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11 Must-Read Books for Nonprofit Professionals

If professional development is one of your New Year’s Resolutions, we’ve got you covered! 

I asked Network for Good staff members for their favorite books on nonprofit leadership, management, and professional development. There are our top pics. 

Know of any we missed? Share your favorite books with us in the comments!

#1: Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t

Read this if: you want to learn what separates a truly great company from an average one (hint: it’s all about the corporate culture). You’ll also get a road map to success that you can implement in your own organization.  

#2: The 4 Disciplines of Execution 

Read this if: your organization’s productivity could be better, your teams aren’t working together well, or you want to be a more effective leader. 

#3: Joan Garry’s Guide to Nonprofit Leadership 

Read this if: you need specific advice on dealing with nonprofit challenges, or if you feel alone in your struggles at work.  

#4You’re in Charge – Now What? 

Read this if: you’re a new manager. Or, if you’re an old manager looking to become a better one. 

 You're in Charge--Now What?: The 8 Point Plan by [Neff, Thomas J., James M. Citrin]

#5Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior 

Read this if: you’re a fan of behavioral psychology and want to understand your donors better or make sense of seemingly irrational behavior by your Director or Board.  

 Sway: The Irresistible Pull of Irrational Behavior by [Brafman, Ori, Brafman, Rom]

#6Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard 

Read this if: you want to make lasting change in your organization (and if you hate the phrase “we’ve always done it this way”). 


#7: Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die 

Read this if: you want to create better donor-centric messaging that captures hearts and minds.  


#8: Lean Impact: How to Innovate for Radically Greater Social Good 

Read this if: you’re committed to growing your impact and making a bigger difference. 

#9: Charity Case: How the Nonprofit Community Can Stand Up for Itself and Really Change the World 

Read this if: you’re interested in the growth of the charity sector as a whole and how you can help it happen. 


#10: Donor-Centered Planned Gift Marketing 

Read this if: you want to get your planned gift program off the ground. 


#11Building a Story Brand 

Read this if: you’re trying to define your organization’s voice, message, and what sets you apart from all the rest. 

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