Reading List (Update)

By | June 30, 2017

[June 30, 2017]  On this Reading List Update, I’m going to deviate a little from the typical leadership book review and recommendation.  Provided here today will be a more comprehensive look at one book (more in the future) that peaked my interest and with others who found it helpful for developing all levels of leadership.  Today’s book is Leadership by Rudolph W. Giuliani, former mayor of New York City.

Side Note: Please remember and take a look at Tom Copeland’s reading blog.  His website, which I highly recommend, can be found here:

Leadership, Rudolph W. Giuliani, 2004.

I literally read hundreds of books in a year; some I don’t finish while others I read twice or more.  This book by Mayor Giuliani is one of those that grabbed my attention because it was plainly-written and because it hit on all the major themes and skills that I believe to be important for leaders to adopt. I’m on my second reading.

Giuliani has his own style of leadership that comes out quickly but the book itself should not be dismissed because it was written by a politician.  Some will claim that most politician-written books are attempts at self-aggrandizement or to make lots of money; that is not the case here.  Giuliani was head of the largest city government in the U.S.; a large and very bureaucracy entity.  He shows us, using his own experience, how he succeeded at getting things done despite the problems he encountered or the poor attitude of those who lived in the city.  And, you don’t have to be a New Yorker to get what he’s writing about.

First, the setting in which Mayor Giuliani came to govern the city was terrible.  The city was ravaged by out-of-control crime and crippled in its ability to serve its citizenry.  New Yorkers suffered from a kind of malaise attitude about the city; they figured nothing could be done about the problems and so everyone settled into a ‘we’ll just muddle through” approach to life in the Big Apple.  Giuliani would have none of it and set out from day one to make big changes and he was not hesitant to tell the world about it.

Second, the book revolves around the terror attack on New York City, September 11, 2001.  He uses the attack and how he and his team worked to recover.  As a nexus for bringing together his leadership principles it works well.  He lays out 15 of them and explains each in detail.  Below are five of those I consider his core principles.

Third, his leadership principles work no matter what kind of leadership style you possess or desire to emulate.  Here are the top six (my opinion only):

  1. Have beliefs and communicate them.
  2. See things for yourself.
  3. Set an example.
  4. Stand up to bullies.
  5. Prepare relentlessly.
  6. Don’t assume a damned thing.

The book is highly recommended for anyone who has an interest in learning or teaching leadership.  It is also good to read how Giuliani, as mayor of NYC, navigated through the confusion, uncertainty, and fear immediately following the most destructive terror attack on U.S. soil.

Highly recommended.

To go to the full Professional Reading list, simply click on this direct link:

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Author: Douglas R. Satterfield

Hello. I'm Doug and I provide at least one article everyday on some leadership topic. I welcome comments and also guests who would like to write an article. Thanks for reading my blog.