Ken’s Top 4 Business Leadership Books

leaders are reader quote

I’ve been an adherent to the motto, “Leaders are readers, and readers are leaders.” This squares nicely with what is widely known as the Growth Mindset and is critical to the infinite possibilities when we accept that learning is never “done.”

When meeting anyone in a leadership position that subscribes to the notion that they don’t have time to read, I challenge that their business cannot afford for them to stagnate that way. Even if a leader is enlightened and complete, if others continue to read, learn, and grow, they will catch up or surpass them.

No one philosophy, system, book, or company has a cornerstone for creating the perfect leadership model; therefore, by committing to education, we commit to expanding, challenging, adjusting, and assessing our ideas of leadership, organization, and execution.

daring greatly

Daring Greatly By Brené Brown

Dr. Brown needs little introduction, as her viral Ted Talk on vulnerability proves. As the title of her tome references, I’d recommend reading Teddy Roosevelt’s “Man in the Arena” speech first, as it is Dr. Brown’s inspiration. In this book, she adroitly leads us through the conventional traps leaders find themselves falling into by providing techniques for having the courage to show up, be fully present, and trust when you cannot control the outcome. Daring Greatly is not about winning or losing. It’s pushing past the feelings of fear to be uncomfortable, vulnerable, and ultimately successful. Wondering what can help build environments of authenticity? Look no further.

Why work sucks and how to fix it

Why Work Sucks and How to Fix It by Cali Ressler & Jody Thompson

Former HR Executives Ressler and Thompson are the brain trust behind the Results Only Work Environment (ROWE). This paradigm-shifting manifesto will challenge how you think about, evaluate, manage, and lead your organization’s people/work equation. Though written many years ago, there’s no better time to introduce yourself to an entirely different approach in the era of work-at-home, hybrid, and return-to-work controversies. Blending some of the work Leader’s Cut has done helping clients hire according to their core values, imagine combining that with the notion that we manage the work rather than the team member. What are the possibilities if we focus on the result (output, outcome, accomplishment, etc.) and let go of when or where someone is doing the work?

Impact Players

Impact Players by Liz Wiseman

Wiseman has a background that would challenge the most skepticism: she rose to executive leadership ranks and has, as they say, eaten her own cooking. Well known for her book, Multipliers, a keen look at why some leaders just seem to make everyone around them more intelligent, in Impact Players, she calls out the talent in the front-line ranks that excel. In short, she describes these impact players as those who do the needed job, step up and lead, move things across the finish line, learn/adapt to change, and make heavy demands feel lighter.

Thinking in Bets making smarter decisions when you don't have all the facts.

Thinking in Bets: Making Smarter Decisions When You Don’t Have All the Facts by Annie Duke

How often have you heard that life (or business) is a game of chess? Well, enter Annie Duke, professional poker player and former contestant on Celebrity Apprentice, to assert that life (and business) is a game of poker. What’s the difference? Duke explains that in Chess, all moves are known because it is a finite board with finite pieces and finite moves. Granted, the ability to see the available moves at any given moment is the skill to be developed. However, poker is more probabilistic, with multiple variables playing in tandem at any given moment. Further, she asserts that success depends on the self-awareness to know when your “win” was a function of ability, luck, or the fact that your opponent was playing poorly. Apply this to your definition of success, and perhaps you’ll see how much more about your business falls into the gray area of making a bet – sometimes good and sometimes not – than you realized.


Have you ever wondered how an Executive Coach & Business Strategist differs from the consulting world? You can think of coaching as “done with you” and consulting as “done for you.” When Ken works with clients, they are partners on a journey that may be top of mind or comes to the forefront through your work together.

As a former Fortune 500 Executive Leader who rose through the ranks and became an entrepreneur, Ken uses his thirty-plus years of insight and lessons, along with his proprietary model, to bring simplicity, clarity, and direction to business leaders and entrepreneurs.

If you are not sure where to start, begin with a short conversation so that we can get to know each other and you can determine if there is a “there” there to move forward. No strings attached.

Leaders Cut The Ken Kilday Business Coaching Experience

Ken is a former executive leader and current Executive Business Coach. He uses the diversity and depth of his leadership experience to help CEOs, Business Owners, and Executives become better leaders, make better decisions, and deliver better results, both personally and professionally.

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