Living Your Leadership is an excellent guide on becoming a true leader.
Chris Ewing’s business book Living Your Leadership instructs on servant leadership that puts others first and transformational leadership that inspires true believers.
Ewing, a former air force officer and an educator, outlines how effective leadership arises from skills like emotional intelligence, humor, and inspiration. The book elucidates the difference between management and leadership, how critically important individual discipline and intrinsic motivation really are within a corporate setting, and why you must improve yourself before you can lead others.
The text contains original, evidence-backed ideas about the importance of self-knowledge, being authentic in all relationships, and nurturing subordinates through leadership, not management. Ideas are deeply developed—the logic of every recommendation is made clear.
The book seems particularly aimed at younger people, especially when it espouses concepts like mindfulness, critical reflection, and personal growth. It’s as much about self-improvement as it is about climbing the corporate ladder. Ewing touts self-knowledge and the humane treatment of others among other enlightened ideas that are often given short shrift in boardrooms and C-suites.
Sage aphorisms and observations run throughout, such as “few things are more harmful than negative self-thought,” “behavior flows from our thoughts,” and the acknowledgement that personal growth and workplace results take time. Well-researched, the book draws extensively from previous leadership literature, citing case studies and theories. It quotes experts and noted leaders, including Theodore Roosevelt and Colin Powell; it also draws wisdom from cultural heavyweights, from Shakespeare to Viktor Frankl. Personal anecdotes from Ewing’s military background also work well to illustrate the book’s points.
Insights feel earned, and the text’s passions are clear. Meticulously and lucidly organized, the book’s easily digestible chapters are divided into broader conceptual sections, such as “Leading Yourself” and “Leading Others.” Charts and graphs help to explain complicated conceptual ideas, such as triadic reciprocal determinism and Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.
More intuitive concepts, like the 90/10 rule that states that a person controls ten percent of what happens and reacts to ninety percent, are broken down for the audience, and the book ably explains how to put them into practice. Bulleted lists further clarify the material, and chapter recaps are useful for summarizing key points.
Some assertions and observations become repetitive as the book stretches on. Still, the book is nothing if not user-friendly, breaking up blocks of text with quotes, putting key summaries in bold, and keeping footnotes short and simple.
Living Your Leadership is an excellent guide on becoming a true leader—getting the most out of oneself, one’s employees, and one’s organization.
Joseph S. Pete
Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the author will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.