Even though I'm not a businessman, I'm very interested in leadership and have read a lot of works on leadership. I've also learned so much from Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University that I thought surely Dave's newest work, "EntreLeadership" would be worth my money.
"EntreLeadership," is a good book on leadership in business. But I don't feel it's a great one. He has, as always, a lot of good practical knowledge that he's willing to share with us. But it's usually not something I haven't read elsewhere in books on leadership or related literature. So, yes, the book's probably worth buying, but it didn't seem to be as excellent in its genre as is Dave's "Financial Peace." There is a lot of excellent basic material here on leadership, goals, organization, working with people, etc. But it's not especially original or compelling. And it's not very in-depth, largely because Dave deals with so many topics all in one book. Still, "EntreLeadership" is a good, one-stop place for good, basic advice on many subjects related to leadership and business. Almost everyone will find something of value in it, especially businessmen looking for a proven, practical vision with integrity.
What Dave shares in this book is his "playbook" for business success, divided up into 15 topics.
Dave sets out first to define what an "EntreLeader" is. It's kind of an ugly word, but Dave feels that what he wanted in business from himself and others was people who had the good characteristics of both leaders and entrepreneurs. So what is an EntreLeader? I'm glad you asked! According to Dave, they're people who can be:
Mavericks who have integrity
Disciplined risk takers
Courageous while humble
Driven while loyal
Dave concludes Chapter 1 by discussing some of the characteristics of leaders, such as power, the need to be servants, and passion. There's some good stuff here, but it's not really original or uniquely compelling.
In Chapter 2, Dave walks us from Dreams to Visions to Mission Statements and Goals. Again, there's good wisdom here, but it's not really unique, and he doesn't spend a lot of time on each. He spends the most time on goals (I won't rehearse what he says here), and it's good material that almost anyone will benefit from. But once again, it's not groundbreaking or original stuff you can't get elsewhere.
Chapter 3 deals with time management and organization. This is something I'm naturally good enough at but not nearly as good as I ought to be. So I learned some new tricks in this chapter - or, more accurately - was motivated to make a better effort to apply what I already know.
The rest of the chapters follow suit in giving good and even excellent advice, but possibly material you've heard before. I have less experience with business than with leading or dreaming, so I can't speak as specifically to the parts that deal specifically with business (such as Chapters 7, 13, and 14). But from what I can tell, they're good solid material for running a business, if that's what I did. I particularly like the chapter on selling (such as Chapters 7, 8, 11, and 12) because in these chapters Dave shows how business can be done with integrity. I like as well the way that throughout he demonstrates a genuine interest in the people who work for him (this especially came out in a touching story in Chapter 7 about someone Dave hired who couldn't live off the salary he could afford to pay her) and those he is serving. These chapters, dealing with people, are probably his strongest chapters because he highlights the need to serve the people around you and not exalt yourself at their expense.
A lot of what Dave says applies, even if you're not in business. For example, any leader can benefit from Dave's philosophy in Chapter 11 that as leaders we must put people first and that the way to judge this is by the Golden Rule. It's good advice to remember, as he teaches in Chapter 12, that we should remember to recognize people. I know that personally, I thrive on appropriate and deserved recognition. In Chapter 12, Dave provides a list of various ways we can actually do this for others. Most of these, such as casting a vision, storytelling, passion, and example, are ways of recognizing others that you could use outside of business, too.
There's much more I could say, but by now you've gotten an idea of the value of the book.
The remainder of the book is organized this way (I'm giving the gist of each chapter, and not the fancy titles):
Chapter 4 - Making Decisions
Chapter 5 - Great Marketing
Chapter 6 - Launching Your Dream
Chapter 7 - Hiring and Firing
Chapter 8 - Selling by Serving
Chapter 9 - Financial Peace for Business
Chapter 10 - Great Communication and Great Companies
Chapter 11 - People Matter Most
Chapter 12 - Recognizing and Inspiring Employees
Chapter 13 - Contracts, Vendors, and Collections
Chapter 14 - Compensation Plans
Chapter 15 - Delegating
I recommend "EntreLeadership" as a good, big picture, book that will help leaders and businessman lead and innovate with greater integrity and skill.