The Real Work Of Leaders: A Report From The Front Lines Of Management

Donald L. Laurie

Published by Basic Books, 2001
ISBN 10: 0738204854 / ISBN 13: 9780738204857
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Synopsis: In The Real Work of Leaders, Don Laurie digs beneath the surface to explore the "act of leadership," the essence of what leaders need to do on a daily basis to frame challenges, mobilize people, and adapt to constant change. Based on fifteen years' experience advising dozens of the world's most progressive and influential business leaders, including Lew Platt of Hewlett-Packard and Ralph Larsen of Johnson & Johnson, The Real Work of Leaders offers a fresh and energizing perspective on the craft of leadership.

Review: If you're ever favored enough to catch a few minutes of a corporate CEO's time, and feel bold enough to ask what their job entails, chances are you'll hear something lofty about developing strategy, empowering employees, seeing the big picture. But if you ask to see their calendar for the past month, you'll probably find they've spent very little, if any, time doing those things.

The look-at-last-month's-calendar trick was devised by Donald Laurie, a Boston-based management consultant, to help top executives figure out how best to lead their companies. Laurie sees a leader as the person who climbs out on the balcony and sees the company from above, the one who sees how all the parts connect to make a smoothly running machine. At the same time, if the leader stays up on that balcony for too much of the day, he or she can't hear the grumbling below. And what's being grumbled about is often the information that could save the CEO's job. As an example of this, Laurie relates the story of Xerox Corp. when it was trying to compete with Japanese companies in the affordable-copier market. The Xerox product didn't work very well, and the company took an embarrassing tumble. But any of the line employees could have told the top executives that the machine wasn't up to snuff; there just wasn't a mechanism for them to do so.

Besides exhorting them to stand on the balcony and promote dialogue after they get back down, Laurie urges today's executives to undertake the real work of: communicating what's real; clarifying competing values; supporting changes in values; regulating distress; and making everyone in the company collectively responsible.

He peppers the book with real-world examples of those imperatives, quoting executives at Chase Manhattan Bank, General Electric, Nordstrom, Johnson & Johnson, the postal service, airlines--so many, in fact, that the specific examples he cites all take on a universality. Whether it's at a post office, a high-tech startup, or a corporate conglomerate, the person at the top has the same job to do, Laurie argues. Yet, chances are, very little time is spent actually doing it. --Lou Schuler

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Title: The Real Work Of Leaders: A Report From The ...
Publisher: Basic Books
Publication Date: 2001
Binding: Paperback
Book Condition: Good
Edition: Revised.

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Book Description INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. In The Real Work of Leaders, Don Laurie digs beneath the surface to explore the "act of leadership," the essence of what leaders need to do on a daily basis to frame challenges, mobilize people, and adapt to constant change. Based on fifteen years' experience advising dozens of the world's most progressive and influential business leaders, including Lew Platt of Hewlett-Packard and Ralph Larsen of Johnson & Johnson, The Real Work of Leaders offers a fresh and energizing perspective on the craft of leadership. Seller Inventory # APC9780738204857

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Book Description INGRAM PUBLISHER SERVICES US, United States, 2001. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English. Brand new Book. In The Real Work of Leaders, Don Laurie digs beneath the surface to explore the "act of leadership," the essence of what leaders need to do on a daily basis to frame challenges, mobilize people, and adapt to constant change. Based on fifteen years' experience advising dozens of the world's most progressive and influential business leaders, including Lew Platt of Hewlett-Packard and Ralph Larsen of Johnson & Johnson, The Real Work of Leaders offers a fresh and energizing perspective on the craft of leadership. Seller Inventory # APC9780738204857

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