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The Best Business Books of the Millennium

Twelve opinionated, acclaimed strategists, scholars, and writers identify and assess the most important business books in strategy, management, and their subcategories.

(originally published by Booz & Company)

It takes only one powerful idea to change your life, bring light into darkness, and — most importantly to strategy+business readers — breathe new life into your organization. As long as printed words have been bound by covers, books have been a source of fresh thinking that regularly and impressively inspires business leaders to build leading businesses. Whatever physical form books take in the future, their power will remain paramount.

Still, finding the big ideas isn’t easy, especially in a business-book market that has seen roughly 10,000 new titles in the last three years, according to the New York Times. As a service to our readers, s+b invited 12 opinionated, acclaimed strategists, scholars, and writers to look beyond the best-seller lists to identify and assess the most important business books in strategy, management, and their subcategories. We also asked our contributors to explore the realms of fiction, history, economics, science, and more. Some were published in this millennium (2000 and 2001); many are from the rather important century that recently ended.

Read on to find out which 12 books the management philosopher Charles Handy recommends for a year’s worth of challenging reading, what leadership scholar James O’Toole has to say about CEO memoirs, and which capitalist characters novelist Kate Jennings finds most important in fiction. Join us in our celebration of the books for business leaders that inspired us during this millennium and the last.

Strategy by David K. Hurst
Leadership by Bruce A. Pasternack
Global Management by Charles Hampden-Turner
Business Novels by Kate Jennings
Economic History by Louis Uchitelle
Corporate Governance by Jay A. Conger and Edward E. Lawler III 
CEO Memoirs by James O’Toole
Beyond Business by Charles Handy 
Knowledge by Jan Dyer and Chuck Lucier
Internet by David S. Bennahum
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