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Podcast #373: The Leader’s Bookshelf | The Art of Manliness

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It’s been said “Leaders are readers.” But what should a leader read?

My guest today set out to answer that question by polling 4-star generals and admirals in the U.S. military to get their best recommendations.

His name is Admiral James Stavridis. He’s served as the commander of US Southern Command, US European Command, and NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe. He now serves as dean of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. In his book, The Leader’s Bookshelf, Admiral Stavridis explains why reading is fundamental for all leaders and provides a list of 50 books suggested by senior officers.

We begin our conversation by discussing the culture of reading amongst military officers past and present, including Generals James Mattis and George Patton. Admiral Stavridis then shares tips on how to read more even with a busy schedule and how to get more out of your reading. We then dig into the list of 50 books military brass recommend most and the lessons on leadership they provide.

You’re going to be adding a lot of books to your reading list after listening to this podcast.

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