Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams, and Why People Follow (英語) ハードカバー – 2009/1/6
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From the author of the long-running #1 bestseller StrengthsFinder 2.0 comes a landmark study of great leaders, teams and the reasons why people follow.
Nearly a decade ago, Gallup unveiled the results of a landmark 30-year research project that ignited a global conversation on the topic of strengths. More than 3 million people have since taken Gallup’s StrengthsFinder assessment, which forms the core of several books on this topic, including the #1 international bestseller StrengthsFinder 2.0.
In recent years, while continuing to learn more about strengths, Gallup scientists have also been examining decades of data on the topic of leadership. They studied more than 1 million work teams, conducted more than 20,000 in-depth interviews with leaders and even interviewed more than 10,000 followers around the world to ask exactly why they followed the most important leader in their life.
In Strengths Based Leadership, #1 New York Times bestselling author Tom Rath and renowned leadership consultant Barry Conchie reveal the results of this research. Based on their discoveries, the book identifies three keys to being a more effective leader: knowing your strengths and investing in others’ strengths, getting people with the right strengths on your team, and understanding and meeting the four basic needs of those who look to you for leadership.
As you read Strengths Based Leadership, you’ll hear firsthand accounts from some of the most successful organizational leaders in recent history, from the founder of Teach For America to the president of The Ritz-Carlton, as they discuss how their unique strengths have driven their success. Filled with novel research and actionable ideas, Strengths Based Leadership will give you a new road map for leading people toward a better future.
A unique access code allows you to take a new leadership version of Gallup’s StrengthsFinder program. The new version of this program provides you with specific strategies for leading with your top five strengths and enables you to plot the strengths of your team based on the four domains of leadership strength revealed in the book.
Tom Rath is one of the most influential authors of the last decade. He studies the role of human behavior in health, business and economics. Rath writes and speaks on a range of topics, from well-being to organizational leadership. He has written several international bestsellers, including the #1 New York Times bestseller How Full Is Your Bucket? In 2007, The Economist listed his book StrengthsFinder 2.0 as the top-selling business book worldwide. In total, Rath’s books have sold more than 5 million copies, been translated in 16 languages and made over 250 appearances on the Wall Street Journal bestseller list. Rath is a senior scientist and advisor to Gallup, where he previously spent 13 years leading the organization’s work on employee engagement, strengths and well-being. He has also served as vice chairman of the VHL cancer research organization.
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If you buy the book, here's what you can expect to find inside:
Part One: Investing in Your Strengths
-Don't Lead by Imitation. Different leaders have different strengths and talents. Learn about the one leader you know least about--yourself.
-Find Your Leadership Strengths. Leaders are often unaware when it comes to something of critical important to them--their personality.
-A Long-term Investment. People who are aware of their strengths and build self-confidence early on will reap increasing advantage that continues to grow over a lifetime.
Part Two: Maximizing Your Team
-Successful leaders surround themselves with the right people and build on each individual's strengths.
-What makes a great leadership team? Based on Gallup research, four unique leadership strength areas emerged: Executing, Influencing, Relationship Building, and Strategic Thinking. Every individual on a leadership team needs to be well rounded in these areas.
-The four strength themes for leadership are introduced. They are: Executing, Influencing, Relationship Building, and Strategic Thinking.
-What do strong teams have in common? A strong focus on results, ability to consistently keep the bigger picture in view, a healthy work-life balance, embracing diversity, and thrives on intense competition.
Part Three: Understanding Why People Follow
-If you want to lead, it is critical to know what the people around you need and expect from you.
-Why do people follow? Followers' four basic needs: trust, compassion, stability, and hope.
Conclusion: Leadership That Lasts Beyond a Lifetime
-Extraordinary leaders do not strive for personal success as success lies with those who follow.
-Leading With Your Strengths: A Guide to the 34 Themes
- The Research (Behind StrengthsFinder, Work Team Engagement, and Why People Follow)
All in all a strong book that I recommend if you liked SF 2.0. If you are a leadership fan like I am, another outstanding book you should consider is Leadership 2.0.
Research demonstrates that people tend not to utilize their natural talents, leading to frustration. Even more, most people also tend not the scale their strengths, but instead focus on scrutinizing their weaknesses. This book makes the case that the best leaders are not, in fact, well-rounded, but maximize their innate gifts with an acute awareness of who they are and the needs of those they lead. This book provides a general framework for effective leadership and helps you identify what your strengths are.
Strengths Based Leadership is the “executive version” of the acclaimed StrengthsFinder 2.0. Both books use the same formula to compute your strengths: by taking a 177-question online assessment. Your “grade” on this test computes your top five themes which you can then read about amongst the 34 themes described in this book.
What Strengths Based Leadership does very well is introduce you to the real leader in you and not the version of a leader formed in the image of popular culture. This book provides tailored, specific and actionable advice on how you can lead in all areas of life. Ultimately, Strengths Based Leadership will likely be a go-to resource well into the future.
As an educator, I have had the opportunity to work with the strengths framework both in the teaching and leadership contexts as well as to teach students that took the connected Strengths Explorer poll. As a result, I frequently find myself revisiting sections of the text as it reads well both from an overview of strengths as well as a reference tool. In fact, the latter half of the text is largely devoted to tips on leading with…(complete with one of the 34 strengths).
Published in 2009, a few of the introductory narratives about well known leaders and their strengths could use to be updated, but sections on how to maximize your team and understand why people follow leaders continue to be relevant and amongst this book's most valuable elements. In fact, the previously mentioned “leading with…” section is organized firstly by the strengths, but also by four broad criteria commonly identified for why people follow a leader.
I would certainly recommend Strengths Based Leadership and continue to use it both when developing strong, cohesive teams, and as a valuable tool in framing not only my or my team’s strengths when making decisions, but also in understanding how those with other strengths (particularly those not represented in the team's "top 5" might view decisions and how best to engage their strengths and talents to support the organization.