Leadership Lessons for Any Leader
By John Parker Stewart
Leadership Excellence, $29.95, 228 pages
John Parker Stewart is an internationally recognized leadership coach with 35 years of experience in executive development, team performance and leadership coaching. Mr. Stewart created a leadership tool named LEAD NOW! Leadership Development Model and 52 Leadership Lessons supports this tool. This book is organized by 52 leadership lessons with catchy names such as; Baboons and Impalas, Two Friends and a Giant, A Spider in Space and The Farmer and the Rock, to name a few. The titles will peak your interest, the stories will keep you engaged. Many of the stories read similar to an Aesop’s Fable. Each lesson is in a highlighted, colored box and is followed by the corresponding leadership dimensions (color-coded once again). A story trails with an explanation. The final section to each lesson is the application.
The application sets this book apart from most leadership books because often leadership books extol a methodology but never really engage the reader to actually try to apply the concept. This book does. Finally, the section ends with another highlighted, colored box with a summary statement that makes the lesson memorable.
For example, Lesson #3 states, “Employees are like Turtles”. This lesson aligns with the leadership dimensions of delegating, focusing on results, coaching, team building and inspiring a commitment. A story follows which reminds the reader that a turtle, when scared, shrinks back into its shell for safety. In other words, if an employee is afraid of making a mistake, she will hide in her shell and never really meet her full potential. Productivity and morale suffer as a consequence. Following the story, there are four questions in the application section and the lesson ends with a key point, “Give your employees the opportunity to stick their necks out without getting ‘whacked’”. ||Leaders will be inspired, regardless of the experience level or tenure. The lessons are simple and straight forward but also logical and practical. If more leaders reached for Stewart’s book, I can only imagine what teams could accomplish!
Reviewed by Seniye Groff
These timeless books are available from www.JohnParkerStewart.com/stewart-leadership-series/