Book News: May 9th, 2013

Alan Berson and Richard Stieglitz challenge high potential managers to become great leaders. They offer help in this guide about climbing the ladder to become a top organizational leader.

Rather than engaging in an ongoing race to be heard and produce short-term results, managers and leaders at all levels must learn how to ask great questions and listen to the answers, to create a culture that places more value on learning than on what people already know, and to foster innovation and strategic thought to achieve long-term objectives.

At the heart of Leadership Conversations arefour types of conversation every leader must master.

Conversations to Build Relationships: how to exhibit the emotional intelligence required to be an effective leader, embrace differences in order to connect with followers and align them with the organization’s goals, and foster genuine transparency and honesty to gain trust and respect.

Conversations to Develop Others: how to drive long term growth and provide the foundation and fuel for future success by tapping into the abilities of others; how to mentor and recognize people, lead high-potential managers, and ultimately celebrate their success

Conversations to Make Decisions: how to integrate facts with people considerations and ask great questions that maximize potential. Key tips are provided on developing good judgment, empowering choice, the importance of being curious, and learning what you don’t know (but need to) in order to make good decisions.

Conversations to Take Action: how to develop vision, allocate resources, and measure performance. How to avoid assumptions and entice followers into action in concert with the leader, rather than directing them to perform. Finally, based on the idea of military “after-action,” how to discuss and learn from both failures and successes.

It’s a different job at the top. Based on the proven management acumen of its authors, and including the stories of successful leaders from the authors’ extensive network of contacts, Leadership Conversations is required reading for leaders of any level who want to improve their performance so they will be promoted into, and be successful at, higher positions.


Published by  Jossey-Bass; 978-1-118-37832-8.  $22.36