A Plethora of Book Reviews

I get the occasional request to review a book or two from publishers, PR folks and authors.

Normally, I get less than one request a month for reviewing books but over the last month I’ve received quite a few more….five to be exact.

Its usually pretty easy for me to read through one additional book per month on top of all the other reading I do but lots of things got in the way over the last few months, so and I wasn’t able to get to all the books as fast as I would have liked.

That said, I finally go through all five books and, rather then write up five different posts reviewing each book, I decided to put them all together here. So…here goes…

Oh…and cover of the last book is awesome…enjoy :)

Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter {affiliate link}

Multipliers - the bookThis is a pretty good book  by Liz Wiseman with Greg McKeown that describes the difference between two leadership styles that the authors call Multipliers and Diminshers.

A Multipler is a leader who is able to extract so much value from their direct reports, colleagues and coworkers while a Diminisher is a leader who tends to suck the energy, excitement and passion out of their direct reports and coworkers. Multipliers enhance the abilities of others while diminishers degrade the abilities of others.

While I thought the book was quite good, I found parts of it difficult to pay attention. I kept having to put it down and pick it up a day or two later.  This was due mostly to my inability to focus in sections of the book because I felt like some of the material was repetitive.

That said, this is a well written book. There are quite a few real world examples provided and some excellent discussion of leadership styles…well worth the read if you are into leadership books.

Lead Like Ike: Ten Business Strategies from the CEO of D-Day {affiliate link}

Lead Like IkeWritten by Geoff Loftus. I liked this book….but not necessarily because it offered great, actionable, ideas for leadership. I loved this book because it takes a look at the historical context around Eisenhower’s leadership styles and decisions he made.

I love history and history books and this one doesn’t disappoint.  That said, there’s not really a lot of actionable information in this book that you can’t find in every other leadership book out there.

Like I said..great book…if you like history.  If you’re a student of military history, military leadership or leadership in general, you’ll probably like this book.  If you’re looking for leadership and strategy advice I’d say find another book.

Leading at Light Speed: Build Trust, Spark Innovation, and Create a High-Performing Organization {affiliate link}

Leading at Light Speed Written by Eric F. Douglas.  According to the PR release, this book is a leadership book for anyone wanting to build organizations that perform at high levels.

Now…I think everyone wants to build organizations that perform at high levels. So..this book is for everyone right?

The book goes into the fundamentals of leadership and then describes ten ‘quantum leaps’ to take to become a better leader. Sounds awesome right?  Quantum leaps makes you think of physics…or that television show with Scott Bakula.

Douglas’ ten quantum leaps are nothing new really.  Things like ‘align the core values’, ‘lead through others’, ‘manage decisions well’ and ‘stimulate the creative flow’ along with others.

Like I said…the ideas aren’t anything new but they are delivered in a way that’s at least interested to read.  This book is well written and, although it uses some corny terms and doesn’t really market itself well, its not a bad book.   I can’t really recommend it though…while I liked the book, I didn’t find much in it that made me think or gave me new insights.

Be Bodacious: Put Life in Your Leadership {affiliate link}

Be BodaciousWritten by Steven D. Wood. When I first received an email about reviewing this book, I took a look at the title and was intrigued. I said yes and I’m glad I did.

I expected this book to be similar to those written by Patrick Lencioni and others…it was a bit different. The author uses stories to highlight various topics…and he does a pretty good job at it.

I loved this book…very very straightforward, honest and it definitely makes you take a second to think about your leadership style and your life.

While not a perfect book, I did enjoy it immensely and I think you would too.

Now…on to the last one.

Welcome to the Company (or what it’s really like working here) {affiliate link}

Welcome to the Company (or what it's really like working here)Dear lord…I love the cover of this book. I love that suit.

Written by Eileen McVety, this book probably has the best cover ever.

This book was actually sent along with Leading at Light Speed as a ‘bonus’ and boy was it a bonus.

I have to say this is one of the best books I’ve read in a long time. It’s not a prize winner, but for shear enjoyment and, at times, I found myself laughing out loud at what Eileen writes.

The book is based on a fictional company and is written to mimic a new employee on-boarding & procedures book.   Funny stuff…and for the most part its extremely true.

I’ll leave you with this quote from the flap of the book:

We’re confident you’ll find your employment experience at The Gordon Wiggins Group to be a richly satisfying one. Not overly confident, mind you. Like we wouldn’t lay money on it…but hey, it’s a job, right? So quit your griping.

Great stuff.  Highly Recommended.