Summary of Leading at the Edge

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Leading at the Edge book summary


7 Overall

6 Applicability

4 Innovation

9 Style


When British explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton was busy saving his crew after a shipwreck in the Antarctic in 1914, you would guess that he wasn’t thinking much about teaching leadership lessons. But author Dennis N.T. Perkins uses Shackleton’s expedition to show how the leadership principles the explorer exercised can be applied to your work. He even adds modern case studies as illustration. This excellent book is at its best when it describes Shackleton’s courageous rescue. He led his men to safety through a frozen wilderness by focusing on the ultimate goal of survival, setting a personal example, overcoming conflict, minimizing status differences, stressing teamwork and applying other essential leadership qualities. Though the principles may sound familiar, the book provides a dramatic new view of them, and it is written in a clear, crisp style. getabstract recommends it to all corporate explorers.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Which 10 principles Shakleton employed throughout his leadership;
  • Why good leaders are not defeated by setbacks; and
  • Why effective leaders recognize and celebrate even the small victories.

About the Authors

Dennis N. T. Perkins, Ph.D.  is President of the Syncretics Group, a consulting organization serving large corporate clients and focusing on effective leadership in demanding environments. He has a B.S. from the U.S. Naval Academy, an M.B.A. from Harvard University and a Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. Margaret P. Holtman  is director of employee development at Hartford Life. Paul R. Kessler is a managing consultant at Stromberg Consulting. Catherine McCarthy, Ph.D. , is a consultant with Organizational Psychologists.



Shackleton’s 10 Leadership Principles
In 1913 and 1914, two expeditions set out to explore frozen wildernesses. Canadian anthropologist Vilhjalmur Stefansson sailed in the Karluk to explore northern Canada, while Sir Ernest Shackleton sailed on the Endurance from the island of South Georgia...

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