Eight Must-Read Books For Purpose-Driven Leaders in 2020

By Keely Gregg in Blog
August 06, 2020 14:45

Eight Books for Purpose-Built Leaders Navigating Challenging Times

These eight must-read business books frame and bring to life narratives for how today’s companies and brands must learn to connect with their stakeholders in more purposeful, relevant ways. Creating personalized and meaningful experiences incorporating social good initiatives or programs is just the start of a revolution that’s already underway and that has completely reshaped the way we do business. As companies and society at large today face unprecedented external and internal pressure and challenges, it’s more important than ever to step back and seek inspiration in the brands and the thought leaders that continue to innovate to create real-world social impact and positive change.

Newer Releases

1. Purposehood 

By Ammar Charani (2020)

Ammar Charani, Co-founder and board member of in/PACT, has founded, co-founded and invested in over 26 startups, and enjoys working with highly talented, smart, and happy people who want to change the world. In addition to mentoring startups, he enjoys working with CEOs and their C-Level teams to introduce simple practical steps to creating growth through igniting a giving culture. As a global serial entrepreneur and an angel investor, his mature startups generate over a billion dollars in revenue and employ thousands. Additionally, he is a Harvard Business School Alumni of the President’s Program in Leadership.

In Purposehood, Charani uses his own experiences to delve into his philosophical perspective on how to live an authentic, fulfilled, and purpose-driven life. Finding “Purposehood” helps one to overcome obstacles and to align with the forces of change, because to “move against this force creates stress and tension; moving with it creates harmony and ease.” In this book, the author aims to challenge the reader to change him/herself and thus change the world.

2. Restoring the Soul of Business 

By Rishad Tobaccowala (2020)

Tobaccowala uses over 30 years of business experience to inspire other business leaders to propagate a communal environment in the workplace which promotes an atmosphere of compassion and trust. Restoring the Soul of Business serves to present best practices and tools that any organization can adopt and implement. It gives corporations an idea of how to find the optimal balance between technology and humanity. There are insights throughout this book that people of every position within an organization may find useful.

3. The Economics of Higher Purpose

 By Robert E. Quinn and Anjan Thakor (2019)

Robert E. Quinn and Anjan V Thakor are two established and well-known authors in the fields of business. In The Economics of Higher Purpose, these authors provide an eight-phase process, based on their experiences, which will guide businesses towards realizing and integrating their “higher purpose.” The intention of this book is to guide business leaders away from the transactional mindset, teaching them tactics for how to transform their brand into one that contributes to the greater good of society. In doing so, businesses will be seemingly refreshed and break the cycle of self-fulfillment that may be currently ruminating within work cultures. 

4. Good is The New Cool: Market Like You Give a Damn

By Afdhel Aziz (2019)

Afdhel Aziz has over 20 years of experience working for a number of blue-chip companies including Absolut Vodka, Heineken, and more. He has been featured in the New York Times, The Guardian, and Forbes for his award-winning work. Bobby Jones has accomplished a number of award-winning campaigns and projects for companies such as Ford and Adidas. Jones leads the marketing and communications efforts towards Peace First’s vision to empower young people to solve the challenges of the world.

Good is the New Cool introduces the backstory for both authors. Then, Aziz and Jones dissect the expectations of brands held by the younger generations, Millennials, and Gen Z and how they have evolved from the expectations of the Boomers. The authors dive headfirst into this age of technology, describing how disruptive trends are impacting how brands connect with their consumers. Finally, Good is the New Cool describes a new model for marketing in which corporations recognize the power they have to initiate positive social change and outlines seven steps for how to “harness the cool” and develop a purpose-driven business model.

5. Unleashing the Innovations-How Mature Companies Find New Life With Startups 

By Jim Stengel (2017)

Jim Stengel is widely known for purpose-based marketing innovation and for his commitment to building leading-edge brand strategies. He is the former Global Marketing Officer of Procter & Gamble, one of the world’s most admired companies. Today, in addition to his work as the world’s leading evangelist for the purpose-driven brand, Jim serves as Chairman of in/PACT’s International Advisory Board.

In Unleashing the Innovators - How Mature Companies Find New Life With Startups, Stengel shows how mature companies can find new energy by encouraging them to get involved with startups. Stengel uses real-life examples and experiences to show how companies can better navigate today's changing landscape, advance customer relationships, stimulate innovation, and increase revenue. 

Other Good Reads

6. Activists Dare to Care. Brand Your Activism for Social Change 

By Christophe Fauconnier and Marjolein Baghuis (2015)

Activists Dare to Care uses the influence of activism to guide businesses and brands towards success and encourages corporations to stimulate change. With each new generation comes an exponentially stronger awareness of purpose, and this book suggests ways in which brands can adapt and cater to the millennial need for social change. Activists Dare to Care features three key best practices that marketers can learn from successful activists. This book also acts as a guide to help businesses pick a cause that resonates with their motives and stakeholders. Not only is this book educational on its own, but it also offers a game including a set of cards that provides hands-on experience to those looking to explore and learn more about activism and how to apply it in their marketing strategies.

7. Happy Money- The Science of Happier Spending 

By Elizabeth Dunn and Michael Norton (2014)

In a world where bad news blankets the media, Happy Money gives us clues as to how we can uplift ourselves and our communities at the same time. In this book, the authors discuss five money spending habits that are proven to yield the most “bang for your buck” in terms of happiness. We find the fifth point, “Invest in Others” to be very relevant for 2020. The authors talk about the positive reaction of the human brain when we help others, and how selflessly spending (investing in others) can actually make us happier in the long run and make us feel good.

8. A Better World, Inc.: How Companies Profit by Solving Global Problems...Where Governments Cannot 

By Alice Korngold (2014)

Alice Korngold reveals a corporate landscape where businesses can earn a profit while developing solutions to global issues, decreasing costs, and improving long term business sustainability. A Better World, Inc. includes guidelines for engaging stakeholders and navigating the corporate world. Korngold provides insight based on her own experiences and ensures that establishing a “Better World” is mutually beneficial for corporations and the community. A Better World, Inc. addresses how companies can find their purpose and play their part in improving society, the planet, and people’s lives.