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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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Brain-Savvy Business: Jan Hills; Head, Heart + Brain: 2016

Brain savvy Business 8 principles from neuroscience and how to apply them

 

Since reading Jan Hills’ 2014 book “Brain-savvy HR”, I’ve been awaiting the chance to review more from this thoughtful and thought-provoking author. So, here we now have a follow-up which extends her exploration of neuroscience to a broader platform.

This is a weighty book – literally and well as figuratively – and is designed, I think, to be a reference tome as much as a ‘solid read’. Indeed, the author acknowledges this in her comment “whether you skip straight to the case studies, the science or how it plays out in business, it doesn’t matter” (p. 13).

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  219 Hits
219 Hits

Appreciative Inquiry: Sarah Lewis, Jonathan Passmore, Stefan Cantore; Kogan Page: 2011

Appreciative Inquiry for Change Management Using AI To Facilitate Organizational Development

Two topics in which I have long had an interest, combined in one book; what could be more enticing?! It describes its purpose in the introduction as “exploring the power of conversation to create new futures for people and organizations”. Written in an approachable style, the book starts by reminding us of the history of management science and organizational enquiry; a useful starting-point. This leads into a discussion about the typical issues that inhibit effective organizational change, and the authors cite such challenges as the naming of problems to produce change (i.e. the belief that a CEO – by simply identifying the required change - believes that it can be made to happen); the belief that instruction will lead to change; the assertion that emotions are problematic per se; the use of power and intimidation to drive change; amongst others.

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  196 Hits
196 Hits

Will the Future Workplace still need you? Kazim Ladimeji (2015)

Will The Future Workplace Still Need You An essential career survival guide for the imminent future

Described by the author as an ‘essay’ this slim, self-published book will give you food for thought after its 45 minute read. Ladimeji seeks to provide a career guidance tool in the form of a concise summary of the ways in which the traditional employment model is being eroded by the introduction of robotic ‘workers’. This inevitable transition wherein artificial intelligence devices will take over tasks as diverse as driving vehicles, brick-laying and serving fast food is something that we should become aware, familiar with and accepting of.

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  223 Hits
223 Hits

Connecting People – creating engaging environments: Kate Davies (LEC Connect Ltd; 2015)

Connecting People Creating Engaging Environments Kate Davies

 

From the outset, Kate Davies makes it clear that this book is for people “who want to know how they can create environments that encourage people to participate to the full extent of their abilities.” It is primarily for people new to line management.

Early on, she summarises the basis of her views on engagement: it is about capability, control and purpose. In this context, capability focusses particularly on having skills that can be enhanced through a desire for learning; control is about have the choice about how much to give oneself to one’s work; and purpose – having focus, making a difference and being able genuinely to enjoy what one is doing. The author uses a number of sources to describe what she means by engagement and does this simply and descriptively. More of the examples used to illustrate engagement in action would have benefitted from being in the organisational / business world – many of the stories used are from the sports and personal-endeavour environment.

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  220 Hits
220 Hits

Humble Inquiry: Edgar Schein; Berrett-Koehler; 2013

Humble Inquiry The Gentle Art of Asking Instead of Telling Humble Leadership Edgar H Schein

Ed Schein, an academic with a 50-year distinguished record in organisational psychology, has written a hugely-reflective book that brings to bear the rich experience arising from his pioneering career. He describes the purpose of the book as being to support the development of positive relationships and he defines ‘humble inquiry’ as “the fine art of drawing someone out, asking questions to which you do not already know the answer, of building a relationship based on curiosity and interest to the other person”.

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  198 Hits
198 Hits

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