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The Leader's Checklist, Expanded Edition: 15 Mission-Critical Principles [Paperback]

Michael Useem

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Book Description

Sept. 20 2011
Named to The Washington Post’s 2011 List of Best Leadership Books

In this fast-reading and illuminating expanded edition of the bestselling Leader’s Checklist, world-renowned leadership expert Michael Useem deepens his examination of 15 mission-critical principles for leaders

Based on the lessons from astonishing stories, solid research, and years of leadership development work with a wide array of companies and organizations in the United States and abroad, Useem presents today’s leaders with 15 guiding principles that form the core of the Leader’s Checklist, which will help you develop your ability to make good and timely decisions in unpredictable and stressful environments—for those moments when leadership really matters.

To illustrate how the Leader’s Checklist can assist leaders, Useem zeroes in on accounts of extraordinary leaders who rose to the challenge, including Laurence Golborne’s role in the triumphant rescue of 33 miners in Chile, Joseph Pfeifer’s remarkable heroism as the first FDNY Fire Chief to take command at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, and Union officer Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain’s transformative actions after the Confederate army’s surrender. He also explores the colossal failure of AIG, one of the greatest corporate collapses in business history.

First published exclusively as an ebook—and now also available in print—this updated and expanded edition features a new preface by the author and three new Knowledge@Wharton interviews with Laurence Golborne, Chile’s Minister of Mining, on leading the rescue operation of 33 miners trapped in the San José Mine; Joseph Pfeifer, New York City Fire Department’s Chief of Counterterrorism and Emergency Preparedness, on being the first Battalion Chief to take command at the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001; and the author on why he wrote The Leader’s Checklist and what he has learned about the most vital items on the checklist from his recent leadership development work with more than a dozen companies and organizations.

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The Leader's Checklist, Expanded Edition: 15 Mission-Critical Principles + Take the Lead: Motivate, Inspire, and Bring Out the Best in Yourself and Everyone Around You
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Review

“One of the most brilliant, original, and exciting leadership books I’ve read in a long time. On top of all that, it will be the most useful and concise book on leadership you’ll ever read!”
—Warren Bennis, Distinguished Professor of Business, University of Southern California, and author of Still Surprised: A Memoir of a Life in Leadership

“With this compact handbook, Mike Useem provides leaders what they all say they want and need but rarely get: a kick-in-the-pants reminder of those parts of the job they have neglected. The boss is now forewarned.”
—Steven Pearlstein, Washington Post business columnist and moderator of the On Leadership website

“Leading an enterprise comes down to a set of enduring principles, and The Leader’s Checklist compellingly captures the most vital. Michael Useem has written the essential companion for anybody whose leadership is on the line, a concise primer for corporate liftoffs and controlled landings.”
—Ram Charan, advisor to CEOs and boards, and coauthor of the bestsellers Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done and The Leadership Pipeline

“A tightly written and superbly designed publication, The Leader’s Checklist reads like an adventure yarn, but packs a goldmine of scholarship and tested observations, that surrounds a list of fifteen principles that guide and teach managers to make on-target, effective business decisions, under real pressure.”
—Blogcritics

“Leaders often work well by operating on gut instinct, but at times they need to reflect on their actions and their consequences. The Leader’s Checklist can refresh a leader’s sense of purpose as well as invigorate his or her calling to lead others.”
—John Baldoni, SmartBlog on Leadership

The Leader’s Checklist is a tightly written 15,000-word book that gets to the point quickly. It may well set the bar for quality writing and amount of content for other business-related digital books in the future….The book is beneficial to those professionals in a leadership role of any kind, including teachers, nurses or any type of professional.”
—Patricia Faulhaber, Suite101

About the Author

Michael Useem is Director of the Center for Leadership and Change Management and William and Jacalyn Egan Professor of Management at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He is the author of The Leader's Checklist, The Leadership Moment, Investor Capitalism, and The Go Point, among other books. The Leadership Moment was included in The 100 Best Business Books of All Time, written by the business book experts at 800-CEO-READ, and listed as one of the 10 best leadership books on the Washington Post’s "Leadership Playlist." Useem’s articles have appeared in the Chicago Tribune, Fast Company, Financial Times, Fortune, Harvard Business Review, McKinsey Quarterly, New York Times, U.S. News & World Report, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and elsewhere.

Useem has presented programs and seminars on leadership development with American Express, China Minsheng Banking Corporation, Citigroup, Coca-Cola, Comcast, Eli Lilly, Estée Lauder, Fidelity Investments, GlaxoSmithKline, Goldman Sachs, Google, Grupo Santander , Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Johnson & Johnson, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, Motorola, National Football League, New York Fire Department, The New York Times, Nokia, Pew Charitable Trusts, PriceWaterhouse Coopers, Samsung, U.N. Development Programme, U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Military Academy, World Economic Forum, and other organizations.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Back Cover
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Amazon.com: 3.7 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Checklist Right on Target! Sept. 29 2011
By N. Blackburn - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
As a MBA with a leadership concentration and over 10 years experience in leadership and leadership development(focused primarily in the business development area), I found this book a fascinating short read. I read no less than 30 leadership books a year. The book contained lists which I thought were laid out the best in any leadership book I have read. They were concise, which in working with someone in any level of administration, it is best to have. The Owner's Manual List said it all and could be utilized as a teaching tool with leaving the rest of the book aside. One criticism I did have with the book was that I found the example stories/interviews to be a bit disorganized and jumbled. I think that utilizing those with someone in leadership would be way too wordy and either briefly read over or skipped all together.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Seminar Notes Sept. 11 2013
By P. Sandwall - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A rather worthless book with extremely little value. Useem's 15 points are well taken; however, they require but a single page not a book.

The "Expanded Edition" of this quite slender volume includes a few reprinted interviews of the author with individuals he believes(?) demonstrate his principles(?).

Don't waste your money, read a few leadership articles off the internet and you'll have gained an equal amount of insight for free.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Advice Feb. 22 2012
By Dr. R. D. B. Laime - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is such an important book. Prof. Michael Useem has done a book which should be read by managers from top to bottom. It's an easy read, and he takes into account different cultures and countries. Simply must reading.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great leadership checklist, ok book March 9 2014
By Turbo-T - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition
I am in two minds about this book:

- The checkist itself seems very valuable and authorative
- The book was written in a way that makes that value inaccessible and hard to get at
- The core content is wrapped in complex tangental anecdotes
- For a short book that espouses brevity, it is neither focused, simple or elegant

Summary:
1) The author offers a concise, considered and valuable list of 15 leadership principles,
2) This is followed by very general, hard to action advice, about how to customise and test these same principles for your unique situation
3) Six learning avenues are recommended to activate these principles, offered again with very general guidance only. Some of these are situational and beyond the direct control of the reader.
4) Each principle is explained using a few sentences in all - stating only the obvious. I would have enjoyed each principle to be discussed in more depth and brought to life, with insights, distinctions and examples - so that I could distill that deeper understanding into brevity - a set of understandings and mental models that get reduced into a few words. Instead, I'm only offered those few words.
6) The expanded edition has some interesting interviews that were worth reading yet more like general leadership bonus content. While they broach moments of leadership, they seem only loosely and vaguely related to the 15 principles themselves.

Conclusion:
- I'm not sure I would have grasped the value of this book had I not read "The Checkilst Manifesto" first.
- If you want a checklist of principles to stay consistent as a leader, you'll find a great checklist in this book.
- You'll be offered an approach to customise these to your situation and activate these principles that are discussed so generally, you'll need other resources, skills and insight to make them actionable.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, short, informative read Nov. 23 2012
By Steven Rakow - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is a great, short, informative read with relevant examples of both good and bad leadership. The checklist really isn't a checklist at all, but principles of leadership required of a good leader.

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