The 2nd Language of Leadership
Psychology Press – 2000 – 144 pages
This book focuses on the behavioral and personality areas that can be used to strengthen one's skills and to make wise decisions about when and how to lead. It was written for the working professional who wants to learn what he or she can do by working with their personality to become more satisfied with and masterful in their leadership roles. Good leaders have learned to succeed over time by acquiring the needed range of personal skills, much like one learns a second language. Geared for entry and mid-term leaders, this book is an empirically based training guide to acquire knowledge and implement a plan to help increase one's leadership skills.
Within the framework of 10 chapters, this book:
* promotes a shared recognition of the role that personality plays in leadership by reviewing a case study of representative leadership situation that both identifies familiar personal struggles and organizational changes;
* offers a way of thinking about how personality in general and the Big 5 in particular fills in the gaps and connects the pieces when it comes to how people become effective leaders;
* illustrates how--within the Big 5 framework--to use the 2nd language approach to leverage natural personality strengths and manage weaknesses in an effort to build greater leadership effectiveness;
* makes available 2nd language tools including effective intervention strategies and goal setting techniques based on enabling philosophies to understand what makes this approach accessible and practical to use; and
* reassures that most leadership failures are reversible and that through using the 2nd language approach, these inevitable and sometimes necessary setbacks afford clarity about how to use your style to the best advantage.
"There are three things that are really neat about this book. The first is that the authors firmly believe, with few exceptions, in the fundamental goodness of all humans. Furthermore, anyone can become a better leader….The second good thing about the book is the unique partnership of the authors--a psychotherapist and a management professor. The writing reflects both bodies of knowledge nicely. The third thing I like about the book is that the first author uses examples of himself."
"The 2nd Language of Leadership, authored by a clinical psychologist and management professor, gives new insight into the role of self in leadership. The well known Big 5 factors in Personality play an important role in one's leadership abilities. This important topic will be of interest to managers, students, and professionals."
—Bernard M. Bass, Ph.D.
Center for Leadership Studies, State University of New York at Binghamton, New Y
"This is the first leadership book I've seen that relies entirely on the Big 5 personality approach. This is timely, particularly given recent evidence that suggests several of the Big 5 dimensions are linked to effective work performance."
—Ronald Riggio, Ph.D.
Claremont McKenna College, Kravis Leadership Institute
"This eminently readable book accomplishes a genuinely useful synthesis. The authors' thesis--that effective managers must be fluent in both their own personality dynamics and in the sociology of leadership--helps explain why so many well-meaning executives run into trouble. More importantly, the authors provide a thoroughly pragmatic guide to the often overlooked elements that spell the differences between good intentions and competent leadership."
—Philip Erdberg, PhD
Corte Madera, CA
Contents: Preface. The Popcorn Chronicles. Personality: An Organizing Role in How Leaders Succeed and Fail. Personality Fundamentals and the Big 5 Concept. Three Languages of Leadership. 2nd Language Challenges. Leadership Development Strategies. Learning to Lead: The Good News. 2nd Language Goal Setting. 3rd Language. Where We've Been and Where We're Going. Appendix.