The Good Struggle: Responsible Leadership in an Unforgiving World

The Good Struggle: Responsible Leadership in an Unforgiving World

by Joseph L. Badaracco Jr.
     
 

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Leadership is struggle

The question of how to lead successfully and responsibly is crucially important in our uncertain, high-pressure, turbulent world. In this book, Harvard Business School Professor Joseph Badaracco answers this question in practical and, at times, provocative ways.

Leaders today are surrounded by what Badaracco calls

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Overview


Leadership is struggle

The question of how to lead successfully and responsibly is crucially important in our uncertain, high-pressure, turbulent world. In this book, Harvard Business School Professor Joseph Badaracco answers this question in practical and, at times, provocative ways.

Leaders today are surrounded by what Badaracco calls “the new invisible hand”—powerful, pervasive markets that touch and shape almost everything. As a result, understanding the inevitability and importance of struggle is critical. And leaders must go a step further to create what Badaracco calls “the good struggle” in order to meet their goals at work, as well as their goals in life.

The Good Struggle helps you meet the relentless challenges of being a leader today by identifying the most important questions you should be asking yourself. New answers to these questions can be found by watching leaders in dynamic settings, especially entrepreneurs. The conditions entrepreneurs have always faced—intense competition, scarce resources, and unforgiving markets—are true now for the rest of us, and they offer valuable, practical lessons about struggling and succeeding in volatile and uncertain environments.

If “the joy of life is in the struggle,” as one thoughtful entrepreneur put it, The Good Struggle can help you find meaning in your work, stay focused on what matters despite the turbulence around you, and keep you on the path to leading successfully and responsibly.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
08/26/2013
How can modern civilization harness the powers of capitalism safely? Harvard Business School ethics professor Badaracco (Leading Quietly) wrestles with that difficult question in this short but wide-ranging discussion. The author divides the larger issue into five specific questions for responsible business leaders to ask themselves: “Do I know what I am really accountable for?”; “Do we have the right core values?”; “Why have I chosen this life?”; and others. These questions serve as guides in the morally ambiguous business world. The author’s ambitions are laudable—his execution, less so. The five questions he raises are incisive, but the answers he cites aren’t convincing, mainly because Badaracco seems oblivious to certain shortcomings of modern business. While the author accepts that some business leaders err because of their ignorance (willful and otherwise), he discounts the possibility of outright dishonesty and fraud. Despite these issues, Badaracco asks important questions, and it will be up to the readers to arrive at answers. (Oct.)
From the Publisher

ADVANCE PRAISE for The Good Struggle:

Gail McGovern, President and CEO, American Red Cross—
“Badaracco has written a valuable book that examines the evolving fundamentals of leadership in a contemporary world filled with greater uncertainty and more intense market pressures.”

Tom Stemberg, Managing General Partner, Highland Consumer Fund; Chairman Emeritus, Staples, Inc.—
“Joseph Badaracco defines the essence of success in building a business: Live with the reality one competes in, but never stop dreaming about what might be possible.”

Ann Fudge, former Chairman and CEO, Young & Rubicam Brands—
“Leading responsibly does not equate to leading successfully. It is indeed a ‘struggle.’ This book challenges the reader to develop the right path for the long term.”

Ronald K. Machtley, President, Bryant University—
“This book’s message is powerful: True leadership is forged from the personal crucible of struggle, values, and choices that justify the risks and time spent being a leader.”

Kunio Nakamura, former President, Panasonic Corporation—
“In this book, Joseph Badaracco poses vital questions for leaders. In these times of turmoil and uncertainty, leaders must face these questions head on.”

Daniel Vasella, MD; former Chairman and CEO, Novartis AG—
“Dealing successfully with VUCA—volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity—is inescapable for successful leaders today in their struggle to make the best choices for their companies, for their people, and for themselves. The Good Struggle provides an approach for leading responsibly amid all the diverging forces.”

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781422191644
Publisher:
Harvard Business Review Press
Publication date:
10/08/2013
Pages:
224
Sales rank:
751,706
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.00(d)

Related Subjects

Meet the Author


Joseph L. Badaracco is the John Shad Professor of Business Ethics at Harvard Business School. He has served as chair of the MBA Program, taught in executive programs in many countries, and has spoken to a wide variety of organizations on issues of leadership, values, and ethics. Badaracco has written several books on leadership, decision making, and responsibility, including Defining Moments, Questions of Character, and the New York Times bestseller Leading Quietly.

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