Leaders build cultures and cultures build teams.

These suggestions criss-cross important topics and disciplines always with an eye toward leadership and common-sense. I’ll add to this page occasionally. Drop me a line if anything sparks a question.


China and the Truth by Benjamin Ra in The Motley Fool

It’s Time To Build by Marc Andreessen

What 9/11 Taught Us About Leadership In A Crisis by Stanley McChrystal and Chris Fussell in NYTimes

To Change The Way You Think, Change The Way You See by Adam Brandenburger in Harvard Business Review

Turning Strategy Into Results by Donald Sull, Stefano Turconi, Charles Sull, and James Yoder in MIT Sloan Management Review

Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds by James Clear on his blog

The Cognitive Biases Tricking Your Brain by Ben Yagoda in The Atlantic

Listen, Amplify, Include: Leadership For The Modern Age by David Gillespie in Brink

To Control Your Life, Control What You Pay Attention To by Maura Thomas in Harvard Business Review

How To Scale A Magical Experience: 4 Lessons From Airbnb’s Brian Chesky by Reid Hoffman on LinkedIn

What It’s Like To Go Without Complaining For A Month by Jessica Hullinger in Fast Company

HBR Embraces Agile At Scale: Rethinking How We Live And Work by Steve Denning in Forbes

Why So Many High-Profile Digital Transformation Fail by Thomas H. Davenport and George Westerman in Harvard Business Review

Reversing Alinsky’s Rules by Seth Godin on his blog

  • White Guilt: How Blacks & Whites Together Destroyed the Promise of the Civil Rights Era, Shelby Steel
  • Principles: Life And Work, Ray Dalio
  • Good To Great: Why Some Companies Make The Leap And Others Don’t, Jim Collins
  • The Hard Thing About Hard Things: Building A Business When There Are No Easy Answers, Ben Horowitz
  • The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change The Way You Lead Forever, Michael Bungay Stanier
  • The Two Cultures And The Scientific Revolution: A Second Look, C.P. Snow
  • Managing Oneself, Peter Drucker
  • The Talent Code: Greatness Isn’t Born. It’s Grown. Here’s How., Daniel Coyle
  • Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming The Unseen Forces That Stand In The Way Of True Inspiration, Ed Catmull and Amy Wallace
  • Storynomics: Story-Driven Marketing In The Post-Advertising World, Robert McKee and Tom Gerace
  • Atomic Habits: An Easy & Proven Way To Build Good Habits & Break Bad Ones, James Clear

The James Altucher Show: #422, George Gilder – How To Think Like A Futurist

The Moment w/ Brian Koppelman: Marc Andreessen 3/12/19

The Tim Ferriss Show – Jim Collins, A Rare Interview with a Reclusive Poymath #361

The Portal w/ Eric Weinstein: #1 with Peter Thiel, #4 with Timur Kuran

33Voices w/ Moe Abdou: Kapil Gupta – The Truth About Performance

The Joe Rogan Experience: #1309, Naval Ravikant

Below The Line w/ James Beshara: #1, Justin Kan – The Philosopher CEO


These are fun to skim through for ideas that can be used directly or adapted and repurposed. In general I find creating ways of working from borrowed ideas more effective and interesting than diving head-first into, say, agile with a capital A. Given the choice, I always default to build for the team(s) rather than following trends.

Simplified: take what works, throw the rest away. Cut mercilessly.

Thomas Irre is the founder of HK5, LLC, Practical Business Technology and Mental Self-Defense for leaders & teams.