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Leadership from the Inside Out

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Leadership from the Inside Out

Becoming a Leader for Life


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Being a leader is not about what you do. It is about who you are.

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Kevin Cashman’s book on why personal development is essential to exemplary leadership is a classic. First published in 1998, this self-help manual quickly became a breakthrough business bestseller. This revised edition is now on the required reading lists of numerous universities and leadership programs around the globe. For this second edition, Cashman, a coaching consultant, conducted extensive new research. He asked corporate CEOs and company presidents to review his models of leadership and to critique his leadership propositions. Additionally, his firm interviewed corporate leaders to learn which areas of personal development they believe relate most closely to leadership. While some insights are obvious, others provide fresh ideas. The book offers a virtual coaching experience that will help you develop as a “whole person” and, thus, as a “whole leader.” getAbstract recommends this respected work to all leaders. It offers valuable insights, ideas, lessons and tools they can use to improve themselves, their employees, their organizations and their communities.


Three People Who Became Leaders from the Inside Out

The first example: An elementary school student named Peter suffered burns on 90% of his body. The nurses who cared for him constantly propped open his mouth and eyelids so they would not seal shut while Peter healed. The valiant boy spent a year in hospital undergoing painful rehabilitation. When he could finally walk, he visited other patients to reassure them that they also could endure.

After his discharge from the hospital, Peter began junior high in a school where he didn’t know anyone. On his first day, the other students in the cafeteria avoided the disfigured boy. Only one girl, Laura, approached Peter and welcomed him. As they ate lunch, she looked intently at Peter, hoping to discover the real person behind the gruesome scars. Remarkably sensitive, Peter responded to her inquiring gaze with these simple words: “Everyone is avoiding me because they don’t know me yet. When they come to know me, they’ll hang out with me. When they get to know the real me inside, they’ll be my friends.” And because of Peter’s indomitable spirit, that is exactly what happened.

The second example: The Toro Company manufactures...

About the Author

Kevin Cashman is the author of numerous leadership books, including The Pause Principle. He has advised senior executives in more than 60 countries.

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    R. M. 6 years ago
    Effective leaders must be comfortable with change; they must practice and teach agility and resilience. Bringing about positive change is never easy. It requires abandoning old habits and patterns and trying new approaches. Live totally in the present without worrying about the past or fearing the future. Pay close attention to unfolding events in your life yet keep the big picture in mind. Build “elasticity” through “mental-emotional stretching” exercises, such as noticing when you must adapt and thinking about how well you’re managing that process.
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    D. S. 1 decade ago
    This is probably one of the most useful books on the topic of Leadership. The basic idea is something we all constantly see in our own lives, from workplace to relationships in families and with friends: leaderhip attitudes and skills are integral / intrinsic to the personality. Hence, true leadership can only come from "the inside", and is not, cannot be, something to put "on top" of our persona.
    In order to acquire and learn leadership skills, there are very good examples and small to-dos suggested, which can help us to focus on what really is essential in every good leader. No wonder it made a bestseller and is used in that many university courses. A truly good read and a worthy reference / desk-companion.