Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Every Leader Is an Artist

O'Malley, Michael and Baker, William F. Every Leader Is an Artist: How the World's Greatest Artists Can Make You a More Creative Leader. New York: McGraw Hill, 2012.

Call no.: 658.4 Om1e

Publisher's Description:
Artists put their work on display for everyone to judge, accepting a position of vulnerability for want of something important to say and in the service of contributing to the common good. Artists bring people closer together by providing a forum for shared experiences. Artists challenge, excite, comfort, and motivate people, and they don’t learn their craft by reading about it in a book; they practice, push themselves and their means of expression, and execute, execute, execute.
These are exactly the same things effective business leaders do day in and day out.
In Every Leader Is an Artist, leadership experts O’Malley and Baker employ the “leadership as an art” metaphor to its conceptual limits: leadership is an art. Literally. And leaders are artists; they just happen to work in a different medium.
This groundbreaking look at leadership offers a completely new perspective on the age-old question: What separates the effective leader from the ineffective leader? O’Malley and Baker reveal 12 key characteristics shared by great artists and leaders, including:
  • Intention: Makes an express commitment to achieve certain exceptional ends
  • Authenticity: Expresses individuality and personal beliefs with honesty and transparency
  • Engagement: Challenges the intellectual capacities of employees and tests their abilities to develop creative solutions to problems
  • Imagination: Makes surprising and unconventional departures from the ordinary that create a new sense of awareness or understanding
  • Form: Diligently combines various communications, structures, and policies into a unified, coherent whole
“Collectively, these attributes make great leadership possible, or, in their absence, difficult,” write the authors. “Their presence does not assure leadership excellence, but it does set the range of potential.”
Providing the tools and techniques for developing these qualities, the authors provide vignettes that draw parallels between the personal qualities of famous artists and effective leaders.
Every Leader Is an Artist will make you see your own leadership characteristics with newfound clarity and help you build upon them to be the best leader you can be. After reading this book, you will never think about leadership and your responsibilities as a leader in quite the same way again.

Publisher's Book Page: http://catalogs.mhhe.com/mhhe/viewProductDetails.do?isbn=0071778578

Harvard Business Review blog review: http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2012/08/every_leader_is_an_artist.html