Top 10 Books on Personality Development for Professionals


There is no denying the importance of a good personality. Whoever you are 
and whatever you do, a pleasing personality will surely help win people around 
you and give you that extra push towards success.  In the olden days it was 
more of a ‘you have it or you don’t’. For example in the famous Jane Austen 
novel ‘Pride and Prejudice’, Mr. Darcy didn’t possess a pleasant personality 
because of which throughout the story he is misunderstood and unable to win 
the hearts of people. Luckily, in today’s world it’s an important skill which can be 
learnt and developed. And the best part is you can do it at the privacy of your 
own space with the help of the following top 10 (in no particular order)well-
researched books on building your personality.

How to win friends and influence people –Dale Carnegie

As the name suggests this book is about gaining friends and influencing people. 
It is perhaps the oldest effective book written on personality development. It 
was written by Dale Carnegie in 1936 but remains popular even today because 
of the simple philosophy on which it is based – that one can influence others by 
changing one’s own behavior towards them.  It has helped thousands of people 
over the years and is sure to help you too. One of the best things about this 
book is the real examples of real people and also greats like Abraham Lincoln. 

Who moved my cheese? – Spencer Johnson

This simple book written by Spencer Johnson in 1998 has to be one of the best 
self-help books because 1. It is written in a fable-style hence easily understood 
by all age groups 2. It talks about how to deal with and prepare for an expected 
change in one’s life, at work or personal and 3. It is relevant to all.

The Power of Positive Thinking – NormanVincent Peale

When Dr Norman Vincent Peale, a minister by profession wrote this book in 
1952, he not only became a household name but also the ‘father of positive 
thinking’. He talks about how faith can energize your life and gives practical 
guide and outlines which can help fulfill your dreams.

7 Habits of Highly Effective people –Stephan R Covey

Released in 1989 and an instant best-seller, this book is slated as one of the 
most popular non-fiction books. He has speaks about the concept of paradigm 
shift helping people understand about perspectives. The 7 habits that he 
mentions in the book works around independence, interdependence and 
continuous improvement – which are imperative for being effective at work or in 
personal life. 

Emotional Intelligence 2.0 - TravisBradberry and Jean Greaves

Emotional intelligence has had its share of bad press, but something that helps 
you achieve success in life cannot be bad, can it? The senior leaders do believe 
there is something as emotional intelligence and if directed the right way, can 
open many doors to success. In this book by Travis Brad berry and Jean 
Greaves there are 66 techniques that will help improve your EQ and behaviors 
responsible for your EQ score.Brad berry and Greaves conclude that emotional 
intelligence predicts 58% of job performance.

Jonathan Livingston Seagull - Richard Bach

Who would have thought that a seagull named Jonathan Livingston could teach 
us great lessons of how to life to the fullest. Richard Bach is a master storyteller 
and his fable-ish book talks about how following ones heart can lead to the 
chosen destination. First published in 1970, it is regarded as a popular self-help 
book.

The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari - RobinSharma

Robin Sharma is a guru of life management and his book is the essential guide 
on how one can live courageously yet in a disciplined way and live life to the 
fullest. This book talks about how one can attain balance one’s life for greater 
success.

How to have a Beautiful Mind – Edward deBono

Edward de Bono is the proponent of the term‘lateral thinking’ and his book 6 
Thinking Hats deliberated on different thinking methodologies to find different 
solutions. In his book How to Have a Beautiful Mind, he talks about how being 
more imaginative and using your mind can make you really engaging and 
beautiful.

Think and Grow Rich – Napoleon Hill

How can growing rich be personality development? With the authors own 
admittance this book is not just about thinking and growing rich but with the 
philosophy laid out in the book, one can achieve any kind of success or be almost 
anyone they want to be. This book was published during the Great Depression 
and has helped thousands of people since.

The Power of Your Subconscious Mind –Joseph Murphy and Ian McMahan

In this book the authors talk about how big an influence our subconscious mind 
has on us and the difference that is made by controlling it. This book teaches 
you how changing one’s beliefs can change one’s life. With the simple, practical 
tips laid out in this book it will help you achieve success like it has helped 
thousands of others. 

Books are an integral part of a student’s life. While some of the above 
mentioned books might be recommended as a part of your distance MBA 
program, there are others that one might read out of interest. Share your 
favorite book titles here!
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