The Leadership Challenge -Barry Posner and James Kouzes

“What qualities would you like to see in your leader?” Since 1985 four are honesty, forward-thinking, inspiration and competency, always topped the list of qualities which people want to see in their leader. I read a book ‘The Leadership Challenge’ by Barry Posner and James Kouzes. This book is different than other books. Whether leaders are born or trained is always been a debatable question.  Posner and Kouzes believe that leaders can be trained but it is not an easy job.

This book explains leadership challenges not only in theory but it also quotes examples of various companies. I am writing about the fifth edition of the book. Each edition is updated with latest research and other updates. The book features on more than 100 case studies and examples. It addresses issues about how people work and what they want from their work?

When making extraordinary things happen in an organisation leaders engage in five main practices which are: Model the way, Inspire a shared vision, Challenge the process, Enable others to act and Encourage the heart. These practices are not private property of few people. Leadership is not about who you are; it’s about what you do. These practices are available for anyone who want to lead people and take organisation to a new height where it has never been before.

Kouzes and Posner emphasises on ‘shared vision’ for everyone in the team or in an organisation.  If shared vision can be developed it can enhance confidence of the staff in the vision of an organisation.

It is beneficial for employees to know what is organisation’s short term and long term goal. This knowledge will make employee feel more connected and responsible to the organisation. Connected employees will always work for the betterment of the organisation.

I suggest this book for all management students, professionals and also those who want to lead their life. Remember, leadership qualities are not only displayed in commercial organisation, it is utmost important quality everyone should develop.

Published in Gulf News on 7 June 2016

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