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How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter


15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Can a book have a positive impact on the way you work? Multiply that idea by 10.

Editorial Rating



  • Innovative
  • Applicable
  • Concrete Examples


Everyone wants to elicit more from the people with whom they work (or live). Liz Wiseman and her colleague and primary contributor Greg McKeown show you how. They know you can draw more from people by making more of them – by multiplying their contributions. This book names the ways in which managers help others grow to become more than they thought they could be – or halt their growth and make them less than they wanted to be. Anchored in the research of the authors, as well as work from Carol Dweck and multiple-intelligences guru Daniel Goleman, this book will challenge you at every turn, adding value to your work and life. Readers with a natural distrust of dichotomies may question the ease with which the authors find a yang for every yin. For every “Challenger” there is a “Know-It-All.” For every “Investor” there is a “Micromanager.” Instead of being suspicious, think of these opposites as a continuum between those who “Multiply” and those who “Diminish” the talent around them. getAbstract recommends that leaders at all levels follow the suggestion of K.R. Sridhar, CEO of Bloom Energy: “I have zero tolerance if someone does not run the experiment.” If even a single person reports to you, run the experiment. Read the book.


“The Multiplier Effect”

If you’ve worked with leaders who are “Diminishers,” you know it. When they run a meeting, they shine and others around them grow dim. This style of leadership isn’t just bad for a team – it’s bad for the entire organization.

Leaders who are “Multipliers” rapidly advance the capacity of their followers, increasing the intelligence of individuals and groups. Productivity and innovation follow.

Research shows that Multipliers draw more effort, energy and achievement from employees. They don’t just access the best people have to offer; they “stretch” the best people have to offer.

Additionally, managers who are Multipliers make resources go further, stimulating a “new corporate logic: Utilize your workers to the fullest and you need not invest in ‘more resources’.”

Answer these questions:

  • Do you view intelligence as something just a few people possess?
  • When you attend a meeting, do you listen only to those who contributed something in the past?

Answering no marks you as a potential Multiplier. Answering yes means you might be a Diminisher (even if you didn't imagine you were).

The distinction...

About the Authors

Liz Wiseman, a former executive at Oracle, serves as president of the Wiseman Group, a consultancy where Greg McKeown is a partner.

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