The 7 Books Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella Says You Need To Lead Smarter – Fast Company
Nadella, whose own first book, the memoir/vision for the future Hit Refresh, is being published in late September, says that heâ€™s drawn particular inspiration from these sevenÂ works on history, economics, technology, and management strategy:
The Great Transformation, Karl Polanyi:Â â€œMy father recommended this book long ago,â€ says Nadella of the 1944 classic by a Hungarian-American writer who chronicles the development of Englandâ€™s market economy and argues that society should drive economic change.
Deep Learning, Ian Goodfellow, Yoshua Bengio, and Aaron Courville: Elon Musk and Facebook AI chief Yann LeCun have praised this textbook on one of softwareâ€™s most promising frontiers. After its publication, Microsoft signed up coauthor Bengio, a pioneer in machine learning, as an adviser.
The Boys in the Boat, Daniel James Brown: Nadella calls this tale with a local Seattle connectionâ€”it involves an underdog University of Washington crew team and the 1936 Berlin Olympicsâ€”â€A wonderful illustration of the importance of teamwork, which was a core part of my focus out of the gate as CEO.â€
The Great Convergence, Richard Baldwin: In this look at how telepresence and telerobotics will increasingly let people cross international borders from the comfort of their own homes, Nadella sees analogies to Microsoftâ€™s HoloLens headset, especially as the technology matures and its cost comes down.
Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol Dweck:
Written by a Stanford psychology professor, this book offers advice on retaining an appreciation for the things you donâ€™t yet know and first resonated with Nadella as a father. As Microsoftâ€™s new CEO, he aspired to steer the company toward â€œa culture that allowed us to constantly refresh and renew,â€ and incorporated Dweckâ€™s perspective into his blueprint for change. â€œNow three years into it, I recognize its power a lot more than I did,â€ he says.
Nonviolent Communication, Marshall Rosenberg:Â
Upon becoming CEO, Nadella confronted Microsoftâ€™s legendarily combative culture by urging his new reports to read this book, which preaches the power of empathy, self-awareness, and authenticity in collaboration in the workplace, at home, and beyond. Like many of his favorites, it was first recommended to him by his wife, Anu: â€œIâ€™m heavily influenced by the books she reads more than the books I read.â€
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