Freedom and Accountability at Work: Applying Philosophic Insight to the Real World / Edition 1

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Overview

We live in organizations that are more interested in controlling and predicting behavior than understanding it. We view freedom as a problem to be managed rather than the essence of all motivation and creativity. If we can deepen our understanding of what it means to be a human being, we can become leaders who discover and create meaning no matter where we work or what we do for a living. Freedom and Accountability at Work is a provocative book on leadership and the workplace that celebrates leadership as a challenge in philosophical reflection as opposed to a set of behaviors and skills to be honed for success. Written in collaboration by noted philosophy professor Peter Koestenbaum and renowned business consultant Peter Block, Freedom and Accountability at Work is a leading-edge and practical book that draws on the co-authors' combined wisdom and expertise. Koestenbaum and Block offer you a new way of thinking about effective leadership. They present a deeper understanding of how to handle the most difficult of human emotions including uncertainty, anxiety, guilt, and anger. These subjective realities of each of our lives can become our allies and sources of strength if we view them from a philosophical viewpoint. Throughout the book, the authors make constructive suggestions for overcoming the feelings of helplessness and isolation that are a product of our technology-dominant culture. Freedom and Accountability at Work reveals how you can make the transition from a science- and psychology-based view of the world to an understanding based on philosophy and the search for meaning and ethics. The authors emphasize the power and value of deepening your appreciation, even changing your mind, about what it means to be human in a world that is driven by speed, technology, and quick-fix solutions. Integrating the wisdom and insights in Freedom and Accountability at Work into your everyday life can help bring meaning, purpose, and hope to your ever- changing and often chaotic world.

THE AUTHORS Peter Koestenbaum was a professor of philosophy at San Jose State University for thirty-four years. He has applied his knowledge of philosophy to business, leadership, management, marketing, and strategic thinking. He is the author of Leadership; The Inner Side of Greatness, Is There an Answer to Death?, Managing Anxiety, Choosing to Love, The Heart of Business, The New Image of the Person, and The Vitality of Death. Koestenbaum and Block are the co-creators of the videotape The Language of the Leadership Diamonda. Peter lives in Westlake Village, California. Peter Block, author, consultant, and speaker, has worked for more than thirty years with governments, businesses, and communities worldwide to bring service and accountability to a wide range of organizations and groups. Peter is the founder of two renowned training firms, Designed Learning and Block Petrella Weisbord. He is the author of The Flawless Consulting Fieldbook and Companion, Flawless Consulting, Stewardship, The Empowered Manager and The Answer to How Is Yes (2001). Block's office is in Mystic, Connecticut.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Both Koestenbaum and Block are such passionate men who bring together what we all seek in our work life-meaning, insight, and humanness. Bless them for this book." (Joyce DeShano, board chair, Ascension Health)

"Peter Koestenbaum's message of courage and accountability in the face of anxiety has struck a powerful chord. He and Peter Block have helped us see the very core of our contribution-compassionately confront people with their own freedom." (Kenneth F. Murphy, senior vice president, human resources, Philip Morris USA)

"Prepare to have your world rocked. Koestenbaum and Block take on the profound task of understanding existence and its place in organizations. You will never be the same." (Christopher G. Worley, director, MSOD Program, Pepperdine University)

"This book deepens the ongoing economic and social dialogue about balancing wealth creation with core human values. The authors' words offer encouragement to people in organizations who choose to elevate their work by using it as a vehicle to discover and strengthen the links between identity and industry, passion and prosperity, meaning and marketability, service and success." (Joseph A. Braidish, director, Kelley Executive Partners, Indiana University Kelley School of Business)

"Peter Koestenbaum brings the full force of his intellectual prowess to bear on the major questions of human existence. His insights are priceless even as they challenge some of our most deeply held assumptions about organizational life." (Camden C. Danielson, executive director, Kelley Executive Partners, Indiana University)

"This work is one of those rare business book breaks from the 'how to'to the what if?'. Block and Koestenbaum provide the foundation for a philosophy of hope for the work place for life; adding meaning to both." (Howard Schultz, cofounder, The Learning Consortium)

"This book is for the curious and the courageous. The curious will learn from a master philosopher and be intellectually challenged. The courageous will be asked to choose freedom and accountability. Be forewarned!" (Charlotte Roberts, author, Fifth Discipline Fieldbook, The Dance of Change)

"Tired of being held? and holding others' accountable? Disappointed that your time management system didn't reduce your stress? Think freedom in the workplace is an oxymoron? Then get ready to go deep, and emerse yourself in the wisdom of Koestenbaum according to Block." (Paul Anderson, dean, Northern California School for Managing and Leading Change)

"I've taught Peter Koestenbaum's leadership philosophy all over the world...and it works! Its broad and all encompassing...and brings a powerful message of hope to us in the workplace." (George I. Fitzpatrick, The Authentic Leader, teacher and practitioner)

"This is an important book by two important management thinkers. Peter Koestenbaum and Peter Block offer an alternative, if not an antidote, to the shallowness of 'speed, simplicity and (unwarranted) self-confidence' by challenging managers to think about freedom and accountability." (Robert M. Fulmer, coauthor, The Leadership Investment, Distinguished Visiting Professor Graziadio School of Business, Pepperdine University)

"Noted philosopher Peter Koestenbaum and author Peter Block present some new perspectives for seekers of meaning, insight and humanity in the work place." (Training, 12/01)

"It's perceptions are strikingly original, challenging the reader on every page to speculate and transform." (Napra Review, 1/02)

"Koestenbaum and Block present more in-depth information on philosophical tenets and do an outstanding job of helping readers see how to apply the ideas." (Choice, 2/02)

"...it provides deep an valuable insight..." (Professional Manager, March 2002)

"It belongs on your retail shelves and also in your backroom to be read and shared with employees." (New Age Retailer, May/June 2002)

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780787955946
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 8/1/2001
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 464
  • Sales rank: 541,037
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.03 (d)

Meet the Author

PETER KOESTENBAUM was a professor of philosophy at San Jose State University for thirty-four years. He has applied his knowledge of philosophy to business, leadership, management, marketing, and strategic thinking. He is the author of Leadership; The Inner Side of Greatness, Is There an Answer to Death?, Managing Anxiety, Choosing to Love, The Heart of Business, The New Image of the Person, and The Vitality of Death. Koestenbaum and Block are the co-creators of the videotape The Language of the Leadership Diamonda. Peter lives in Westlake Village, California.

PETER BLOCK author, consultant, and speaker, has worked for more than thirty years with governments, businesses, and communities worldwide to bring service and accountability to a wide range of organizations and groups. Peter is the founder of two renowned training firms, Designed Learning and Block Petrella Weisbord. He is the author of The Flawless Consulting Fieldbook and Companion, Flawless Consulting, Stewardship, The Empowered Manager and The Answer to How Is Yes (2001). Block's office is in Mystic, Connecticut.

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Table of Contents

Part One.

1. Experience of Freedom.

2. Choice, Reality, and Will.

3. Determinism and the Case Against Freedom.

4. Existential Understanding.

Part I: Implications.

Part Two.

5. Value of Anxiety.

6. Revelations of Anxiety.

7. Coping with Anxiety of Rebirth.

Part II: Implications.

Part Three.

8. Vitality of Death.

9. Revelations of Death and Failure.

10. Reality of Evil.

11. Coping with Anxiety of Evil.

Part III: Implications.

Part Four.

12. Two Kinds of Guilt.

13. The Problem of Meaning.

14. Constituting the Workplace.

Part IV Implications.

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