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on November 18, 2005
The typical leadership book is filled with the same old techniques that leaders can employ to inspire, direct, persuade, and monitor the activities and results of followers. The premise of this book is different: leading leaders is a special skill, distinct from leading followers. Salacuse, a well-respected law professor and former dean of law schools at Tufts and Southern Methodist Universities, has done a fine job with this volume.

Even without all the great advice about working with the elite, with the experts, with the cream of the crop, the slam-dunk for me was the fascinatingly insightful comparison between the leadership styles of two people who held the same job at different times. Readers will thoroughly enjoy and benefit from Salacuse's side-by-side presentation of George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush. What dramatically different styles of leading leaders! The full-blown contrast of the two men was one of the most instructive lessons I've read in any management or leadership book. The theme was carried out through the book, gently reminding the reader that there are different ways of leading leaders...that will produce different results.

Readers accustomed to the ubiquitous List of Seven somethings that crop up in far too many books will not be disappointed. Salacuse gives us Seven Daily Tasks of Leadership. You'll learn how Direction, Integration, Mediation, Education, Motivation, Representation, and Trust Creation enable leaders of leaders to build meaningful one-on-one relationships with respected colleagues to generate success. Plenty of examples from various fields give the reader all sorts of personal connections.

You'll gain a lot from this book. Highly recommended.
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on November 25, 2005
Jeswald Salacuse is Professor of Law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. From 1986-1994, Professor Salacuse served as The Fletcher School's Dean. He also served as Dean of the School of Law at Southern Methodist University. In addition to his role as a higher education leader, he is a specialist on international negotiation and international law. Dr. Salacuse is an independent director of several mutual funds and a member of the Steering Committee of the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School.

Much of today's literature on leadership use sports or military analogies. Indeed successful Generals and Coaches often command premium speaker fees to speak to leaders about leadership. The presumption is that there is a technique that can be used to "inspire" "mobilize" "energize" and "direct" players to work together for the sake of the team.

Such programs can indeed be of value in hierarchical work systems.

But what about law firms, investment banks, accounting firms, physician practices, Boards of Directors, consulting firms, higher education and research organizations? Do these military-type models of leadership work?

Dr. Salacuse argues that leaders in professionals firms must "lead leaders" and not "troops" or "employees" or "players." By leaders, he refers to people who have an independent power base outside their organizational roles. That power base might be the marketability of their own talents, their network of contacts, their stature within their professions, their wealth, their ability to access clients/funding sources.

This book asks how can a leader lead leaders?

Dr. Salacuse employs political metaphors rather than military or sports analogies to make practical points. He reasons that politics is the art of managing other leaders who have their own power base and are not necessarily dependent on the leader.

He has a fascinating chapter on "the medium sends the message" and uses the different managerial approaches of President George H.W. Bush versus President George W. Bush to illustrate the concept. In organizing a coalition to go to war against Iraq, George H.W. Bush spent considerable time on 1:1 discussions with the phone with leaders. He appealed to the unique interests of each leader one at a time and used the phone as the primary communications tool and himself as the primary communicator. In seeking to form an alliance to go to war with Iraq, George W. Bush, on the other hand, delegated much of the communications role to others. He used broad appeals without customizing the message 1:1. Dr. Salacuse argues that the father represents the model for how to engage other leaders while the son represents the model for how not to do it.

In my own experience with CEOs who get fired by their Boards of Directors, I often find that these CEOs saw 1:1 conversations with Board members as side-track issues that prevented them from managing their companies. They often did not find the time valuable and it showed in their dealings with Board members. They preferred 1:1 chats with the Chairperson combined with memos and reports to everyone else on the Board. They felt that they could inspire the group at Board meetings rather than to use the Board meeting to ratify what had been worked out quietly in 1:1 conversations.

Dr. Salacuse has a fascinating chapter on how to make stars into a team. As a good negotiator he turns the topic upside down and asks leaders to first look at the issue from the perspective of the professions within the organization: how much should I allow integration to happen and how much should I allow this integration to damage my professional goals? This is the followers' dilemma. And leaders of professional service firms need to explicitly address making stars into teams by looking at the followers' dilemma first.

There are practical leadership suggestions for dealing with talented spoilers and how to constantly remind people about their common organizational history.

Laurence J. Stybel,Ed.D.



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on January 7, 2016
A very insightful book with some strong application potential. Salacuse skillfully directs leaders in how to work with those "elite" individuals they lead in ways that not only improve the organization but also empower its members. A somewhat quick read with practices that are feasible to initiate and truly bring about organizational and leadership development.
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This refreshing little book on leadership takes an unusual tack by focusing on how to lead leaders. This kind of leadership, says author Jeswald W. Salacuse, is different from all others. However, he explains, leaders occur at every level of an organization, so managers throughout the hierarchy will find his principles applicable. Salacuse's core idea is that you must discover the interests of those you wish to lead and then make it clear to them that you are serving their interests. This requires listening, personal attention, framing your objectives in their terms, and respecting their freedom and autonomy. Salacuse illustrates his ideas with examples drawn from history and contemporary politics. We recommend adding Salacuse's book to your leadership library.
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on September 9, 2013
Leading by following or following by leading. Finally a book, written by an outstanding academic professor, which gives in non-academic terms some tested practical guidelines on how to manage smart, talented, rich and powerful people and/or on how to lead leaders (insofar there would be a difference between these two processes). Although the book might be perceived as too "light" for an academic public, non-academic leaders will definitely find it useful to question, test and develop their leadership skills towards their followers.
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on January 21, 2010
I received this used book and was pleasantly surprise that is was in such good condition.

The book is awesome and gives very good ideas on leading leaders. Definitely worth investing the time to read it.
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on May 5, 2013
you need this book. Excellent insights into how leaders are influenced and what is a reasonable timeline for making changes.
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on April 27, 2015
Great book
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on March 31, 2006
I walk in to Barnes & Noble nad stroll over the Business section and there is a new book with a catchy title and subtitle; "Leading Leaders", "How to manage smart talented, rich and powerful people"

What you get is more of the Communists News Network (CNN) useless diatribe on how the war on terror and Iraq are failures and that the President can be held in contempt because we have the freedom of speech.

Mr Salacuse writing style is both reckless and irresponsile.

What a farce.
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on May 11, 2015
Needed the book for a Strategic Organizational Leadership Class. This book provided important tips on how to provide leadership and assistance to those who are already leaders. Helps us to help leaders and be respectful that they too possess knowledge and are capable or they wouldn't have an audience or followers.
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