Leadersmithing : Revealing the Trade Secrets of Leadership
Author(s): Eve Poole
'Leadership' is in danger of becoming a tired phrase in the world of management - it may sound cerebral and important, but more often comes across as static and trite. Which might explain why so many 'leaders' feel like imposters; they may have a vision or masterplan, but the reality is daily messiness, acute uncertainty and fragile loyalty from team members. Often, they have been parachuted in to transform a complex situation, or promoted in unexpected circumstances. Are there more effective ways in which people can learn the art of being a great leader?
Being an effective leader is about the daily grind, and it is a far from glamorous existence, but it can be hugely rewarding if leaders are realistic about the choices they face. In many trades and professions, mastery of the subject can take a lifetime; leadership is no different. An apprenticeship approach can breathe life into the development of leaders, day in, day out.
Using insights gained by Ashridge Business School about how leaders really learn, Leadersmithing guides readers through the process of becoming more precisely job-ready and more effectively resourced for the challenges they face. The result is a more confident leader, more perceptive as to their vocation and mandate, and able to maintain the most effective position at the very top of their game.
"Inspirational, practical and fascinating, this book will help you no matter what your age or achievements. I couldn’t put it down." - Joanna Lumley, OBE
"I stumbled into leadership by accident rather than design. My learning was all "on the job" with many mistakes and a few successes. How much easier my job would have been if there had been books like this around to help me navigate my journey." - John Barton, Chairman, Easyjet and Next
"This is a different kind of leadership book. It encourages and inspires. It shows us that we all need to continue to learn and develop our leadership skills, however high or low we may be. And it reminds us that it's a journey of one step at a time, with a lot of work on the way. It's a must-read." - Chris Smith, Baron Smith of Finsbury, Master of Pembroke College Cambridge
"At a time when leadership is scarce, Eve Poole offers some practical insights for all on what it takes to become a true leader. Indeed an acquired skill." - Paul Polman, CEO, Unilever
"Leaders should be readers and Eve Poole’s Leadersmithing is a must-read for anyone that wants to improve their ability to lead. Whether you run a business, a small team, or aspire to lead in the future, Leadersmithing will help you become the leader you want to be, with strong practical insight, humour and honesty." - Jayne-Anne Gadhia, Chief Executive, Virgin Money
"I found the book fascinating. Whether you are looking for leadership advice when tackling a new challenge, or merely developing your personal leadership skills, Eve's deck of cards will provide the inspiration." - Major General Paul Nanson, Commandant, The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and Director Leadership for the British Army
"This is a leadership book from the frontline, written from a deep base of academic understanding but grounded in the daily practice of the leadership art. I will be buying it for all my Board and recommending it very often." - Stephen Bampfylde, Chairman, Saxton Bampfylde
"Eve Poole gives us an engaging and fresh take on leadership development. The book frames the practice as a guild unto itself, whose masters are rewarded with the most challenging and rewarding work. Practice, simulation and muscle memory are offered as fundamentals in how leaders can be modelled and honed. Poole’s eye-opening metaphors and commonsense templates provide a welcome divergence from a canon that is too often stilted with jargon and buzzwords. Imminently accessible, Leadersmithing invites all – at any stage of development – to use its insights and exercise on a path to leadership excellence." - Dr Randall P White, author of "Breaking The Glass Ceiling" and "The Future of Leadership"