Here are some resources I’ve found very helpful or others have recommended. In the spirit of full-disclosure, please know I receive a small commission if you make purchases after following my links. I hope you’ll explore these materials, find the ones that resonate with you the most, and that you’ll reap great success from them.

Emotional Intelligence 2.0

Emotional Intelligence, or our Emotional Quotient (EQ), is an evaluation of our ability to relate to others. It’s been said that our EQ has greater potential to positively impact our success than our Intelligence Quotient (IQ). The good news is that we can increase our emotional intelligence. Emotional Intelligence 2.0 delivers a step-by-step program for increasing your EQ via four, core EQ skills that enable you to achieve your fullest potential:

1) Self-Awareness
2) Self-Management
3) Social Awareness
4) Relationship Management

The book also includes access to the enhanced online edition of the world′s most popular EQ test—the Emotional Intelligence Appraisal—that pinpoints the strategies that will increase your emotional intelligence the most and tests your EQ a second time to measure your progress. Periodically, I offer a Group Coaching workshop on this topic. Visit the Increasing Leadership Effectiveness page for more details.

Clifton Strengths Finder

This book explains a new paradigm that busts our belief that we should focus on overcoming our weaknesses. Instead, it speaks to capitalizing on our strengths so our weaknesses become insignificant.

Do you know what your Strengths are?

When you buy the book (or one of the others listed below) you get a serial number for the online assessment. This also gives you access to resources within the Strengths website.

Take the assessment learn what your talents are and become more selective in the type of projects you take on.

Strengths-Based Leadership

If you want to create and lead in a strengths-based culture, Strength Based Leadership is the book to provide you the insights you need. This book includes the assessment described above.

Go, Put Your Strengths to Work

The Strengths Finder assessment reveals your top talent themes. These themes will appear in everything you pursue. Go, Put Your Strengths to Work is the book I’ve used to further articulate my strengths and navigate the challenge of telling others what you do well and that the organization will be better off if you can focus on those tasks and responsibilities. All that without sounding arrogant or appearing that you’re not a team player.

The Question Behind the Question

A very quick read that teaches us (and so we can coach others) to always ask ourselves: What can I do to make this better? My personal trigger is frustration and wanting to blame others. When I hear myself saying things like If only they would… I am reminded to ask the question behind the question, what can I do to make this better?

Humble Inquiry

The gentle art of asking versus telling. A book I hope to devour soon!

Process Tools

Action Items Log

Do you have a consistent method to record and track action items within your organization? Do you ever lose track of action items that have been assigned during meetings? The Action Items Log helps you keep track of assigned tasks and make sure all the work gets done.

The Action Items Log lists work that needs to be completed, and it can be shared with others so they always know what to work on next. The Action Items Log gives peace of mind because you always know exactly what’s pending, when it’s due, and who to contact to get the work done.

The Action Items Log helps you:

  1. Record and track action items along with their due dates and who’s responsible.
  2. Maintain status of items that are in progress.
  3. Manage delinquent and incomplete action items.
  4. Complete required work on time.
  5. Share with others.

Decision Tool

Separate emotions from facts so you can make fact-based decisions that will benefit your organization:

  • The Decision Tool is designed to work for individuals or teams so everybody can participate and own the final decision.
  • The Decision Tool helps you make an informed decision when choosing from multiple options.
  • The Decision Tool keeps track of past decisions, allowing you to maintain an evidence-based log of the decisions you’ve made for your organization.

The Decision Tool runs on Microsoft Excel. The tool file includes detailed instructions, a blank tool you can use to make decisions, and a sample demonstration. Best of all, it’s free!

For more information on the Decision Tool, visit my blog post “How to Make Business Decisions Based on Facts, Not Emotions.”

The Value-Added Employee: 31 Skills to Make You Irresistible to Any Company

While I haven’t read this book, it includes competencies I’ve used over the years when helping hiring managers define competencies for their employees. I also use the 31 competencies to help leaders assess themselves.

Stakeholder Communication Matrix

The Stakeholder Communication Matrix helps you:

  • Identify the people who need to know about the change.
  • Develop a clear, high-level overview that can be shared with everybody.
  • Formulate answers to questions from those directly impacted by the change.
  • Plan the timing and distribution of messages regarding the change throughout your organization.