The Practice of Adaptive Leadership: Tools and Tactics for Changing Your Organization and the World
Harvard Business Press, 2009 - Business & Economics - 326 pages
When change requires you to challenge people's familiar reality, it can be difficult, dangerous work. Whatever the context--whether in the private or the public sector--many will feel threatened as you push though major changes. But as a leader, you need to find a way to make it work.
Ron Heifetz first defined this problem with his distinctive theory of adaptive leadership in Leadership Without Easy Answers. In a second book, Leadership on the Line, Heifetz and coauthor Marty Linsky highlighted the individual and organizational dangers of leading through deep change in business, politics, and community life. Now, Heifetz, Linsky, and coauthor Alexander Grashow are taking the next step: The Practice of Adaptive Leadership is a hands-on, practical guide containing stories, tools, diagrams, cases, and worksheets to help you develop your skills as an adaptive leader, able to take people outside their comfort zones and assess and address the toughest challenges.
The authors have decades of experience helping people and organizations create cultures of adaptive leadership. In today's rapidly changing world, The Practice of Adaptive Leadership can be your handbook to meeting the demands of leadership in the midst of complexity.
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So many of the world’s problems, and the issues that businesses and people face every day, can seem intractable and unsolvable. Leadership consultants Ronald Heifetz, Alexander Grashow and Marty Linsky propose a new way to lead the charge to change: “Adaptive leadership” calls for shedding outdated approaches and embracing new skills and attitudes to guide organizations in the 21st century. The authors’ counsel combines wisdom from psychology, biology, language and business with a healthy dose of self-assessment to help you and your company face ongoing challenges. Filled with useful exercises, real-life examples and thoughtful asides, their book can help you make difficult decisions about change. This process takes time, energy and self-knowledge, but the rewards you and your organization will reap are worth it. getAbstract recommends this inclusive leadership manual and its lessons about leading adaptively to budding and current business leaders, heads of nonprofits, and politicians who face challenges that require new responses.
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This book is fantastic and talks about leadership in a way that many leadership books do not - such as discussing the difference between leadership and authority, and technical versus adaptive problems/solutions. It goes beyond previous books (by Heifetz and Linsky) by giving specific recommendations on how to diagnose and experiment in your organization. The specific action steps may seem easy at first glance, but done well are extremely difficult and worth the effort.