Creating A Leadership Collection

Being slightly competitive (at least when it comes to my school library) might have been one of the reasons I created a leadership collection.

As part of reinvigorating our non-fiction collection, we have genrefied and added books on a range of topics. One of those new sections is our Entrepreneurship collection, which features a strong collection of leadership books. This collection happened quite by chance, but now that I look back, it makes so much sense.

When I first purchased a few leadership books, they were for my own benefit and I bought them with my own funds. I read a lot of leadership and management books as I think these skills are vital for anyone working in school libraries. But when I brought them into school one day, my #AmazingLibraryTech saw them and suggested we add them to the library collection.

A few months later, my principal was speaking at assembly and was talking about one of the leadership books he’d recently read. He’s renowned as a fantastic leader (and can I say, working for him is awesome). He then offered all the students and staff access to his personal book collection on leadership.

Well, that got my competitive streak going. Our principal was promoting books (first response: whoohoo!!!) But I have to admit that when he offered to lend books to staff and students, a little voice inside me said “but that’s my job!”.

Of course, by then we had added my originally purchased leadership books to the non-fiction collection. In the process of genrefying, we decided to add the leadership books to our Entrepreneurship collection. We may separate the leadership books if the collections get big enough, but for now many of them sit perfectly alongside the books and resources we have on starting a business, running with great ideas and solving problems to help others.

We also started to purchase other leadership books. Some of our top titles include

Dare to Lead by Brene Brown

Entrepreneurial Leadership by Joel Peterson

Principled by Paul Browning

Leading with Vision by Bonnie Hagemann

Alongside the leadership books are management books, business books and entrepreneurship books, as well as books that cover all these topics.

Having a leadership collection makes a lot of sense for our school library. As part of updating our vision statement and strategic plan, I looked at our school’s vision statement, which explicitly mentions leadership. In supporting wellbeing at the school, leadership is identified as a characteristic to encourage and grow in our students. Many of the library’s extra-curricular activities allow students to experience leadership and expand their skills in this area, so it makes sense to support leadership with the books we have.

Leadership is not just for older students. We also have a range of picture books, early readers, junior non-fiction, and middle grade fiction that have been identified as supporting leadership. While these collections are not genrefied, I am using reading lists and LibPaths to highlight these collections and make it easy for staff and students to find these resources. We are also on the hunt for new titles to add to and expand our leadership collection.

A screenshot from our Leadership LibPath

Do you have a leadership collection in your school library? Or what collection is unique to your library and school?