Leading at a Higher Level: Blanchard on Leadership and Creating High Performing Organizations

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“Leading at a Higher Level translates decades of research and 25 years of global experience into simple, practical, and powerful strategies to equip leaders at every level to build organizations that produce bottom-line results. At Nissan, we have made these principles a core part of our leadership philosophy, better equipping our managers to bring out the great energies and talents of our employees.”

Jim Irvine, Vice President of Human Resources, Nissan North America

“At Southwest Airlines, we have always ...

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Overview

“Leading at a Higher Level translates decades of research and 25 years of global experience into simple, practical, and powerful strategies to equip leaders at every level to build organizations that produce bottom-line results. At Nissan, we have made these principles a core part of our leadership philosophy, better equipping our managers to bring out the great energies and talents of our employees.”

Jim Irvine, Vice President of Human Resources, Nissan North America

“At Southwest Airlines, we have always strived to lead at a higher level. We truly believe that profit is the applause you get for taking care of your internal and external customers. We have always insisted upon a happy, carefree, team-spirited—yes, even fun—working environment, which we think results in motivated employees who will do the right thing for their internal and external customers. Reading this book will make a positive difference in your organization.”

Colleen C. Barrett, President, Southwest Airlines

“If you want to have a great company, you don’t have a choice but to lead at a higher level. When you do that, you excite your people, they take care of your customers, and your cash register goes ca-ching.”

Horst Schulze, President and CEO, The West Paces Hotel Group, LLC; Founding and former President & COO, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, LLC

“Leading at a higher level is a must today if leaders are to rebuild trust and credibility, as we are doing at Tyco. This book will teach you how.”

Eric Pillmore, Senior Vice President of Corporate Governance, Tyco International

The definitive “Blanchard onLeadership”

25 years of breakthrough leadership insights in one extraordinary book!

From The One Minute Manager® to Raving Fans, Ken Blanchard’s books have helped millions of people unleash their power and the potential of everyone around them. The Ken Blanchard Companies has helped thousands of organizations become more people-oriented, customer-centered, and performance-driven.

In Leading at a Higher Level, Blanchard and his colleagues have brought together all they've learned about world-class leadership. You'll discover how to create targets and visions based on the “triple bottom line”...and make sure people know who you are, where you’re going, and the values that will guide your journey.

Blanchard extends his breakthrough work on delivering legendary customer service and creating “raving fans.” You’ll find the definitive discussion of the renowned Situational Leadership® II techniques for leading yourself, individuals, teams, and entire organizations. Most importantly, Leading at a Higher Level will help you dig deep within, discover the personal “leadership point of view” all great leaders possess—and apply it throughout your entire life.

For everyone who wants to become a better leader...

...in any company, any organization, any area of life

Set the right targets, follow the right vision

Focus on the “bottom lines” that really matter

Serve your customers at a higher level

Deliver your ideal customer experience, and create “raving fans”

Beyond ego: the way of the servant leader

Listen, praise, support, guide, and help your people win

Lead at a higher level. Lead your people to greatness as you create high performing organizations that make life better for everyone.

This book will guide you, inspire you, provoke you, and be your touchstone.

Ken Blanchard (coauthor of The One Minute Manager®) and his colleagues have spent more than 25 years helping good leaders and organizations become great, and stay great. Now, for the first time, they’ve brought together everything they’ve learned about outstanding leadership. Discover how to...

Go beyond the short term and zero in on the right target and vision

Deliver legendary, maniacal customer service, and earn raving fans

Truly empower your people and unleash their incredible potential

Ground your leadership in humility and focus on the greater good

For a long time, leaders have relied on Ken Blanchard’s insight, wisdom, and practical techniques. Now, he and his colleagues have delivered the leadership classic for a new generation: Leading at a Higher Level.

www.LeadingAtAHigherLevel.com

  

Contents

Introduction: Leading at a Higher Level—by Ken Blanchard  xvii

Section I: Set Your Sights on the Right Target and Vision

Chapter 1   Is Your Organization High Performing?  3

Chapter 2   The Power of Vision  21

Section II: Treat Your Customers Right

Chapter 3   Serving Customers at a Higher Level  39

Section III: Treat Your People Right

Chapter 4   Empowerment Is the Key  67

Chapter 5   Situational Leadership® II: The Integrating Concept  87

Chapter 6   Self Leadership: The Power Behind Empowerment  103

Chapter 7   Partnering for Performance  117

Chapter 8   Essential Skills for Partnering for Performance: The One Minute Manager®  145

Chapter 9   Situational Team Leadership  167

Chapter 10    Organizational Leadership  195

Chapter 11    Strategies for Managing a Change  219

Section IV: Have the Right Kind of Leadership

Chapter 12    Servant Leadership  249

Chapter 13    Determining Your Leadership Point of View  277

Endnotes  297

Organizational Change Readiness Assessment  309

Acknowledgments and Praisings  313

About the Authors  317

Services Available  333

Index  335

 

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What People Are Saying


Leading at a Higher Level translates decades of research and 25 years of global experience into simple, practical, and powerful strategies to equip leaders at every level to build organizations that produce bottom-line results. At Nissan, we have made these principles a core part of our leadership philosophy, better equipping our managers to bring out the great energies and talents of our employees.”
Jim Irvine, Vice President of Human Resources, Nissan North America

“At Southwest Airlines, we have always strived to lead at a higher level. We truly believe that profit is the applause you get for taking care of your internal and external customers. We have always insisted upon a happy, carefree, team-spirited—yes, even fun—working environment, which we think results in motivated employees who will do the right thing for their internal and external customers. Reading this book will make a positive difference in your organization.”
Colleen C. Barrett, President, Southwest Airlines

“If you want to have a great company, you don’t have a choice but to lead at a higher level. When you do that, you excite your people, they take care of your customers, and your cash register goes ca-ching.”
Horst Schulze, President and CEO, The West Paces Hotel Group, LLC; Founding and former President & COO, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, LLC

Leading at a Higher Level is a must today if leaders are to rebuild trust and credibility, as we are doing at Tyco. This book will teach you how.”
Eric Pillmore, Senior Vice President of Corporate Governance, Tyco International

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780132347723
  • Publisher: FT Press
  • Publication date: 11/9/2006
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 8.92 (w) x 10.92 (h) x 1.21 (d)

Meet the Author

Ken Blanchard has had an extraordinary impact on the day-to-day management of millions of people and companies. His phenomenal bestseller, The One Minute Manager®, has sold 13,000,000 copies. He is Chief Spiritual Officer of The Ken Blanchard Companies, an international management training and consulting firm he co-founded in 1979.

This book contains indispensable contributions from The Ken Blanchard Companies’ founding associates—Margie Blanchard, Don Carew, Eunice Parisi-Carew, Fred Finch, Laurence Hawkins, Drea Zigarmi, and Pat Zigarmi—and consulting partners Alan Randolph, Jesse Stoner, Susan Fowler, Fay Kandarian, Judd Hoekstra, and Scott Blanchard.

 

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Read an Excerpt

IntroductionIntroductionLeading at a Higher Level

Ken Blanchard

This past year, my wife, Margie, and I went on a safari in South Africa with some family and friends. Margie and I have been on a number of safaris over the past 20 years. This time I saw some things I'd seen before but never quite as vividly. What I observed is how vicious, competitive, and territorial the jungle is. If you've ever heard a lion roar, it brings chills up your back. When our long-time guide, Gary Clarke from Topeka, Kansas, imitates the roar, he shouts, "It's mine, mine, mine, mine!" That's because when the lion roars, what he's really saying is, "This is my territory. Don't mess with me." In fact, lions will kill their sons if they challenge their control over the father's territory.

The reason I saw this more vividly than ever before is that I had decided on this trip that I was going to find out as much as I possibly could about Nelson Mandela. We had been at a dinner party where people around the table were asked to share what person—of anyone in the world—they would love to have dinner with. It was a quick decision for me. I said, "Nelson Mandela. I would love to have dinner with a man who was in prison for 28 years and treated cruelly, yet came out of that experience full of love, compassion, and reconciliation." On the trip, I began to read Mandela's book Long Walk to Freedom.

When I compared what I saw in the jungle with how Mandela had reacted to his treatment, I realized that in many ways we as human beings are just intelligent animals. And being intelligent animals, we canchoose between being self-serving and serving. The animals in the jungle can't make that choice. A rhino can't get up in the morning and say, "I'm going to make friends with the lion today." It's just not in their temperament. And yet, just as Mandela did, we can make choices to live and lead at a higher level. But when you look at the leaders around the world—whether they're running countries, businesses, churches, educational institutions, or what have you—too many people are choosing to be self-serving rather than serving. Why is that? Because they don't have a different leadership role model.

When I contemplated this dilemma, my thinking took me back to my days in graduate school, when I studied Paulo Freire, a revolutionary from Brazil. He wrote a fascinating book called The Pedagogy of the Oppressed. Freire argued that the problem with oppression is that once the oppressed throw off the oppressor, the only leadership role models they have are the very people who oppressed them. Thus, the oppressed become the new oppressors. The ramifications of this are disheartening—not only for countries, but for every enterprise imaginable. This phenomenon creates a new breed of self-serving leaders overseeing a system where all the money, power, and recognition move up the hier-archy and away from the people the organization was established to serve.

I think the only answer to this recurring cycle is a different leadership role model. That's what this book is all about—helping individuals and organizations lead at a higher level.Leading at a Higher Level

What is leadership? For years we defined leadership as an influence process. We believed that anytime you tried to influence the thoughts and actions of others toward goal accomplishment in either your personal or professional life, you were engaging in leadership. In recent years, we have changed our definition of leadership to the capacity to influence others by unleashing their power and potential to impact the greater good. We made this change for an important reason.

When the definition of leadership focuses on goal accomplishment, you can think that leadership is only about results. Yet when we talk about leading at a higher level, just focusing on goal accomplishment is not enough. The key phrase in our new definition is "the greater good"—what is best for all involved. We think leadership is a high calling. Leadership should not be done purely for personal gain or goal accomplishment; it should have a much higher purpose than that.

What is a higher purpose? It is not something as internally focused and self-centered as making money. As Matt Hayes and Jeff Stevens contend in The Heart of Business, when it becomes obvious that profit, which is a legitimate goal, is the driving reason for being in business, everyone—stockholders, top managers, employees, customers, suppliers, and the community—quickly becomes self-serving, with a focus on their own agenda and personal enrichment. Employee loyalty and passion often go out the window as the point of work becomes simply to get as much as you can for as little effort as possible.1

What is the answer to this dilemma? A higher purpose—a key element of what we will refer to throughout this book as a compelling vision. In Hayes and Stevens' terms, it is outwardly focused, must require sacrifice—in other words, it takes precedence over any short-term goal such as profit—and is intrinsically honorable.

Leaders can be successful in the short run if they emphasize only goal accomplishment. What tends to fall by the wayside is the condition of the human organization. Leaders don't always take morale and job satisfaction into consideration—only results count. They forget what the point is. They don't have a higher purpose. In business, with that kind of leadership, it is a short leap to thinking that the only reason to be in business is to make money. There is an either/or added to people and results. Leaders falsely believe that they can't focus on both at the same time.

When you are leading at a higher level, you have a both/and philosophy. The development of people—both customers and employees—is of equal importance to performance. As a result, the focus in leading at a higher level is on long-term results and human satisfaction. Leading at a higher level, therefore, is a pro-cess. We define it as the process of achieving worthwhile results while acting with respect, care, and fairness for the well-being of all involved. When that occurs, self-serving leadership is not possible. Why?

Self-serving leaders think that leadership is all about them and not about the best interests of those they serve. They forget about acting with respect, care, and fairness for all involved. Everything is about their own self-interest. It's only when you realize that it's not about you that you begin to lead at a higher level.Why Are We Writing This Book?

We are writing this book for several reasons. First, our dream is that someday everyone will know someone who is leading at a higher level. Self-serving leaders will be a thing of the past, and leadership throughout the world will be composed of people who, as Robert Greenleaf said, "Serve first and lead second."2 We are writing this book to help make our dream a reality.

Second, the vision of The Ken Blanchard Companies is focused on leading at a higher level. This kind of leadership begins with a vision. Jesse Stoner and I wrote a book called Full Steam Ahead! about the power of visioning. To us, a compelling vision tells you who you are (your purpose), where you're going (your preferred picture of the future), and what will drive your journey (your values).

The purpose of The Ken Blanchard Companies is to help individuals and organizations lead at a higher level. Our mission statement reflects our new definition of leadership:

Unleash the power and potential of people and organizations for the greater good.

Our picture of the future is

  • Everyone is trained to lead at a higher level.
  • Every organization is led by people leading at a higher level.
  • People are motivated to lead at a higher level by observing people who lead at a higher level.

Our operating values are

  • Ethical—Doing the right thing
  • Relationships—Developing mutual trust and respect
  • Success—Operating a profitable and well-run organization
  • Learning—Always growing, inquiring, and developing

These values are ordered by rank. In other words, we won't do anything to improve the profitability of the company that is unethical or that doesn't honor the relationships we have with our customers, our people, our suppliers, and our community. We realize that making money is not the higher purpose of our business.

You might say that this all sounds like Pollyanna—overly optimistic. That may be, but these are the standards we have set for ourselves. And these are the same high standards we want to help you and the people in your organization reach through this book. Helping individuals and organizations lead at a higher level is our passion, for both your organization and our own.

Finally, in many ways this book spells out our leadership point of view. Extensive research shows that effective leaders have a clear leadership point of view and are willing to share with others these beliefs about leading and motivating people. We hope reading this book will impact your leadership point of view.How This Book Is Organized

Over the years, I have found that in organizations where leading at a higher level is the rule rather than the exception, people do four things well:

  • They set their sights on the right target and vision.
  • They treat their customers right.
  • They treat their people right.
  • They have the right kind of leadership.

This book is organized into four sections. Section I focuses on the right target and vision and integrates our work on the triple bottom line, the characteristics of a high performing organization, and creating a compelling vision.

Section II highlights treating the customer right and integrates our work on legendary service, raving fans, and customer mania. Today, everybody should realize that their customers are the reason their organization exists.

Section III focuses on treating your people right. This is where the rubber meets the road. If you don't empower your people and treat them right, they won't take care of your customers, and in the long run, you won't get your desired results. This is the longest section of the book, because your treatment of people is leadership in action. This is what The Ken Blanchard Companies has been focusing on for more than 25 years. In this section, we start with empowerment and then examine four leadership domains: self leadership, one-on-one leadership, team leadership, and organizational leadership.

Effective leadership of people starts with looking at yourself—who you are, what you stand for, and how you take initiative when you don't have position power. Without this kind of perspective, it's hard to be effective at one-on-one leadership, where building a partnership based on trust is key. Once you know how to work with individuals, you can begin to build a team and a sense of community. Leading a team is much more complicated than one-on-one leadership and is a precursor to engaging in organizational leadership, which is the most complex leadership domain.

Section IV zeros in on the right kind of leadership. Here we're not talking about leadership style; we're talking about character and intentionality. My travels over the years through organizations of all shapes and sizes have convinced me of two things: Effective leadership starts on the inside, and the right kind of leadership is servant leadership. This is a leadership not based on false pride or fear, but one that's grounded in humility and focused on the greater good. With the right kind of leadership, leading at a higher level can become a reality.

This section also includes our thoughts on determining your leadership point of view. This turns the focus to you. Here we assist you in pulling together many of the concepts you have learned and help you integrate and apply that knowledge to your own leadership situation.

Writing this book has been a labor of love. It pulls together our best thinking from more than 25 years of working together. It truly is Blanchard on Leadership. It includes not only Margie's and my thinking, but also all the wonderful contributions of our founding associates—Don Carew, Eunice Parisi-Carew, Fred Finch, Laurie Hawkins, Drea Zigarmi, and Pat Zigarmi—and other fabulous consulting partners who have really made Blanchard "the home of the authors," including Alan Randolph, Jesse Stoner, Fay Kandarian, Susan Fowler, Judd Hoekstra, and our son, Scott Blanchard.

We think everyone can lead at a higher level, whether at work, at home, or in the community. We hope that, regardless of your position, the size or type of your organization, or the kind of customers or people you serve, you will learn some important information in this book that will help you lead at a higher level and create a high performing organization that not only accomplishes your desired results but is a welcome harbor for the people you touch. May good come out of your reading of this book.

Ken Blanchard
San Diego, California
Fall 2006

© Copyright Pearson Education. All rights reserved.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Leading at a Higher Level—by Ken Blanchard  xvii

Section I: Set Your Sights on the Right Target and Vision

Chapter 1   Is Your Organization High Performing?  3

Chapter 2   The Power of Vision  21

Section II: Treat Your Customers Right

Chapter 3   Serving Customers at a Higher Level  39

Section III: Treat Your People Right

Chapter 4   Empowerment Is the Key  67

Chapter 5   Situational Leadership® II: The Integrating Concept  87

Chapter 6   Self Leadership: The Power Behind Empowerment  103

Chapter 7   Partnering for Performance  117

Chapter 8   Essential Skills for Partnering for Performance: The One Minute Manager®  145

Chapter 9   Situational Team Leadership  167

Chapter 10    Organizational Leadership  195

Chapter 11    Strategies for Managing a Change  219

Section IV: Have the Right Kind of Leadership

Chapter 12    Servant Leadership  249

Chapter 13    Determining Your Leadership Point of View  277

Endnotes  297

Organizational Change Readiness Assessment  309

Acknowledgments and Praisings  313

About the Authors  317

Services Available  333

Index  335

 

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 24, 2007

    Blanchard's 25-year cumulative definition of leadership

    Dramatic changes have altered the workplace over the course of the past 25 years, but many executives stick to outdated scripts even as corporate directions shift. Fortunately, The One Minute Manager guru Ken Blanchard offers insightful coaching exercises that give leaders new ways to proceed. Using straightforward language, Blanchard provides templates, examples and guidelines for employee education, performance reviews and promotions. The reader may become impatient with the repetition of key points and with Blanchard's slightly jarring habit of referring to himself in the third person, but despite these minor annoyances, this book is an excellent primer about modern leadership roles. In fact, Blanchard says that it 'pulls together the thinking from the Ken Blanchard Companies for the past 25 years.' We recommend this leadership overview to managers, board members, team leaders and every employee in a cubicle who aspires to reach higher levels.

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