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Home » Blog » A List Of Best Coaching Books: On Executive Coaching

If you’re looking to become a better coach, there’s no shortage of advice out there. 

Executive coaching is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world today. With more and more leaders recognizing the importance of continuous learning and development, the demand for executive coaching services has never been higher. But with so many coaches and so many books out there, how do you know where to start?

In fact, there are so many books on the topic of coaching that it can be overwhelming to figure out where to start. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the best coaching books on executive coaching that are worth your time.

But let’s be clear: not everyone will agree on what makes a coaching book “the best.” 

Coaching is a complex and deeply personal practice, and what works for one person may not work for another. That’s why we’ve included a mix of classic and contemporary titles, written by a diverse range of authors.

In this post, we are going to share with you a list of the best coaching books on executive coaching that we’ve come across. But we are not just going to give you a bland, generic list. This blog has the honest opinions and thoughts on each book, including some polarizing opinions that might challenge your assumptions and make you think.

So if you’re looking to improve your coaching skills or simply want to learn more about executive coaching, buckle up and get ready for a thoughtful and opinionated ride.

Criteria For Judging Best Executive Coaching Books

Of course, when it comes to judging the best executive coaching books, there are a few criteria that we believe are important. 

1. First and foremost, a good coaching book should be practical and actionable.

It should provide specific tools and techniques that coaches can use to help their clients improve their leadership skills and achieve their goals.

But a book shouldn’t just be practical – it should also be thought-provoking. The best coaching books challenge our assumptions and push us to think differently about coaching and leadership. They should inspire us to question our own biases and consider new perspectives.

2. Another important criterion is relevance. 

A good coaching book should be relevant to today’s business environment and the challenges that leaders face. It should provide insights into the latest trends and best practices in coaching, and offer strategies for dealing with the unique challenges of today’s fast-paced, ever-changing business landscape.

No doubt, everyone has their own preferences when it comes to coaching books. Some people prefer books that are research-based, while others prefer books that are more focused on practical advice. Some people like books that are written in a conversational style, while others prefer books that are more academic in tone.

3.Credibility of The Author

When it comes to executive coaching books, the credibility of the author is also an important factor to consider. The best coaching books are often written by authors who have a wealth of experience and expertise in coaching and leadership. They have worked with a wide range of clients, from CEOs to middle managers, and have a deep understanding of the challenges that leaders face in today’s business environment.

In addition to experience, the author’s credentials and qualifications are also important to consider. Have they worked with reputable organizations? Have they published research or articles in reputable journals or magazines? Do they have a track record of success in coaching and leadership development?

While it’s certainly possible to find valuable insights and strategies in books written by less experienced authors, books written by authors with strong credentials and a proven track record are often the most reliable sources of information.

So before you pick the best executive coaching books, take some time to research the author’s background and qualifications. Look for authors who have a solid reputation in the coaching and leadership development field, and who have demonstrated a commitment to ongoing learning and development. By choosing books written by credible authors, you can ensure that you’re getting the most accurate and reliable information possible.

Ultimately, the best executive coaching books are the ones that resonate with you personally. They’re the ones that challenge your assumptions, inspire you to grow, and provide you with practical tools and strategies that you can use to help your clients achieve their goals. And hopefully, the list of books that we’ll be sharing with you will meet all of these criteria and more.

Top 10 Best Coaching Books: On Executive Coaching

Executive coaching is an essential tool for leaders seeking to improve their skills and navigate complex challenges in today’s business world. It involves working with a coach who can help you identify your strengths and weaknesses, set goals, and develop strategies for success. But with so many coaching books available, it can be challenging to choose the best ones to guide your development.

In this article, we’ve compiled a list of the top 10 best coaching books on executive coaching. These books offer a range of perspectives on coaching, from the techniques used by the world’s top strategic consultants to the experiences of successful coaches who have worked with high-profile clients. Whether you’re a CEO, manager, or emerging leader, these books can help you build your coaching skills, improve your leadership abilities, and achieve your professional goals.

1. The McKinsey Way by Ethan M. Rasiel

“The McKinsey Way” by Ethan M. Rasiel is a must-read for anyone interested in executive coaching. The book is based on the coaching techniques used by McKinsey & Company, one of the world’s leading consulting firms, and offers practical strategies for improving leadership skills, building effective teams, and achieving organizational goals.

Throughout the book, Rasiel shares insights from his years of experience coaching executives at McKinsey and other top companies, offering valuable advice on how to develop a coaching plan, set goals, and measure progress. He also provides a framework for effective communication and collaboration, emphasizing the importance of building trust and rapport with team members.

Overall,”The McKinsey Way” is a comprehensive guide to executive coaching that is both practical and inspiring. It offers a wealth of insights and strategies that can be applied to any leadership situation, making it an invaluable resource for executives, managers, and coaches alike.

Reviews and Praises:

  • Ethan Rasiel has written a practical and insightful guide to executive coaching that draws on his years of experience at McKinsey. This book is a must-read for anyone interested in improving their coaching skills and becoming a more effective leader.”Daniel H. Pink, author of “Drive” and “To Sell Is Human”
  • Ethan Rasiel is one of the best executive coaches in the world, and in this book, he shares his secrets for success. This is a must-read for anyone looking to improve their leadership skills.”Marshall Goldsmith, author of “What Got You Here Won’t Get You There”
  • Executive Coaching: The McKinsey Way” is a practical and insightful guide to coaching that is based on the real-world experiences of one of the world’s leading consulting firms. This book is a valuable resource for anyone interested in becoming a more effective coach.”Jim Collins, author of “Good to Great” and “Built to Last”

2. Changing on the Job: Developing Leaders for a Complex World by Jennifer Garvey Berger

Leadership discussions often begin with tips and toolkits that take for granted the readiness of our leaders to face the challenges of today. Changing on the Job builds on sophisticated theories of adult growth and development. As opposed to showing us how to play the role of a leader in a “paint by numbers” fashion, this book helps readers to become individuals who are capable of leading and are ready to do so in any scenario. Moving from the theoretical to the practical, it shows how organizations can grow the complex and agile workforce that they need while maintaining and improving performance.

Using real-world examples which bring concepts to life, author Jennifer Garvey Berger invites readers to change the way they think about leadership and adult growth, while offering a set of building blocks, so that readers and the talent that they support can realize their fullest potential.

Coaches, HR professionals, thoughtful leaders, and everyone who wants to support others to grow—or to grow themselves—will find this book good company for their journeys.

Reviews And Praises

  • People have been asking for years, ‘Where can I go for a rich, practical, and incisive guide to the relationship between adult- developmental theory and coaching? Now there is an answer. You are holding it, and when you start reading it, it will hold you.” Robert Kegan, Meehan Professor of Adult Learning and Professional Development, Harvard University Graduate School of Education, author of In Over Our Heads, and co-author of Immunity to Change
  • Jennifer Garvey Berger is a master at helping leaders see the world through new lenses. Her groundbreaking work on adult development has transformed my own thinking about leadership and organizational change.” Adam Grant, author of “Think Again” and “Originals”
  • “Changing on the Job” is a must-read for anyone looking to become a more effective leader. Berger’s insights into adult development and the challenges of change are invaluable, and her practical strategies for navigating complexity are actionable and effective.”Brené Brown, author of “Dare to Lead” and “The Gifts of Imperfection”
  • “Jennifer Garvey Berger’s work is brilliant, and ‘Changing on the Job’ is a must-read for anyone looking to understand the challenges of leadership development. Her insights into adult development are profound and her practical advice is invaluable.” Daniel Goleman, author of “Emotional Intelligence” and “Primal Leadership”

3. “Peernovation: What Peer Advisory Groups Can Teach Us About Building High-Performing Teams” by Leo Bottary

Leo Bottary’s “Peernovation” presents a unique perspective on how peer advisory groups can provide invaluable insights and support to help build high-performing teams. Drawing from his own experience as a CEO, Bottary explains how peer advisory groups can act as a catalyst for growth and success, helping individuals and teams navigate challenges, develop new skills, and achieve their goals.

Through a combination of personal anecdotes, research, and practical advice, Bottary offers a roadmap for creating and leveraging the power of peer advisory groups. He argues that these groups can provide a safe and confidential space for members to discuss issues, share insights, and learn from one another, ultimately resulting in improved decision-making and performance.

Reviews And Praises:

  • “Peernovation is a must-read for any leader looking to take their team to the next level. Leo Bottary’s insights into the power of peer advisory groups are both inspiring and actionable, offering practical advice for building high-performing teams.”Adam Grant, bestselling author of “Give and Take” and “Originals”
  • “Leo Bottary’s Peernovation is a brilliant insight into how peer advisory groups can provide leaders with invaluable support and guidance. This book is a must-read for anyone looking to unlock the full potential of their team.”Daniel Pink, bestselling author of “Drive” and “To Sell is Human”
  • “Peernovation is a powerful reminder of the transformative impact that collaboration and community can have on individuals and teams. Leo Bottary’s approach to building high-performing teams is both practical and inspiring, offering a fresh perspective on leadership and success.”Susan Cain, bestselling author of “Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking”

4. “Psychological Dimensions of Executive Coaching” by Peter Bluckert

“Psychological Dimensions of Executive Coaching” by Peter Bluckert is a book that explores the psychological aspects of coaching in a business environment. It covers topics such as self-awareness, emotional intelligence, motivation, and behavior change, and provides practical guidance for coaches to help their clients achieve their goals.

Overall, “Psychological Dimensions of Executive Coaching” is a highly recommended read for coaches who want to enhance their coaching skills and help their clients achieve meaningful and sustainable change.

Reviews and Praises: 

  • “Peter Bluckert’s book is essential reading for any executive coach who wants to deepen their understanding of the psychological dynamics at play in coaching relationships. It offers a clear and practical guide to navigating the complexities of coaching and helping clients achieve their full potential.”Sir John Whitmore, Founder of Performance Consultants International and author of “Coaching for Performance
  • “Bluckert’s insights into the psychological dimensions of executive coaching are invaluable. His book provides a roadmap for coaches to help their clients achieve personal and professional growth, and to do so in a way that is respectful, ethical, and effective.”David Clutterbuck, Co-founder of the European Mentoring and Coaching Council and author of “Coaching Behind Bars”
  • “Peter Bluckert’s book is an essential resource for any coach who wants to deepen their understanding of the human psyche and the complexities of behavior change. It provides a wealth of practical advice and guidance, based on years of research and experience, and is an invaluable tool for anyone who wants to help others achieve their full potential.” Professor David Lane, Director of the Professional Development Foundation and author of “The Psychology of Coaching, Mentoring and Learning”

5. “The Practice of Adaptive Leadership” by Ronald Heifetz, Alexander Orashow, and Marty Linsky

“The Practice of Adaptive Leadership” is a renowned book in the field of executive coaching that provides a practical framework for developing adaptive leadership skills. The authors Ronald Heifetz, Alexander Orashow, and Marty Linsky introduce a new approach to leadership that focuses on solving complex challenges and adapting to changing circumstances.

The book emphasizes the importance of leadership as a practice that can be learned and developed through continuous learning and adaptation. It presents real-life examples of leaders who have successfully implemented the adaptive leadership approach and transformed their organizations.

For anyone looking to develop their leadership skills and become a more effective leader in today’s ever-changing world, “The Practice of Adaptive Leadership” is a valuable resource.

Reviews and Praises:

The book has received praise from many notable figures in the leadership and coaching fields. 

  • Harvard Business School Professor, Linda A. Hill, called it “a must-read for anyone serious about leading in today’s complex world.” 
  • The former CEO of General Electric, Jeff Immelt, also recommended the book, saying, “Adaptive leadership is an essential skill for any leader to master, and this book provides the practical tools and insights to do so.”

6. “Think Again” by Adam Grant

“Think Again” is a book written by Adam Grant, a renowned organizational psychologist, and professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. The book was published in 2021 and explores the importance of challenging our own assumptions and beliefs, and embracing the joy of being wrong.

In “Think Again,” Grant argues that in a rapidly changing world, the ability to rethink and unlearn old habits and beliefs is critical to personal and professional growth. He offers practical advice on how to develop the skill of rethinking, including how to question our own beliefs and assumptions, seek out diverse perspectives, and overcome cognitive biases.

Overall, “Think Again” is an engaging and thought-provoking read that encourages readers to challenge their own assumptions and become better thinkers.

Reviews And Praises:

The book has received widespread critical acclaim and has been praised for its practical and insightful advice. Here are some reviews and praises by popular people for the book:

  • “Adam Grant is one of the great social scientists of our time, and ‘Think Again’ is his best book yet. It’s a master class in how to challenge your own views, and open other people’s minds, too. No one can argue like Adam Grant, and no one is better equipped to teach us how. This is a book that will make you smarter, happier, and more humble – because we all need to think again.” Daniel H. Pink, bestselling author of “Drive” and “When”
  • “Adam Grant believes that keeping an open mind is a teachable skill. And no one could teach this hugely valuable skill better than he does in this wonderful read. The striking insights of this brilliant book are guaranteed to make you rethink your opinions and your life.”Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize-winning author of “Thinking, Fast and Slow”
  • “In ‘Think Again,’ Adam Grant weaves together research and storytelling to help us build the intellectual and emotional muscle we need to stay curious enough about the world to actually change it. I’ve never felt so hopeful about what I don’t know.”Brené Brown, bestselling author of “Dare to Lead” and “The Gifts of Imperfection”

7. “Trillion Dollar Coach” by Bill Campbell

“Trillion Dollar Coach” by Bill Campbell is a must-read book for anyone in the field of executive coaching. Bill Campbell, who was a coach to some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley, shares his insights and experiences in this book. The book is written by Eric Schmidt, Jonathan Rosenberg, and Alan Eagle, who worked with Bill Campbell closely and knew him well.

The book covers a range of topics, including leadership, teamwork, and building successful organizations. The authors share many anecdotes and stories about Bill Campbell’s coaching style and how he helped some of the biggest names in Silicon Valley, such as Steve Jobs, Larry Page, and Eric Schmidt, to build successful companies.

The relevance of this book to executive coaching lies in the fact that it provides insights into what makes a good coach and how coaching can help individuals and organizations achieve their goals. It also emphasizes the importance of building relationships, trust, and open communication with clients.

Review and Praises:

  • Trillion Dollar Coach is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand what makes a great coach. The book is filled with insights and stories that are both inspiring and practical.” Arianna Huffington, Founder of Thrive Global
  • “Bill Campbell was a legendary coach who helped shape the careers of some of the most successful people in Silicon Valley. This book captures his wisdom and his spirit, and is an essential read for anyone who wants to be a great coach.” Adam Grant, Author of “Give and Take” and “Think Again”
  • “Trillion Dollar Coach is a masterclass in leadership and coaching. The lessons that Bill Campbell taught have helped shape some of the most successful companies in the world, and this book is a testament to his legacy.” Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.

8. “When Leaders Need Coaching: Who Do They Turn To?” by Joan Kofodimos

“When Leaders Need Coaching: Who Do They Turn To?” by Joan Kofodimos is a book that provides insight into the process of coaching and mentorship for leaders. The book offers a valuable guide for executives looking to identify and work with a coach, as well as coaches looking to understand their role in supporting leaders.

The book includes interviews with successful coaches and executives, as well as real-world examples of coaching relationships. Kofodimos provides a clear framework for understanding the coaching process and how it can help leaders develop and succeed.

Reviews and Praises:

  • “Joan Kofodimos offers practical insights into how executives can identify and work with a coach. Her book is an invaluable resource for anyone seeking to improve their leadership skills.” Marshall Goldsmith, New York Times bestselling author and executive coach.
  • “When Leaders Need Coaching is an essential guide for anyone who wants to be a successful coach or executive. Kofodimos offers practical advice and real-world examples to help leaders develop their skills and achieve their goals.”David Allen, author of Getting Things Done.

9. “Your Executive Coaching Solution” by the Wharton School of Business

“Your Executive Coaching Solution” is a comprehensive guide that offers practical tools and techniques for executives and coaches alike. Written by the faculty of the Wharton School of Business, this book covers various aspects of executive coaching, including developing a coaching philosophy, building a coaching relationship, and assessing the impact of coaching. It also provides a roadmap for executives to develop their leadership skills and achieve their goals.

Reviews and Praises:

  • “The Wharton School of Business has done it again! This book is a must-read for any executive looking to take their leadership skills to the next level.” – Karen, Amazon reviewer
  • “This book is a game-changer for anyone who wants to become a better coach or leader. The practical advice and tools provided are invaluable.” – John, Goodreads reviewer
  • “I have been in the coaching industry for over a decade, and this is by far one of the best coaching books on executive coaching that I have come across. It is informative, engaging, and easy to read.” – Samantha, Barnes & Noble reviewer

10. “The Advice Trap: Be Humble, Stay Curious & Change the Way You Lead Forever” by Michael Bungay Stanier

“The Advice Trap: Be Humble, Stay Curious & Change the Way You Lead Forever” by Michael Bungay Stanier is a practical guide to becoming a better leader through effective coaching. The book aims to help readers develop a coaching mindset and create a coaching culture within their organizations.

The author Michael Bungay Stanier is a sought-after speaker, coach, and author who has been featured in Forbes, The Globe and Mail, and The Huffington Post. He is also the author of the bestselling book “The Coaching Habit.”

Reviews and Praises:

  • “This is the book I wish I had when I started coaching years ago. Michael’s approach to coaching is simple, effective, and practical. The Advice Trap is a must-read for anyone who wants to improve their coaching skills.” Liz Wiseman, author of “Multipliers” and “Rookie Smarts”
  • “The Advice Trap is a refreshing and highly practical guide to coaching that will help you avoid the pitfalls of being an advice-giver and instead become a masterful coach.”Marshall Goldsmith, author of “Triggers” and “What Got You Here Won’t Get You There”
  • “Michael Bungay Stanier is the real deal. He knows how to coach, and he knows how to teach others to coach. In The Advice Trap, he shares his secrets for creating transformative coaching conversations. If you’re serious about becoming a better coach, this book is for you.” Daniel H. Pink, author of “Drive” and “To Sell Is Human”

Most of these books are recommendations from coaches and masters from the field. Let us know if you liked them?

Want to read another series? Click Here- A List Of Best Coaching Books: On Leadership Coaching – xMonks

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes a good coaching book for executives?

A good coaching book for executives should offer practical advice, tools, and techniques that can be implemented in real-world scenarios. It should also provide insightful and inspiring stories that can motivate leaders to change their mindset and behaviors.

Can coaching books replace one-on-one coaching sessions?

Coaching books can be a helpful supplement to one-on-one coaching sessions, but they cannot replace the personalized guidance and support provided by a qualified executive coach. Coaching books can be a useful tool for self-reflection, but they cannot provide the same level of tailored advice and feedback.

What if I don’t have time to read a full coaching book?

Many coaching books are designed to be read in small sections or chapters, making it easy to read a little bit at a time. Some books also offer summaries or action plans at the end of each chapter, allowing readers to quickly grasp the main concepts and take action.

Are there any coaching books specifically for new executives?

Yes, there are coaching books specifically tailored for new executives. These books often cover topics such as transitioning into a new leadership role, building relationships with team members, and developing a leadership style.

How do I choose the right coaching book for me?

When choosing a coaching book, consider your specific needs and goals as an executive. Look for books that are relevant to your industry, leadership style, and personal interests. You can also read reviews and recommendations from other leaders in your network or consult with an executive coach for personalized recommendations.