There have been so many books written about project management that it can be hard to choose one to take off the shelf and start reading. Whether you’re just getting into project management, trying to study for your PMP certification, or want to update yourself on current practices, you will be able to find something on this list of the best project management books to read.
8 of the Best Project Management Books to Read Right Now
1. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge
The PMBOK Guide is the Project Management Institute’s official book of guidelines and rules for project, portfolio, and program management. It contains the global golden standards for project management, so it goes without saying that every project management professional should have it at the top of their list of the best project management books to read.
2. Making Things Happen: Mastering Project Management
This project management book offers practical advice on scheduling, leadership, strategy, decision making, and turning ideas into successful projects. It contains plenty of actionable content about managing the various stages of projects, from vision, to execution, to measuring the results.
3. Project Management: Absolute Beginner’s Guide
This book, as the title implies, is targeted towards newer project management professionals who need a crash course in project management. It is easier to digest than the PMBOK, and can even be used as an alternative to the PMBOK to study for the PMP certification exam. It covers many basic concepts and principles of project management.
4. The Fast Forward MBA in Project Management
This is a book written for both new and intermediate project managers. It has over 500 pages of comprehensive material that can serve as a complete introduction to project management for beginners, or as reference material for more experienced professionals. Whether you’re looking for supplemental reading to the PMBOK, or want to brush up on your project management skills, this is a solid book to add to your collection.
5. Construction Management JumpStart
OK, so you don’t need to read this one if you don’t work in construction project management, but if you do, then this book is a great intro to the field. It covers all the fundamentals of construction PM, as well as newer topics such as Building Information Modeling and sustainability.
6. The Lazy Project Manager: How to Be Twice As Productive and Still Leave the Office Early
Don’t let the title fool you, this book isn’t actually about being lazy. It focuses on how to create a balance by worker smarter, not harder. You’ll learn about using the 80/20 rule to get more done in less time, so you have more time to do the other things in your life that are important too!
7. Project Management for the Unofficial Project Manager
For project managers, leadership can be one of the toughest skills to develop, and also one of the most important. This is a short, fast read for anyone who ends up in a project management role who wants some quick tips on how to lead a team, motivate them, and take projects to successful completion.
8. Project Management: A Systems Approach to Planning, Scheduling, and Controlling
The last book on our list is also the largest — it has a whopping 1,296 pages! This book has been adopted as a textbook for students of project management, as well as by people studying for PMP certification. It’s size is due to the fact that it not only covers principles and practices, but also offers solutions to deal with a huge variety of situations you might face as a PM. This book is a great choice for the serious project management professional and goes hand in hand with the PMBOK.
These are just a few of the books you can read to increase your knowledge of project management. No matter whether you’re new to the field, or a seasoned veteran, anyone can benefit from learning new things, continuous improvement, or brushing up on their PM skills.