Originally published on December 12, 2017

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I have always loved reading books. My mom, Amy Garfield, a teacher and reading specialist, taught me to read before I started school. Later, she was a volunteer for Reading is Fundamental in St. Louis, winning the RIF Volunteer of the Year Award in 1998. While attending Antioch College, she served as Community Manager, so that might explain my interest in community management.

I have created and maintained management reading lists for many years, and I am pleased to present this one. It includes 100 books on topics of great interest to me, five books by the provocative thinker and writer, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, and 25 additional reading lists created by me and others.

I published my first book in 2007, my second in 2017, my third in 2020, and contributed chapters to four other books. Details on all are provided below.

If you would like to highlight other books not mentioned below or in the lists collected at the end, please add your comments. When doing so, please include titles, authors, and links for all books you recommend.


  1. Section 1: My Books, Reviews, and Connections
  2. Section 2: Leadership, Management, and Business
  3. Section 3: Innovation and Creativity
  4. Section 4. Knowledge Management
  5. Section 5: English Usage, Communications, and Storytelling
  6. Section 6: Social Business, Social Media, and Social Networks
  7. Section 7: Communities
  8. Section 8: Marketing and Selling
  9. Section 9: Individual Development
  10. Section 10. Information Architecture and Technology
  11. Appendix 1: Books by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
  12. Appendix 2: Reading Lists

Section 1: My Books, Reviews, and Connections

  1. Implementing a Successful Knowledge Management Program — designed specifically to provide a step-by-step guide to initiating and managing a KM initiative. Each of the key stages is explored, the potential pitfalls are explained, the necessary research is outlined, and all relevant resources that will help you in reaching your targets are listed at length. A checklist for success, this book can ensure the time and energy invested in your program returns dividends. It offers straightforward advice from planning and strategic direction all the way through to program implementation and the various technical components that many organizations use to support their KM strategies.
  2. Proven Practices for Promoting a Knowledge Management Program — offers techniques and advice from a seasoned KM professional and expert with decades of experience in the field. You’ll learn the essential elements of a knowledge management program; how to lay the foundation for success; the secrets to obtaining early and ongoing leadership commitment; tips for communication strategies that actually do influence and engage your audience; how to assess and leverage technology appropriately; powerful methods of nurturing a knowledge-sharing culture (including recognizing and rewarding participants), and finally, you’ll read detailed case studies of 10 organizations — among them Microsoft and NASA — that will inspire you as you set your own knowledge management strategy.
  3. Handbook of Community Management: A Guide to Leading Communities of Practice — an in-depth tutorial on how to make communities work to really improve business performance. It covers principles and proven practices that ensure community success and longevity, provides tips and techniques for leading communities and communities programs that the reader can apply immediately, looks at different types of communities and the technologies that support them, and illustrates communities in practice.
  1. Successful Knowledge Leadership: Principles and Practice — Effective knowledge management demands equally effective leaders. Yet, what exactly is an effective knowledge leader? What are the attributes and skills needed? What are the challenges that knowledge leaders face and, importantly, how do they overcome them? This book addresses these key questions, revealing the critical skills and abilities, behaviors, and techniques needed to drive KM success. My contribution is Chapter 5 — The modern knowledge leader: A results-oriented approach. This includes: Try things out by quickly implementing, continuously improving, and iterating; Lead by example, practice what you preach, and model desired behaviors; Set goals and establish promotion requirements; Recognize and reward desired behaviors.
  2. Gaining Buy-In for KM — packed with case studies, in-depth insight, and practical working guidance from a wide range of international organizations, highlighting the processes behind setting up buy-in initiatives, their key benefits, and the results you can expect to achieve. However innovative, time-saving, or potentially profitable a KM project or team may be, it will always be essential (and difficult) to achieve true buy-in for it within an organization. This book provides in-depth strategic and tactical guidance on key KM buy-in topics. My contribution is Chapter 2 — Obtaining support for KM: The ten commitments. This includes: The ten commitments; Culture and values; Ensuring that the ten commitments are kept.
  3. Measuring the ROI of KM — For organizations looking at Knowledge Management, it is no longer a question of ‘should we?’ It is now, a question of ‘how should we?’ As the global market becomes increasingly more competitive, and budgets get tighter, many organizations are treading very carefully with their investments. With knowledge resources being intangible at best, it is increasingly difficult to justify any investment in KM. From outlining the best methods of quantifying the return from KM, to discussing the limitations of an ROI-focused approach, this book looks to present an all-encompassing view of how to best tackle this this matter that is rife with guesswork and uncertainty. My contribution is Chapter 7 — The case against ROI for knowledge management. This includes: The right focus; Literature review.
  4. Knowledge Management Matters: Words of Wisdom from Leading Practitioners — a collection of works penned by a diverse group of thought leaders. Each of these trailblazers has generously shared their knowledge with a view to helping you and your organization succeed in the knowledge environment. The tips, tactics, and techniques they suggest are time-tested and proven concepts that will help you achieve your organizational objectives. Their collective works are based on decades of experiences with real-world organizations. This is not a book of untested theories that might work, but rather a compilation of genuine words of wisdom from experienced KM practitioners who know knowledge management. Throughout the book are excellent examples of what works, what doesn’t, and some thought-provoking teases about the future. My contribution is Chapter 6 — Communities Manifesto: 10 Principles for Successful Communities.
  1. Next Generation Knowledge Management, Volume 3 by Jerry Ash, Stan Garfield, Raj Datta, Arthur Shelley, Tom Barfield, Melissie Rumizen, Doug Madgic, et al. — Chapter 1: A Career, a Historic Journey (pages 1–33)
  2. Flat Army: Creating a Connected and Engaged Organization by Dan Pontefract — Chapter 6: Beyond the Connected Leader — Bettering (pages 129–131)
  3. Navigating the Minefield: A Practical KM Companion by Paul Corney and Patricia Eng — Chapter 4: Keeping KM Going When it is Working — Innovative Ways of Implementing KM (page 48), Chapter 5: Killing KM — The HP/Compaq/Digital Story (pages 61, 64–65)
  4. The Knowledge Services Handbook: A Guide for the Knowledge Strategist by Guy St. Clair and Barrie Levy — Chapter 2.1: Collaboration in the knowledge services workplace (pages 74–78)
  1. Digital Habitats: Stewarding Technology for Communities by Etienne Wenger, Nancy White, and John D. Smith — My Review
  2. KM Systems Implementation: Lessons from the Silicon Valley by Hind Benbya — My Review
  3. Enterprise 2.0: New Collaborative Tools for Your Organization’s Toughest Challenges by Andrew McAfee — My Review
  4. Designing a Successful KM Strategy: A Guide for the Knowledge Management Professional by Nick Milton and Stephanie Barnes — My Review
  5. Building Smarter Organizations: How to Lead Your Zombie Organization Back to Life by Gordon Vala-Webb — My Review
  6. Woo, Wow, and Win: Service Design, Strategy, and the Art of Customer Delight by Thomas Stewart and Patricia O’Connell — My Review
  7. The KM Cookbook: Stories and Strategies for Organisations Exploring Knowledge Management Standard ISO30401 by Chris Collison, Paul Corney and Patricia Eng — My Review
  8. Story Thinking: Transforming Organizations for the Fourth Industrial Revolution by John Lewis
  1. Next Generation Knowledge Management: Transforming theory into practice by Jerry Ash, Steve Denning, Lesley Shneier, Carl Frappaolo, Leif Edvinsson, Debra Amidon, Richard Cross, David Skyrme, Karl-Erik Sveiby, Charles Savage, David Snowden, Hubert Saint-Onge, Debra Wallace, Carol Kinsey Goman, et al.
  2. Next Generation Knowledge Management, Volume 2 by Jerry Ash, David Snowden, Steve Barth, Robert H. Buckman, David Gurteen, Patti Anklam, Carl Frappaolo, Verna Allee, Nancy Dixon, Nick Milton, et al.
  3. Collaborative Knowledge Networks by Stephen Dale, Curtis Conley, Joel Muzard, et al.
  4. Smarter Innovation: Using Interactive Processes to Drive Better Business Results by Katrina Pugh, T.J. Elliott, Madelyn Blair, V. Mary Abraham, Karla Phlypo, Susan Scrupski, Catherine Shinners, Joachim Stroh, Jean Pagani, John Hovell, Roberto Evaristo, et al.
  5. Adapting for Success: The Practice of Organisational Learning by Albert Simard

Section 2: Leadership, Management, and Business

  1. The Serving Leader: Five Powerful Actions to Transform Your Team, Business, and Community by Ken Jennings and John Stahl-Wert
  2. Rework: Change The Way You Work Forever by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson
  3. The Age of Agile: How Smart Companies Are Transforming the Way Work Gets Doneby Stephen Denning
  4. The Leader’s Guide to Radical Management: Reinventing the Workplace for the 21st Century by Stephen Denning
  5. Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us by Seth Godin
  6. Why Employees Don’t Do What They’re Supposed To Do and What To Do About It by Ferdinand Fournies
  7. Authentic Leadership: Rediscovering the Secrets to Creating Lasting Value by Bill George
  8. A Force For Change: How Leadership Differs from Management by John Kotter
  9. Peopleware: Productive Projects and Teams by Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister
  10. The Mythical Man-Month by Fred Brooks

Section 3: Innovation and Creativity

  1. The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book that Will Change the Way You Do Business by Clayton M. Christensen
  2. The Innovator’s Solution: Creating and Sustaining Successful Growth by Michael E. Raynor and Clayton M. Christensen
  3. The Innovator’s Manifesto: Deliberate Disruption for Transformational Growth by Michael E. Raynor
  4. The New Age of Innovation: Driving Cocreated Value Through Global Networks by C.K. Prahalad and M.S. Krishnan
  5. Lateral Thinking: Creativity Step by Step by Edward de Bono
  6. A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative by Roger von Oech
  7. Are Your Lights On? How to figure out what the problem really is by Gerald M. Weinberg and Don Gause

Section 4. Knowledge Management

  1. Learning to Fly: Practical Knowledge Management from Leading and Learning Organizations by Chris Collison and Geoff Parcell
  2. Working Knowledge: How Organizations Manage What They Know by Thomas Davenport and Laurence Prusak
  3. Common Knowledge: How Companies Thrive by Sharing What They Know by Nancy M. Dixon
  4. If Only We Knew What We Know: The Transfer of Internal Knowledge and Best Practice by Carla O’Dell and C. Jackson Grayson
  5. The Wealth of Knowledge: Intellectual Capital and the Twenty-first Century Organization by Thomas A. Stewart
  6. The Future of Knowledge: Increasing Prosperity through Value Networks by Verna Allee
  7. The Knowledge Manager’s Handbook: A Step-by-Step Guide to Embedding Effective Knowledge Management in your Organization by Nick Milton and Patrick Lambe
  8. Knowledge Management in Practice by Anthony J. Rhem
  9. KNOWledge SUCCESSion: Sustained Performance and Capability Growth Through Strategic Knowledge Projects by Arthur Shelley
  10. Sharing Hidden Know-How: How Managers Solve Thorny Problems With the Knowledge Jam by Katrina Pugh
  11. Mastering Organizational Knowledge Flow: How to Make Knowledge Sharing Work by Frank Leistner
  12. Deep Smarts: How to Cultivate and Transfer Enduring Business Wisdom by Dorothy Leonard and Walter Swap
  13. The Explanation Age: Inspiring Visualizations of the New Learning Organization by John Lewis

Section 5: English Usage, Communications, and Storytelling

  1. The Elements of Style by William Strunk, Jr. and E.B. White
  2. On Writing Well: The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction by William Zinsser
  3. Fumblerules: A Lighthearted Guide to Grammar and Good Usage by William Safire
  4. The Visual Display of Quantitative Information by Edward Tufte
  5. Envisioning Information by Edward Tufte
  6. Beautiful Evidence by Edward Tufte
  7. Squirrel Inc.: A Fable of Leadership through Storytelling by Stephen Denning
  8. The Leader’s Guide to Storytelling: Mastering the Art and Discipline of Business Narrative by Stephen Denning
  9. Putting Stories to Work by Shawn Callahan

Section 6: Social Business, Social Media, and Social Networks

  1. Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations by Clay Shirky
  2. The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki
  3. The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell
  4. Net Work: A Practical Guide to Creating and Sustaining Networks at Work and in the World by Patti Anklam
  5. Organizations Don’t Tweet, People Do: A Manager’s Guide to the Social Web by Euan Semple
  6. The New Social Learning: A Guide to Transforming Organizations Through Social Media by Tony Bingham and Marcia Conner
  7. Groundswell: Winning in a World Transformed by Social Technologies by Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff
  8. Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes Everything by Don Tapscott
  9. Everything Is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder by David Weinberger
  10. The Cluetrain Manifesto: The End of Business as Usual by Christopher Locke, Rick Levine, Doc Searls, and David Weinberger
  11. Working Out Loud: For a better career and life by John Stepper
  12. Connecting Organizational Silos: Taking Knowledge Flow Management to the Next Level with Social Media by Frank Leistner

Section 7: Communities

  1. Cultivating Communities of Practice: A Guide to Managing Knowledge by Etienne Wenger, Richard McDermott, and William M. Snyder
  2. Leveraging Communities of Practice for Strategic Advantage by Hubert Saint-Onge and Debra Wallace
  3. Buzzing Communities: How to Build Bigger, Better, and More Active Online Communities by Richard Millington

Section 8: Marketing and Selling

  1. Positioning: The Battle for the Mind by Al Ries and Jack Trout
  2. Focus: The Future of Your Company Depends on It by Al Ries
  3. Marketing Warfare by Al Ries and Jack Trout
  4. Bottom-Up Marketing by Al Ries and Jack Trout
  5. The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing: Violate Them at Your Own Risk! by Al Ries and Jack Trout
  6. The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding by Al Ries and Laura Ries
  7. Why Customers Don’t Do What You Want Them To Do — And What To Do About It by Ferdinand Fournies
  8. SPIN Selling by Neil Rackham
  9. Major Account Sales Strategy by Neil Rackham
  10. Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  11. To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Moving Others by Daniel H. Pink
  12. The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More by Chris Anderson

Section 9: Individual Development

  1. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink
  2. When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing by Daniel H. Pink
  3. Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  4. Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  5. The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact by Chip Heath and Dan Heath
  6. Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool’s Guide to Surviving with Grace by Gordon MacKenzie
  7. What Got You Here Won’t Get You There: How Successful People Become Even More Successful by Marshall Goldsmith and Mark Reiter
  8. The Purpose Effect: Building Meaning in Yourself, Your Role and Your Organization by Dan Pontefract
  9. Peak Performers: The New Heroes of American Business by Charles Garfield
  10. Thinking for a Living: How to Get Better Performances and Results from Knowledge Workers by Thomas Davenport
  11. The Power of Pull: How Small Moves, Smartly Made, Can Set Big Things in Motion by John Hagel III,‎ John Seely Brown,‎ and Lang Davison

Section 10. Information Architecture and Technology

  1. Organising Knowledge: Taxonomies, Knowledge and Organisational Effectiveness by Patrick Lambe
  2. Information Architecture: For the Web and Beyond by‎ Louis Rosenfeld,‎ Peter Morville, and‎ Jorge Arango
  3. Essential SharePoint 2013: Practical Guidance for Meaningful Business Results by Susan Hanley, Scott Jamison, and Chris Bortlik
  4. The Right Way to Select Technology: Get the Real Story on Finding the Best Fit by Tony Byrne

Appendix 1: Books by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

  1. Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life
  2. The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms
  3. Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder
  4. The Black Swan: Second Edition: The Impact of the Highly Improbable
  5. Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets

Appendix 2: Reading Lists

  1. KM Books
  2. My reading list
  3. My recommendations
  4. Books I blogged
  5. Books I tweeted
  6. Books on Community Management and Communities of Practice
  7. Books with strategies for building an organizational culture that drives innovation
  8. Leadership Books
  9. Authentic Leadership
  10. Verna Allee
  11. Amazon
  12. AOK
  13. Ark Group
  14. Nick Bontis
  15. Nancy Dixon
  16. David Gurteen
  17. Inside Knowledge
  18. KM Portal
  19. KnowledgeBoard
  20. Knowledge Bucket
  21. M. Audran Sevrain
  22. David Skyrme
  23. Kaye Vivian
  24. Nancy White
  25. Ron Young

Written by

Knowledge Management Author and Speaker, Founder of SIKM Leaders Community, Community Evangelist, Knowledge Manager https://sites.google.com/site/stangarfield/

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