A CTO’s 11 Reads From January Could Help You Be A Better Leader

7 Must Reads And A Couple Others That Could Change How You See Everything

William Anderson


DALL·E 2023–01–30 16.23.40 — powerful books emotional painting

My Top Reads This January

This January, I read 11 books, with 7 having a significant impact on my thinking and habits. I’ve been shifting how I come across recommendations and the subjects that I read to gain a better sense of “whole” and more rounded skills and impressions. I’ve also opened myself up to views that exist outside of my own, or personalities that may be contradictory to how I interact with the world.

The top 7 are books I strongly recommend and they are ranked in recommendation order. I’ve included a few that didn’t make it that I also finished this month that are honorable mentions, and a couple that just weren’t for where I am at in my journey.

Hopefully these spark your interest and help you develop into a better leader in all parts of your life. If you do give them a read, let me know your thoughts and opinions, especially if they differ from mine.

1. Daring Greatly ★★★★★

by Brené Brown

Daring greatly started slow, but once getting through the first 20% led to conversations with my wife and family, goal reassessments, and past reflections that really force me to give it the number one spot.

Daring Greatly is a book about how we relate to ourselves and how we relate to shame. The impact our self-impression has on others, and how society puts different value-pressures on men and women. As a man, the chapters on pressure to always be strong, deliver, and never show shame, and how society is set up to keep men in that box were particularly resonant.

Below are my top takeaways:

  • We all experience shame, but our shame is not all the same
  • “Doing” is better than thinking about doing. “The gathering with takeout you host is better than the dinner party you never do.”
  • Think deeply about what is compelling you to share a story when you do
  • Giving actively engaged feedback comes from facing discomfort
  • Be glad when someone walks in a…



William Anderson

Engineering Leader | Technology Leadership with Transformative Impact | Ex: @VoiceHQ , @Forbes | Jr Board @NYHomeless | https://williamanderson.io/subscribe