The 10 Best Books and Podcasts for Building Culture

Reading and listening to good content is a key part of learning. And at ADURO, we devour new books and podcasts to learn more about how we can reach our own goals and help our clients’ reach theirs. We polled our teams and curated a list of the best books and podcasts for anyone building their company culture this quarter. Pick up one or all of these to dive into and #ownyourmoment!

Read these books to improve company culture

Top Book Recommendation for Q1

Stealing Fire: How Silicon Valley, the Navy SEALs, and Maverick Scientists Are Revolutionizing the Way We Live and Work

By Steven Kotler & Jamie Wheal

Every so often, you find a book that changes your life in a very real way. Dr. Toni Best, our Chief Human Performance Officer, knew “Stealing Fire” was going to be one of those books before it was even released. The goal of this read is to inspire people to find a flow state. If you’re not familiar with the concept of Flow Genome, you will be after reading the book. Flow is a heady concept that examines the neuroscience and accessibility of peak performance. While psychedelics, music, and extreme physical activity are specifically mentioned in the book, finding flow could be as simple as a venture into nature or a creative brainstorming session. Our marketing and design team actually practices this with a monthly meeting – Creative Caffeine – to brainstorm ideas.

Honorable Mentions:


By Kip Tindell
It comes as no surprise that the man that is a pioneer of the home storage and organization industry would excel at finding the best ways to organize his people for optimal workplace performance. “Uncontainable” isn’t a new release but worth being on your to-read list this quarter. The book reads much more like a friend telling a story than a business book, but you will still walk away with a better understand of how to build or improve your company culture.
Tribal Leadership: Leveraging Natural Groups to Build a Thriving Organization

By Dave Logan, John King, Halee Fischer-Wright
In 2009, the concept of Tribes really took off, to the point of becoming trendy. This was among the litany of publications on tribes and company culture released at the time, but this book can walk the walk. It offers a uniquely nuanced take on high-performance people and how to optimize the inherent human tendency to gravitate towards link-minded individuals.
The Purpose Economy

By Aaron Hurst
“The Purpose Economy” is a must for anyone with millennial employees, whose main goal in the workplace is to make a difference in the world. This book truly embraces an ADURO core value: in order for an individual to enact change in the world, they must start inside.
The Best Place to Work: The Art and Science of Creating an Extraordinary Workplace

By Ron Friedman, PhD
We get really excited when books mix science and art to talk about behavior change and corporate culture. This is a great research-based read for building better culture. Leadership and HR and employees can pull invaluable lessons from this book.

An Everyone Culture: Becoming a Deliberating Developmental Organization
By Robert Kegan, Lisa Laskow Lahey, Matthew L Miller, Andy Fleming, Deborah Helsing
At ADURO, we take the wellbeing and personal development of our people to heart. Meetings always start with two questions: How are you feeling (1 being unwell and 5 being fantastic), and where are you with your current goals? This book deeply inspired our internal learning and development, and the recommendation for “An Everyone Culture” comes straight from our Chief Human Performance Officer, Dr. Toni Best.

Listen to these podcasts for the latest in workplace trends

Top Podcast Recommendation for Q1

The Growth Show
This is a podcast hosted by Hubspot and a favorite at ADURO for everyone from our CEO to the marketing team. They chat with all manner of people from the founder of Trello to author Nir Eyal in a loose discussion style interview. What separates this work-hacking podcast from the rest? “The Growth Show” found the perfect balance of specific, actionable advice for all walks of people in business and the anecdotal stories that we are all drawn to.
Honorable Mentions

This podcast, led by Authentic Jobs, talks design in work, culture, and the ins and outs of hiring and getting hired. They feature influencers from tech and media moguls like Buzzfeed and discuss the nitty gritty of successful work, as well as host tactical discussions about why your designers should code and how content trends are evolving.

TalentCulture Radio
You may recognize TalentCulture from their popular Twitter chat #WorkTrends that immediately follows this live podcast. They dig into workplace culture, the future of work, recruiting and how to people and technology fit together in this thing called life.
Crafting Culture: Helping Executives Create Incredible Company Culture
Crafting Culture interviews CEOs, executives and talent experts on the who, what, where, when and why of organizational culture. There are interviews from thought leaders including Greg Besner of Culture IQ and Travis Dutka of 360insights.

For the avid reader, certified coach, advisor and author Beth A. Miller compiled a list her book recommendations for everything from talent management to leadership development.