The 5 Best Books on Coaching for Life-Changing Transformations

Coaching sometimes seems like a dark art.

And that lucky coaches are born with a mentorship ability to guide their clients through tough times.

But the truth is, many coaching techniques can be learned.

So in this article, we examine the 5 best books on the topic to make you more effective.

The Best Books on Coaching

1. The Coaching Habit: Say Less, Ask More & Change the Way You Lead Forever by Michael Bungay Stanier

The Coaching Habit discusses the importance of coaching and how to be an effective coach.

The book contains seven habits of effective coaching, which are:

  1. Say less and ask more – about being concise and getting to the point when coaching someone. It’s important to ask questions and allow the person you’re coaching to come up with their own solutions.
  2. Give feedback that sticks – give feedback that sticks, is about giving feedback in a way that will be helpful to the person you’re coaching.
  3. Connect on a personal level – connect on a personal level, is about establishing a connection with the person you’re coaching so they feel comfortable talking to you.
  4. Acknowledge progress – about recognizing when someone makes progress and praising them for it.
  5. Stay curious – about always being open to learning new things and exploring new possibilities.
  6. Challenge assumptions – about being willing to question what someone believes and examine different ways of looking at things.
  7. Practice reflection – about taking the time to reflect on your own coaching style and making changes as needed.

2. Co-Active Coaching: Changing Business, Transforming Lives by Laura Whitworth, Henry Kimsey-House, Karen Kimsey-House, Phillip Sandahl

The authors of this book posit that coaching is not a new concept, but the way it is currently being practiced is new.

They argue that the current way of coaching is ineffective because it relies too heavily on the coach’s authority and expertise.

The co-active approach to coaching, which is based on the client’s needs and desires, is more effective because it allows for a more collaborative relationship between the coach and client.

The co-active approach to coaching is based on three principles:

  1. Self-awareness
  2. Mutual respect
  3. Collaboration

These principles are based on the idea that people are capable of change and growth if they are given the opportunity to do so in a safe and supportive environment.

The co-active approach to coaching focuses on the whole person, not just their problems or goals, meaning that coaches must be willing to listen to their clients without judgement and be open to learning from them.

The co-active approach to coaching has been shown to be successful in both personal and professional contexts.

Coaches who use this approach are able to help their clients achieve their goals while also building relationships of trust and respect.

To me, the co-active approach to coaching is a transformative way of working with people that can change lives for the better.

3. Coaching for Performance: GROWing Human Potential and Purpose – the Principles and Practice of Coaching and Leadership by John Whitmore

In this book, the author discusses the principles and practice of coaching and leadership, and provides readers with a guide to achieving success.

Whitmore begins the book by discussing the definition of coaching and its benefits, explaining that coaching is a process that helps individuals to achieve their goals, and that it can be used to develop both personal and professional skills.

Whitmore also discusses the different types of coaches, and explains that the best coaches are those who are able to adapt their approach to meet the needs of their clients.

The author then provides a guide to effective coaching, proposing that successful coaching involves setting clear goals, providing feedback, and using questioning techniques to help clients reflect on their progress.

Whitmore also discusses the importance of establishing trust with clients, and offers advice on how to deal with difficult situations.

The second half of the book is devoted to leadership development.

Whitmore explains that leaders need to be able to inspire others, and that they must be able to provide direction and support when needed.

The author also covers the importance of accountability, and offers tips on how to create a positive work environment.

Overall, the author’s advice is easy to follow, and his explanations are concise yet thorough.

Coaching for Performance is an informative book that provides readers with a guide to achieving success through coaching and leadership.

4. The Prosperous Coach: Increase Income and Impact for You and Your Clients by Steve Chandler and Rich Litvin

The Prosperous Coach focuses on increasing income and impact for coaches.

It also includes interviews with successful coaches to provide insight on what has contributed to their success.

One of the main themes of the book is that coaches need to focus on creating value for their clients, finding ways to help them achieve their goals and improve their lives.

In order to do this, coaches need to be able to identify what their clients want and need and be able to provide support and guidance throughout the coaching process.

The book covers a number of areas for becoming a successful coach, including:

  • Developing a strong coaching presence
  • Creating a niche market
  • Building a successful coaching business.
  • How to price your services
  • How to market your business
  • Managing your time effectively

Overall, The Prosperous Coach is an informative read that provides valuable advice for aspiring coaches.

The authors provide an in-depth look at what it takes to be successful in the coaching profession.

They offer helpful tips and strategies that can be put into practice immediately.

This book is a must-read for anyone looking to start or grow a successful coaching business.

5. Trillion Dollar Coach: The Leadership Playbook of Silicon Valley’s Bill Campbell by Eric Schmidt, Jonathan Rosenberg, Alan Eagle

The Trillion Dollar Coach is a biography of the late Silicon Valley executive Bill Campbell.

The book explores Campbell’s life and career, and offers insights into how he helped build some of the most successful companies in Silicon Valley.

One of the key themes of the book is that Campbell was a great leader because he was able to:

  • Connect with people
  • Understand their strengths
  • Coach them
  • Help them grow as professionals

Campbell was known for his ability to build strong teams, and he frequently advised other executives on how to do the same.

The book also includes several case studies that illustrate how Campbell’s advice helped companies achieve success.

For example, one case study looks at how Google was able to overcome early challenges and become a leading technology company.

Overall, the book provides an interesting look at the life and career of Bill Campbell, and it offers valuable insights into how to build successful teams and businesses.


There you have it – if you’re looking to brush up on your coaching skills, these books are where it’s at.

After all, coaches must practice what they preach, constantly investing in skill acquisition and personal growth.

So let me know how you get on when implementing the advice in these recommended reads!