Business books to read if you want to be a chief marketing officer


Want to get that promotion? These are the books that chief marketing officers recommend.

'How brands grow: What marketers don't know' by Byron Sharp

Recommended by Claire Cronin, senior vice-president of marketing at Virgin Atlantic, because it helps her explain marketing to the executive team.

"The reason it's helped me so much is that it's a great book to be able to engage the rest of the board with," Cronin explained at a panel chaired by CNBC anchor Carolin Roth at this week's Festival of Marketing in London.

"Having read it, we also supplied it to all of the directors on the board of Virgin Holidays which is where I started out before I came over to Virgin Atlantic and sure enough it's making the rounds of Virgin Atlantic too."

"Thank you for being late: An optimist's guide to thriving in the age of accelerations" by Thomas L. Friedman

Thomas L. Friedman speaks during Advertising Week New York in September 2016
John Lamparski | Getty Images

Recommended by Julie Woods-Moss, chief marketing and innovation officer at Tata Communications, because it made her reflect.

"I did just really enjoy reading Thomas Friedman's latest book "Thank You For Being Late." And the insight there was… sometimes if you just get your head out of your device and take time to reflect, those great insights will come to you. That's one of my big worries about how we are all living our lives, that our brains are not given a chance to decompress and what's that going to do to creativity in the long run."

"Why should anyone be led by you? What it takes to be an authentic leader" by Robert Goffee and Gareth R. Jones

Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones, authors of 'Why Should Anyone Be Led By You?'
Kim Grace | Harvard Business Review Press

Recommended by Philip Almond, director of marketing and audiences at the BBC, because it helped him learn how to lead.

This book is "all about authentic leadership and how you influence and lead people in organizations," Almond explained at the Festival of Marketing. "Having come up through marketing… and got good at that, when you get to a certain level it's about how you lead organizations and that was a really important book for me."