Nine Books as Journeys into New Ways of Seeing

Since 1992, I have published nine books, each of them an invitation to explore world views that offer very different insights and perspectives, an invitation to see the world with new eyes. I have learned that with a shift in vision, we see more clearly what’s going on in the complex systems and lives we’ve created. This clear seeing gives us the capacity to better serve the people and causes we care about. And we develop the confidence and strength necessary to persevere in our right work.


Facing Reality | Claiming Leadership | Restoring Sanity

by Margaret Wheatley

Several years ago, in the face of irreversible global problems and the devolution of leadership, I began to challenge every leader I met with these questions: Who do you choose to be for this time? Are you willing to use whatever power and influence you have to create islands of sanity that evoke and rely on our best human qualities to create, relate, and persevere? Will you consciously and bravely choose to reclaim leadership as a noble profession that creates possibility and humaneness in the midst of increasing fear and turmoil?

This book summons us to be leaders for this time of profound disruption, to reclaim leadership as a noble profession that creates possibility and humaneness in the midst of increasing fear and turmoil by creating Islands of Sanity.

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Entering Sacred World | A Meditative Memoir

How Does Raven Know Cover
by Margaret Wheatley
I am very pleased to offer you this new book, a very personal and reflective work written just after my 70th birthday.

Each of my books is an invitation to see the world with new eyes. Yet unlike my previous seven books, How Does Raven Know? invites you to see the world anew informed not by science but by sacred wisdoms. I have sought to encourage you to shift your gaze once again to discover the support, confidence, and companionship we need to meet this time.

My aspiration is to reintroduce you to a world we modern ones have dismissed or ignored, a world still held for us in the ancient wisdom traditions of most cultures. It is not a call to action, but to relationship with forgotten companions and animate Earth that, in my own experience, willingly offer us support, encouragement, and consolation.

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Lost and Found in Our Brave New World

So Far From Home Cover

by Margaret Wheatley
An Invitation to Warriorship

I wrote this book for you if you offer your work as a contribution to others, whatever your work might be. And if now you find yourself feeling exhausted, overwhelmed, and despairing while also experiencing moments of joy, belonging, and increased resolve to do your work.

This book describes how we can do our good work with dedication, energy, discipline and joy by consciously choosing a new role for ourselves, that of warriors for the human spirit.

This book contains maps of how we ended up in a world nobody wants – overtaken by greed, self-interest and oppressive power–the very opposite of what we worked so hard to create. These maps look deeply into the darkness of this time so that we can develop the insight we need to contribute in meaningful ways.

This book provides maps into the future, how we can transform our grief, outrage, and frustration into the skills of insight and compassion, to serve this dark time with bravery, decency and gentleness.

As warriors for the human spirit, we discover our right work, work that we know is ours to do no matter what. We engage wholeheartedly, embody values we cherish, let go of outcomes, and carefully attend to relationships. We serve those issues and people we care about, not so much focused on making a difference, as on being a difference.

Nautilus Book Award Winner Image

I invite you into this exploration of warriorship:

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A Learning Journey into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now

Walk Out Walk On Cover

by Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze

In this era of increasingly complex problems and shrinking resources, can we find meaningful and enduring solutions to the challenges we face today as individuals, communities and nations?

In Walk Out Walk On, authors Meg Wheatley and Deborah Frieze invite you on a learning journey to seven communities around the world to meet people who have walked out of limiting beliefs and assumptions and walked on to create healthy and resilient communities. These Walk Outs who Walk On use their ingenuity and caring to figure out how to work with what they have to create what they need.

From Mexico to India, from Columbus, Ohio to Johannesburg, South Africa, we discover that every community has the ingenuity, intelligence, and inventiveness to solve their seemingly insolvable problems. “We discovered a gift inside ourselves,” one Brazilian said, “something that was already there.”

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Nautilus Book Award Winner Image


Perseverence Cover

by Margaret J. Wheatley

How is it that some people persevere, remaining steadfast & persistent no matter what?

How is it that some people, even with failures, betrayals, and set-backs, still keep going, working for what they care about?

How do they not fall victim to exhaustion & despair?

How do they preserve their energy, their motivation, their faith?

For many years, I’ve observed people persevering through tragedies and harsh circumstances I hope never to encounter. And I’ve observed friends, family and colleagues struggling to persevere through this time of uncertainty, difficulty and occasional insanity.

This book is my offering to you if you seek to be one who perseveres, if you hope that your work and life contribute to making things better, not worse, for the people, issues and places you love.

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Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future


by Margaret J. Wheatley

Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.; February 2009

When this book was first published in 2002, I made a rash statement: “I believe we can change the world if we start listening to one another again.” I still believe this. I still believe that if we turn to one another, if we begin talking with each other – especially with those we call stranger or enemy – then this world can reverse its darkening direction and change for the good. And I know with all my heart that the only way the world will change is if many more of us step forward, let go of our judgments, become curious about each other, and take the risk to begin a conversation.

Our twenty-first-century world is descending into aggression, fear, and separation. War, genocide, violence, slavery, pandemics, poverty, natural disasters – all these are commonplace in this new century, despite most people’s deep longing to live together in peace.

What are we going to do about this? What role do we choose to play? Do we withdraw and hope at least to live a satisfying private life? Or do we turn to one another and do what we can to birth a healthy future?

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Discovering Order in a Chaotic World
Third Edition

Leadership and the New Science Cover Image

by Margaret J. Wheatley
Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.; 2006

We live in a time of chaos, rich in potential for new possibilities. A new world is being born. We need new ideas, new ways of seeing, and new relationships to help us now. New science–the new discoveries in biology, chaos theory, and quantum physics that are changing our understanding of how the world works–offers this guidance. It describes a world where chaos is natural, where order exists “for free.” It displays the intricate webs of cooperation that connect us. It assures us that life seeks order, but uses messes to get there.

Leadership and the New Science is the bestselling guide to applying the new science to organizations and management. The book describes how the new science radically alters our understanding of the world, and how it can teach us to live and work well together in these chaotic times. It will teach you how to move with greater certainty and easier grace into the new forms of organizations and communities that are taking shape. You’ll learn that:

* Relationships are what matters–even at the subatomic level
* Life is a vast web of interconnections where cooperation and participation are required
* Chaos and change are the only route to transformation

In this expanded edition, you’ll read examples of how non-linear networks and self-organizing systems are flourishing in the modern world, and in the midst of turbulence, we create work and lives rich in meaning.

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FINDING OUR WAY: Leadership for an Uncertain Time

Finding Our Way Cover Image by Margaret J. Wheatley

Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.; 2005

For many years, I have written about how to create resilient and adaptive organizations where people are seen as the blessing, not the problem. I’ve tried to demonstrate how perspectives about chaos, networks, and relationships that come from the new sciences can be applied to human organizations. Such organizations become creative, self-organizing living systems, rather than the more common highly controlled mechanistic systems that only create robotic behaviors.

Finding Our Way is a collection of my practice-focused articles, where I apply themes I have addressed throughout my career to detail the organizational practices and behaviors that bring them to life. The pieces presented here represent more than ten years of work, of how I took the ideas in my books and applied them in practice in many different situations. However, this is more than a collection of articles. I updated, revised or substantially added to the original content of each one. In this way, everything written here represents my most current views on these subjects.

Finding Our Way sums up my thinking on a diverse scope of topics, from leadership and management, to social change, to our personal role in these turbulent times; from provocative social commentary to specific organizational practices and more.

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A Simpler Way Cover Imageby Margaret J. Wheatley & Myron Kellner-Rogers

Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.; 1996

Constructed around five major themes — play, organization, self, emergence, and coherence — A Simpler Way challenges the way we live and work, presenting a profound worldview.

In thoughtful, creative prose, the book helps readers connect their own personal experiences to the idea that organizations are evolving systems. With its relaxed, poetic style, A Simpler Way will help them increase their organizing capacity and free them from the daily stress that disorganization brings.

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