E:
T: +44 (0)345 077 2980 Option 1

                    

Powerful leadership learning and current thinking on coaching

Welcome to our book reviews

Take a look at the books that have stood the test of time in leadership and coaching.  

You'll find reviews and author interview clips below.

Want to write a review?

Bob Hughes, Forton Group CEO & Creator of the Leadership Book Club

We welcome guest reviews. If there's a book you'd like to share, get in touch - .

 

Stay up to date

Click the 'subscribe via RSS' button above to stay up to date. 

We interview authors in our Leadership Book Club.  You're welcome to join our discussions - find out more here.

Know what you don’t know: Michael A Roberto (Pearson Education, 2009)

Know What You Dont Know How Great Leaders Prevent Problems Before They Happen Michael A Roberto

Decision-making, problem-solving and creative thinking are significant and current challenges in management practice and so Roberto’s book has some apparent relevance. Sub-titled “How Great Leaders prevent problems before they happen”, this is a book that blends structure with case studies in an easy-read style.

In order to draw the reader in, Roberto explains how organisational breakdowns and crises form from a number of small problems; how often-unrelated issues collide to bring about a unique set of corrosive circumstances. He furthermore points to a common leadership imperative not to be confronted by surprises: leaders prefer the ‘bad news’ upfront. Roberto argues that the most effective leaders are those that seek out the issues before they spiral out of control. This book, then, is about how leaders can develop an acute sense of interrogation. And, it deals with how we should develop a perception of problems as lessons for future improvement. This last message is somewhat counter-cultural: after all, we know that leaders generally dislike the “bad news” story and dirty linen is best aired behind closed doors in the corporate world.

Continue reading
  234 Hits
234 Hits

Risk Intelligence: Dylan Evans (Atlantic Books, 2012)

Risk Intelligence How to Live with Uncertainty Dylan Evans

When senior managers are polled about the greatest challenges that their organisations face, one of the issues that regularly achieves high scores is that of the quality of their people’s decision-making (others, like problem-solving and talent, also perennially appear in such lists). Evans’ book about a concept he terms risk intelligence is therefore something that should be of interest to all those in organisations seeking to gain competitive advantage through their people. As the recent financial crisis demonstrated, living with ambiguity has become a constant, and this book is subtitled “how to live with uncertainty.”

Evans – an eclectic author and academic with psychoanalysis, behavioural science and risk management under his belt – employs mathematics, psychology and his own experience to demonstrate how a risk-intelligence approach to business decision-making provides more balanced and predictable outcomes despite the uncertain environment in which we operate.

Continue reading
  262 Hits
262 Hits

Brain Savvy HR: Jan Hills (Head, Heart + Brain; 2014)

Brain Savvy HR A Neuroscience Evidence Base Jan Hills

This formidable book has a lot going for it: it rides the crest of a number of waves that are very much ‘of the moment’. Its essence is the application of knowledge about neuroscience to the HR discipline, and it follows hard on the heels of some recent literary successes in the field of the brain and the way we process our thoughts and actions (one thinks of Steve Peters’ “The Chimp Paradox” and Daniel Kahneman’s “Thinking Fast and Slow” as examples). Anyone enthused by these and other recent publications cannot fail to be interested in Hills’ recent addition to the genre.

Continue reading
  251 Hits
251 Hits

Zen and the Art of Making a Living: A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design: Lawrence G Boldt (Penguin-Arkana, 1999 revised edition)

Zen And the Art of Making a Living A Practical Guide to Creative Career Design Laurence Boldt

 

Choosing to review a book like “Zen and the Art of Making a Living” is an act of bravery, if not bravado: it is such a Big Book in every sense. I hope, therefore, that I can capture just a little of its essence in this c.900 word review without diminishing its value and gravitas.

In a world where sound-bites and wikis cater for our every information need, why would anyone want to read a large, challenging and discomfort-inducing tome (this last adjective refers to the disquiet that comes from having the basic tenets of modern life challenged)? – the answer is that this book makes you think; will make you feel slightly uncomfortable and will probably change your perspective on the world (of work particularly, if not the whole entity).

Continue reading
  249 Hits
249 Hits

Strategic Talent Development: Janice Caplan (Kogan Page, 2013)

Strategic Talent Development Develop and Engage All Your People for Business Success Paperback Janice Caplan

Books on talent and people development are – for me – always likely to please, simply because of the importance of the subject. We should all be interested in personal development, shouldn’t we?!

This book is therefore the latest in a large number that tackles this subject. In truth, although talent is very much at its heart - as you'd expect from the title! - I think this is really a useful guide around the topics of organisational development and the management of change. Given that, it is practical and grounded in delivery; in the pursuit of excellent HR practice; even if it does not particularly say anything new.

Continue reading
  262 Hits
262 Hits