IN THIS GROUNDBREAKING BOOK, business and management expert Joel Kurtzman tackles the central question of leadership. What is common purpose? It is that rare, almost palpable experience that happens when a leader coalesces a group, team, or community into a creative, dynamic, brave, and nearly invincible we. It happens the moment the organization's values, tools, objectives, and hopes are internalized in a way that enables people to work tirelessly toward a goal. Common purpose is rarely achieved. But Kurtzman has observed that when a leader is able to bring it about, the results are outsized, measurable, and inspiring.
Based on Kurtzman's thirty years of experience working with global thought leaders and institutions, Common Purpose features personal interviews with some of the most dynamic, successful, and enduring leaders, including Joel Klein of New York City Schools, Simon Cooper of Ritz–Carlton, Ilene Lang of Catalyst, Steve Wynn of Wynn Resorts, Shivan Subramaniam of FM Global, Mickey Arison of Carnival Cruise Lines, Michael Dell of Dell, Inc., Richard Boyatzis of Case Western Reserve University, Tom Kelley of IDEO, and distinguished professor and author Warren Bennis.
In a world besieged by failures of leadership, leaders who hope to last must understand how to create sustainable, healthy organizations. With new insights on how to approach a leadership mindset, as well as how to implement it, Common Purpose sheds new light on the meaning of leadership, the crucial qualities of leaders, and most importantly, how to lead.
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Introduction: No One Leads Alone.
1 The Leadership Disconnect.
2 The New Rules of Employment.
3 Leaders at All Levels.
4 Internalizing What the Organization Stands For.
5 The Best Leaders Are Part of the Group.
6 Cultivating Curiosity, Not Complacency.
7 Creating a Culture of Leadership.
8 We re All in This Together.
9 How Leaders Stay Positive and Determined.
10 Leading Is a Mental Game.
11 Different Strokes for Different Generations.
12 You Don t Have to Be Ruthless to Lead.
13 Ideas Matter.
Epilogue: The Future of Leadership.
A Leadership Library.
About the Author.
"Through well–told anecdotes and strong logic, Kurtzman convincingly demonstrates that the essence of leadership is the ability to forge, from a disparate group of individuals, "a creative, dynamic, brave and nearly invincible we." How does one do that? Not by stepping out in front of the group, describing a vision, and leading the charge forward. Rather, Kurtzman′s ideal leader is deep in the mix of the organization, causing its values, objectives, and approaches to be internalized by decision makers at every level." (Harvard Business Review, January–February 2010)