Book News: October 28th, 2008

By Robin Ryde

The author is Deputy Chief Executive of the UK National School of Government and he writes to help leaders learn how to survive and succeed in the modern world. The book covers ‘high concept’ leadership thinking and locates such ideas in examples from the fast moving, occasionally vexing and often lonely business of leading people and organisations.

He suggest that leaders should ask themselves how long they have got, what is their level of ambition and what do they wish to influence.

His starting point, perhaps untypically, is one of sympathy for leaders and the gigantic task they accept. The job of leadership whether in the public, private or NGO sector is supremely difficult and very unforgiving. Leaders operate under intense scrutiny, and it is crucial that they have laser-like clarity in understanding what they are there to do and what is possible.

Most leaders don’t have the luxury of unlimited time and scope to develop and deliver grand strategies. For most, this must be tempered by the expectation of quick results or a clear line of sight to the legacy that will be left.

Published by Palgrave Macmillan ISBN: 978-0-230-20259-7 25.00 pounds.