the shape of leadership

Three Recommendations for Fall Reading

Books to grow on this season

Influence Magazine on September 26, 2018

Servant Leadership in Action

Ken Blanchard and Renee Broadwell, editors (Berrett-Koehler)
Servant leadership
is a term Robert Greenleaf coined to describe leadership concerned with people development, not just profit maximization. Servant Leadership in Action presents state-of-the-art thinking about the concept. Editors Ken Blanchard and Renee Broadwell curate 42 short essays developing various aspects of servant leadership. Contributors include business leaders, organizational consultants and Christian ministers. The editors acknowledge Jesus Christ as the fundamental influence on servant leadership — as do many of the essays’ authors — but they write, “a major goal of this book is to prove that servant leadership has application in both secular and spiritual leadership in every kind of organization.”

The Hospitable Leader

Terry A. Smith (Bethany House)
People don’t tend to link hospitality and leadership. Hospitality is for the home, leadership for the organization. Terry A. Smith thinks decoupling hospitality and leadership is a mistake. “A hospitable leader creates environments of welcome where moral leadership can more effectively influence an ever-expanding diversity of people.” Smith roots hospitable leadership in Jesus’ teaching and example, but he shows how it has wide application in the Church, as well as other contexts. “Our world needs leaders who, like Jesus, sit in the middle of a great celebration and invite people in.” The Hospitable Leader shows readers how to do just that.

Leading From Your Gut

Dr. John Townsend (Zondervan)
Leaders often ignore their gut when making decisions. They believe it’s best to base decisions solely on external data, not internal feelings. Dr. John Townsend thinks that’s only half right. The premise of Leading From Your Gut is this: “Great leaders succeed by harnessing the power of both the external world and the internal world.” Along with developing the ability to interpret data correctly, in other words, leaders need to hone their intuition. To help them do that, Townsend outlines the five aspects that shape a leader’s internal world — values, thoughts, emotions, relationships and transformation.

This article originally appeared in the September/October 2018 edition of Influence magazine.

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