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[Review] The Three Commitments Of Leadership

In the book "Three Commitments of Leadership: How Clarity, Stability, and Rhythm Create Great Leaders", authors Tom Endersbe, Jon Wortmann, and Jay Therrien - all of whom are learning and development experts - attempt to distil individual experiences and learning to piece together a model of leadership that can be applied to any organization, big or small. And they believe the best way to do so is to simplify accepted, well-entrenched leadership principles. Instead of looking at end-results - short-term profits, popularity, pleasing the board or bosses, for example - the authors argue that leaders should instead be obsessing over building lasting relationships with stakeholders that bring about those results. To that effect, they've streamlined leadership concepts into three main pillars:

Clarity.

They (Good leaders) know how to figure out what their people really want to do, and give them clear targets that meet their personal goals as they fulfill the organization's objectives. Think of the perfect customer service at Zappos because reps know what to do and like doing it.

Stability.

They know how to offer all the resources teammates need, and as they do, build a culture of trust in their organization where people actually like working together. Think Ernest Shackleton who brought one and one half tons of bacon as his Nimrod team set a series of records on Antartica.

Rhythm.

They know how to reduce or eliminate distractions for their people, so results happen as stress is reduced. Think Edison and his 1093 patent from a lab that hummed with teams of inventors for decades and birthed General Electric.     The challenge for most, of course, is to recognize that we are deficient as leaders is some way or another. If you do realize your own leadership pitfalls, and want to motivate teams, build a more productive and successful business, and generally be the kind of person others want to be led by, this book may be for you.

Daniel Goh is the founder and chief editor of Young | Upstarts, as well as an F&B entrepreneur. Daniel has a background in public relations, and is interested in issues in entrepreneurship, small business, marketing, public relations and the online space. He can be reached at daniel [at] youngupstarts [dot] com.

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