Powerful words. Great story. Quick-read book. What could be better?
I accepted the opportunity to be part of the launch team for Mark Miller’s new book, The HEART of Leadership. I read it in just a few hours(!)… but I will be referring back to it for a long time.
Without leadership character,
no one cares about your skills.
Mark’s book tells the story of Blake Brown and his search for what makes leaders different after he misses a leadership promotion. Blake seeks out help from his mentor, Debbie Brewster, who sends him to meet with five special people. Each of the five share with Blake one element of leadership character. Blake changes his heart in the process, as well as his leadership at home and at work.
This book is a simple, quick, easy read… but there is great depth in its content. Here is a quick review of key points from The HEART of Leadership, but I highly recommend you buy the book for yourself!
UNGER FOR WISDOM Wisdom informs all of our decisions. Mark mentions four ways to cultivate a hunger for wisdom:1) focus on the pursuit, not the outcome; 2) be open to input, new ideas, different opinions; 3) grow constantly, and 4) establish a network of counselors/mentors for advice.
XPECT THE BEST Leaders see potential, what could be. They are generally optimistic and believe the best about others and themselves. They don’t ignore reality or facts, but they generally see the glass as 100% full – half liquid… and half air!
CCEPT RESPONSIBILITY Mark says that leaders “own” their actions and the actions of others. They accept responsibility when the team fails. Leaders don’t blame others; they guard against pride and people pleasing and… they give the praise to others!
ESPOND WITH COURAGE Leaders don’t hesitate when faced with difficult or challenging situations; they initiate to mend broken relationships, challenge people to grow, or make hard or unpopular decisions. They may get it wrong sometimes, but they choose to act.
HINK OTHERS FIRST This is the most important point of all. The servant leader works to ensure that others do well and that they feel honored and valued… but they must act with a sincere heart attitude; they can’t fake it or manipulate.
As I read Mark’s book, I felt numerous tugs at my heart in every chapter. Like the imaginary Blake, I saw obvious weak areas and lots I can improve. Mark uses an iceberg to illustrate that only 10% of leadership is the skills that show above the water. 90% of leadership is the leadership character below the surface.
Our work and homes and world need leaders with great character… with great HEART. I’m ready to work on my HEART. Want to change the world with me?
Mark Miller, well known business leader, best-selling author, and communicator, is excited about sharing The Heart of Leadership: Becoming A Leader People Want To Follow with those who are ready to take the next step.