The best 30 Talent Development books

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Talent Development Books: Growing Great Employees by Erika Andersen

Growing Great Employees

Erika Andersen
Turning Ordinary People into Extraordinary Performers
3.9 (37 ratings)
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What's Growing Great Employees about?

Growing Great Employees (2006) is about coaching, management and leadership. Using gardening as metaphor that runs throughout the book, consultant and CEO Erika Andersen cleverly explains how to successfully develop thriving and productive employees.

Who should read Growing Great Employees?

  • Aspiring life coaches
  • Organizers and leaders
  • Anyone responsible for other people at work

Talent Development Books: Conscious Business by Fred Kofman

Conscious Business

Fred Kofman
How to Build Value Through Values
4.3 (62 ratings)
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What's Conscious Business about?

Conscious Business (2006) pushes beyond conventional measures of success to show you how to create a dynamic organization based on core human values. You’ll learn why companies that empower employees to align their work with the values they hold dear are the companies that succeed in today’s marketplace.

Who should read Conscious Business?

  • People looking to make work more fulfilling
  • CEOs and managers wanting to create space for values in their organizations
  • Entrepreneurs who value more enlightened measures of success

Talent Development Books: High-Impact Tools for Teams by Stefano Mastrogiacomo and Alexander Osterwalder

High-Impact Tools for Teams

Stefano Mastrogiacomo and Alexander Osterwalder
5 Tools to Align Team Members, Build Trust, and Get Results Fast
4.2 (169 ratings)
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What's High-Impact Tools for Teams about?

High Impact Tools for Teams (2021) offers flexible tools for project planning, assessment, and creating an empowering environment for your team members. At the center is the Team Alignment Map, a simple chart that will transform the way you conduct meetings, track progress, and identify problems before they occur.

Who should read High-Impact Tools for Teams?

  • Leaders and project managers looking for better results
  • Anyone trying to get an ambitious project off the ground
  • Team members who long for a better work environment

Talent Development Books: Solving the Productivity Puzzle by Tim Ringo

Solving the Productivity Puzzle

Tim Ringo
How to Engage, Motivate and Develop Employees to Improve Individual and Business Performance
3.8 (148 ratings)
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What's Solving the Productivity Puzzle about?

Solving the Productivity Puzzle (2020) is a guide for people management professionals. It covers topics such as learning and development, motivation of the workforce, and planning strategies. It’s essential reading for HR professionals who want to build a culture in which people can thrive.

Who should read Solving the Productivity Puzzle?

  • HR managers interested in change programs
  • Those looking for the perfect job
  • Managers who want to improve their employee productivity

Talent Development Books: Permission to Glow by Kristoffer Carter

Permission to Glow

Kristoffer Carter
A Spiritual Guide to Epic Leadership
4.3 (261 ratings)
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What's Permission to Glow about?

Permission to Glow (2021) provides managers with a roadmap to lead with intention and purpose so that everyone can reach their full potential. By embracing its four permissions, it shows how leaders can maximize outcomes and personal successes by first tapping into their own power and then guiding others to do the same.

Who should read Permission to Glow?

  • Leaders looking for meaning and fulfillment
  • Managers wanting to champion the potential of others
  • Seekers of inner peace

Talent Development Books: Everyone Deserves a Great Manager by Scott Jeffrey Miller, with Todd Davis and Victoria Roos Olsson

Everyone Deserves a Great Manager

Scott Jeffrey Miller, with Todd Davis and Victoria Roos Olsson
The 6 Critical Practices for Leading a Team
4.5 (276 ratings)
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What's Everyone Deserves a Great Manager about?

Everyone Deserves a Great Manager (2019) provides business leaders with six crucial practices that will transform team members into high performers. Offering practical solutions, it fills in the gap many new managers encounter when they’re promoted without receiving any leadership training. 

Who should read Everyone Deserves a Great Manager?

  • Newly promoted managers who have no idea what they’re doing
  • Fledgling managers wanting better outcomes
  • Senior managers looking to update their skills

Talent Development Books: Remarkable by David Kronfeld


David Kronfeld
Proven Insights to Accelerate Your Career
4.2 (215 ratings)
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What's Remarkable about?

Remarkable (2021) is a playbook for professionals looking to advance their careers. It’s not about getting ahead by any means, though. Covering topics like self-promotion, mistakes, and disagreements, it makes a compelling case that the best way to move forward is by staying humble and working with – and for – your team. 

Who should read Remarkable?

  • Managers and leaders
  • Entrepreneurs and self-starters 
  • Team players

Talent Development Books: Driving Performance Through Learning by Andy Lancaster

Driving Performance Through Learning

Andy Lancaster
Using L&D to Improve Performance, Productivity and Profits
4.1 (193 ratings)
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What's Driving Performance Through Learning about?

Driving Performance Through Learning (2019) is a guide to help learning and development professionals understand the full breadth of possibilities for learning in the modern workplace. It explains the benefits of learning during the natural flow of work, encouraging a wide range of innovative methods.

Who should read Driving Performance Through Learning?

  • Learning and development professionals expanding their horizons
  • Managers who want to understand L&D better
  • Workers who love learning new professional skills

Talent Development Books: Design for How People Learn by Julie Dirksen

Design for How People Learn

Julie Dirksen
4.5 (141 ratings)
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What's Design for How People Learn about?

Design for How People Learn (2015) is a practical guide for teachers, workshop leaders, and managers who want to create lessons that engage and inspire. It covers the science of how we learn and then shares the design principles that underpin successful lessons – no matter what’s being taught.

Who should read Design for How People Learn?

  • Teachers who want students to genuinely connect with their material
  • Managers who want to help their team members skill up
  • HR professionals who want to prioritize employee development

Talent Development Books: Impact Players by Liz Wiseman

Impact Players

Liz Wiseman
How to Take the Lead, Play Bigger, and Multiply Your Impact
4.3 (341 ratings)
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What's Impact Players about?

Impact Players (2021) uncovers the qualities of the most indispensable players in a team or organization, and breaks down the mindset that sets these influential individuals apart from the rest. Drawing on insights from top industry leaders, it shows how to leverage the approaches used by influential professionals to multiply your own impact in the workplace.

Who should read Impact Players?

  • Aspiring leaders
  • Business owners and entrepreneurs
  • Organization development professionals

Talent Development Books: Workplace Learning by Nigel Paine

Workplace Learning

Nigel Paine
How to Build a Culture of Continuous Employee Development
4.5 (232 ratings)
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What's Workplace Learning about?

Workplace Learning (2019) argues that learning and development professionals have to offer more than the usual array of courses and seminars. If you want to help your company compete in today’s fast-moving world, Nigel Paine believes, you have to start building the right kind of organizational culture. That culture rests on two pillars: open communication and knowledge sharing. For Paine, these are the foundation for the kind of constant, day-to-day learning organizations need. 

Who should read Workplace Learning?

  • Team leaders and managers 
  • HR professionals 
  • Anyone who wants to improve their workplace

Talent Development Books: Map It by Cathy Moore

Map It

Cathy Moore
The Hands-On Guide to Strategic Training Design
4.4 (40 ratings)
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What's Map It about?

Map it! The Action Mapping Book (2017) is a practical, hands-on guide for those in the business world that design training for fellow professionals. This revolutionary guide refocuses on solving problems in business and achieving measurable results. So if you’re longing to dump those ineffective webinars and boring slide stacks look no further—Map it! Will help you focus on what the problems are, how they got that way, and what everyone can do about it for provable results. 

Who should read Map It?

  • Business trainers looking for targeted, measurable results 
  • Problem solvers wanting a reliable path to better outcomes
  • Anyone who wants to ditch that boring training course, but make better on-the-job choices

Talent Development Books: Learning at Speed by Nelson Sivalingam

Learning at Speed

Nelson Sivalingam
How to Upskill and Reskill Your Workforce at Pace to Drive Business Performance
3.9 (229 ratings)
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What's Learning at Speed about?

Learning at Speed (2022) is your guide to professional learning and development in the modern world. By adopting a lean methodology inspired by startups, L&D can help businesses thrive.

Who should read Learning at Speed?

  • Learning and development professionals in search of new ideas
  • Managers looking to upskill their staff
  • Business professionals seeking to understand modern L&D

Talent Development Books: The Learning and Development Handbook by Michelle Parry-Slater

The Learning and Development Handbook

Michelle Parry-Slater
A Learning Practitioner's Toolkit
4.2 (220 ratings)
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What's The Learning and Development Handbook about?

The Learning and Development Handbook (2022) is a practical guide for human resources experts who want to upgrade how people learn in their organization without slavishly following new fads. So what’s their best bet? Michelle Parry-Slater thinks companies’ can benefit from the digital revolution, but only if they embed professional development in wider cultures of learning. That means one thing above all: working with the grain of human psychology, collective as well as individual. 

Who should read The Learning and Development Handbook?

  • Human resource managers 
  • Coaches and educationalists
  • Psychologists interested in learning

Talent Development Books: Mavericks by David Giles Lewis, Jules Goddard & Tamryn Batcheller-Adams


David Giles Lewis, Jules Goddard & Tamryn Batcheller-Adams
How Bold Leadership Changes the World
4.4 (253 ratings)
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What's Mavericks about?

Mavericks (2022) makes a case for maverick leadership. It shows that independent thinkers motivated by meaningful goals can transform their careers and communities – and that anyone can develop their inner maverick by focusing on five key characteristics.

Who should read Mavericks?

  • Leaders interested in shaking things up
  • Anyone who wants to become more resourceful or resilient
  • People who want to change their organizations or communities for the better

Talent Development Books: Evidence-Informed Learning Design by Mirjam Neelen & Paul A. Kirschner

Evidence-Informed Learning Design

Mirjam Neelen & Paul A. Kirschner
Creating Training to Improve Performance
4.2 (124 ratings)
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What's Evidence-Informed Learning Design about?

Evidence-Informed Learning Design (2020) takes stock of where learning and development in the workplace is today. While many learning myths are still encountered in contemporary workplace learning, there’re effective ways for learning professionals to identify them – and stamp them out. Once this is done, there are a number of fantastic techniques learning professionals can utilize to help assist employee learning.

Who should read Evidence-Informed Learning Design?

  • learning professionals looking to up their game
  • employees looking to get ahead with their professional knowledge
  • students of any persuasion hoping to discover effective learning strategies

Talent Development Books: Trust and Inspire by Stephen M.R. Covey

Trust and Inspire

Stephen M.R. Covey
How Truly Great Leaders Unleash Greatness in Others
4.6 (121 ratings)
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What's Trust and Inspire about?

Trust & Inspire (2022) provides a new leadership model. Instead of the traditional “Command and Control” approach, Covey proposes one that focuses on collaboration, trust and personal growth. It offers a new set of tools for inspiring and unlocking the massive potential of a modern workforce. 

Who should read Trust and Inspire?

  • CEOs and executives looking to create a better workplace environment
  • Managers and supervisors who want to be more hands-off
  • Parents and educators who want a more empowering approach to childcare

Talent Development Books: The Adaptation Advantage by Heather E. McGowan and Chris Shipley

The Adaptation Advantage

Heather E. McGowan and Chris Shipley
Let Go, Learn Fast, and Thrive in the Future of Work
4.4 (260 ratings)
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What's The Adaptation Advantage about?

The Adaptation Advantage (2020) explores how to navigate the future of work – without worrying about the robots taking over. It provides actionable insights on how to tap into uniquely human attributes like adaptation to excel.

Who should read The Adaptation Advantage?

  • Workers worried about the rise of the machines
  • Managers and business owners seeking new perspectives
  • Futurologists fascinated by what’s coming next

Talent Development Books: The Remix by Lindsey Pollak

The Remix

Lindsey Pollak
How to Lead and Succeed in the Multigenerational Workplace
4.4 (11 ratings)
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What's The Remix about?

The Remix (2019) illustrates the importance of creating and maintaining a multigenerational workspace that is inclusive to all. Combining recent data, independent research, and case studies from Fortune 500 companies, it shows teams how to embrace diverse working styles and turn potential clashes into opportunities.

Who should read The Remix?

  • Career enthusiasts
  • College graduates transitioning into the workplace
  • Managers looking to improve their leadership skills

Talent Development Books: Handbook of Strategic 360 Feedback by Allan H. Church, David W. Bracken, John W. Fleenor, Dale S. Rose

Handbook of Strategic 360 Feedback

Allan H. Church, David W. Bracken, John W. Fleenor, Dale S. Rose
3.7 (129 ratings)
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What's Handbook of Strategic 360 Feedback about?

The Handbook of Strategic 360 Feedback is a guide to the pros and cons of 360 Feedback, including detailed guidance on how to implement the process as well as how to avoid pitfalls such as unconscious bias or people who try to game the system. 

Who should read Handbook of Strategic 360 Feedback?

  • Company leaders
  • HR managers
  • Team leaders

Talent Development Books: Next! by Joanne Lipman


Joanne Lipman
The Power of Reinvention in Life and Work
4.1 (96 ratings)
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What's Next! about?

Next! (2023) is an inspiring guide to personal reinvention. With insights from scientific research and real-life success stories, it provides practical steps to implement meaningful change in life and work.

Who should read Next!?

  • Tenacious scholars
  • Aspiring creatives
  • Visionary millennials

Talent Development Books: The Ultimate Guide to Great Mentorship by Scott Jeffrey Miller

The Ultimate Guide to Great Mentorship

Scott Jeffrey Miller
13 Roles to Making a True Impact
4.1 (45 ratings)
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What's The Ultimate Guide to Great Mentorship about?

The Ultimate Guide to Great Mentorship (2023) demystifies the art of being an effective mentor. It walks prospective mentors through the entire mentoring journey – from setting expectations and goals at the outset to tracking progress to ending on a high note.

Who should read The Ultimate Guide to Great Mentorship?

  • Mentors and mentees seeking a symbiotic relationship
  • Experienced professionals who want to share their learnings 
  • Managers looking to matchmake mentors and mentees for best results

Talent Development Books: Elevate Your Team by Robert Glazer

Elevate Your Team

Robert Glazer
Empower Your Team To Reach Their Full Potential and Build A Business That Builds Leaders
4.5 (74 ratings)
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What's Elevate Your Team about?

Elevate Your Team (2023) presents a framework to optimize team performance and drive company growth, while safeguarding employees against burnout. By implementing this strategy, leaders can guide their teams to reach their full potential, so that both they – and their company – thrives.   

Who should read Elevate Your Team?

  • Leaders seeking sustained business growth
  • Managers wanting to optimize team performance
  • Directors looking for a new framework for success

Talent Development Books: The Way Up by Errol L. Pierre with Jim Jermanok

The Way Up

Errol L. Pierre with Jim Jermanok
Climbing the Corporate Mountain as a Professional of Color
4.2 (11 ratings)
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What's The Way Up about?

The Way Up (2022) is a career guidebook that provides professionals of color with empowering advice on climbing the corporate ladder. Drawing on interviews and lived experience, it tackles topics like expanding networks, overcoming impostor syndrome, and securing executive mentors. With motivating wisdom and practical strategies, it shows how to navigate workplace challenges and fulfill your leadership potential.

Who should read The Way Up?

  • Professionals of color 
  • Managers wanting to support diversity 
  • Leaders from diverse communities 

Talent Development Books: When They Win, You Win by Russ Laraway

When They Win, You Win

Russ Laraway
Being a Great Manager Is Simpler Than You Think
4.4 (201 ratings)
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What's When They Win, You Win about?

When They Win, You Win (2022) is your guide to being a great manager. This playbook reveals the simple leadership principles that unlock your employees’ full potential, create happy, engaged teams, and drive better business results.

Who should read When They Win, You Win?

  • Managers and leaders looking to improve employee satisfaction
  • Founders and entrepreneurs seeking to build effective teams and retain top talent
  • Business school students studying organizational behavior and human resources

Talent Development Books: Humanocracy by Gary Hamel & Michele Zanini


Gary Hamel & Michele Zanini
Creating Organizations As Amazing As the People Inside Them
3.3 (39 ratings)
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What's Humanocracy about?

Humanocracy (2020) explores the constraints of traditional bureaucratic organizational structures and proposes a shift toward more human-centric models. Based on the idea that bureaucracies stifle innovation and alienate employees, it argues for a system that unleashes human potential and creativity. Through real-world examples and strategies, it guides organizations in restructuring to foster empowerment, adaptability, and resilience.

Who should read Humanocracy?

  • Leaders looking to transform organizational cultures and structures for increased innovation and adaptability
  • HR professionals wanting to integrate employee-centric policies and practices for enhanced workplace satisfaction and productivity
  • Business students seeking to understand new organizational models and management strategies

Talent Development Books: Standout 2.0 by Marcus Buckingham

Standout 2.0

Marcus Buckingham
Assess Your Strengths, Find Your Edge, Win at Work
3.0 (43 ratings)
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What's Standout 2.0 about?

StandOut 2.0 (2015) delves into the nuances of individual strengths and how to harness them for career success. Building on an assessment tool, the book identifies nine strength roles and offers actionable advice to help individuals find their talents and win at work. Through the identification and application of these strengths, individuals and teams alike can find their edge, achieve heightened productivity, and stand out in work and in life.

Who should read Standout 2.0?

  • Professionals pursuing strengths-based development
  • Managers enhancing team dynamics
  • Career-seekers looking to identify unique strengths

Talent Development Books: Talent Wins by Ram Charan, Dominic Barton & Dennis Carey

Talent Wins

Ram Charan, Dominic Barton & Dennis Carey
The New Playbook for Putting People First
3.0 (25 ratings)

What's Talent Wins about?

Talent Wins (2018) advocates for a radical shift in business strategy to prioritize human capital, asserting that talent management should be at the core of organizational decision-making. It emphasizes the need for agility, collaboration, and a continuous learning culture to foster a high-performing workforce. And it provides practical strategies and recommendations to drive transformation and ensure that talent is leveraged effectively for business success.

Who should read Talent Wins?

  • Business executives and leaders
  • Entrepreneurs and startup founders
  • Business students and educators

Talent Development Books: The Modern Learning Ecosystem by JD Dillon

The Modern Learning Ecosystem

JD Dillon
A New L&D Mindset for the Ever-Changing Workplace
4.3 (14 ratings)
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What's The Modern Learning Ecosystem about?

The Modern Learning Ecosystem (2022) offers a practical and transformative approach to help you adapt to the rapid pace of change in modern workplaces. It provides a comprehensive framework for Learning and Development (L&D) professionals to integrate learning seamlessly into daily workflows, helping employees navigate current challenges and future opportunities.

Who should read The Modern Learning Ecosystem?

  • New starters in the world of learning and development
  • L&D teams having difficulty with the pace of change
  • Professionals looking to understand how they can adapt their organizations’  approach to L&D

Talent Development Books: Irresistible by Josh Bersin


Josh Bersin
The Seven Secrets of the World's Most Enduring, Employee-Focused Organizations
3.6 (9 ratings)
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What's Irresistible about?

Irresistible (2022) introduces a fresh perspective on leadership and organizational design, advocating for a “network of teams” approach rather than traditional hierarchies. It highlights the importance of fostering an employee-centric culture for improved engagement, retention, and innovation. By making your organization irresistible, it argues, you can achieve greater speed, profitability, and market leadership.

Who should read Irresistible?

  • Business leaders seeking organizational growth
  • HR professionals focused on talent development
  • Entrepreneurs building employee-centric cultures

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