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Real Leadership

Book Description

Too many organizations today play follow the leader: the commander articulates a “vision” and people uncritically go along with it. But this type of leadership—what Dean Williams calls "counterfeit leadership"—generates an unhealthy dependence on an authority figure and relies on dominance, control, and group seduction to get things done. By hampering people's ability to anticipate and react to changing circumstances, it creates a self-limiting cycle. And if the leader's vision is flawed, the entire organization suffers.

The true task of a leader, Williams argues, is to get people to face the reality of any situation themselves and develop strategies to deal with problems or take advantage of opportunities. Real leaders don't dictate; they help people face their challenges and make adjustments in their values, habits, practices, and priorities to ensure the enterprise is given its best chance to succeed.

Williams details how to apply this new approach to the challenges every organization or community faces. Throughout, he demonstrates the practical application of real leadership in the real world through examples from his own experiences working with organizations as diverse as the government of Singapore, Aetna Life and Casualty, and the nomadic Penan tribe in Borneo, as well as historical examples and the insights gleaned from his many interviews with presidents, prime ministers, and business leaders. At a time when so many “visionary” leaders have led their organizations to disaster, Real Leadership offers a needed, proven alternative.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover Page
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Introduction
  5. Acknowledgments
  6. PART I: Real Leadership The Engine of Progress
    1. CHAPTER 1: Odin, Enron, and the Apes
      1. Distinguishing Real Leadership from Counterfeit Leadership
      2. The Features of Real Leadership
      3. Counterfeit Leadership: How a Group Is Given a False Set of Tasks
      4. Conclusion
    2. CHAPTER 2: Diagnostic Work
      1. Determining the Principal Challenge
      2. Six Domains for Leadership Challenges
      3. Governor William Bligh and the Rum Problem
      4. Diagnostic Principles
      5. Conclusion
  7. PART II: The Six Challenges of Real Leadership
    1. CHAPTER 3: The Activist Challenge
      1. Calling Attention to a Contradiction in Values
      2. The Nature of an Activist Challenge
      3. Alice Paul: Getting Men to Do the Right Thing
      4. Intervention for an Activist Challenge
      5. Real Leadership for an Activist Challenge
      6. Conclusion
    2. CHAPTER 4: The Development Challenge
      1. Cultivating the Latent Capabilities Needed to Progress
      2. The Nature of a Development Challenge
      3. Singapore: Facing the Development Challenge
      4. Real Leadership for a Development Challenge
      5. Conclusion
    3. CHAPTER 5: The Transition Challenge
      1. Moving from One System of Values to Another
      2. The Nature of a Transition Challenge
      3. Transitioning Japan: Crossing the River into the Modern World
      4. Real Leadership for a Transition Challenge
    4. CHAPTER 6: The Maintenance Challenge
      1. Protecting and Sustaining What Is Essential during Hard Times
      2. The Nature of a Maintenance Challenge
      3. The Case of Weary Dunlop
      4. Real Leadership for a Maintenance Challenge
      5. Conclusion
    5. CHAPTER 7: The Creative Challenge
      1. Doing What Has Never Been Done Before
      2. The Nature of a Creative Challenge
      3. Taking a Mundane Assignment and Turning It into a Creative Breakthrough
      4. Real Leadership for a Creative Challenge
    6. CHAPTER 8: The Crisis Challenge
      1. Leading in a Period of Extreme Danger
      2. The Nature of a Crisis Challenge
      3. East Timor Burning: Where Is the Leadership?
      4. Real Leadership for a Crisis Challenge
      5. Conclusion
  8. PART III: Real Leadership in Action
    1. CHAPTER 9: Leading in Multiple Challenges
      1. The Case of T. E. Lawrence
      2. Lawrence and Arabia: The Story of the Reluctant Leader
      3. Diagnosing the Challenge
      4. The Development Challenge
      5. Maintenance Tasks
      6. Crisis Tasks
      7. The Activist Challenge
      8. The Transition Challenge
      9. The Next Development Challenge
      10. Lawrence Walks Away
    2. CHAPTER 10: Odin, the Samurai, and You
      1. Taking Responsibility for Yourself as an Instrument of Power
      2. Your Personal Case and the Six Leadership Challenges
      3. Case of the Lost Samurai
      4. The Detective Work of Real Leadership
      5. A Final Note
  9. Notes
  10. Index
  11. About the Author
  12. About Berrett-Koehler Publishers
  13. Be Connected
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    6. Join the BK Community