Paperback: 260 pages
Publisher: SEABURY BOOKS (February 1, 2007)
Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars See all reviews (110 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #38,361 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #38 in Books > Christian Books & Bibles > Churches & Church Leadership > Church Leadership #8647 in Books > Religion & Spirituality
This is perhaps Edwin Friedman's magnum opus -- or would have been, had he lived to see this to completion. Building on his earlier work in Generation to Generation and on a multitude of conversations he had been involved in since the publication of that work in 1985, Friedman was working on this book on leadership at the time of his death in 1996. Friedman's wife worked with several of his colleagues to bring the manuscript to print -- at least, the 300+ pages that Friedman had written by that point. The first five chapters are thorough; the latter five chapters are somewhat more sketchy; but there is enough material here that the interested reader can get a pretty good glimpse of where Friedman was headed.Friedman's thesis: there is a "failure of nerve" in American civilization today. "There exists," he says, "throughout America today a rampant sabotaging of leaders who try to stand tall amidst the raging anxiety-storms of our time. It is a highly reactive atmosphere pervading all the institutions of our society -- a regressive mood that contaminates the decision-making processes of government and corporations at the highest level, and, on the local level, seeps down into the deliberations of neighborhood church, synagogue, hospital, library, and school boards." This reactivity leads to what he calls a "leadership-toxic climate" that makes it exceptionally difficult for clear, decisive, well-defined leadership to function effectively. The book, he says, "is about leadership in the land of the quick fix, about leadership in a society so reactive that it cannot choose leaders who might calm its anxiety.
Note: This review originally appeared as a "You Be the Critic" column in the Rochester NY Democrat & Chronicle, 5/8/07:In 20 years of coaching executives, I've read scores of books on leadership. I continue to return to Edwin Friedman as the most insightful, realistic analyst of the dynamics that occur in the emotional soup we call the workplace.This book is not for the faint of heart. As the title implies, the antidote to a failure of nerve is courage. Courage becomes necessary once a leader begins to shift his/her own participation in the brokenness of the organization - e.g., to finally address a performance issue with a key employee. With this commitment to decisive, mature action, reactions are inevitable. Thus the need for courage: to persist in the face of those reactions.Leaders will discover keys to recognize the emotionality that contaminates all decision-making processes, and what is required to provide clear, decisive, well-defined action. Friedman offers a treasure trove of tools, concepts and principles (e.g., five characteristics of a highly anxious system) to help leaders diagnose complex situations and to determine what is helpful and what is harmful.Perhaps his most crucial contribution is the insistence that the leader focus on self: that is, in order to create transformation in a system, the leader needs to identify his/her participation in the present dynamic, and focus on altering his/her own role. Again, courage is a requirement here, but thankfully, focus on self diminishes the stress inherent in attempting to change others.
A Failure of Nerve: Leadership in the Age of the Quick Fix 21 DAY FIX: 30 Top 21 DAY FIX RECIPES with complete container count PREP IN 15 MIN OR LESS (21 day fix recipes, 21 day fix cookbook, 21 day fix book) The B12 Deficiency Survival Handbook: Fix Your Vitamin B12 Deficiency Before Any Permanent Nerve and Brain Damage Leadership: Leadership styles and techniques that will make you a better leader (Leadership books Book 1) IEC 60605-6 Ed. 2.0 b:1997, Equipment reliability testing - Part 6: Tests for the validity of the constant failure rate or constant failure intensity assumptions The Age Fix: A Leading Plastic Surgeon Reveals How to Really Look 10 Years Younger Strategic Leadership: Integrating Strategy and Leadership in Colleges and Universities (The ACE Series on Higher Education) Leadership for a Better World: Understanding the Social Change Model of Leadership Development Practicing the Art of Leadership: A Problem-Based Approach to Implementing the ISLLC Standards (4th Edition) (Allyn & Bacon Educational Leadership) The Basic Guide to SuperVision and Instructional Leadership (3rd Edition) (Allyn & Bacon Educational Leadership) Law and Ethics in Educational Leadership (2nd Edition) (Allyn & Bacon Educational Leadership) Effective Leadership and Management in Nursing (8th Edition) (Effective Leadership & Management in Nursing (Sull) Liderazgo principios de oro [Golden leadership principles]: Las lecciones que he aprendido de una vida de liderazgo [The lessons I have learned from a lifetime of leadership] Effective Leadership and Management in Nursing (Effective Leadership & Management in Nursing (Sull) Leadership Roles and Management Functions in Nursing: Theory and Application (Marquis, Leadership Roles and Management Functions in Nursing) Management And Leadership For Nurse Administrators (Roussel, Management and leadership for Nurse Administrators With Online Access) Tennis Strategy: How To Beat Any Style Player - Quick-Fix Book STOP Back Pain: Kiss Your Back, Neck And Sciatic Nerve Pain Goodbye! Sugar Crush: How to Reduce Inflammation, Reverse Nerve Damage, and Reclaim Good Health Anatomy and Physiology Study Guide: Key Review Questions and Answers with Explanations (Volume 3: Nerve Tissue, Spinal Nerves & Spinal Cord, Cranial Nerves & Brain, Neural Integrative, Motor & Sensory Systems, Autonomic Nervous System, Special Senses)