The Leadership Skills Handbook: 50 Essential Skills you need to be a Leader

The Leadership Skills Handbook: 50 Essential Skills you need to be a Leader
February 25th, 2016 Lee


PUBLISHER: Kogan Page: ISBN 978–0–7494–7156–9
What’s it about? Well, leadership for a start. There’s a cynical theory (probably true) that if you put the word “leadership” into a book’s title it gives it gravitas.

Who’s it for? In this case, would-be leaders, who are still contemplating how to climb the greasy pole of corporate success. It’s written by the founder of Teach First (the largest graduate recruiter in the UK), and the self-confessed “best nappy salesman in Birmingham.”

Why read it? The author, Jo Owen says that the book, “takes some of the randomness out of random experience and lets you learn faster and better than your peers – this is your guide to accelerated leadership.”
What’s the style? Simple in the extreme : two or three pages per chapter peppered with lists and timely thoughts: e.g. “Cynical junior and middle managers are going to stay that way : cynical and junior. Or, “Boxes are for the dead not the living.”
… and the best advice. Take a look at Projects (page 219), helpful and a good place to start the book. It’s got some good practical commonsense that would-be leaders (or just plain Jane managers) would find useful to heed).
… and if only time to read one chapter? We’ll go for two please (as they are all very, very short). Chapter 8 (page 59) “Careers Versus Careering: Avoiding Death stars” and Chapter 9 (page 64) “How not to get Promoted.”

How MCE Rate it? Sadly, just three out of five. Mr Owen knows his stuff but just doesn’t engage the reader. The tiny chapters are annoying. And becomes more like a book of lists. The readers never has time to get settled in and enjoy the advice. Would benefit from a rewrite or refocus.

How to buy it?