A great starting point for a lifelong leadership journey
Today, we continue to have a few great leaders, some pretty good leaders, and bucket loads of people in positions of authority who are mediocre, incompetent, or worse at leadership, according to Roxi Bahar Hewertson in her book Lead Like it Matters…Because it Does: Practical Leadership Tools to Inspire and Engage Your People and Create Great Results. Even though we know that leaders have a significant impact on people’s lives and well-being, we allow them to operate in their sphere of influence without having to prove that they have the skill set or the integrity to lead anyone anywhere.
The book aims to provide the reader with practical tools and skills for raising leadership abilities, dividing the content into four main categories:
- Personal mastery, which includes emotional intelligence, understanding your personality type, and your personal mission, vision and values;
- Interpersonal mastery, which includes deep listening, giving constructive feedback, managing up and conflict resolution;
- Team mastery, which includes group dynamics, decision making, delegation, running meetings, and building trust; and
- Culture and systems mastery, which includes cultural analysis, leading change, accountability, recognition, and courage.
I found this to be a very useful leadership textbook. The content is at a fairly basic level, and there are no revolutionary new ideas, but the book gives a good and accurate overview of the different facets of leadership. There are numerous exercises which give the reader a taste of various leadership tools, although mastery will require much deeper levels of study and practice. Reading the book will not make the reader a great leader, but it will at least point him or her in the right direction for a lifelong journey.