Sunday, August 5, 2007

Review: Quiet Leadership - Help People Think Better - Don't Tell Then What to Do!

The book title definitely caught my attention, Quiet Leadership: Six Steps to Transforming Performance at Work by David Rock.

I recently read the book and liked it's concepts. Definitely consistent with my notion of Quiet Leadership.

In the book, Rock encourages leadership based on a six step program, namely,
  1. Think about Thinking
  2. Listen for Potential
  3. Speak with Intent
  4. Dance Toward Insight
  5. Create New Thinking
  6. Follow Up

I like the intent. Rock advises leaders to stop giving advice, ask questions, listen to understand and work collaboratively to come up with a solution. The approach is very consistent with the Lead Quietly approach.

I particularly like his "Think about Thinking" postulate. In this step, he encourages leaders to think about other people's thinking, not what they are thinking about but the way they think. This is truly critical thinking. His concept reminded my of the classic definition of critical thinking that comes from the 1989 work of Paul, Binker, Adamson, and Martin where they defined critical thinking as,

the art of thinking about your thinking while you are thinking in order to make your thinking better: more clear, more accurate, or more defensible.

I do believe that quiet leaders must be great thinkers but as Rock concludes, try to let other's thinking take center stage. He encourages that leaders should let other people think through the issues. This may start out as easy as asking of your teammates, "What do you think? What is your opinion?"

David Rock makes a good point in the book. And it can be simple!

Thanks for reading. Please lead quietly.


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