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Lillian Cunningham

Lillian Cunningham is the editor of On Leadership and writes features for the section.

Posted at 03:50 PM ET, 01/31/2013

Kevin Cashman’s ‘Leadership from the Inside Out’

Title: Leadership from the Inside Out: Becoming a Leader for Life

Author: Kevin Cashman

Publisher: Berrett-Koehler, 2008

ISBN-13: 978-1576755990, 215 pages


Kevin Cashman’s book on why personal development is essential to exemplary leadership is a classic. First published in 1998, this self-help manual quickly became a breakthrough business bestseller. This revised edition is now on the required reading lists of numerous universities and leadership programs around the globe. For this second edition, Cashman, a coaching consultant, conducted extensive new research. He asked corporate CEOs and company presidents to review his models of leadership and to critique his leadership propositions. Additionally, his firm interviewed corporate leaders to learn which areas of personal development they believe relate most closely to leadership.

While some insights are obvious, others provide fresh ideas. The book offers a virtual coaching experience that will help you develop as a “whole person” and, thus, as a “whole leader.” getAbstract recommends this respected work to all leaders. It offers valuable insights, ideas, lessons and tools they can use to improve themselves, their employees, their organizations and their communities.

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By Thomas Bergen of getAbstract  |  03:50 PM ET, 01/31/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 03:53 PM ET, 01/17/2013

Reading Colin Powell’s ‘It Worked for Me’

Title: It Worked for Me: In Life and Leadership

Authors: Colin Powell and Tony Koltz

Publisher: Harper, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-0062135124, 304 pages



Colin Powell is an American icon. A former U.S. secretary of state and former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, this four-star general rose from modest beginnings as a child of immigrants to the heights of power as a military and civilian leader. In this autobiographical book of observations on leadership, Powell, collaborating with writer Tony Koltz, parses through his life and the opportunities he has had, distilling the valuable information he has learned into anecdotal teachings on management and leadership.

Many of his conclusions are inspirational, though the book does bog down at times in diplomatic and military exploits. His treatment of his infamous 2003 U.N. presentation, when he asserted that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, may leave some readers dissatisfied. However, getAbstract believes that Powell’s admirers and those who value business advice based on military wisdom will gain greatly from his hard-won successes.

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By Thomas Bergen of getAbstract  |  03:53 PM ET, 01/17/2013 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 07:35 AM ET, 12/27/2012

Reading ‘Winning with Transglobal Leadership’

Title: Winning with Transglobal Leadership: How to Find and Develop Top Global Talent to Build World-Class Organizations

Authors: Linda D. Sharkey, Nazneen Razi, Robert A. Cooke and Peter Barge

Publisher: McGraw-Hill, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-0071790512, 266 pages



Management experts Linda D. Sharkey, Nazneen Razi, Robert A. Cooke and Peter Barge acknowledge the common characteristics and competencies of good leaders but argue convincingly that global leaders need additional, unique skills. The authors have sufficient impressive knowledge of global business to write knowingly about global leadership based on their experience alone. Yet this work stands out because they add their analysis of past and new research, including surveys and interviews with some 150 global leaders, and they use that data to test their assumptions.

This uncluttered, interesting read includes new, useful and, in one case, even surprising findings. Of course, the authors offer the inevitable global leadership basics, but they present these core concepts in a succinct, relevant way as they build toward a logical, evidence-based framework that features practical tools and guidelines for developing global leaders. getAbstract recommends this book to board members, executives, leadership development experts, HR officers, and actual and aspiring global leaders.

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By Patrick Brigger of getAbstract  |  07:35 AM ET, 12/27/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)
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Posted at 08:51 PM ET, 12/13/2012

Geoff Colvin’s ‘The Upside of a Downturn’

Title: The Upside of the Downturn: Ten Management Strategies to Prevail in the Recession and Thrive in the Aftermath

Author: Geoff Colvin

Publisher: Portfolio, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-1591842965, 192 pages


The 2008 recession and its lingering aftermath have undoubtedly transformed the global economy. All aspects of business have changed, including consumer attitudes, competition, employee relations, the role of government, and customers’ saving and spending behaviors. Yet with all these shifts, few companies have consciously adapted to new business realities. Business journalist Geoff Colvin writes that the recession presents some intrepid managers with a rare opportunity to reinvent themselves and their businesses. He proposes 10 strategies that firms of all sizes can use to compete in the post-recession world. Unfortunately, some of his role models for those strategies haven’t held up as well as he anticipated – his book appeared in mid-2009, before all the dust of the financial crisis had settled. Nonetheless, getAbstract recommends his 10 sensible prescriptions to leaders who want a makeover for themselves and their enterprises.

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By Thomas Bergen of getAbstract  |  08:51 PM ET, 12/13/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)

Posted at 11:40 AM ET, 11/29/2012

Roger Martin’s ‘Fixing the Game’

Title: Fixing the Game: Bubbles, Crashes, and What Capitalism Can Learn from the NFL

Author: Roger L. Martin

Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-1422171646, 249 pages


Roger L. Martin, dean of the University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management and a life-long sports enthusiast, writes that the 2008 mortgage meltdown was only the most recent crisis in the chronically ill U.S. economy and that another setback is inevitable unless American business leaders change their approach. He traces the U.S. economy’s problems to the mid-1970s, when corporate philosophy shifted from serving consumers to placating shareholders. He calls for a return to the old business model of paying executives based on real achievement not on meeting or missing projections. He cites the U.S. National Football League (pre-referee strike) as the perfect illustration of how well a real-rewards model can work if executives put their customers first. “It isn’t about how profitable a company wants to be,” Martin says, “It is about in what way the company becomes profitable.” getAbstract believes that his playbook can help corporations get back in the game.

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By Patrick Brigger of getAbstract  |  11:40 AM ET, 11/29/2012 |  Permalink  |  Comments ( 0)


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