Uplifting Leadership: How Organizations, Teams, and Communities Raise Performance Hardcover – Jun 23 2014
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From the Inside Flap
What does it take to do more with less? How can you do better than before, or better than others? How do you turn losses into wins, near-bankruptcy into strong profitability, or abject failure into stellar success?
The power of uplift enables any organization to do more with less, beat the competition, and perform better than ever. Leaders who uplift their employees’ passions, intellects, and commitments produce remarkable results.
Based on original research from a seven-year global study, Uplifting Leadership reveals how leaders from diverse organizations inspired and uplifted their teams’ performance. Distilling the six common characteristics of leaders at high-performing organizations across business, sports, and education, authors Andy Hargreaves, Alan Boyle, and Alma Harris explore the nature of uplift, its impact on performance, and the ways to achieve it within and beyond an organization’s walls, revealing how leaders:
- Identify and articulate an inspiring dream that is coherently connected to the best of what the organization has been before
- Pursue that dream at a sustainable pace without squandering resources, incurring excessive debt, or burning people out
- Forge paths of innovation and improvement that others have overlooked or rejected
- Monitor progress by using metrics and indicators in a mindful and meaningful way
- Build teams that naturally pull people into change rather than pushing them through it
Featuring case studies of organizations as diverse as Shoebuy.com, Fiat, Dogfish Head Craft Brewery, Marks & Spencer, Cricket Australia, Burnley Football Club, and the Vancouver Giants, as well as world-leading educational systems, Uplifting Leadership provides tools for leaders to incorporate these performance-driving strategies into their own.
For leaders who want their people to try harder, transform what they do, reach for a higher purpose, and stay resolute and resilient when opposing forces threaten to defeat them, Uplifting Leadership provides a path to better performance across any organization.
From the Back Cover
PRAISE FOR UPLIFTING LEADERSHIP
“How do highly effective leaders think and act in ways that others don’t? This groundbreaking book offers surprising answers from around the world that overturn many conventional assumptions about leadership. Now more than ever, leaders need to help transform our schools, our workplaces, and our institutions. Uplifting Leadership is brimming with inspiring ideas and practical evidence—from public education to private enterprise—on how to do exactly that. This important book will help leaders everywhere lift their organizations to higher levels of achievement, whatever the odds.”
—SIR KEN ROBINSON, author, The Element and Out of Our Mind
“Uplifting Leadership is the change book of the century. Forget every ad hoc idea about performance—these six brilliant insights about system success dance off the pages. Hargreaves, Boyle, and Harris reveal the secrets of soaring in turbulent times. Uplifting Leadership doesn’t invite you, it takes you!”
—MICHAEL FULLAN, OC, professor emeritus, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, University of Toronto, and author, Leading in a Culture of Change
“What makes Uplifting Leadership remarkable is more than its extensive research and direct style. In our either/or culture, its unique power is how it takes the energy inherent in paradox and shows how opposites really can attract so that, transformed by unity, practical wisdom becomes clear.”
—MARGARET J. WHEATLEY, author, Leadership and the New Science and So Far From Home
“Uplifting Leadership is about big change and how to make it—not in a few companies or teams, but on a big scale, including the transformation of entire countries. Turning crisis into long-term success requires enormous amounts of hard work and great leadership skills. Uplifting Leadership tells compelling, inspiring stories about how to drive major transformation, and it may well change the way you lead forever. I strongly recommend it.”
—ESKO AHO, former prime minister, Finland, and executive vice president, Nokia
“In politics and in business, there are many times when we could all do with a bit of a lift. Uplifting Leadership shows a powerful new idea that can transform the way we do business. Anchored in solid research, but written in attractive prose, this book will challenge leaders in business, education, and other sectors to rethink how they can bring together soft skills with hard data in ways that will elevate all of us.”
—FRANCES STRICKLAND, psychologist, educator, and former First Lady of Ohio
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Top Customer Reviews
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
A great read - highly recommended for any leader wanting to uplift their organization, federation or division of organizations to higher levels of achievement in a collaborative environment.
When you are quoting MLK, Melville and Aquinas among others, you better bring the goosebumps. But this book simply does not inspire. The case studies come off sounding like testimonials for the corporate video presented at the annual meeting. After reading the introduction I expected 6 gut punches that would prepare me to run through a wall for my organization. As it was, I felt like the authors were more focused on singing the praises of the organizations than they were in teaching the reader to create lift.
Let me make it crystal clear. Having taught in multiple settings over the last 20 years, I understand the greatest challenge of a teacher: get them to take the lesson with them as they go. Do not let them leave in the same state they entered. I honestly felt that while this book has some wonderful material in it, I wasn't any different than I was before I'd picked it up. I found myself reading faster and faster trying to find the piece that would thrill me, uplift me. The closest I came was reading the words of King or Aquinas. It all felt very second-hand. Knowing that these three are educators actually may shed some light on it. The greatest teachers are not the ones who know the material, they are the ones who have lived the material.
Overall, I really enjoyed the paradoxical tension between the 6 topics covered. I thought they were well presented and supported, expertly written and well organized. If a teacher were grading on a rubric, it would be an "A" no doubt. But as any teacher knows who has graded a stack of essays, you are always looking for that one that not only fulfills the rubric, but transcends the grading process and makes you forget you are grading anything. That essay with something to it. Something that shifts things around inside of us. Something that makes us feel the headwind blow beneath our dusty wings. Something that causes us to rise, lift-off and soar. That's what I was looking for, but didn't quite find.
I think the really good thing about this book is that while it doesn't necessary tell us anything the reader could not have intuitively guessed, the variety of organizations spotlighted is broader than other leadership books. Most people in my view are better able to identify with the small business down the street than a Fortune 500 company. In this way, this becomes a leadership book for everyone, rather than a book that touts a bunch of mega corporations and tacks on the less than believable phrase "and you can do it too" as though they suddenly remembered they have to sell books to the general public.
Uplifting Leadership is a quick read that has a little something for everyone from the conventional business type to the international sports fan that is far more practical than most conventional leadership texts.