Leading the Life You Want: Skills for Integrating Work and Life

Overview


“For nearly thirty years, my life’s work has been to help people like you find ways to bring the often warring aspects of life into greater harmony.” — Stew Friedman, from Leading the Life You Want

You’re busy trying to lead a “full” life. But does it really feel full—or are you stretched too thin? Enter Stew Friedman, Wharton professor, adviser to leaders across the globe, and passionate advocate of replacing the misguided metaphor of “work/life balance” with something more ...

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Overview


“For nearly thirty years, my life’s work has been to help people like you find ways to bring the often warring aspects of life into greater harmony.” — Stew Friedman, from Leading the Life You Want

You’re busy trying to lead a “full” life. But does it really feel full—or are you stretched too thin? Enter Stew Friedman, Wharton professor, adviser to leaders across the globe, and passionate advocate of replacing the misguided metaphor of “work/life balance” with something more realistic and sustainable. If you’re seeking “balance” you’ll never achieve it, argues Friedman. The idea that “work” competes with “life” ignores the more nuanced reality of our humanity—the interaction of four domains: work, home, community, and the private self. The goal is to create harmony among them instead of thinking only in terms of trade-offs. It can be done.

Building on his national bestseller, Total Leadership, and on decades of research, teaching, and practice as both consultant and senior executive, Friedman identifies the critical skills for integrating work and the rest of life. He illustrates them through compelling original stories of these remarkable people:

• former Bain & Company CEO and Bridgespan co-founder Tom Tierney
• Facebook COO and bestselling author Sheryl Sandberg
• nonprofit leader and US Navy SEAL Eric Greitens
• US First Lady Michelle Obama
• soccer champion-turned-broadcaster Julie Foudy
• renowned artist Bruce Springsteen

Each of these admirable (though surely imperfect) people exemplifies a set of skills—for being real, being whole, and being innovative—that produce a sense of purpose, coherence, and optimism.

Based on interviews and research, their stories paint a vivid picture of how six very different leaders use these skills to act with authenticity, integrity, and creativity—and they prove that significant public success is accomplished not at the expense of the rest of life, but as the result of meaningful engagement in all its parts. With dozens of practical exercises for strengthening these skills, curated from the latest research in organizational psychology and related fields, this book will inspire you, inform you, and instruct you on how to take realistic steps now toward leading the life you truly want.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

ADVANCE PRAISE for Leading the Life You Want:

Melinda Gates, Co-chair, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation—
Leading the Life You Want illustrates through compelling biographies the skills you need to…lead a life that truly blends meaning and happiness.”

Tom Gardner, CEO, The Motley Fool—
“A much needed surge of inspiration.”

Billie Jean King, sports icon and social justice pioneer—
“Stew Friedman shows how to harness your passions to pursue four-way wins—in your work, home, community, and most importantly, for yourself.”

Neil Blumenthal, Co-founder and Co-CEO, Warby Parker—
“Stew Friedman makes the idea of finding harmony between work and life not only possible, but practicable. A brainy yet conversational guide that offers inspired, effective solutions.”

Herminia Ibarra, Professor, INSEAD; author, Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader
“Absolutely wonderful. Read it, and you will be inspired to live and work like never before.”

David Allen, author of the international bestseller, Getting Things Done
“This is a great manifesto for getting it done. Bravo!”

Anne-Marie Slaughter, President and CEO, New America Foundation—
“Stew Friedman stands out as one of the few male voices in the field. He understands better than anyone else how leadership, life, and business can fit together.”

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781422189412
  • Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
  • Publication date: 10/7/2014
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 1,065,640

Meet the Author


Since 1984 Stew Friedman has been teaching at Wharton, where he is the Practice Professor of Management. In 1991 he founded both the Wharton Leadership Program—initiating the required MBA and Undergraduate leadership courses—and the Wharton Work/Life Integration Project. Stew served in the mental health field before earning his PhD in organizational psychology from the University of Michigan. In 2001 he concluded a two-year assignment (while on leave from Wharton) at Ford, as the senior executive for leadership development. Stew is the author of Baby Bust: New Choices for Men and Women in Work and Family (Wharton Digital, 2008) and Total Leadership: Be a Better Leader, Have a Richer Life (Harvard Business Review Press, 2014). The Total Leadership program is used worldwide, including by the 57,000+ students in Stew’s recent Coursera MOOC. He advises many organizations, gives high-energy keynotes, and is an award-winning teacher. The New York Times cited the “rock star adoration” he inspires in students. He was chosen by Working Mother as one of America’s twenty-five most influential men to have made things better for working parents, and by Thinkers50 as one of the “world’s top fifty business thinkers.” The Families and Work Institute honored him with a Work Life Legacy Award. Follow him on Twitter @StewFriedman and tune in to his show, Work and Life, on Sirius XM 111, Business Radio Powered by the Wharton School, Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. (EST).
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