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IT management presents considerable challenges, like navigating the tricky dynamics of startups and the rise of artificial intelligence and automation. It can be overwhelming. Books on IT Management offer problem-solving advice, share leadership and team-building tips, and keep CTOs updated with the latest trends. From bestsellers to lesser-known treasures, my highlighted books will make you a great manager.

If you want to be a better leader, explore my list of the best IT Management books.

17 Best IT Management Books

I've curated this list of books that address the IT management challenges you're facing.

  1. The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford
  2. The DevOps Handbook: How to Create World-Class Agility, Reliability, and Security in Technology Organizations by Gene Kim, Patrick Debois, John Willis, and Jez Humble
  3. Lean Enterprise: How High Performance Organizations Innovate at Scale by Jez Humble, Joanne Molesky, and Barry O'Reilly
  4. Accelerate: The Science of Lean Software and DevOps: Building and Scaling High Performing Technology Organizations by Dr. Nicole Forsgren, Jez Humble, and Gene Kim
  5. Site Reliability Engineering: How Google Runs Production Systems by Niall Richard Murphy, Betsy Beyer, Chris Jones, and Jennifer Petoff
  6. IT Governance: How Top Performers Manage IT Decision Rights for Superior Results by Peter Weill and Jeanne W. Ross
  7. The IT Manager's Survival Guide by Rob Aalders and Peter Hind
  8. Driving Digital Strategy: A Guide to Reimagining Your Business by Sunil Gupta
  9. Measuring ITIL: Measuring, Reporting and Modeling - the IT Service Management Metrics That Matter Most to IT Senior Executives by Randy A. Steinberg
  10. Adventures of an IT Leader: Updated Edition with a New Preface by the Authors by Robert D. Austin, Richard L. Nolan, and Shannon O'Donnell
  11. Managing the IT Services Process (Computer Weekly Professional) by Noel Bruton
  12. IT Risk: Turning Business Threats into Competitive Advantage by George Westerman and Richard Hunter
  13. The Information Paradox by John Thorp
  14. Digital to the Core by Mark Raskino and Graham Waller
  15. Service Management for Dummies by Judith Hurwitz, Robin Bloor, Marcia Kaufman, and Fern Halper
  16. World Class IT: Why Businesses Succeed When IT Triumphs by Peter A. High
  17. Data-Driven: How Performance Analytics Delivers Extraordinary Sales Results by Jenny Dearborn

Overviews of The 17 Best IT Management Books

1. The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win by Gene Kim, Kevin Behr, and George Spafford

The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win - IT management book

Summary:

This book illuminates the principles and practices of DevOps, transforming the way IT professionals think about their processes. Through a captivating story, it describes the journey of an IT manager struggling to save his company's dysfunctional IT department.

What You'll Learn:

The three ways to streamline and improve information technology operations. How to break down silos and enhance productivity across teams. Techniques for integrating development, operations, and other business areas.

Why You Should Read It:

Because it offers a clear, storytelling approach to understanding DevOps, making complex concepts approachable.

Quote From The Book:

"Improving daily work is even more important than doing daily work."

About The Author:

For more updates, follow Gene Kim on Twitter, and connect with Kevin Behr, and George Spafford on LinkedIn.

2. The DevOps Handbook: How to Create World-Class Agility, Reliability, and Security in Technology Organizations by Gene Kim, Patrick Debois, John Willis, and Jez Humble

The DevOps Handbook: How to Create World-Class Agility, Reliability, and Security in Technology Organizations - IT management book

Summary:

A comprehensive guide to understanding DevOps principles and their application in the IT and business world. The book provides concrete steps to achieve high-performing IT capabilities.

What You'll Learn:

The foundations of the DevOps movement. How to amplify feedback loops and enable continuous integration. Ways to create a culture of experimentation and learning.

Why You Should Read It:

To get actionable steps and strategies that have been successfully applied by influential organizations worldwide.

Quote From The Book:

"The best architectures, requirements, and designs emerge from self-organizing teams."

About The Author:

Gene Kim, Jez Humble, Patrick Debois, and John Willis are pioneers in the DevOps community.

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3. Lean Enterprise: How High Performance Organizations Innovate at Scale by Jez Humble, Joanne Molesky, and Barry O'Reilly

Lean Enterprise: How High Performance Organizations Innovate at Scale - IT management book

Summary:

Lean Enterprise delves deep into the transformation of high-growth large organizations into agile, innovative powerhouses.

What You'll Learn:

Principles of Lean thinking for the business context. Strategies to enable innovation at scale. How to implement lean methodologies in modern enterprise environments.

Why You Should Read It:

To learn how world-class organizations innovate at scale and evolve with the ever-changing landscape of enterprise IT.

Quote From The Book:

"Focus on building a sustainable business, not just a scalable one."

About The Author:

Jez Humble, Joanne Molesky, and Barry O'Reilly are renowned experts in the fields of software engineering, IT operations, and product management.

4. Accelerate: The Science of Lean Software and DevOps: Building and Scaling High Performing Technology Organizations by Dr. Nicole Forsgren, Jez Humble, and Gene Kim

Accelerate: The Science of Lean Software and DevOps: Building and Scaling High Performing Technology Organizations - IT management book

Summary:

"Accelerate" breaks down the results from the largest DevOps survey to date, providing insights into the practices and capabilities that drive high performance in the tech world.

What You'll Learn:

Key metrics to measure software delivery performance. The role of leadership and culture in technological performance. Effective practices that high-performing teams use.

Why You Should Read It:

To get data-driven insights and actionable strategies to boost your organization's tech performance.

Quote From The Book:

"High performers have shorter lead times, faster recovery from failures, and lower change fail rates."

About The Author:

Dr. Nicole Forsgren, Jez Humble, and Gene Kim are recognized leaders in the DevOps community.

5. Site Reliability Engineering: How Google Runs Production Systems by Niall Richard Murphy, Betsy Beyer, Chris Jones, and Jennifer Petoff

Site Reliability Engineering: How Google Runs Production Systems - IT management book

Summary:

Straight from Google's SRE team, this book provides an in-depth look into how Google runs its large-scale services. It breaks down the principles and practices that allow Google to ensure its large-scale services are reliable and scalable.

What You'll Learn:

The principles of Site Reliability Engineering. How to balance release velocity with service reliability. Strategies for automating operations and reducing toil.

Why You Should Read It:

To grasp the practices that allow industry giants like Google to operate efficiently at scale.

Quote From The Book:

"Hope is not a strategy. Traditional operations have too much of it."

About The Author:

Niall Richard Murphy, Betsy Beyer, Chris Jones, and Jennifer Petoff are part of Google's SRE team.

6. IT Governance: How Top Performers Manage IT Decision Rights for Superior Results by Peter Weill and Jeanne W. Ross

IT Governance: How Top Performers Manage IT Decision Rights for Superior Results - IT management book

Summary:

This book provides a clear framework for optimizing IT governance, helping organizations make strategic decisions that drive superior performance.

What You'll Learn:

The principles of effective IT governance. Strategies for aligning IT capabilities with strategic goals. How top performers manage IT for maximum benefit.

Why You Should Read It:

To understand and implement IT governance frameworks that lead to top-tier results.

Quote From The Book:

"Effective governance aligns IT activities with business objectives, allocates scarce resources to the most important and valuable opportunities, and ensures that large, complex projects are completed on time and within budget."

About The Author:

Peter Weill and Jeanne W. Ross are respected figures in the world of IT research and governance.

7. The IT Manager's Survival Guide by Rob Aalders and Peter Hind

The IT Manager's Survival Guide - IT management book

Summary:

In the fast-paced world of IT, challenges are endless. "The IT Manager's Survival Guide" is a beacon for professionals finding their way. Rob Aalders and Peter Hind masterfully curate a collection of real-world challenges, solutions, and anecdotes that are both enlightening and practical. It’s a lifeline for both seasoned and budding IT managers.

What You'll Learn:

Strategies to tackle the most common challenges in IT management. Techniques to lead IT teams effectively and foster a healthy working environment. Methods to balance technical requirements with business needs.

Why You Should Read It:

Navigating the IT landscape can be daunting. This guide offers not just theoretical knowledge, but real-life experiences and solutions that have proven effective in various IT scenarios. It's the compass every IT manager needs to steer their team to success.

Quote From The Book:

"Effective IT management isn't about knowing the most about technology—it's about understanding people, processes, and how they intertwine."

About The Author:

Rob Aalders and Peter Hind have a rich history in IT, boasting decades of experience between them. Their profound insights stem from their hands-on experiences in the trenches of IT management.

8. Driving Digital Strategy: A Guide to Reimagining Your Business by Sunil Gupta

Driving Digital Strategy: A Guide to Reimagining Your Business - IT management book

Summary:

This insightful book offers a step-by-step guide for businesses to adapt and thrive in the digital age, drawing from numerous case studies and real-world strategies.

What You'll Learn:

How to develop a cohesive digital strategy for your organization. Techniques to reinvent and digitize your business model. Ways to overcome internal resistance and digital competition.

Why You Should Read It:

To gain a holistic understanding of digital transformation and ensure your organization remains competitive.

Quote From The Book:

"In the digital age, strategy is no longer about positioning; it's about motion and agility."

About The Author:

Sunil Gupta is a leading expert in the field of digital strategy and innovation.

9. Measuring ITIL: Measuring, Reporting and Modeling - the IT Service Management Metrics That Matter Most to IT Senior Executives by Randy A. Steinberg

Measuring ITIL: Measuring, Reporting and Modeling - the IT Service Management Metrics That Matter Most to IT Senior Executives - IT management book

Summary:

As an authoritative text on ITIL (IT Infrastructure Library), this book provides DevOps tools and techniques to measure IT service performance and drive continuous improvement.

What You'll Learn:

How to apply key performance indicators (KPIs) in an ITIL context. Techniques to measure service performance and customer satisfaction. Strategies for continuous service improvement based on metrics.

Why You Should Read It:

For a deep dive into ITIL metrics, ensure that your IT services are aligned with business objectives and are delivering value.

Quote From The Book:

"Measurement is the first step that leads to control and, eventually, to improvement."

About The Author:

Randy A. Steinberg is a seasoned IT service management professional, find out more about him through his LinkedIn.

10. Adventures of an IT Leader: Updated Edition with a New Preface by the Authors by Robert D. Austin, Richard L. Nolan, and Shannon O'Donnell

Adventures of an IT Leader: Updated Edition with a New Preface by the Authors - IT management book

Summary:

This book provides a unique insight into the challenges faced by IT leaders, taking readers on an enlightening journey with a new CIO as he navigates the complex terrain of IT management.

What You'll Learn:

How to deal with challenges in IT leadership roles. Balancing business requirements with IT capabilities. Effective strategies for IT team management and collaboration.

Why You Should Read It:

For a realistic view of IT leadership and the inherent challenges, presented in a gripping narrative.

Quote From The Book:

"IT leadership isn't about knowing the tech, it's about understanding people."

About The Author:

Robert D. Austin, Richard L. Nolan, and Shannon O'Donnell are renowned for their work in IT management studies.

11. Managing the IT Services Process (Computer Weekly Professional) by Noel Bruton

Managing the IT Services Process (Computer Weekly Professional) - IT management book

Summary:

A deep dive into the IT services process, this book elaborates on best practices, quality management, and ensuring IT aligns with business goals.

What You'll Learn:

Effective IT service management techniques. Tools and metrics for ensuring quality in IT services. How to integrate IT processes with overall business strategy.

Why You Should Read It:

To gain a comprehensive understanding of IT service management and its strategic importance.

Quote From The Book:

"Quality in IT is not an act, it's a continuous process."

About The Author:

Noel Bruton is an expert in IT service management.

12. IT Risk: Turning Business Threats into Competitive Advantage by George Westerman and Richard Hunter

IT Risk: Turning Business Threats into Competitive Advantage - IT management book

Summary:

This thought-provoking read addresses the business risks associated with IT, proposing strategies to turn these potential threats into competitive assets.

What You'll Learn:

Understanding and evaluating risks associated with IT. Methods to leverage IT risks for competitive advantage. Techniques for proactive IT risk management.

Why You Should Read It:

To shift your perspective on IT risks and learn how they can become a strategic advantage.

Quote From The Book:

"Every IT challenge holds the seed of a competitive edge."

About The Author:

George Westerman and Richard Hunter are well-respected figures in the realm of IT risk management.

13. The Information Paradox by John Thorp

The Information Paradox - IT management book

Summary:

This seminal work delves into the discrepancy between the potential value of IT investments and the benefits actually realized by businesses.

What You'll Learn:

The gaps in traditional approaches to IT investment. Methods to derive tangible business benefits from IT projects. The concept of 'realizing value' from technology.

Why You Should Read It:

To understand the challenges of getting tangible ROI from IT investments and learn strategies to overcome them.

Quote From The Book:

"Technology's promise is vast, but its true value is realized only when aligned with strategy."

About The Author:

John Thorp is renowned for his expertise in aligning IT with business value.

14. Digital to the Core by Mark Raskino and Graham Waller

Digital to the Core - IT management book

Summary:

The book uncovers the essence of transforming organizations in the digital era, highlighting the role of leaders in driving digital-first strategies.

What You'll Learn:

Three key disruptive forces of the digital era. Leadership traits are vital for a successful digital transformation. Strategies to inculcate a digital mindset in organizational culture.

Why You Should Read It:

To grasp how leaders can shape and steer organizations in an age where digital is at the forefront.

Quote From The Book:

"Being digital is not an 'add-on'. To lead is to be digital to the core."

About The Author:

Mark Raskino and Graham Waller are distinguished analysts and authors in the field of digital business leadership.

15. Service Management for Dummies by Judith Hurwitz, Robin Bloor, Marcia Kaufman, and Fern Halper

Service Management for Dummies - IT management book

Summary:

A practical guide to understanding service management, the book simplifies complex concepts making them accessible to all.

What You'll Learn:

Fundamentals of service management. Best practices and methodologies in the field. Real-world applications and case studies.

Why You Should Read It:

For a comprehensive yet simplified introduction to service management, with insights beneficial for both novices and seasoned professionals.

Quote From The Book:

"Service management is not just a process, but a pivotal framework for business efficiency."

About The Author:

Judith Hurwitz, Robin Bloor, Marcia Kaufman, and Fern Halper are known for their work on technology strategy and service management.

16. World Class IT: Why Businesses Succeed When IT Triumphs by Peter A. High

World Class IT: Why Businesses Succeed When IT Triumphs - IT management book

Summary:

Peter High details the foundational principles that form the bedrock of IT organizations that excel in a competitive environment.

What You'll Learn:

The five principles that world-class IT organizations employ. Best practices to achieve IT and business alignment. The art of executing IT strategies that offer tangible business value.

Why You Should Read It:

It provides a roadmap for IT leaders to drive excellence in their organizations, ensuring alignment with business goals and achieving competitive advantage.

Quote From The Book:

"Excellence in IT is not just about technology; it's about understanding business at its core."

About The Author:

Peter A. High is a reputed thought leader in IT strategy and the president of Metis Strategy.

17. Data-Driven: How Performance Analytics Delivers Extraordinary Sales Results by Jenny Dearborn

Data-Driven: How Performance Analytics Delivers Extraordinary Sales Results - IT management book

Summary:

Jenny Dearborn underscores the significance of analytics in driving sales results. The book emphasizes a shift from intuition-driven decisions to a data-driven approach in sales.

What You'll Learn:

The transformation of sales strategies using analytics. How to harness data for pinpointed sales interventions. Real-world cases of organizations that embraced data to bolster sales.

Why You Should Read It:

It offers a compelling case for the power of data in sales, equipping sales leaders with actionable insights to revamp their sales approach.

Quote From The Book:

"In the age of data, intuition alone won't drive sales success. It's time to let the numbers lead."

About The Author:

Jenny Dearborn is a senior executive at SAP and a prominent voice on data analytics in sales.

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By Paulo Gardini Miguel

Paulo is the Director of Technology at the rapidly growing media tech company BWZ. Prior to that, he worked as a Software Engineering Manager and then Head Of Technology at Navegg, Latin America’s largest data marketplace, and as Full Stack Engineer at MapLink, which provides geolocation APIs as a service. Paulo draws insight from years of experience serving as an infrastructure architect, team leader, and product developer in rapidly scaling web environments. He’s driven to share his expertise with other technology leaders to help them build great teams, improve performance, optimize resources, and create foundations for scalability.