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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.

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

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Book Reviews

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The Resilience Pocketbook: Waldman & Jackson (Management Pocketbooks Ltd, 2017)

Resilience Pocket Book Management Pocketbooks

 

This book is “crammed full of tips, tools and techniques … to help you bounce back from difficulties”. So say the authors in the introduction to this pocket-sized handbook. And it is no idle claim: each of the 110 bite-sized pages packs a punch, making this a very useful accompaniment for all team leaders and managers striving to guide their colleagues through the high-intensity, device-driven world of work.

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  69 Hits
69 Hits

Presence – Bringing your boldest self to your biggest challenges: Amy Cuddy (Orion publishing, 2016)

Presence Bringing Your Boldest Self to Your Biggest Challenges

AA Milne once wrote that "you're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think". This applies brilliantly to Cuddy’s fascinating, engaging and enlightening book. You may have already heard of the author, or even seen her TEDtalk, since she has quickly become synonymous with the topic of self-confidence and body-mind connectivity.

This circa-300 page tome provides the science, logic and real-life stories to support the overarching concept of personal presence. Described by Cuddy as the sense of “believing in and trusting yourself – your real, honest feelings, values and abilities”, presence is the state of “being attuned to and able to comfortably express our true thoughts, feelings, values and potential”. It is a transitory state of being and is therefore a moment-to-moment phenomenon. Presence is also like power: with it, we can do whatever we want; without it, we feel powerless.

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  62 Hits
62 Hits

“The Coaching Habit: say less, ask more & change the way you lead for ever” Michael Bungay Stanier; Box of Crayons Press, 2016

The Coaching Habit Say Less Ask More Change the Way Your Lead Forever

The first thing that strikes the reader about this book is the impressive array of reviewers providing laudatory comments – from Dan Pink, to Brene Brown and Dave Ulrich – which left me wondering: who is this guy?! Well, the author is an Australian living in Toronto who studied in Oxford, England. His writing betrays a supreme confidence in his grasp of the subject-matter (which is reassuring) and he writes with brevity in a colloquial and accessible style. It is not written in an academic form, although it has plenty of academic references and uses the author’s business resources (Lindsay, his researcher-colleague) to support the key messages.

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  61 Hits
61 Hits

“Corporate Energy. How to engage and inspire audiences” Chris Atkinson; New Leadership Press, 2016

Corporate Energy How to engage and inspire audiences

 

The premise of this book is that the role of leaders is to inspire those around them, engage employees and raise levels of consciousness beyond simply turning up to work. I believe it achieves this: it is a graphic, technical and – at times – challenging body of work, but one which also maintains interest through humour, a good choice of anecdotes and some self-deprecation (this last topic is a kind of theme throughout).

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  55 Hits
55 Hits

Will it make the boat go faster? Hunt-Davis & Beveridge; Troubadour; 2011

Will It Make The Boat Go Faster Olympic winning Strategies for Everyday Success

Uh-oh: another book written by a sportsperson (in this case, Ben Hunt-Davis, an Olympic champion in rowing’s coxed 8’s in the Sydney Olympics of 2000) about defeating the odds after a career of almost-winning. Surely this can add nothing to the already-saturated world of the published bon-mots and tired homilies that follow major sporting events?

Well, actually: this is a really good read! Not just because Hunt-Davis has a story that deserves to be heard (especially since most people probably do not remember him in the shadow of a number of better-known British rowers); but also because Harriet Beveridge (management consultant, coach and stand-up comic) adds real value by interpreting and summarising the lessons learned from the rower’s story. Laid out chronologically in the run-up to the Sydney games, the first chapter looks at the importance of setting goals. What I like about this is the idea of ‘layered goals’ – from the ideal to the bite-sized everyday goals. It talks to the concept of being purposeful: everything comes back to purpose.

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  52 Hits
52 Hits