The personal and professional qualities that go into making a good leader are not always obvious. And different situations often call for different qualities. In this section experts recommend books to unlock the secrets of good leadership.
Brett Wigdortz, is the founder and CEO of UK-based independent charity Teach First, which places graduates to teach in schools in challenging circumstances across England, to raise the attainment, access to opportunity and aspiration of its pupils. He argues that good leaders combine an iron will with a dose of humility and recommends books ranging from The tipping point by Malcolm Gladwell to Exodus and the lessons we can learn from Moses’ leadership.
Alastair Campbell, former press secretary to Tony Blair when prime minister and director of communications for the Labour Party, takes his pick of the best books on leadership in politics and in sport.
The Rise and Fall of Athens: Nine Greek Lives
by Ian Scott-Kilvert & Plutarch
The Greek Alexander Romance
by Richard Stoneman
by Cornelius Nepos & Nicholas Horsfall
by Harold Mattingly, James Rives & Tacitus
Lives of the Eminent Philosophers
Diogenes Laertius (ed. James Miller, trans. Pamela Mensch)
Whatever modern leadership books may say about what’s required to be a good leader, for the ancients there was only one vital requirement: studying philosophy. Jeffrey Beneker, Professor of Classics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, talks us through what ancient biographies reveal about how to be a leader.