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The Courage Solution

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The Courage Solution

The Power of Truth Telling with Your Boss, Peers, and Team

Greenleaf Book Group,

15 min read
10 take-aways
Audio & text

What's inside?

Learn to be brave enough to “tell the truth” to yourself and others at work and at home.

Editorial Rating



  • Applicable
  • Inspiring


Mindy Mackenzie, a senior adviser at McKinsey consulting, knows the value of courage. Abused as a child, she found the only way she could maintain her sanity was to excel in elementary school, high school, college and graduate school. As an HR specialist at Walmart, Campbell Soup Company and Jim Beam, she was often the only senior female executive in the room. She attributes her success to bravery and “truth telling,” and explains why these attributes matter to your career and personal life, even when they are hard to muster. She includes practical strategies, exercises, lists and worksheets to help you build your courage. getAbstract recommends her advice on candor and bravery to leaders and prospective leaders.


True To Yourself

“Telling the truth” gets short shrift in corporations. Being honest requires courage and a willingness to be vulnerable to others, but it confers many surprising benefits. First, your career success depends on your relationships: “with yourself, your boss, your peers and those you lead.” To move ahead, work to improve these relationships, especially your relationship with yourself.

“You First”

Hold yourself accountable and take ownership of everything you do, say and accomplish – or don’t accomplish, as the case may be. Your relationship with yourself demands courage and “truth telling.” Accept the fact that you create your own reality.

Successful leadership depends on authenticity, which demands being honest with yourself. You will never be truthful with others if you can’t be truthful with the person in the mirror. Face up to who you are and what you can become. See yourself as a work in progress. Everything comes down to the choices you make – today, tomorrow and in the days ahead. Positive change starts with being willing to transform yourself. Men have a tendency to avoid critical self-analysis. Many men are more comfortable with...

About the Author

Mindy Mackenzie, former chief performance officer at Beam Inc., is a senior adviser with the McKinsey consulting firm.

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