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Leading IT: Still the toughest job in the world, Second edition [Kindle Edition]

Bob Lewis
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $19.95
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $9.96 (50%)

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Book Description

What do IT leaders (and, really, all business leaders) have to do to build their organizations and move them forward?

The first edition of "Leading IT: The toughest job in the world" gave you specific, proven techniques for all eight tasks of leadership. The Second Edition adds more. A lot more.

If you like metrics, it's nearly twice as long. If you like useful metrics, it isn't just longer - it has twice as much useful, practical advice, covering a broader range of topics than the first edition.

If you prefer specifics to metrics, here are just some of the new topics covered in the second edition:
> The importance of focus and alignment.
> Why leaders have to control their time - and how.
> The Edison Ratio and why it matters (yes, this is a teaser).
> Why employees who can't fail can't succeed.
> Why 'Holding Employees Accountable' is a terrible idea.
> When and how to terminate an employee.
> The role of achievement in employee motivation.
> Why money is a terrible motivator but a terrific communication channel.
> How to measure the size of a team (hint: It isn't the number of members).
> Culture clashes and what to do about them.
> Lots and lots of new guidance on persuasion and facilitation.
> Leadership challenges new to the 21st century.
If you're tired of clichés and inspiring-sounding but empty rhetoric that's devoid of concrete guidance, this is what you're looking for: A relentlessly pragmatic book, designed to help you become a more effective leader.

Product Details

  • File Size: 608 KB
  • Print Length: 228 pages
  • Publisher: IS Survivor Publishing; 2 edition (September 18, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005P2HQGY
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #377,193 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read book September 16, 2011
By Nobody
I read the first edition of the book, and I wasn't that impressed. Don't get me wrong, Bob Lewis is almost always impressive, but the book itself didn't really have that much that was memorable in it. I had no intention of getting this book, figuring it was just a way of juicing up more sales, not substantially different than what I heard before. I get Bob Lewis' e-mail news letter and read his blog, so most of the ideas that end up in his books are developed there anyway. My boss got me the book.

Boy was I wrong.

You may already know that most everything Bob Lewis writes is worth reading, so you probably already want to order this book. Everyone who reads it will learn something from it, it is packed with a tremendous breadth and depth that there is no area of being a leader which doesn't get touched on, and in every case Bob catalogs and defines what to do and how to do it.

Those who are thinking about skipping this book, because they think it is "only" a second edition or because they didn't like the first book, or because they don't think they can learn something from Bob Lewis are probably the ones you will be replacing on your way up to higher leadership positions as they wonder where they went wrong.

(See page 176 of the book to understand the amateurish use of pronouns that someone like me who only read enough to be dangerous ends up producing).

This is not a book that needs to be read once, it is a book that needs to be read several times. It can make a huge difference in so many areas of leadership. Although the book uses IT in its title, it really is much broader than that.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive coverage of a difficult area September 18, 2011
By Jeevan
I am still in the process of finishing this work but felt I had enough of a grasp of it to be able to offer some feedback. IT is a ridiculously tough job -- mostly because there are few if any resources for IT leadership despite there being masses of resources for every other leadership quarter. And what little resources do exist are so dreary and dull that reading them is no treat. Bob recognizes these factors and identifies with the IT person instead of treating him or her like the "other" (which many authors do in order to appeal to mainstream audiences). His tone is consistently supportive and shows humor and wit -- just enough to keep the reading entertaining without it devolving into a semi-rant or a series of jabs against business. It is a very important factor to note that Bob is in this world and consults in the arena. He is not a journalist/business guru who is preaching based on general research and observation.

The only reason I didn't give this book five stars is because he is overly-comprehensive, in my opinion. There is a lot of information here that covers many arenas and yet is all jammed into a deceptively short book. The work will need some serious commitment on the part of the reader to really sit down and digest (and take more than just a handful of notes) to implement all that Bob is saying. Few will be able to remember the various issues explored and this is definitely not a book that would make a good "elevator pitch" in terms of what the main takeaway is. Such an approach is in contrast to the direction being taken by the majority of books in this arena. Given how busy executives are and the demands on time, readers rarely read entire books any more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Encompassing, entertaining, not only for IT January 23, 2012
By Dave
I've been reading Bob's articles for years and have always enjoyed his insight, breaking down problems and issues with a common sense approach that can be followed by just about anyone, within and outside of IT. His style of writing is entertaining and engaging. As an example, in the chapter about building teams, Bob reminds us of the team building success of Major Reisman in the movie The Dirty Dozen. Just about every chapter has something in it that will make you smile. When's the last time you read a management related book that you can say that about (Dilbert doesn't count)?

The book covers a broad topic, leadership, into easily digestible chunks without getting too deep in any one aspect, which I liked. I've read other leadership/management works that dive down into one or two aspects and found myself putting the book down after 100 or so pages or asleep on a plane wondering where I left off. The only complaint, and minor at that, is that I was hoping the book would be more focused specifically on IT leadership. While there are a few parts that do specifically address IT issues, I found the book more applicable to any organizational leadership than specifically IT.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By JJ Rock
I have read many management orientated books and usually hope to take away a few good ideas that I can use to improve my abilities as an IT leader. Those same books tend to pound a few ideas into my head in hundreds of pages.

Bob Lewis has taken the opposite approach. Cover all of the areas of IT leadership in a book packed with ideas and ways to immediately improve your leadership abilities.

A few examples. We live in a world where resume scanners are used to find key skills. Bob makes a strong argument for hiring the best people, not the best "Sack of Skills". Bob also talks abut common pitfalls in hiring new employees.

Bob does a great job talking about the importance of culture and how your behavior as a leader has a direct impact on the culture. Immediately following culture, Bob writes about how to motivate your staff. His chapter on motivation has the same impact of Daniel Pink's "Drive" book but in fewer words with tools that you can immediately use.

In short, this is one of those books that you read and immediately start to learn new leadership ideas or validate your own leadership style. Bob has written this book in his own unique (non-textbook) and enjoyable style with makes it a great read.
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More About the Author

Since the 1996 launch of his "Survival Guide" column in InfoWorld, Robert Lewis has been in the forefront of a guerilla consulting movement that rejects the orthodoxy of "running IT as a business" that has "internal customers." Instead, he advocates integrating IT into the enterprise, where it actively collaborates to improve how the business functions.

The award-winning author of ten books and more than a thousand columns, Mr. Lewis is one of the most respected advisers and commentators in the IT industry. He has held a wide variety of executive, management, and staff positions in information technology, manufacturing, product development, and business planning ... he was a practitioner before becoming an author and adviser, one source of his reputation for providing a unique blend of vision and pragmatism.

In 2001, Mr. Lewis founded IT Catalysts, a consultancy specializing in business change, IT organizational effectiveness, and IT/business integration.

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