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on August 10, 2008
I purchased this book with hesitation, assuming it would fit the mold of other leadership fads and would wax poetic mostly using anecdotes and success stories. Happily, I was wrong. Kim Cameron has kept it to the essentials, while linking empirical research to effective leadership strategies - none of which are groundbreakingly new, but useful nonetheless. For anyone who has an interest in Appreciative Inquiry but is put off by it's new-ageiness, Cameron has drawn from similar concepts of Positive Psychology while using straightforward language any business person will find meaningful. If you're looking for more of the academic underpinnings, you may feel drawn to look up several of the studies referenced within the book for continued reading, as I did. If, on the other hand, you prefer a quick read and would appreciate having a cumulative checklist/action plan to help apply the suggested tactics, I strongly recommend this book.
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on November 9, 2008
A good leader can make mediocre workers good and good workers great. "Positive Leadership: Strategies for Extraordinary Performance" is a leadership manual encouraging managers to inspire and motivate their workers to new levels using the advice and tips contained within. With four principle strategies, he goes over their implementation and also gives advice on motivating oneself along with their employees. "Positive Leadership" is solid and recommended reading for anyone in charge of the productivity of others.
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on April 5, 2009
Positive Leadership introduces you to `positive deviant performance.' This is performance that is much more than plain old great performance. To use an example from this book, Cameron describes a government contractor who finished a job 60 years sooner than expected and 30 billon dollars cheaper than expected. You begin to envision what this positive deviant performance looks like and how it could transform your team. The good news is that according to Kim Cameron it is possible to achieve in most organizations. This book tells you how. It outlines the characteristics common to organizations producing such results backed up by his extensive research. I'd highly recommend this book, but if you are not sure you can listen to an interview first with Kim Cameron as he discusses this book at: [...]

Susan Stamm, Author, 42 Rules of Employee Engagement
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on October 13, 2009
Positive Leadership is a leadership guide for the 21st Century. Research shows how leadership is changing, even over the last 5 years. Today's leaders need to be skilled at developing and building relationships and connecting with people, to bring out that huge potential everyone has, but rarely offers. This book, Positive Leadership, is all about harnessing that hidden potential within people, but in a big way. Especially by accessing the right brain - the enormous intuitive intelligence we all have.

Instead of typical problem solving, which goes on today in 90-percent-plus of everything, whether it involves medicine, education, psychology or business, Cameron urges leaders not to ignore problems, but to set abundant visions. The world is fixated on fixing problems. However, what if we set our sites higher than just "normal," with intentions of achieving something extraordinary? As an example, in another book by Cameron, which he references in Positive Leadership, called "Making the Impossible Possible," he talks about the Rocky Flats nuclear arsenal, the most dangerous place in America at one time. A major analysis, costing about $18 million, to show what it would take to clean it up, estimated 70 years and $36 billion. But through positive leadership, over 200 innovations led to much more than just a clean-up - their abundant vision was to create a wild life refuge. After only 10 years, and a savings of $30 billion, their abundant vision came to fruition.

As a consultant, I use positive leadership tools in my practice and see people achieving extraordinary accomplishments - beyond the expectations of everyone. Positive leadership is all about creating positive emotions in people. Along the lines of emotional intelligence - but a lot more focused. Scientific proof shows how positive emotions enables people to think more broadly, quicker, and more accurate - leading organizations to having greater creativity, more capable and collaborative people, better and faser decisions and a greater competitive edge.

I rated this book only 4, instead of 5 stars, not for anything wrong. I felt is was a bit short and could've provided more on this important topic that needs to receive much more attention in the business community.
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on March 13, 2011
Despite its slender stature, at only 131 pages, Positive Leadership is definitely not a "light read". The book is reminiscent of a grad school term paper citing a great deal of research to support it's premise.

While it's true that the book does not offer the same cookie cutter approach to defining leadership, it veers into a discussion of the cardiovascular and hormonal systems as they relate to leadership. "...oxytocin (a health enhancing hormone) is released in the body leading to lower blood pressure..." This section of the book implies that a working strategy for positive leadership requires that the leader understand body changes as it relates to the work environment.

The book is also fraught with words which almost require an accompanying dictionary "... and engender a focus on virtuousness and eudaemonism..." The effort to be so technical and use such extensive vocabulary distracts from the book. Another example..."Empirical evidence suggests" Why is the evidence "empirical"?

The book has a lot of excellent points to make. I feel, however, that a lot of it is lost in the research type writing style and extensive word choice of the author.
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on February 5, 2010
"Positive Leadership" by Kim Cameron

Kim Cameron's book "Positive Leadership" is part of the avalanche of management and general business self-help books that have descended on the marketplace in the last twenty years. Cameron makes a clear break from the usual collection of inspirational stories, and simplistic or overused maxims i.e. "seek to understand and then to be understood" and "think outside the box".

"Positive Leadership" rises to the level of making you think, giving you ideas and inspiring action. These are the expected or normal outcomes when reading a book of this genre. It then rises above the norm--appropriate given the central theme of "positive deviance".

Cameron uses a more scholarly approach to the central goal--to explain strategies that move an organization from the level of ordinary success to extraordinary or "positively deviant" success. He cites real world examples of positively deviant results, and backs them up with empirical studies from the last forty years of academic research.

My sole negative feedback is the manner he employs to cite the empirical research. This kind of book is meant to be consumed by the manager stuck in an airport waiting for a flight, or by the business professional in their hotel room the night before a big speech. It is light on graphics and illustrations meant to help the reader seize on takeaways more easily.
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on March 26, 2013
Kim Cameron presents the research behind Positive Leadership in an easy-to-read and understand manner, formatting the book around the different pieces of Positive Leadership. Although a quick read, the book is chalked full of valuable information for anyone interested in learning more about the field or brushing up on their own leadership skills.
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on June 11, 2012
This book lacks any hard data and references so many other works, when making very general statements, that you'd be better served reading those than this insufficient summary / aggregate of one-liners.
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