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Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting out of the Box

Leadership and Self-Deception: Getting out of the Box

4.0 93
by Arbinger Institute

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Since its original publication in 2000, Leadership and Self-Deception has become a word-of-mouth phenomenon. Its sales continue to increase year after year, and the book’s popularity has gone global, with editions now available in over twenty languages.

Through a story everyone can relate to about a man


Since its original publication in 2000, Leadership and Self-Deception has become a word-of-mouth phenomenon. Its sales continue to increase year after year, and the book’s popularity has gone global, with editions now available in over twenty languages.

Through a story everyone can relate to about a man facing challenges on the job and in his family, the authors expose the fascinating ways that we can blind ourselves to our true motivations and unwittingly sabotage the effectiveness of our own efforts to achieve success and increase happiness.

This new edition has been revised throughout to make the story even more compelling. And drawing on the extensive correspondence the authors have received over the years, they have added a section that outlines the many ways that readers have been using Leadership and Self-Deception to improve their lives and workplaces—areas such as team building, conflict resolution, and personal growth and development, to name a few.

Read this extraordinary book and discover what millions already have learned—how to consistently tap into an innate ability that dramatically improves both your results and your relationships.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“This is a profound book, with deep and sweeping implications. It is engaging, fresh, easy to read, and packed with insights. I couldn’t recommend it more highly.”
—Stephen R. Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

“Extraordinary . . . Five Stars.”
—Business Ethics

“This is the most profound and practical business book I have ever read! Everyone I have recommended this book to has been challenged intellectually and also touched emotionally. It is a must-read that I will give to my kids to read before they begin their careers.”
—Tom A. DiDonato, Vice President, Human Resources, American Eagle Outfitters

“I love this book. It identifies the central issue in all organizational performance. Like truth itself, this book reveals more with each re-examination. I highly recommend it.”
—Doug Hauth, Business Development Manager, Convio, Inc.

“Imagine working in an organization where the aim of your colleagues is to help you achieve your results. I could not believe it possible. After reading this book I just had to bring Arbinger to the UK to teach our people. What an experience! We are all better people for it. This book touches the very foundation of culture, teamwork, and performance.”
—Mark Ashworth, President and CEO, Butcher’s Pet Care, UK

“It’s rare to find a business book that is good enough to recommend to your boss, your work team, and your friends. The concepts in this book have transformed both the way I work and the way I live.”
—Robert W. Edwards, Managing Director, Sales, FedEx

“After decades of executive leadership in senior management positions,
I’ve finally found in Arbinger what I consider to be the best means of improving every measure of success. From boosting the bottom line to increasing personal joy, this book shows the way.”
—Bruce L. Christensen, former President and CEO, PBS

“This astonishing book is a MUST-read for every executive or personal and professional coach.”
—Laura Whitworth, coauthor of Co-Active Coaching, and cofounder, The Coaches Training Institute

“The concepts in this book are powerful. They are fundamental to success whether on the playing field, in the office, or perhaps most importantly, at home. Read this book and you’ll see what I mean.”
—Steve Young, two-time NFL Most Valuable Player

“Rarely has a book had such an immediate and profound impact on the hundreds of CEOs of fast growth firms we work with through our
MIT/Inc./EO Executive Program. And it’s one of those rare books that touches both the personal as well as professional lives of these leaders.”
—Verne Harnish, cofounder, Entrepreneurs’ Organization, and CEO, Gazelles, Inc.

“Leadership and Self-Deception is a touchstone for authentic leadership. Arbinger’s innovative exploration of what lies beneath behavior uplifts, enlightens, and transforms. We’ve wholeheartedly adopted Leadership and Self-Deception as the foundational material for our administrator development program.”
—Troy S. Buer, Educational Program Director, University of Virginia School of Medicine

“This is probably the most outstanding book that directs us to soul searching and introspection. It teaches us to take accountability for our lives and our destinies in a down-to-earth and bluntly practical manner. The lessons in this book have helped me personally, as well as other people I love.”
—Kalyan Banerjee, cofounder and Senior Vice President, MindTree

“The principles of Leadership and Self Deception provide the groundwork for our success as individuals and organizations. I recommend it highly to my fellow board members, to global networks, corporate clients, entrepreneurs, and individuals alike. “
—Heidi Forbes Öste, CEO and Founder, 2BalanceU and Public Relations, Europe Region, Business and Professional Women International

“Because it distills important leadership, spiritual, and life principles into one profound and impossible-to-put-down-book, Leadership and Self Deception is a treasure. MBA students in my classes share my enthusiasm for this rare book. You will surely return to this book again and again; and each time you do, it will be as penetrating a learning experience as the first time.”
—Barry Brownstein, CSX Chair in Leadership, University of Baltimore

“The leadership principles in this book have had a greater impact on the quality of leadership in our company than anything we have ever implemented. They have been extraordinarily important in helping make our company a great place to work while at the same time helping us focus on results and increase productivity as never before.”
—Michael Stapley, President and CEO, DMBA

“While reading, I reviewed my life, and, sure enough, what successes there were in it were based on Arbinger’s principles. This book is a tool that could transform and elevate the way government functions!”
—Mark W. Cannon, former Administrative Assistant to the Chief Justice of the United States and Staff Director, Commission on the Bicentennial of the U.S. Constitution

“Simple . . . clear . . . powerful. With many years of experience in leadership, organizational development, and training I was surprised to find something strike me with such impact.”
—Janet Steinwedel, President, Leaders Insight

“As a therapist I was pleasantly surprised to find that a book geared toward managers could have such far-reaching implications in my life and the lives of my clients. I believe the ideas in this book could transform the counseling profession. It is now required reading for all my clients.”
—Jason Beard, family therapist

“Are you relating to the world anxiously or angrily, not comprehending why you hold judgmental attitudes, feel uncontrollable fear, or unleash explosions of temper against your colleagues without being able to explain why? Do you feel hopeless and unable to change? Learn the practical tools provided in this fascinating book and eliminate this problem at its source right now!”
—Marcos Cajina Heinzkill, Certified Coach and Facilitator, founder and President, Renewal, Spain

“Remarkable. Arbinger possesses the hidden key to productivity and creativity. Do whatever you can to get your hands on this material.”
—Dave Browne, former President and CEO, LensCrafters

“This book is a rare gem that is treasured by all who have read it. The organization for which I work has passed this book to so many people, and it is amazing to watch peoples’ attitudes and behaviors towards each other changing. Each day everyone gives a little more, making us better leaders but more importantly better people.”
—Nuala Murphy, Senior Vice President, Global Financial Services Company

“Leadership and Self-Deception holds up a brutally honest mirror to behavior in which we all indulge to justify our shortcomings. The result is not self-remorse or punishment but a glimpse of a life to be lived with integrity and freed of the boundaries and constraints we inflict upon ourselves and others. I am always excited to watch Arbinger’s thinking help my clients to unlock painful family disputes and lead them to resolution.”
—Neil Denny, family lawyer, Wiltshire, UK

“A remarkable book. It can be valuable to your understanding of why so many people create their own problems, are unable and/or unwilling to see that they are creating their own problems, and then resist any attempts by others to help them stop creating those problems.”
—Robert Morris, Amazon Top 50 Reviewer

“I’ve been in the book publishing business for twenty five years. Rarely have I read a book as profound and life-changing as Leadership and Self-Deception.”
—David Sanford, Literary Agent, Credo Communications

“This book was recommended to me at an annual strategic planning session. I was stunned by the truth of it and the simple solution. Our entire management has now read it. It has been a building block for our personal and organizational development.”
—Rick Chalk, CEO, Cal-tex Protective Coatings

“My business partners and I built a health-care company on the ideas in this book. We are amazed at what it has helped us achieve. Careful reading and rereading of this book has proven better than any productivity, team-building, or leadership training we’ve encountered.”
—Mark Ballif, CEO, Plum Healthcare

“An important book that has the potential to change the way you think, behave, and live your life, both personally and professionally.”
—Rolf Dobelli, Amazon Top 50 Reviewer

“Our Executive Committee read Leadership and Self-Deception nearly two years ago. Since then every member of our staff has read it. The
Arbinger approach adds tremendous value as we grow the company and integrate companies we acquire along the way.”
—Robin Hamill, Chairman, Igility Group

Product Details

Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
Edition description:
Second Edition
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.70(d)

What People are Saying About This

Stephen R. Covey
Stephen R. Covey, author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

I've known the work of the Arbinger Institute for years. Arbinger's ideas are profound, with deep and sweeping implications for organizations. Leadership and Self-Deception provides the perfect introduction to this material. It is engaging and fresh, easy to read, and packed with insight. I couldn't recommend it more highly.

Meet the Author

The Arbinger Institute helps organizations, families, individuals, and communities worldwide to correct the trouble created by the little-known but pervasive problem of self-deception. Arbinger is led internationally by founding partners James Ferrell, Duane Boyce, Paul Smith, and Terry Warner. Headquartered in the United States, Arbinger now has operations around the world, including throughout the Americas, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, India, Oceania, and Asia.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

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Leadership and Self-Deception 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 93 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Leadership and Self-Deception helps you understand how your actions both directly and indirectly affect others. It certainly made me aware of how much impact something can have on your life and the lives of others, and I was able to see how I can improve my everyday life both personally and professionally for the better. This book goes to core of what it means to live in a world so consumed with ego and self-promotion that many times we are more concerned about how we appear today rather than what impact our appearances, actions and aspirations will have on ourselves.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A book that finds it's reader compelled to improve in every aspect of their life. This is not just a book that tells a story, but a book that brings life to the forefront and then tells you how to deal with it. REALLY DEAL WITH IT!
Guest More than 1 year ago
It took only one night to read and I could see where I was and was not 'in the box'. A powerful idea expressed with such simplicity--should be required reading for all leaders and the people they lead.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I couldn't put it down and neither could my wife. We both read it in a day. The insight is remarkable and I'll never be the same after having read this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
While I have been acquainted with the Arbinger material for 20 years, this book walked me back through many instances in my life when my heart has not been right with others. When I first learned this material, I was startled to discover the part I played with the 'problem' people in my life. I liked it better when I thought I was innocent. The most helpful aspect of the book's material was that it was presented in a way such that I didn't feel to defend myself. Instead, I felt to be completely honest with myself. The material has been encouraging and unsettling at the same time. I learned that I could improve myself and my relationships with others, but also that I had much to improve and repair. The thing I feared most, complete honesty, not just an accurate report of my self-deceived emotions, has turned out to be the most freeing experience. P.S. Twenty years ago I had a lot of bad days with only a few good moments. Now I have a lot of good days with only a few bad moments. Thank you again.
abundantdoc More than 1 year ago
I have read this book several times. I just finished going through it with my master mind team and now I am taking my staff at my Chiropractic clinic through this book as well. It is a fantastic look at what makes us tick, when we are in it and how to get out of it if it isn't working for us. I love this book and will read it again and again. Dr. McFarland
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a superb book that presents some life-changing concepts and principles in an easy-to-read novel format. As a therapist, I've been looking for a way to share with clients and co-workers the principles in this book without 'boring' them with psychobabel. This book is truly as applicable to individuals, couples, and families as it is to companies. It's one of the five top books on my 'Have to Read' list.
Yojimboe More than 1 year ago
This book/concept is foundational to all interpersonal relationships. No matter the setting home/family, work, church or any affiliations these concept will have real tangible effects. As always seemingly simple concepts take a great deal of work sometimes to implement. This is why I have bought 4-5 copies of this book and given them either to friends or to people of influence in hope they may spread the concepts and at the same time help me practice. This book is for everyone, not just the professional or those dealing with the public. This will affect your relationship with your spouse, children, friends literally every person you come in contact. It is told in a simple hypothetical scenario, practical on many levels. The follow-up book "The Anatomy of Peace" is excellent as well in applying these principles in understanding conflict resolution. I highly recommend this book too all. At the risk of losing some, when God says "Love your neighbor as yourself" here are practical tools on how to do that, enjoy!
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The book definitely changed my way of thinking for the better.
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English Comp 102 Kyla Hammond 12 June 2013 Leadership & Self Deception The main character is Tom Callum, a new senior manager for Zagrum Company. It took him eight interviews, three-weeks of silence and self doubt before he was actually hired. Tom is about to be introduced to the Zagrum ritual for all senior management, a day-long, one-on-one meeting with the executive vice president, Bud Jefferson. Tom, desperate to find out what the meeting will contain, tried gathering information from his colleagues, however their explanations confused him. They mentioned a discovery that solves “people problems,” how no one focuses on results, and that something about the “Bud Meeting” as it was called, led to the company’s success. In the past month, Tom was always the first to arrive and the last to leave. He was making a point to outwork and outshine every coworker who might compete for promotion in the coming years. He was ready to meet Bud Jefferson. Arriving in the main lobby of the third floor, he was greeted by Bud’s secretary, Maria. “You must be Tom Callum,” she said with enthusiasm. “Yes thank you, I have an appointment with Bud at 9:00”. He was asked to wait in the East View Room. A minute or so later, a brief knock on the door and in walks Bud. They greet and shake hands. Tom sits across anxiously awaiting for Bud to start the meeting. Bud immediately opens up with letting Tom know he has a problem, a problem he had to solve if he was to remain with Zagrum. This knocked Tom off balance. Bud informed him that he was self-deceived. Bud told Tom that he was “In the box,” (pg 3) which refers to when people see others as the source of the problem. People who are “In the Box” view themselves as center of the world and others as objects. This type of behavior demotivates colleagues and causes friction and fault-finding. Throughout the interview, Bud teaches Tom a variety of tools to be able to detect and overcome these obstacles by learning how to keep him “out of the box” Out of the box thinking requires the person to see others as people, not as obstacles or competition. They can see others and understand their feeling, hopes, and needs. This behavior motivates the people that work for Zagrum. The point Bud was trying to make is that people can always tell when they are being manipulated or outsmarted. People skills take work and they are necessary because your peers can tell if you are sincere. Your sincerity makes it possible to deliver the hard messages, and still be an “out your box” leader. Instead of focusing on what people are doing wrong, focus on how you can help them improve so you can work together toward a better solution. Of all of the problems in organizations today, self-deception is the most common and most damaging. Bud has these interviews to prevent Zagrum’s leaders’ from creating these problems and to improve teamwork and morale throughout the organization. Self-aware leaders make for a happier work environment. References Arbinger Institute (2000). Leadership & Self Deception
farmmom More than 1 year ago
This book is founded on lifelong principles presented in a fresh new way.....positive reinforcement!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This should be required reading in high school and college. There is so much content but it is not too lofty or theoretical. Very helpful. Will be reading more than once!
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was very well written, I couldn't put it down and I despise reading. This book has opened my eyes to some of the faults I have as a leader in business as well as the leader of my family. I highly recommend this book to anyone. I will be reading this book yearly.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago