Why So Many Leaders Abdicate Their Most Important Responsibilities
Shay was still angry but shrugged nonchalantly as if to say, it’s not that big of a deal. “So, what am I wrong about?”
“You’re not going to want to hear this, but I have to tell you anyway.” Liam paused before finishing. “You might be working hard, but you’re not doing it for the company.”
“What the hell does that mean?” Shay wanted to know.
Knowing that his adversary might punch him for what he was about to say, Liam responded. “You’re doing it for yourself.”
New York Times best-selling author Patrick Lencioni has written a dozen books that focus on how leaders can build teams and lead organizations. In The Motive, he shifts his attention toward helping them understand the importance of why they’re leading in the first place.
In what may be his edgiest page-turner to date, Lencioni thrusts his readers into a day-long conversation between rival CEOs. Shay Davis is the CEO of Golden Gate Alarm, who, after just a year in his role, is beginning to worry about his job and is desperate to figure out how to turn things around. With nowhere else to turn, Shay receives some hard-to-swallow advice from the most unlikely and unwanted source—Liam Alcott, CEO of a more successful security company and his most hated opponent.
Lencioni uses unexpected plot twists and crisp dialogue to take us on a journey that culminates in a resolution that is as unexpected as it is enlightening. As he does in his other books, he then provides a straightforward summary of the lessons from the fable, combining a clear explanation of his theory with practical advice to help executives examine their true motivation for leading. In addition to provoking readers to honestly assess themselves, Lencioni presents action steps for changing their approach in five key areas. In doing so, he helps leaders avoid the pitfalls that stifle their organizations and even hurt the people they are meant to serve.
Great, short, powerful ideas but wanting more
I love Lencioni’s stuff, and this was no exception. The ideas in this quick-read are poignant and necessary. The sentences and paragraphs of genius are there, I just feel like I’m missing some clear next steps for solving the issues brought up.
The things leaders typically avoid like hard or awkward conversations, calling out behaviors, leading engaging and well-run meetings and more are great areas we need to be vigilant in. But I do wish there were some practical next steps to run a great meeting, have a hard conversation and so on.
I understand (and Lencioni even says it) those ideas could be a longer book in and of itself. But for me to love a book enough to share with others, I need some takeaways that help people take action. Recognizing these things is helpful and makes for great conversation in meetings, hut I found myself more hesitant to share this book to anyone not at an executive level in an organization.
If you are at an executive level of leadership in an organization, read this, we all need it. And if you’re a reward-driven leader, I’ll quote Bob Hope and just say your solution is “Stop it.”
I'm blown away as I see some of my responses, in Shay. Dont be afraid to ask yourself these important questions.
I read it in 2 short days but I believe it will have lasting impact on how I lead.