Customer Reviews for

Leadership Is an Art

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 29, 2002

    A book from life

    Max De Pree (1992) in his book "Leadership is an Art" emphasizes the importance of relationships and values in leadership. According to DePree, ¿¿the art of leadership: liberating people to do what is required of them in the most effective and humane way possible¿. He discusses many key elements of Leadership. Creating and maintaining a health organisation culture I think is a foundation of the philosophy of De Pree. De Pree believes that each employee brings a unique set of gifts to an organisation and the role of leadership is to liberate and enable these gifts. The leader thought its behaviour and simple language can provide a clear vision that allows "intangible and crucial and fragile information" to guide strategy. Another aspect of leadership that De Pree gives importance is what he means covenant. The covenant according De Pree includes a set of rights between the members of the organisation. The rights include: to be needed, to be involved, to understand, to affects one's destiny to be countable, to appeal and to make a commitment.. Further, the covenant is founded on De Pree's concept of "intimacy". Intimacy according De Pree is a part of the experience of the ownership and is dependent on the leaders and employees beliefs. I think that the thinking of De Pree is affected form his personal and professional life. The leader is a facilitator not a producer of organizational success. The role of facilitator includes some unique responsibilities: Leaders should make a measured contribution. They must leave behind a legacy Leaders should generate momentum through a clearly articulated and shared vision Leaders should enable others and encourage leadership in others. Leaders should encourage participatory action where all members of an organization become committed to the organization¿s success Leaders must take a role in developing, expressing, and defending values De Pree supports that the leaders owe: The people of their institution A covenant to the corporation or institution A certain maturity The corporation rationality Leaders are obligated to provide and maintain momentum Leaders are responsible for effectiveness Leaders can delegate efficiency, but they must deal personally with effectiveness Leaders must take a role in developing, expressing and defending civility and values

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 11, 2002

    Quite Repetitive

    Depree really knows his stuff, but he says that same stuff over and over. Books like that lose my interest quickly. He also seems to have a big head on his shoulders about how great of a leader he is and how wonderful his company is. That's a bit of a turn-off for me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2001

    Joel DePres thoughts on Leadership is an art

    I thought this was a excellent book, It worked as a text book one to look at for answers and also was field with good stories. This book was writen well and I enjoyed it. Joel DePree Johnson And Wales University

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2001

    Learn the Art with a Cup of Hot Java

    This book is a quickie. Go to B&N, grab a Starbuck's Frappacino, and learn the art of leading people. It's a treasure from DePree, who knows his stuff.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2000

    I Only Give Three Stars

    As I was reading this book, I heard the author speaking to me and reading the words on the page. Unfortunatly, this author is not a good story teller. His sentences are short and undescriptive. Don't get me wrong, I understand that leadership is not the most exciting topic to write about; however, DePree didn't make it very exciting to read about either. DePree states in the introduction that, 'the book is not filled with anecdotes.' It is my experience that when a book does not include working examples of its main ideas, (other than examples within the company that the author works for) it becomes more of a textbook than an entertaining read. However, DePree seems to be a very intelligent man with many good insights into the aspects of leadership. In my personal opinion, the book is filled with intelligent thoughts about leadership, but could use a bit more 'color.'

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2000

    The Art of Leadership

    While relatively small in size, this book speaks volumes on how the spirit of leadership should be. Yes, it is idealistic and the anecdotes are entertaining, but I believe it also proves useful to leaders striving to understand how to lead people in a way that benefits everyone. This book aspires to articulate that leaders must transform themselves, not the people around them. He challenges leaders to look beyond what they need, and instead focus on what they owe. DePree has a self-described Participative Management perspective and it is the continuous thread throughout the book. He focuses on how to create a collective culture within the organization which is ideally made up of employee-owners who are the epitome of his affirmation of identity within an organization - not to mention a competitive edge in the marketplace. These lofty aspirations can be actualized in the organizational world by incorporating the idea of 'roving leadership' and use of organizational 'giants' which are people within organizations who need to be sought out and let run free . . . through the act of roving leadership. In an attempt to define leadership, DePree lays the foundation upon which he feels successful leadership should be judged. His criteria for a leader are not based on a set of interchangeable personality characteristics, but instead a compilation of what a success leader does to fulfill his responsibilities and debts to both the organization and to the people he works for. DePree gives us three specific sentences which I think are not only insightful, but sums up the book's whole philosophy, 'The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between the two, the leader must become a servant and a debtor.' A rational environment is based on 'trust and human dignity while providing the opportunity for personal development and self-fulfillment in the attainment of the organization's goals.' For this environment to become obtainable, it is essential leaders and employees trust each other to be accountable for doing their jobs. If proper work ethics and accountability become evident, trust is built and leaders then feel confident giving the space and freedom we are owed as employees. DePree also has a lot to say about leaders being debtors. Leaders owe it to the organizations they work for and the people within it to share their assets to help people reach their inert potential. The leader's various responsibilities and debts are dependent upon the things the people in the organization need, from their leader, in order to become sufficiently accountable. Granted while leadership comes with debts to the future, DePree states a leader's day-to-day obligations are to uphold momentum levels within the organization. Momentum seems to be a buzz word for DePree and it takes on various personas within the organization. It is a feeling among employees that their lives and work are intermeshed and maneuvering toward a conspicuous and genuine goal. The trick to having momentum is to 'begin with a competent leader, a management team strongly dedicated to aggressive managerial development, and opportunities.' Cultivating vision throughout the organization is a vital part of this philosophy and can be achieved through momentum as well. Momentum has many other uses and is delineated. Overall, the scope of DePree's analysis seems to be ample. However, I feel the depth of discussions on each topic barely scrapes the surface. While maintaining a continuous theme of focusing on the individual's needs, I found some of the points to be slightly repetitive as opposed to constructively detailed. I do however, like DePree's suggestion of observing employees for tangible evidence of outstanding leadership. According to DePree, praiseworthy leadership manifests itself primarily as reached potential, as employees who learn while on the job, and as employees who achieve tasks - just to name

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2000

    Send in your resume

    I thought that Leadership is an Art was an excellent book. It was concise and a very easy read. Through his example of the Herman Moiller Co. DePree showed how an employer can, by sharing in potential and utilizing employee creativity, benefit thecompany as a whole. It is leadership that can help individuials reach their potential. DePree brought up an interesting type of leadership called roving leadership. These are the leaders that are there when we need them. This book reminds us that as a leader it is important to be an enabler of others. After all, if those you lead are not successful and do not reach their potential, you as a leader are not successful either. Read this book and you will seriously consider sending your resume to the Herman Miller Co.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2000

    Basic Leadership

    Although this was a good read, and had a lot of great information, I think that it just skimmed the surface. This would be a good book for the beginner in management or leadership, but if you have already read anything on the subject this would mainly serve as only an affirmation to what you have already heard. DePree gives a lot of great testimonies to back up his information, and that helps make this an enjoyable read.

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    Posted August 12, 2010

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