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Elaine Biech's Top 6 Go To ATD Reads
Monday, July 20, 2015
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Are you looking to recharge your battery with top-notch training content? We asked training legend Elaine Biech to assemble a list of go-to ATD favorites that are on her desk right now, and here’s what she had to say.

Evidence -Based Training Methods, 2nd Edition
By Ruth Colvin Clark

Ruth is one of my favorite authors. She's candid, bold, and—of course—evidence-based. In this fast paced world, we need to be certain we are doing what is right. This is even more critical as talent development (TD) professionals because we affect so many other lives. We must implement what works and avoid practices that do not. I use this book as a resource, quoting the facts in the books I am writing. I also pass on what I learn to others in our profession. I've learned a great deal from this book and you will too.
(Read a sample chapter.)

Passing the Torch
By Norma Dávila and Wanda Piña-Ramírez

Many of my clients are struggling with succession planning. I've been using this book to help my clients approach the issue and solve it with the process presented by the authors. I turn to the thought-provoking questions again and again. Most TD professionals are not that well-versed in the topic of succession planning, and need to get up to speed. Fortunately, this is just the book to get you started.
(Read a sample chapter.)

Leaders Open Doors, 2nd Edition By Bill Treasurer

I don't have just one copy of this book; I have a mini-stack that I give to leaders with whom I work. Depending on the need of the individuals, I mark specific pages that I want them to read—adding a couple of well-chosen words of encouragement. The book's 100-page length is perfect for a busy leader, and I know that on my next visit with the leader, we will have lots to discuss after they read it. You'll use this book in many ways: to share with a struggling manager, as inspiration for a friend, and to learn about leadership yourself.
(Read a sample chapter.)

ASTD Leadership Handbook Edited by Elaine Biech

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I work with several leaders in both industry and the military—who all have different needs, their own personal style, and deserve the best. This book offers advice and quotes from the best. Indeed, it features most of the leadership gurus in the world between its two covers. This comprehensive compilation of leadership philosophy and practical, how-to advice (conveniently compiled into one book) is always on my desk.
(Access tools and a sample chapter.)

ASTD Competency Study By Justin Arneson, William J. Rothwell, and Jennifer Naughton

My copy of this offering is two years old, dog-eared, and marked up. It is my best reference to help those new (and sometimes not-so-new) to our profession to understand competencies, applications, and the broadness and depth of the talent development profession. I currently use it as a reference for a couple of people I am mentoring.
(Read a sample chapter.)

Revolutionize Learning & Development
By Clark Quinn

This book (co-published by ATD and Wiley) causes me to pause, think, and create. Its message—it's time for talent leaders to align solutions more closely with how people really think, learn, and work—motivates me to strive for the next level expected of me and my colleagues. What’s more, its message challenges me.
(Read a sample chapter.)

Other books I'd include on my must-read list:

Finally, I think EVERYONE working in talent development  should have the ASTD Handbook!!

If a few of these resources are missing from your own bookshelf, don’t miss ATD’s new Elaine Biech’s Essential Reads Book Bundle and Elaine Biech’s Essential Reads – Ultimate Book Bundle.

Is your favorite training book missing from this list? Tell us why you love it in the Comments section.

Happy reading!

About the Author

Amanda Smith is the Learning & Development Community of Practice manager at the Association for Talent Development (ATD). Her specialties include educational planning, PR/marketing, and project management. Amanda has more than 12 years of experience in the non-profit sector, developing and marketing professional development programs for the adult learner.

Amanda brings a diverse and unique perspective on program development. She has worked for companies in healthcare, foodservice, commercial real-estate, and media industries, including the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA), American Society of Consultant Pharmacists (ASCP), International Foodservice Distributors Association (IFDA), Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA), and the National Association of Broadcasters Education Foundation (NABEF). 

She also serves as president and spokesperson for the Alliance for Women in Media, National Capital Area Chapter (AWM-NCAC) in Washington, D.C.  She resides in the D.C. Metro area with her husband and two children.

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