by Peter Block
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Book Reviews With a Twist
“Driver’s Ed for Today’s Managers” by Helm Lehmann
Helm Lehmann's approach to leadership in "Driver's Ed for Today's Managers “ is unique in that it provides the reader with what it will take to stay on the road in a time of constant change and focuses on the inter-relationship between both personal and organizational effectiveness. Most importantly, Lehmann emphasizes the critical significance of leadership skills from a whole person perspective rather than leadership skills as simply a role or part of a job description. As the role of managers and leaders in organizations continues to evolve with technological advances, strategic partnerships and dramatic re-definitions of work systems, Lehmann describes leadership strategies that will serve as the foundation for the defining leadership skills in the new millennium—creating opportunities and increasing personal choices. The book highlights six strategies for building personal leadership capacity and increasing your personal influence and leadership skills.
Strategy 1: Know when to be prescriptive and when to be
One of the strengths of the book is that, Lehmann uses practical examples and Road Tests to prompt you to look at the strategies with respect to the new road that lies ahead for all of us.
Favorite Quote: "Your perception of the world has the power to create opportunities or limit choice. “
Lasting Impression: The Road Test. It just couldn't be “Driver's Ed for Managers” without a Road Test. So gather up the keys and take your new skills for a spin. Lehmann provides you with a Road Test at the end of each chapter to make sure you can motor along with the best of the best. The Road Tests translate theory and ideas into practice. Each Road Test forces you to rethink your management assumptions and beliefs, tests your understanding of new ideas, offers ideas for practicing your newfound skills and reminds you of some key points you may have missed along the way.
Yet Another Lasting Impression: Examples from the World of Business. Lehmann leaves theory behind in both his Road Test and his Examples From the World of Business. The author provides real world examples in almost every chapter, some of which you will remember from business history and some from his own experiences that demonstrate his key points on the six leadership strategies. This is a useful aspect of the book since most people relate to and remember examples long after the book is closed. The examples along with his many other practical tips along the way provide the map for a successful trip.
This book is a great combination of theory, practice and relevant examples from the real world of business. The combination is effective and a useful addition to your toolkit for both new and seasoned managers who want to change their perspective on the future.