air Staff), Deputy Chief of Staff for Operations, Directorate of Intelligence, Top Secret Control & Cables Section Jul 1945-Dec 1954, box 46, 9300 to 2-9399

With the U.S. nuclear monopoly, if not superiority, ending, U.S. intelligence began to look at the military implications. Air Force intelligence prepared what turned out to be an exaggerated estimate of Soviet capabilities to produce atomic weapons and deliver them to targets in the United States and the United Kingdom. The Air Force projected that the Soviets already had the capability to deliver atomic weapons to targets in the Northwest United States, using TU-4 bombers on two-way missions. Striking significant industrial, political, and military installations further east would require one-way missions until the Soviets had an aerial refueling capability.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-25-Document-12

Document 25

National Archives, Record Group 128, Records of Joint Committee on Atomic Energy, box 3, JCAE Transcripts

During this hearing of the Joint Committee of Atomic Energy (JCAE), a defensive Director of Central Intelligence Roscoe Hillenkoetter argued that "our estimate was not too far off in the first place" because it was an "error of a few months" (p. 5) and that "I don't think we were taken by surprise." (p. 46). Nevertheless, a fuller picture emerged when Chairman Sen. Brian McMahon (D-Conn) read from the Joint Nuclear Energy Intelligence Committee’s 1949 report (see document 3 above) estimating mid-1953 as the "most probable" date. One of the Republicans, Senator Eugene D. Milliken (CO), observed that it was a "very bad mis-estimate" and that "we have not had an organization adequate to what is going on in the past and [Hillenkoetter] gives me no assurance that we are going to have one in the future." The DCI had his defenders. For example, Rep. Chester Holifield (D-CA) observed that "you can't order a piece of intelligence out of Russia like you order groceries in the morning." Senator Edwin C. Johnson (D-CO) questioned why the Soviets would "stumble on to the very best way to do this job without a little assistance from some place or the other." Hillenkoetter cited the high proficiency of Soviet science, but a full answer depended on intelligence sources, such as the Venona intercepts, that the DCI was unlikely to discuss in this setting.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-26-Central

Document 26

A brief analysis of the Soviet test in this CIA publication found that the Soviets had gained a political advantage. Despite the test, it did not fundamentally change the U.S.’s military-security position; the “superior US stockpile” remained a “significant” advantage. To identify a prospective military threat, it would be necessary to “determine the time at which the rising curve of a Soviet stockpile will reach a point at which it can be considered operationally effective.” The fact that the Soviets had an “ability to stockpile” was another matter because it raised “psychological and political imponderables.” Moscow’s access to atomic technology “permits [it] to exert psychological and political pressures in Western Europe.” While the Soviets had not yet exerted such pressure, and there was no way to gauge European reactions to pressure, “it is certain that the USSR has an enhanced ‘cold war’ capability.”

National-Security-Archive-Doc-27-Estimate-of-the

Document 27

To deal with the strategic issues raised by the Soviet bomb, the CIA produced a long analysis, focusing not only on Soviet nuclear capabilities but also on Moscow's intentions and the extent to which a nuclear weapons capability increased the risk of U.S.-Soviet conflict. The analysts reached the general conclusion that they saw “no firm basis for an assumption that the USSR presently intends deliberately to use military force to attain a Communist world or further to expand Soviet territory if this involves war with a potentially stronger US .” Even with atomic weapons, Soviet intentions were unlikely to change although “a Soviet capability for effective direct attack upon the continental US must be considered to increase the danger that the USSR might resort to military action to attain its objectives.” Dissents by the intelligence organizations of the State Department, the Navy, the Army, and the Air Force indicated profound misgivings about the ORE estimate of Soviet intentions. For example, the State Department dissented from the conclusion that “except under extreme and apparently unlikely circumstances, the USSR will not deliberately employ military force in its struggle against the US.”

Part VI: The German Factor: Future Findings

National-Security-Archive-Doc-28-Central

Document 28

Mandatory declassification review request to CIA

While U.S. and British intelligence were well aware that captured German scientists were playing multiple roles in the Soviet nuclear program, they did not have the details until they could interview the scientists when they began to return during the 1950s (Operation DRAGON). Some of the interview-based reports have already been declassified and published in a National Security Archive posting . This report, along with the next two documents, add to the knowledge base of the work on the German scientists, although they have to be checked against other sources. [20] According to the report, German scientists at the Agudzeri Institute successfully developed a mass spectrometer which is essential to measure the results of uranium isotope separation activities. Another success was Heinz Barwich’s contribution to the gaseous diffusion program, including theoretical work on cascade theory, for which he was awarded a Stalin Prize. By contrast, Nobel Prize winner Gustav Hertz’s effort to develop an industrial-scale method to separate uranium isotopes was a failure. At the end of this document, like the two that follow, are excised pages that probably list the German scientists and technicians who had been interviewed.

National-Security-Archive-Doc-29-Central

Document 29

The Sinop Institute, like Agudzeri, focused on isotope separation, but with greater success, according to the CIA. The leading figure was Baron Manfred Von Ardenne, whom some of the Germans saw as a “charlatan,” although with very good organizational skills. Research on electromagnetic separation of uranium isotopes began at Sinop but was eventually given low priority because the gaseous diffusion method proved more successful. In that respect, “The contributions of [Peter Adolph] Thiessen and of his group … at Sinop must be ranked high among the German contributions to the Soviet atomic energy program,” largely because of their development of the barriers used in gaseous diffusion plants. [21] Another major project at Sinop was the ultracentrifuge research directed by Max Steenbeck. The Germans may have convinced the Soviets that the gas centrifuge was an “ideal” method for isotope separation compared to gaseous diffusion, but technical problems were difficult to solve: the high speeds required (100,000 RPM) caused the rotors and bearings to fail. In 1953, key personnel in the Steenbeck group were sent to Leningrad for further R&D work. Gernot Zippe, identified as the head of Ultracentrifuge Team I, later became an important source on the progress of the Soviet gas centrifuge program. The drafters of this report did not have access to Zippe and the Steenbeck group, who did not return to the West until late 1956. Consequently, the report’s findings were rather downbeat: the “Steenbeck group probably made no substantial contribution to the overall success of the Soviet atomic energy program other than to vigorously investigate one possible means of isotope separation.”

National-Security-Archive-Doc-30-Central

Document 30

The German scientists at Elekrostal led by Nikolaus Riehl made a contribution to the Soviet atomic project that CIA analysts believed had saved the Soviets about “six months” of work. Born in Russia, Riehl directed research at the Auer Company, which manufactured uranium metal for the Nazi atomic weapons project. According to this report, two key Soviets, Iulii Khariton and General A.P. Zaveniagin who were in Berlin after the Nazi collapse made Riehl an offer to produce uranium in a Soviet laboratory. [22] The Soviets gave top priority to the production of “pure uranium metal in sufficient quantity for the operation of reactors producing plutonium.” At Elektrostal, Riehl’s group tried to reduce uranium oxide to metallic form but the results were not sufficiently pure. They then successfully processed uranium tetrafluoride (UF 4 ) into pure uranium metal. In both instances, the reducing element was the pure calcium produced by the plant at Bitterfeld, East Germany (see document ….). Much of the work was accomplished during 1946-1947, although the scientists “retained much value” for the Soviets. By 1952 all of the German scientists at Elektrostal had been sent to Sukhumi, Georgia, for a period of “forgetfulness” or “quarantine” before returning to Germany in 1955. A note on page 9 indicates that the CIA’s sources of information on Elektrostal included Nikolaus Riehl, Gunther Wirths, and Karl Heinrich Riewe.

[1] . For the naming of “Joe 1,” see Michael D. Gordin, Red Cloud at Dawn : Truman, Stalin, and the End of the Atomic Monopoly ( New York: Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux, 2009). 357, note 3.

[2] . David Holloway, Stalin and the Bomb: The Soviet Union and Atomic Energy, 1939-1956 (New Haven: Yale University Press, 1994), 266-267.

[3] . For the detection the Soviet test, see Jeffrey Richelson, Spying on the Bomb: American Nuclear Intelligence from Nazi Germany to Iran and North Korea (New York: W.W. Norton, 2007), 88-92.

[4] . For details, see Charles A. Ziegler and David Jacobson, Spying Without Spies: Origin of America's Secret Nuclear Intelligence Surveillance System (Praeger, 1995)

[5] . David Holloway, “Barbarossa and the Bomb: Two Cases of Soviet Intelligence in World War II,” Jonathan Haslam and Karina Urbach, eds ., Secret Intelligence in the European State System, 1918-1989 (Palo Alto: Stanford University Press, 2013), 62.

[6] . Donald P. Steury, "How the CIA Missed Stalin's Bomb," Studies in Intelligence 49 No. 1 (2005), 19-26, and Richelson, Spying on the Bomb , 92l; Henry Lowenhaupt "Chasing Bitterfeld Calcium," Studies in Intelligence (pdf) Studies in Intelligence 17 (Spring 1973): 21-30.

[7] . Intelligence Memorandum No. 225, "Estimate of Status of Atomic Warfare in the USSR," 20 September 1949, in Michael Warner, editor, The CIA under Harry Truman (Washington, D.C.: History Staff, Center for the Study of Intelligence, 1994), 319.

[8] . For a detailed account, see Gordin, Red Cloud at Dawn , 216-238. For Lilienthal’s role, see Journals of David Lilienthal Volume 2: The Atomic Energy Years (New York: Harper & Row, 1964), 569-572.

[9] . Truman later reprimanded Senator Johnson for the disclosure. "Science: So It Was Plutonium," Time , 5 December 1949

[10] . See also Richelson, Spying on the Bomb , especially 62-104, and Michael S. Goodman, Spying on the Nuclear Bear: Anglo-American Intelligence and the Soviet Bomb (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2007

[11] . Melvyn P. Leffler, A Preponderance of Power: National Security, the Truman Administration, and the Cold War (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1992), 325-333, and Gordin, Red Cloud at Dawn , 247-275.

[12] Holloway, Stalin and the Bomb , 266-267; Evgueni Bajanov, "Assessing the Politics of the Korean War, 1949-51," Bulletin of the Cold War International History Project 6/7 (1995): 87; Vladislav Zubok, A Failed Empire: The Soviet Union in the Cold War from Stalin to Khrushchev (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2007), 86 (citing Bajanov). For the Soviet announcement and further discussion, see Gordin, Red Cloud at Dawn , 240-244.

[13] . Ziegler and Jacobson, Spying Without Spies , 210.

[14] . For Bitterfeld in context, see Henry Lowenhaupt, “ Chasing Bitterfeld Calcium .”

[15] . For Soviet production of highly pure graphite and the construction of a production reactor near Kyshtym, see Holloway, Stalin and the Bomb , 100-101 and 183-187.

[16] . See also, Ziegler and Jacobson, Spying Without Spies , 210-211; Richelson, Spying on the Bomb , 90

[17] . For the Navy project, see Herbert Friedman, Luther B. Lockhart, and Irving H. Blifford, "Detecting the Soviet Bomb: Joe-1 in a Rain Barrel," Physics Today 49 (No v ember 1996): 38-41.

[18] . Steven Zaloga, The Kremlin's Nuclear Sword: The Rise and Fall of Russia's Strategic Nuclear Force, 1945-2000 (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 2002), 10-12

[19] . The Los Alamos findings corresponded to the findings of the AFOAT-1 contractor, Tracerlab. See Ziegler and Jacobson, Spying Without Spies, 187-189, 207.

[20] . Pavel V. Oleynikov’s “German Scientists in the Soviet Atomic Project,” The Nonproliferation Review , 7 (2000), 1-30, provides a valuable account of these developments.

[21] . For more on gaseous diffusion, see Holloway, Stalin and the Bomb , 191-192.

[22] . Ibid., 109-112. See also Oleynikov, “German Scientists,” at 7. During this trip, the Soviets also acquired 300 hundred tons of uranium oxide that the Germans had hidden.

Advertisement

Supported by

Five Places Russia Is Fighting to Break Through Ukrainian Lines

Outmanned and outgunned, Ukrainian ground forces are in perhaps their most precarious position since the opening months of the war.

  • Share full article

By Marc Santora ,  Scott Reinhard and Josh Holder

the best strategic planning books

Sievierodonetsk

Zaporizhzhia

Line of contact

before invasion

Sea of Azov

the best strategic planning books

Ukraine is engaged in a desperate fight to hold back the Russian onslaught.

Russian forces captured the longtime Ukrainian stronghold of Avdiivka before dawn on Saturday, Moscow’s first major battlefield gain since it took Bakhmut last May.

But across the entire 600-mile-long front, Ukraine is short on ammunition without renewed American military assistance, and it is struggling to replenish its own depleted forces after two years of brutal fighting.

Russia’s assault has split into five major lines of attack, spanning towns and cities across much of the front in eastern and southern Ukraine. Here is the status of Russia’s offensive in five critical battles:

1. Avdiivka

Russia captured a longtime ukrainian stronghold..

The now-destroyed city of Avdiivka covers only some 12 square miles. But for the better part of a decade it carved a bulge in the front line that undermined critical Russian logistical operations. It sits only a few miles from the city of Donetsk, which Russia has occupied since 2014.

In recent weeks, Russian forces have breached a critical supply line and threatened to encircle Ukrainian soldiers. Oleksandr Tarnavskyi, the head of Ukraine’s forces in the south, said that Ukraine had no choice but to withdraw.

“In a situation where the enemy is advancing on the corpses of their own soldiers with a 10-to-1 shell advantage, under constant bombardment, this is the only correct solution,” he said in a statement.

It’s not clear how far the Russians might be able to push this fight beyond Avdiivka, or how well the Ukrainians have constructed their next lines of defense. But the next major population centers, home to tens of thousands of civilians, are only about 35 miles to the west.

Roughly 50,000 Russian soldiers have been dedicated to the fight for Avdiivka in this direction, although the numbers fluctuated. Tens of thousands of Russians have been killed or wounded, according to Western and Ukrainian officials, but Russia has steadily replenished their ranks, including using convicts to join the fighting.

Even if the lines stabilize after the Russians take the city, its fall allows the Russian military to move troops and equipment more efficiently behind the line as it presses in other directions.

Read more: The Death Throes of a Ukrainian City , Feb. 18

A destroyed town is now a base for Russian attacks.

By last month, Russian forces had finally cleared out the last Ukrainian defenders of Marinka , another longtime frontline town.

There is very little left of Marinka after two years of Russian bombardments and battles. But its capture has allowed the Russians to turn their attention to the south and another vital Ukrainian stronghold, Vuhledar .

Last year, the Russians repeatedly tried to attack Vuhledar from the south and suffered catastrophic losses, including a devastating defeat in one of the largest tank battles of the war.

But with Marinka under control, the Russians are attacking Vuhledar from the north. They are currently advancing through the village of Novomykhailivka, which is about 13 miles to the northeast.

It is not clear how many forces the Russians have amassed in this direction, but Ukrainian officials have said Russia has kept around 40,000 in the nearby Mariupol area to be deployed for attacks from the south.

Soldiers fighting in the Vuhledar area said that the fall of Avdiivka, 55 miles to the northeast, would likely free up Russian forces to step up attacks from the north.

Read more: A Trophy in Ruins: Evidence Grows That Russia Controls Marinka , Jan. 4

3. Robotyne

Russia is seeking to reverse ukraine’s largest gains last year..

When Ukraine’s failed summer counteroffensive culminated last year, its forces had managed to advance only about ten miles deep into the southern front, reaching just beyond a tiny village, Robotyne .

Russia now appears determined to win back what it lost.

The Russian military has more troops concentrated on this front than on the Avdiivka front, Dmytro Lykhovii, a spokesman for Ukrainian soldiers fighting in the south, said this week.

“It seems that the Russians have set a goal to gain some success there by storming in, just as they are trying to do in Avdiivka,” he said.

Read more: Russia Retakes Some Land Hard Won by Ukraine During Counteroffensive , Dec. 28

4. Kreminna

Russia is pushing from kreminna to reclaim towns in the northeast it lost to ukraine in late 2022..

Ever since the Russians were driven out of occupied territories in northeastern Ukraine more than a year ago — losing control over more than 500 settlements spread over 11,000 square kilometers — they have been fighting to try and take it back.

Last year, little territory changed hands, despite intense fighting in the forest belts along the front here. Now, Russia is starting to move forward again, albeit slowly in the face of fierce Ukrainian resistance.

Russian forces are pushing in two directions from the city of Kreminna : toward the battered city of Kupiansk to the north, and toward Lyman , 80 miles to the south. Russia has maintained a total force of around 110,000 troops in the area for months, despite losses, Illia Yevlash, a spokesman for the military in the area, told reporters earlier this month.

Read more: Ukraine and Russia Battle for a Gateway City in the East , Dec. 27

Russia has regained the momentum, and a major Ukrainian city could come into artillery range.

Russia destroyed and then seized the city of Bakhmut in May, its last significant territorial gain on the battlefield before advancing on Avdiivka this week. By the time the Russians took Bakhmut, their forces were exhausted, and the Wagner mercenary group that led the fight was in open rebellion against the Russian ministry of defense.

Ukrainian hopes to exploit the disarray to counterattack around the flanks of the city largely stalled. Now, it is the Russians who have the initiative.

General Oleksandr Syrsky, the newly appointed commander of Ukrainian forces, said recently that the Russians are determined to break through their defenses around Chasiv Yar , which would give them control of commanding heights in the area and expose the city of Kramatorsk to increased artillery fire. Some 62,000 Russian soldiers are on the ground in the Bakhmut direction, according to Ukrainian estimates.

“The situation is tense, requiring constant monitoring of the overall situation and prompt decision-making on the ground,” Gen. Syrsky said in a statement earlier this month.

Read more: Why Bakhmut? It’s a Question as Old as War , May 5, 2023

Marc Santora has been reporting from Ukraine since the beginning of the war with Russia. He was previously based in London as an international news editor focused on breaking news events and earlier the bureau chief for East and Central Europe, based in Warsaw. He has also reported extensively from Iraq and Africa. More about Marc Santora

Scott Reinhard is a graphics editor, focusing on cartography and data visualization. He holds a master's degree in Graphic Design from North Carolina State University. More about Scott Reinhard

Our Coverage of the War in Ukraine

News and Analysis

As the war in Ukraine enters its third year , leaders in Kyiv are trying to find a new path forward  amid ferocious Russian assaults, while facing a series of daunting unknowns and hard choices .

Senator Chuck Schumer, the majority leader, traveled to Ukraine  for a visit that aimed to show American solidarity with a democratic ally under attack and to increase the pressure on Republicans to quit opposing additional U.S. aid.

Russian forces launched multiple attacks around the southern Ukrainian village of Robotyne , targeting land hard-won by Ukraine in a rare success of its counteroffensive in 2023.

A Long Fight: On the second anniversary  of Russia’s invasion, many Ukrainian citizens are taking a longer view of the war , pinpointing the Maidan uprising of 2014 as the start of a 10-year conflict with their adversary.

Sending a Message: Two years since the start of the war in Ukraine, President Vladimir Putin of Russia has fully embraced the image of an unpredictable strongman  ready to escalate his conflict with the West.

Wounded Soldiers: The number of Russian troops with amputated limbs or serious injuries is believed to be staggering . When these veterans return home, they face a patchwork system of treatment and, often, efforts to keep them out of the public eye .

Creative Use of Weapons: Ukraine’s use of a Patriot missile to take down a plane in January is an example of how novel battlefield tactics can be fraught with peril as well as promise .

How We Verify Our Reporting

Our team of visual journalists analyzes satellite images, photographs , videos and radio transmissions  to independently confirm troop movements and other details.

We monitor and authenticate reports on social media, corroborating these with eyewitness accounts and interviews. Read more about our reporting efforts .

The 14 Best Books of 2023, According to Goodreads

How many of these did you read?

Goodreads Readers Choice Awards

How did you do reading-wise this year? Did you hit your book goals? Or are you still planning on adding “read more” to your 2024 resolutions? Whatever the case, we can agree that it was another exciting year for new releases . There was clever fiction reads, exciting mysteries and thrillers, swoon-worth romances, thought-provoking nonfiction, and buzzy memoirs.

To help us look back at the year in reading, Goodreads announced their 2023 Goodreads Choice Award winners , that had members voting on the best books of 2023. Over 5.8 million votes were cast this year, so people had a lot of opinions on their favorites!

This year, a new category was added: romantasy. The Goodreads editorial team told us: “The romantasy genre melds the epic world-building and high stakes of traditional fantasy novels with subplots featuring a strong love story and familiar romance tropes. We saw this genre truly explode in popularity this year with the publication of   Fourth Wing , a romantasy bestseller featuring a deadly dragonrider academy that Goodreads members (and readers everywhere) just couldn’t get enough of!”

And there were some authors who made the list again this year, including author Emily Henry, who won her third Best Romance win in a row; R.F. Kuang, who previously won twice in the Fantasy category; Leigh Bardugo; and Stephen King. Browse the winners below.

2023 Goodreads Choice Awards Winners

the best strategic planning books

Best Fiction: Yellowface by R.F. Kuang

What Goodreads says: “R.F. Kuang continues her astonishing ascent from genre specialist to literary sensation with  Yellowface , a lacerating parable about the publishing industry itself. A combination of satire, metafiction, and slow-burn thriller, the book ultimately delivers a sly cultural critique concerning race and tokenism in the book business.”

the best strategic planning books

Best Historical Fiction: Weyward by Emilia Hart

What Goodreads says: “An artful variation on the historical fiction novel, Emilia Hart’s  Weyward  follows three desperate women along three timeline threads—separate but related—in 1619, 1942, and 2019. Hart’s story stitches back and forth in time as the women encounter an abiding feminine power, deeply rooted in the land. Bonus tip: Look up the definition of weyward for some witchy etymology.” 

the best strategic planning books

Best Mystery & Thriller: The Housemaid’s Secret by Freida McFadden

What Goodreads says: Sequel to  The Housemaid —a nominee last year in the Mystery & Thriller category— The Housemaid’s Secret  is the first Goodreads Choice Award for author (and practicing physician) Freida McFadden. The new novel finds maid-with-a-secret Millie Calloway in another dodgy situation as author McFadden delivers her patented blend of psychological suspense and switchback plot twists. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Romance: Happy Place by Emily Henry

What Goodreads says: Emily Henry clocks her third straight victory in the category with this tale of a couple who have broken up but don’t want to harsh the vibe on an upcoming trip with friends. The result is a clever variation on the old fake-dating trope. Henry’s three-in-a-row streak is extra impressive when you consider that she’s published only four adult romances in total. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Romantasy: Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yarros

What Goodreads says: This year’s most unstoppable book , Rebecca Yarros’ dragon-rider fantasy/romance surfed an atmospheric river of BookTok support straight to the bestseller stratosphere. Yarros’ astonishing success has earned the author a massive fandom of devoted readers, and the book helped popularize the emerging consensus term for 2023’s hottest hybrid genre: romantasy. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Fantasy: Hell Bent by Leigh Bardugo

What Goodreads says: Leigh Bardugo is back on top with  Hell Bent , the winner of this year’s Fantasy category. Not coincidentally, the book is the sequel to  Ninth House , 2019’s winner in Fantasy. Bardugo’s beloved series has established a new trajectory for dark academia books, promising Ivy League hopefuls a world of secret societies, occult rituals, and interdimensional portals. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Science Fiction: In the Lives of Puppets by T.J. Klune

What Goodreads says: With its skillful mix of fantasy and science fiction elements, T.J. Klune’s innovative novel brings the core concepts of the Pinocchio legend into the notional environs of the 21st century and beyond. Androids! Anxieties! Found families! Klune has an intuitive feel for this kind of modern mythmaking, bringing contemporary resonance to this classic tale. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Horror: Holly by Stephen King

What Goodreads says: As elder statesman and genre godfather, Stephen King is a familiar name in the Horror category. He returns this year with  Holly , which pits an old fan-favorite character—private investigator Holly Gibney—against a pair of uniquely depraved antagonists. King’s book is part character study, part thriller, and part cautionary tale concerning octogenarian academics. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Young Adult Fantasy: Divine Rivals by Rebecca Ross

What Goodreads says: Another massive BookTok sensation, Rebecca Ross’ Divine Rivals introduces a genuinely fresh new fantasy world featuring vengeful gods, the horrors of war, and the power of love—all kinds of love. The book also extols the virtues of old-world correspondence (writing letters!). Good news for impatient readers:  Book two of the series  hits U.S. shelves on December 26. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Young Adult Fiction: Check & Mate by Ali Hazelwood

What Goodreads says: Author Ali Hazelwood made her name in the book business by writing smart love stories for discerning adult readers. So, it’s an encouraging development that her first venture into the young adult aisles is proving equally popular.  Check & Mate  follows reluctant chess genius Mallory Greenleaf as she deploys gambits and strategies in the game of life. Smart kids need love too, you know. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Debut Novel: Weyward by Emilia Hart

What Goodreads says: Alert readers will note that debut author Emilia Hart is a double winner in this year’s GCAs, having also taken the prize in  Best Historical Fiction . As first novels go, Weyward is both accomplished and ambitious, effectively blending elements of magical realism and historical conjecture to tell the stories of three amazing women in three different eras. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Nonfiction: Poverty, by America by Matthew Desmond

What Goodreads says: Sociologist and Pulitzer Prize winner Matthew Desmond earns this year’s prize with the kind of book that future historians will be citing for generations. Desmond asks some deeply uncomfortable questions about poverty in the United States, then persuasively argues for a bold new agenda of shared prosperity.

the best strategic planning books

Best Memoir & Autobiography: The Woman in Me by Britney Spears

What Goodreads says: One of several high-profile celebrity memoirs to drop this year, Britney Spears’ big book was ecstatically received by fans—and it did quite well with the critics, too. If you’re keeping score at home,  Prince Harry ’s memoir,  Spare , came in second place in this category. Mathematically, that’s American Pop Princess > British Royal Scion—for Goodreads voters, anyway. 

the best strategic planning books

Best History & Biography: The Wager: A Tale of Shipwreck, Mutiny and Murder by David Grann

What Goodreads says: Journalist and veteran researcher David Grann profiles the bloody fate of an 18th-century British warship that generated two groups of survivors, each telling a different tale of What Really Happened. Perhaps this year’s most expansive book,  The Wager  crosses rigorous research with true-crime verve, peppered with elements of survival tale, legal thriller, and horror story. 

the best strategic planning books

Best Humor: Being Henry: The Fonz…and Beyond by Henry Winkler

What Goodreads says: In our increasingly divided culture, it’s nice to find one thing we can all agree on: The Fonz is, was, and shall forever be cool. This bedrock wisdom provides the unshakable foundation of Henry Winkler’s delightful memoir , which reveals the actor’s keen eye, big heart, and formidable writing chops. Sometimes the good guys finish first, after all. 

We only recommend things we love. If you buy something through our site, we might earn a commission.

Keep Reading:

  • Gifts & Shopping

Dude, Where’s My Ranch? These Getaways Reinvent the Iconic Western Vacation

Dude, Where’s My Ranch? These Getaways Reinvent the Iconic Western Vacation

Fast Furniture Is Out—Shop These 7 Sustainable Brands Instead

Fast Furniture Is Out—Shop These 7 Sustainable Brands Instead

This is your sign to rip out your concrete backyard and turn it into a lush retreat, this is exactly what to order at the best ice cream shops in the west, sign up for our newsletter.

We use cookies to understand how you use our site and to improve your experience. This includes personalizing content and advertising. To learn more, click here . By continuing to use our site, you accept our use of cookies, revised Privacy Policy and Terms of Service .

Zacks Investment Research Home

New to Zacks? Get started here.

Member Sign In

Don't Know Your Password?

Zacks

  • Zacks #1 Rank
  • Zacks Industry Rank
  • Zacks Sector Rank
  • Equity Research
  • Mutual Funds
  • Mutual Fund Screener
  • ETF Screener
  • Earnings Calendar
  • Earnings Releases
  • Earnings ESP
  • Earnings ESP Filter
  • Stock Screener
  • Premium Screens
  • Basic Screens
  • Research Wizard
  • Personal Finance
  • Money Managing
  • Real Estate
  • Retirement Planning
  • Tax Information
  • My Portfolio
  • Create Portfolio
  • Style Scores
  • Testimonials
  • Zacks.com Tutorial

Services Overview

  • Zacks Ultimate
  • Zacks Investor Collection
  • Zacks Premium

Investor Services

  • ETF Investor
  • Home Run Investor
  • Income Investor
  • Stocks Under $10
  • Value Investor
  • Top 10 Stocks

Other Services

  • Method for Trading
  • Zacks Confidential

Trading Services

  • Black Box Trader
  • Counterstrike
  • Headline Trader
  • Insider Trader
  • Large-Cap Trader
  • Options Trader
  • Short Sell List
  • Surprise Trader
  • Alternative Energy

Zacks Investment Research Home

You are being directed to ZacksTrade, a division of LBMZ Securities and licensed broker-dealer. ZacksTrade and Zacks.com are separate companies. The web link between the two companies is not a solicitation or offer to invest in a particular security or type of security. ZacksTrade does not endorse or adopt any particular investment strategy, any analyst opinion/rating/report or any approach to evaluating individual securities.

If you wish to go to ZacksTrade, click OK . If you do not, click Cancel.

the best strategic planning books

Image: Bigstock

Associated Banc-Corp (ASB) Rides on Strategic Plan, Costs High

Associated Banc-Corp ( ASB Quick Quote ASB - Free Report ) is committed to advancing its strategic efforts to strengthen loan and deposit balances. It expects the strategic growth plan to yield favorable operating leverage gradually. However, elevated funding costs and a worsening operating backdrop are likely to exert pressure on asset quality. ASB remains focused on its organic growth strategy, driven by robust loans and deposit balances and efforts to improve fee income. Loans and deposits witnessed a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.8% and 6.6%, respectively, over the last six years ended 2023. The company anticipates enhancing its lending capabilities under its strategic plan, adding “higher-margin” loans to its portfolio and digital investments to strengthen revenues. Further, this will help achieve positive operating leverage going forward. Though Associated Banc-Corp’s total revenues dipped in 2021, the metric witnessed a CAGR of 3.2% over the last six years (2017-2023). We estimate total revenues-FTE (excluding one-time items) to witness a CAGR of 2.5% by 2026 on the back of strategic plans and NIM growth. In November 2023, Associated Banc-Corp announced Phase 2 of its strategic plan, leveraging on the success of its first phase, which was announced in September 2021. The plan intends to further strengthen loan and deposit-gathering capabilities by 2025. Further, high interest rates will keep supporting net interest margin (NIM) expansion, though elevated funding costs will weigh on the metric. Despite NIM reduction in 2021 and 2020 attributed to low interest rates, a subsequent recovery occurred in 2022 amid rising rates, followed by a decline in the last year, primarily due to higher funding and deposit costs. Nonetheless, the balance sheet repositioning action and rate cuts (as signaled by the Federal Reserve) will likely support NIM this year. We project NIM to be 2.81%, 2.91% and 3.01% in 2024, 2025 and 2026, respectively. Over the past three months, shares of ASB have gained 14.1% compared with the industry ’s growth of 7.9%. Currently, the stock carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).  

Zacks Investment Research

Nonetheless, Associated Banc-Corp witnessed a consistent increase in non-interest expenses, with a CAGR of 2.3% over the last six years (2017-2023). The rise was primarily attributed to high personnel costs and technology expenses. Non-interest expenses are expected to remain elevated due to business expansion plans. We expect adjusted total non-interest expenses to rise 2.5% this year. Poor asset quality poses challenges for Associated Banc-Corp. Though provision for credit losses declined in 2021, it increased in 2022 and 2023 on anticipations of a worsening macroeconomic environment. Going forward, expectations of an economic slowdown are likely to exert pressure on asset quality. We project provision for credit losses to jump 41.1% in 2024. ASB's loan portfolio was 63% commercial as of Dec 31, 2023, with decreasing demand and potential asset quality deterioration amid challenges.

Bank Stocks Worth Considering

A couple of better-ranked stocks from the banking space are 1st Source Corporation ( SRCE Quick Quote SRCE - Free Report ) and Farmers National Banc Corp. ( FMNB Quick Quote FMNB - Free Report ) , each sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) at present. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks Rank #1 stocks here . The Zacks Consensus Estimates for SRCE’s 2024 earnings have been revised 7.1% upward over the past 30 days. Shares of 1st Source Corporation have jumped 15.2% over the past six months. The Zacks Consensus Estimates for FMNB’s 2024 earnings have been revised 4% upward over the past 30 days. Shares of Farmers National Banc Corp have gained 9.8% over the past six months.

See More Zacks Research for These Tickers

Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report free:.

1st Source Corporation (SRCE) - free report >>

Associated Banc-Corp (ASB) - free report >>

Farmers National Banc Corp. (FMNB) - free report >>

Published in

This file is used for Yahoo remarketing pixel add

the best strategic planning books

Due to inactivity, you will be signed out in approximately:

IMAGES

  1. Strategic Management, 6th Edition by Graham Hubbard, Paperback

    the best strategic planning books

  2. The Best Strategic Business Planning Books

    the best strategic planning books

  3. The Strategic Planning Workbook (Edition 3) (Paperback)

    the best strategic planning books

  4. Master Strategy: 10 Best Books On Strategic Planning

    the best strategic planning books

  5. Strategic Planning by Robert Wittmann · OverDrive: ebooks, audiobooks

    the best strategic planning books

  6. Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning

    the best strategic planning books

VIDEO

  1. Strategic Planning

  2. Strategic Plan Unveiling

  3. 22.Beginning Strategy (Planning Concepts)

  4. strategic planning seminar

  5. Strategic Planning 1

  6. Use These 3 Planning Books To Instantly Improve Your Garden

COMMENTS

  1. Discover the Best Strategic Planning Books in the 2024 Updated Edition

    Contents. 1 20 Best Books About Strategic Planning; 2 Good Strategy/Bad Strategy: The Difference and Why It Matters; 3 The Art of Strategy: A Game Theorist's Guide to Success in Business and Life; 4 Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant; 5 Competitive Strategy: Techniques for Analyzing Industries and Competitors

  2. The most recommended strategic planning books

    Meet our 57 experts. Rita Gunther McGrath Author. George Felton Author. Zoë Routh Author. +51. 57 authors created a book list connected to strategic planning, and here are their favorite strategic planning books. Shepherd is reader supported. When you buy books, we may earn an affiliate commission .

  3. 16 Best Business Strategy Books to Read in 2024

    1. Your Next Five Moves: Master the Art of Business Strategy by Patrick Bet-David and Greg Dinkin. Via Amazon. Your Next Five Moves is one of the best new strategic planning books. The book challenges readers to think like chess grandmasters and anticipate chains of events.

  4. 19 Best Books on Strategic Planning

    2. Blue Ocean Strategy | By W. Chan Kim. In this perennial bestseller, embraced by organizations and industries worldwide, globally preeminent management thinkers W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne challenge everything you thought you knew about the requirements for strategic success.

  5. 7 of the Best Strategy Books to Read in 2024

    7 of the Best Strategy Books to Read in 2024. "Books are a form of political action. Books are knowledge. Books are reflection. Books change your mind.". ― Toni Morrison. A new year, a new chance to shift our perspectives, understand one another and the systems around us, and take our strategic thinking to new heights.

  6. 6 Best Books on Strategic Thinking and Planning

    1 The Art of Strategy. The Art of Strategy by Avinash Dixit and Barry Nalebuff is a classic book that applies game theory to real-world situations. Game theory is the study of how people make ...

  7. Strategic: The Skill to Set Direction, Create Advantage, and Achieve

    Master the four disciplines of strategic fitness essential to executive performance. In Strategic, New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Rich Horwath delivers an incisive roadmap to help leaders at all levels think, plan, and act strategically to navigate every business challenge they face. The book offers business leaders a proven framework―the Strategic Fitness System ...

  8. 20 Best Business Strategy Books of All Time

    Business Strategy Business Management Startup Execution. #1 WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLER. AN INSTANT INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER. From the creator of Valuetainment, the #1 YouTube channel for entrepreneurs, comes a practical and effective guide for thinking more clearly and achieving your most audacious business goals.

  9. The Best Strategy Books of All-Time (Updated for 2024)

    But if you're interested in strategy tips from the creator of one of the biggest hedge funds in history, this is the one to choose. Get this book. 7. The Pumpkin Plan: A Simple Strategy to Grow ...

  10. 51 Best Books on Strategic Thinking

    Strategy Safari by Henry Mintzberg. Key Performance IndicatorsePub eBook by Bernard Marr. Billion Dollar Lessons by Paul B. Carroll. Blink by Malcolm Gladwell. Essentialism by Greg McKeown. ← Explore other reading lists like this one. Sharpen your competitive edge with the top books on strategic thinking.

  11. 9 of the Best Strategy Books to Read in 2022

    Douglas Shontz - Assistant to the Manager, Borough of State College, Pennsylvania. I've got not one, not two, but three recommendations for strategy books in 2022! First up, Good to Great by Jim Collins. This isn't specifically about performance management, but it does provide a great foundation on management strategies and how ...

  12. 100 Best Strategy Books of All Time (Updated for 2021)

    Steve Blank | 4.02. The bestselling classic that launched 10,000 startups and new corporate ventures - The Four Steps to the Epiphany is one of the most influential and practical business books of all time. The Four Steps to the Epiphany launched the Lean Startup approach to new ventures.

  13. Master Strategy: 10 Best Books On Strategic Planning

    The book Leadership For Introverts includes a section on Planning for Success. The planning process includes: Finding your why, determining your core values, creating a mission statement or Edict, developing your strategic vision and determining your strategy. Each part includes hints and tips for introverts to capitalize on their quiet nature.

  14. Top 10 Strategy Books in 2024

    Blue Ocean Strategy. Recognised as one of the most iconic strategy books ever written, now updated with fresh content from the authors, it argues that cutthroat competition results in nothing but a bloody red ocean of rivals fighting over a shrinking profit pool. Based on a study of 150 strategic moves, the authors argue that lasting success ...

  15. Amazon.com: Strategic Planning: A Practical Guide to Strategy

    Strategic Planning: A Practical Guide to Strategy Formulation and Execution weaves that knowledge into a roadmap for anyone charged with creating a strategic plan, evaluating a strategic planning process, or executing resulting strategies in an effective and efficient way. Not a one-size-fits-all solution, the book offers a menu of information ...

  16. The Best 21 Books on Strategic Thinking

    The Balanced Scorecard: Translating Strategy into Action" by Robert S. Kaplan and David P. Norton is a seminal book that introduced the balanced scorecard framework, a strategic management tool that helps organizations align their strategy with their objectives, measures, targets, and initiatives.

  17. Strategic Planning Books

    Advanced Strategic Planning: A 21st-Century Model for Church and Ministry Leaders (Kindle Edition) by. Aubrey Malphurs. (shelved 2 times as strategic-planning) avg rating 3.83 — 214 ratings — published 2013. Want to Read. Rate this book. 1 of 5 stars 2 of 5 stars 3 of 5 stars 4 of 5 stars 5 of 5 stars.

  18. 8 Books That Will Help You Sharpen Your Strategic Thinking

    Here are eight books I've read that sparked my entrepreneurial thinking. 1. The Long Game: How to Be a Long-Term Thinker In a Short-Term World by Dorie Clark. Newly released from Harvard Business ...

  19. 20 best books on planning

    The Strategy Paradox by Michael E. Raynor is a captivating book on planning that challenges conventional wisdom and presents a fresh perspective on strategic decision-making. Raynor delves into the heart of the planning paradox, highlighting the unpredictable nature of the business world and the inherent risks involved in formulating long-term ...

  20. 5 Leadership Books To Learn Skills To Manage Change In 2024

    1. Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change. Penned by William and Susan Bridges, this book teaches you that the best way to prepare for organizational change is when you involve your ...

  21. The Power of an Effective Employee Training Plan

    A training plan provides several benefits and helps to identify potential pitfalls. This section explores the advantages and disadvantages of developing training plans. Pros. Training plans enhance employee skills and help them become more proficient. A training plan can support the individual's personal development and career growth.

  22. 7 Investment Books Every Advisor Should Read

    If you're looking for a timeless read on portfolio-building, you might want to pick up a copy of "A Random Walk Down Wall Street." This best-selling book offers a life-cycle guide to investing and financial planning, something you might find valuable as an advisor if you have clients moving through changing life stages.

  23. Streamlining supply chain management: Strategies for the future

    How Kubota is changing the status quo in agriculture and sustainability with technology . 2 min read - Kubota, a Japanese-based services and technology provider within the agriculture, water and environmental industries, has a keen focus on innovation and sustainability. A few years ago, Kubota aimed to tackle operational efficiency challenges, water and sewage systems maintenance issues, and ...

  24. Detection of the First Soviet Nuclear Test, September 1949

    Washington, D.C., September 9, 2019 - Seventy years ago, on 9 September 1949, Director of Central Intelligence Admiral Roscoe Hillenkoetter handed President Harry Truman a carefully worded report of "an abnormal radio-active contamination" in the Northern Pacific that greatly exceeded normal levels in the atmosphere. While uncertain as to the cause, the DCI's first hypothesis was "An ...

  25. Maps: Where Ukraine Is Fighting to Hold Back Russian Onslaught

    Outmanned and outgunned, Ukrainian ground forces are in perhaps their most precarious position since the opening months of the war.

  26. The 14 Best Books of 2023, According to Goodreads

    What Goodreads says: "R.F. Kuang continues her astonishing ascent from genre specialist to literary sensation with Yellowface, a lacerating parable about the publishing industry itself.A combination of satire, metafiction, and slow-burn thriller, the book ultimately delivers a sly cultural critique concerning race and tokenism in the book business."

  27. What Russians Are Reading

    The Raw Youth by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. "It's the second Dostoyevsky book I've read. The first was Crime And Punishment. I actually didn't like it, but it gave me this urge to get to grips ...

  28. Associated Banc-Corp (ASB) Rides on Strategic Plan, Costs High

    In November 2023, Associated Banc-Corp announced Phase 2 of its strategic plan, leveraging on the success of its first phase, which was announced in September 2021. ... Zacks' 7 Best Strong Buy ...

  29. Airbus is raising the bar for Sustainable Aviation Fuel

    Airbus set up a strategic partnership with DG fuels in the United States to support new technology and fuel production. Likewise, Airbus teamed up with Lanzajet to advance the building of SAF facilities. Additionally, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between Airbus and Masdar, an Abu Dhabi energy company, to further develop SAF production.