Lead by Example: 50 Ways Great Leaders Inspire Results
By John Baldoni
Even before I was halfway through this book, I was emailing my clients to rush out and buy it. Lead by Example is a fantastic handbook for anyone who is responsible for getting their organizations through these tough economic times. Actually, the book is a very good guide for any time and should be on every manager’s bookshelf for ready reference.
The author has taken what looks like a lifetime of experiences and put the leadership lessons he has learned into readable form. He expounds on the importance of setting the right example, acting the part, handling the tough stuff, and putting the team first, among other things.
Many leaders are what I call good-time Charlies or Charlenes, who seem to say (with conviction) all the right things when things are going well; but when a business has a downturn in sales or a new product fails to live up to the hype, these good-time leaders are tested. They rant and rave and start pointing fingers as soon as the bad news comes out. In some cases, as the pressure builds, they lash out at employees who did not create the circumstances and cannot remedy the problems.
Baldoni offers lessons for almost any situation in which a manager has a chance to lead. He gives specific examples and solutions for each of the 50 lessons mentioned in the book. On one level, this is a how-to book. On other levels, it is a great reminder for people who have responsibilities of what needs to be done in particular situations.
One of my favorite of the “50 Ways” is the lesson on how to “Manage Around Obstacles.” Another great lesson is “Perseverance: Keep Pounding the Rock.” Many so-called leaders abandon projects because they take too long before yielding positive results. But the value of perseverance is worth learning over and over again. It is the old story of the tortoise and the hare slow and steady wins the race.
In summary, if you are a leader, this book will reinforce your strengths. If you are new to management, you will find these lessons in 100 different books and seminars, but here they are condensed into one neat package. Keep this book handy you may need it sooner rather than later.