Through an entertaining and highly instructive story, this book presents a revolutionary new understanding of the nature of successful leadership, drawn from recent research and findings in philosophical psychology. It shows how self-betrayalthe act and then on-going state of going against one's ethical sense of what he or she should be doing for othersleads to self-deception, the central player in all leadership breakdowns, relationship issues, and performance problems in organizations.
The book reveals how leaders who are self-deceived might as well be living in a boxtrapped, cut off from others, and blind to the truth. It illustrates how leaders trapped within this box cannot lead effectively no matter how hard they try and no matter how many skills and techniques they employ. Through vivid examples, the book shows what self-deception is, how it operates, and, most importantly, how it can be overcome.
Leadership and Self-Deception demonstrates how when we understand self-deception we understand why its not enough to identify and treat leadership problems as if they were separate and distinct. Often that's what happens: we make an inventory of leadership skills and determine that a given leader doesn't provide enough feedback or doesn't take time to listen to people, or delegates without providing clear direction. But those who receive such feedback often fail to improve their leadership abilities. They may work to become more effective evaluators at one workshop, more practiced listeners at another, more directive leaders at another, and yet overlook completely the root cause of the problem. Frequently, they still are not transformed into leaders whom people want to follow.
What will transform them? The authors assert that the key to leadership lies deeper than any particular behavior or skill. It lies in how we areour way of being. They reveal that, while we may behave in an infinite variety of ways, at the deep level of who we are, there are fundamentally two ways of being: the state of self-deception (like living in a box), and the state of being that is honest, straightforward, and genuine. The first is the source of leadership problems and the second the source of leadership success. While some books have identified the importance of state of being in leadership, this book shows how we come to enter one state or the other as leadersand how it is possible to change. Understanding and applying this principle is the key to leadership transformation; it is the key to becoming a consistent catalyst for success.
Leadership and Self-Deception clearly demonstrates how people can stop undermining themselves and what amazing things happen when they dofreely and fully putting to work all the behavioral skills, systems, and techniques that will bring success to them and their organizations. While other books cover useful people skills, techniques, and systems of leadership, this one goes deeper, fully illuminating the source of what makes truly effective leadership.
Jan 15, 2000
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