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Hacking Leadership: The 11 Gaps Every Business Needs to Close and the Secrets to Closing Them Quickly Hardcover – December 16, 2013

4.7 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“I love this book! Mike Myatt hooked me at the Prologue and had me engaged until the end. Hacking Leadership is insightful, stimulating, and entertaining—rich in wisdom and long on practicality. It has so many golden nuggets of learning that I know I'll return to it often for expert advice and counsel. Besides that, it’s just plain fun to read. My nomination for the short list of best business books of the year.”
Jim Kouzes, coauthor of The Leadership Challenge and Executive Fellow of Leadership, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University

“Mike Myatt's 'Hacking Leadership' is a must read... Mike combines insightful yet practical commentary with in the trenches leadership experience few can match. I would highly recommend this text to anyone looking to become a better leader."
Vijay Govindarajan, Professor at Tuck at Dartmouth and the author of NYT bestseller Reverse Innovation

"Mike Myatt's Hacking Leadership could well be the leadership book for our time, practical, plain speaking, robust and of the moment."
Stuart Crainer, cofounder of Thinkers50

“Leveraging his accumulated wisdom as a highly regarded executive coach, Myatt has beautifully moved to the far side of complexity of today's leadership challenge with simple, direct, timely and proven guidance for lifting every leader's ability to contribute and advance.  A must read for the aspiring leaders of today and tomorrow.”
Douglas R. Conant, Chairman Avon Products, Chairman Kellogg Executive Leadership Institute at Northwestern University, Former President, CEO and Director of Campbell Soup Company

“Hacking Leadership merits a place on every 21st century leader’s short list of must-read books. Written from the heart and the mind of the renowned leadership expert Mike Myatt, this remarkable manual for action will inspire you to your greatest leadership contribution in your work and life.”
James Strock, author, Serve to Lead, Theodore Roosevelt On Leadership, Reagan On Leadership, Former George H.W. Bush appointee as chief law enforcement officer for the U.S. EPA

"Hacking Leadership is a thought-provoking, status quo shattering jolt of leadership wisdom that can propel anyone in the direction of their full leadership potential. At a time when scores of people are content settling for What Is, Mike challenges us to ask ourselves, What If? Instead of simply writing another book on leadership, he's penned a powerfully persuasive narrative that reminds us the only limits to our leadership are those we impose on ourselves. Hacking Leadership is a must read for everyone!"
Brigadier General John E. Michel, Commanding General NATO Air Training Command-Afghanistan and author of (No More) Mediocre Me: How Saying No to The Status Quo Will Propel You From Ordinary to Extraordinary

“The ideas in Mike Myatt's Hacking Leadership will challenge you—but they are achievable and waiting for you to put them into action. Read this book, apply its concepts, and prepare to move light-years ahead in your leadership journey.”
Ken Blanchard, coauthor of The One Minute Manager® and TrustWorks!

“Every leader I know, including myself, has leadership gaps, and all of us need a resource and framework for not only identifying the gaps, but also a practical roadmap to help close those gaps. Hacking Leadership is an essential tool for every leader to have in their toolbox for working on their own leadership, and thus improving the team and overall organization. Mike reminds us all to not settle for the status quo, and the important role each of us have to be the change we seek. True leaders do something about it, and are willing to mix things up and hack away at their leadership, with the constant pursuit of excellence, and thus their true leadership potential.”
Brad Lomenick, President and key visionary, Catalyst, Author, The Catalyst Leader

“Mike's insights are logical, entertaining and well outlined.  Deep experience with a myriad of leaders enables him to understand the landscape, and his passionate pursuit of innovation lets him crack it open.  Hacking Leadership is a fresh take on what it means to be an effective leader and take action.”
Thomas X. Geisel - CEO, Sun Bancorp, Inc.

“Tremendous! Mike Myatt has written a superb book on leadership that is exceptionally timely and relevant for our world today.  This book is both deeply insightful as well as intensely practical—a rare combination. I will highly recommend Hacking Leadership to leaders everywhere, at every level, and in all walks of life.”
Stephen M. R. Covey, author of The New York Times and #1 Wall Street Journal bestseller, The Speed of Trust, and coauthor of Smart Trust

"Great leaders are aware of gaps and blind spots in their organizations, teams, and lives. Learn the secrets of great leaders when you read Mike Myatt’s Hacking Leadership!"
Marshall Goldsmith – 2 million-selling author of the New York Times bestsellers, MOJO and What Got You Here Won't Get You There

“All leaders have blind spots which they aren't aware of and these results in gaps in leadership. While not all gaps will have a major impact on how you function as a leader, some do and so it's important to know how to identify these and become aware of self imposed limitations and perceptual biases that you may have.”
The Economic Times

From the Inside Flap

Look up the verb to hack in any contemporary dictionary and you're likely to find as many as ten or more definitions, including: "to break up the surface of the ground," "to alter a computer program by accessing its operating code," "to cope with or manage successfully," "to clear a path by cutting away brush, vines, and weeds," and "to create innovative customizations to existing or outdated methodologies." For the purposes of this book, all of the above apply.

The follow-up to Mike Myatt's internationally acclaimed Leadership Matters, Hacking Leadership is for leaders who feel that their performance falls short of their potential and who want to know why. It's for leaders who understand that in business today, the rule is adapt or die. And it's for anyone who wants to expand their leadership acumen, or for leaders interested in shaping a sustainable culture of leadership.

While much of what you discover within the pages of this book will be new to you, some will be very familiar. As Mike explains, core leadership principles have remained largely the same since the dawn of time. The trick is learning how to integrate those principles with evolving leadership practices engineered for twenty-first century success.

Enter Hacking Leadership. It delivers a proven approach to identifying your blind spots and closing leadership gaps. This book helps you gain a sharper perspective on your performance as a leader; learn to challenge your presuppositions about leadership and who you are as a leader; gain deep insights into your perceptual biases and self-imposed limitations; and totally reframe your thinking about what it means to be a leader.

But that's not all. With the help of in-depth case studies chronicling his work with leaders at many of the world's leading organizations, Mike identifies the eleven leadership gaps which can be fatal to your health as a leader. These include gaps in the key areas of leadership, purpose, future, mediocrity, culture, talent, knowledge, innovation, expectation, complexity, and failure.

More importantly, he arms you with actionable leadership and management hacks to bridge those gaps in order to create a true culture of leadership within your organization and drive record-breaking bottom-line and top-line business results.

Offering a bold new approach to leadership development and powerful tools for achieving your full potential as a leader, Hacking Leadership is must-reading for anyone who refuses to think of leader as merely a job title, but as their life's mission.


Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (December 16, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118817419
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118817414
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 0.8 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (42 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #230,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Related Media

More About the Author

Mike Myatt, is a leadership advisor to Fortune 500 CEOs and Boards, is widely regarded as America's Top CEO Coach, recognized by Thinkers50 as one of the preeminent leadership thinkers globally, is the author of "Leadership Matters," a Forbes leadership columnist, a Senior Fellow at The Gordian Institute, and serves as chief executive officer at N2growth. His latest book "Hacking Leadership" (Wiley) will be available in bookstores everywhere on December 16th, 2013 and is available for pre-order now. Follow Mike on Twitter @mikemyatt

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition
I liked one of Myatt's columns in Forbes and so I bought the book.

The good part is that I'm learning from it. Myatt's thesis is that leadership is a form of service and not an avenue for personal glory. He has a lot of perspective and, though he doesn't back it up with any convincing data, it at least rings true.

The writing is terrible, though. It's repetitive and cliche-ridden. Imagine buying Myatt a few beers and sitting with him for a few hours while he rants to you about everything he knows about leadership. Imagine transcribing that conversation and publishing it as a book. That's what it reads like. You'd certainly learn something. But it's not what I expect when I buy a book.

After I saw the phrase, "People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care" for the third time, I did a Google search and found several columns that were pasted wholesale into his book. e.g.,

The irony of this book is that, while Myatt describes leadership as an act of service, he doesn't serve he readers well by making them slog through repetitive, poorly edited rants. Though he preaches the value of character, he doesn't tell us that much of his book is lifted without change from his free online columns.
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Format: Hardcover
While it is a business book, the applications for pastors and churches are endless. Pretty much any time he said "business" you could apply it to churches.

I could not agree more that churches have gaps in them and these gaps, if they go untouched, keep the church from fulfilling why God placed the church here.

Here are the gaps and stop me when you feel like it applies to your church or a church you worked at:

Leadership gap - "we don't have enough leaders or volunteers."
Purpose gap - "where are we going, why do we exist, why are we doing what we're doing?"
Future gap - "what is next, how do we reach the next generation, how do we make choices?"
Mediocre gap - "it's good enough for church."
Culture gap - "this gets at why things are done without thinking (ie. we've always done it this way)".
Talent gap - "who is being developed, how do you hire people, how do you raise up leaders."
Knowledge gap - "how do you communicate, do leaders and volunteers know how to make decisions that line up with the vision."
Innovation gap - "how will your church go to the next level and reach the next generation."
Expectation gap - "are ministries aligned or are they silos doing their own thing?"
Complexity gap - "how clear is your strategy, how busy is your church, how many layers and committees does it take to get an answer to a question."
Failure gap - "how does your church or leaders handle failure when it happens?" And it will happen.

As I said, incredibly relevant.

I love his writing style as well. He had one liners all over the book.
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Format: Hardcover
"Hacking Leadership" written by Mike Myatt is one of the many books on the market that talks about leadership, but certainly one of a small number of those that are worthy of your attention.

In these uncertain and stressful years we live leadership problem is particularly sensitive issue.
Regardless of the size or type of organization people are ascending through the hierarchy and often come to the position solely due to their formal qualifications, confirming Peter's principle that the organization members where promotion is result of achievement, success and merit will eventually be promoted beyond their ability level.
But the main issue is not this fact but its result when such situation occur and such leaders often don't bother to improve their capabilities but consider that persons who are below in the hierarchy must come to terms with it or leave the organization.

The problem becomes particularly visible in the small organizations, family businesses where the owner is at the same time main boss who thinks that just because he invested his money and time, he has right to say everyone what, when and how much they should do.
It's true that the leaders are born, but it is even bigger truth that even a person who isn't a born leader can work on it to get him his subordinates begin to perceive her/him as a person worthy of respect and following.

And in that sense, this book gives a lot of useful information for any leader, regardless of organization size, level and types how to fix those things that don't work well, how to improve ourselves as leaders.
Of course, it's first necessary to determine what is not working well, and that is the lack of many people who feel that due to their hard work they deserve to make many mistakes.
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Format: Hardcover
I enjoy reading books about leadership and finding ways to incorporate the learning into my own life as well as into the lives of the students I work with on a daily basis. Mike Wyatt has written a book that not only is practical in nature, but also pragmatic as well. This is a type of book that you will be able to pick up time and time again and find something new within it.

Mr. Wyatt also has written this book in such a way that you can easily follow his ideas/principles to make changes within your own life to become a more successful and efficient leader. The concepts that he shares are ones that can be replicated in any context in my opinion, which for me, makes the book even more valuable.

I loved the practical examples that he shares, and through these examples you not only see why he is an expert at what he does, but also why you should listen and learn from him.

While the book is dense and has a lot to share, you will find yourself re-reading sections to not only better understand the concepts, but also to soak in the meaning that is being shared so that you can internalize it better too.

This was a great book that anyone wanting to gain valuable insights on leadership will enjoy!

*I received a copy for review - all opinions are my own*
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