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Quiet Leadership: Six Steps to Transforming Performance at Work Hardcover – April 11, 2006


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Quiet Leadership: Six Steps to Transforming Performance at Work + Your Brain at Work: Strategies for Overcoming Distraction, Regaining Focus, and Working Smarter All Day Long + Coaching with the Brain in Mind: Foundations for Practice
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: HarperBusiness; 3.12.2006 edition (April 11, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060835907
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060835903
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.3 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #420,304 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A leader's job "should be to help people make their own connections," Rock asserts—a commonsense message he overcomplicates in this guide for executives and managers who want to improve employee performance. Rock, CEO of Results Coaching System, strives to legitimize his methodology with neuroscience, acronyms and catchphrases and gratuitous, Powerpointesque illustrations. But his writing style conflicts with his advice—keep it succinct and focused. Promising that his approach "saves time and creates energy," he details his six steps: "Think About Thinking" (let people think things through without telling them what to do, while remaining "solutions-focused"); "Listen for Potential" (be a sounding board for employees); "Speak with Intent" (clarify and streamline conversation); "Dance Toward Insight" (communicate in ways that promote other people's insights); "CREATE New Thinking" (which stands for Current Reality, Explore Alternatives and Tap Their Energy, an acronym about "helping people turn their insights into habits"); and, finally, "Follow Up" to ensure ongoing improved performance. Rock also explains how to apply the steps to problem solving, decision making and giving feedback. Perhaps Rock conveys his strategies more effectively in a seminar setting, but for busy executives, this guide (after Personal Best) is more likely to generate frustration than an " 'aha' moment." (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“This highly practical guide includes exercises for each major concept, giving readers a chance to practice what they’ve learned.” (Library Journal)

“Quiet Leadership will help you improve other people’s thinking, which is the best place to begin improving other people’s performance.” (Marshall Goldsmith, founder of Marshall Goldsmith Partners; named one of the 50 greatest thinkers who have impacted the field of management by the American Management Association.)

“Essential reading for any leader who has ever wondered ‘Why don’t people do what I tell them to do?.’” (Elisa Mallis, Human Performance Consultant, Accenture, London)

A quick and useful guide to a softer management style that draws on recent discoveries in the field of neuroscience (Continental Magazine)

More About the Author

I have been interested in 'what makes us tick' since as early as I can remember, and my personal interest in brain research has been there since my teens.

In 2004 I found that brain research provided a missing piece in our understanding of how to be more effective leaders, managers or coaches. I have now written three books based on what I have been learning, including Quiet Leadership, the text book Coaching with the Brain in Mind, and Your Brain at Work.

I coined the term 'NeuroLeadership' in 2007, and am now closely involved with running a global Institute that is involved in research and education around how to improve organizations through the use of neuroscience. Learn more on that at www.neuroleadership.org I also run a consulting and training organization at NeuroLeadership.com

I maintain an active personal blog at www.davidrock.net, as well as posting regularly on psychology today, on a blog called 'Your Brain at Work'.

I live between Sydney Australia and New York City, and have a wonderful wife and two beautiful young daughters.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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First half of book was very good.
JAK Reviews
I recommend this book to anyone who is an employer, manager, or any other leader.
Clint Stonebraker
The examples provided are clear and the insightful.
Barbara

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

188 of 230 people found the following review helpful By A management reader on June 23, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I purchased this book after receiving a series of promotional emails, and I had high expectations due to the level of name-dropping and implied endorsements. The book was promoted as giving a scientific brain-based explanation of leadership. I am a management and leadership professor and consultant who has researched and taught leadership theory, philosophy and practice in leading US and European universities for many years.

Unfortunately I found this was this is yet another pseudoscientific book on management and leadership offering over-simplified "magic bullet" six-step solutions, although one with an interesting spin, in that it uses neuroscientific research as a means of justifying and legitimizing the author's leadership development programs.

Pseudoscientists claim to base their theories on empirical evidence and take great pleasure in pointing out the consistency of their theories with past research and well-known facts.

Pseudoscientists do not recognize that such consistency is, in fact, not proof of anything at all, and they use previous scientific work as a means of legitimizing or justifying their own argument or products (for a detailed discussion of this issue see the excellent book Management Mumbo-Jumbo: A Skeptics' Dictionary - the UK amazon web site has a recorded sound clip well worth hearing).
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49 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Frank Hulton on September 1, 2006
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Quiet Leadership - David Rock

I bought this book encouraged by some of the positive reviews it received, and by the promise of the title, Quiet Leadership. I have long felt that effective leadership can be accomplished in "quiet", humble, and non-demonstrative ways and I was looking forward to the author's insights and contributions toward this leadership approach. This book disappointed me.

Mr. Rock presents his leadership development approach as six steps. Well enough. But when you actually read through chapters describing the six steps, you soon realize that his approach is more like twenty or so steps as each basic step is further broken down into sub-steps and in some cases, "models". A powerful aspect of good books on leadership is to present ideas, even if they are already well-known principles, in a simple and/or motivating manner. This book does not do this. Mr. Rock's approach is tedious and unnecessarily complex, and I found it hard to maintain my focus while reading the individual chapters.

Mr. Rock supports his approach by findings in neuroscience. This impressed me as superfluous. For, example, I think most astute, aware individuals understand that people bring different experiences and points of view to a situation. Now, from reading Mr. Rock, I understand that is because people have different and unique neural "maps". Ok, what's special about the neuroscience's insight here? Neuroscience is undoubtedly a complex field and most likely still has a long way to go before we understand everything there is to know about the workings of the brain. The assuredness and precision of Mr Rock's "findings" just don't seem appropriate to this kind of science as applied to leadership.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Dennis DeWilde on November 7, 2007
Format: Hardcover
When telling does not work, "Why not try asking questions?" might be another way to describe the "Quiet Leadership" approach advocated by training and coaching consultant David Rock in this book that describes his performance coaching methodology of leadership. Designed to get the other party to think, rather than react to your thinking, Rock presents his Six Steps to Transforming Performance as the six sigma of performance coaching. Others might describe the process as respecting the individual (looking for the positive and the possibilities) and using an active listening process to help them get clear on the issues, constraints, and possible solutions. However you say it, the thinking behind the coaching process is solid as a `Rock' and any leader interested in developing the potential of his/her people might pick-up some useful tips from reading this book.

Dennis DeWilde, author of
"The Performance Connection"
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By William H. Seidman on January 24, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Quiet Leadership is the best book I have read for tying the most recent advances in neuroscience to leadership behaviors, particularly coaching. Having worked with leadership and coaching for a long time, and just recently starting working with neuroscience, I am personally thrilled to see all of these tied together. I strongly believe that the use of neuroscience in all aspects of business will grow rapidly, so this is a very timely contribution. It is worth reading just for the first sections.

However, the coaching methodology of the Six Steps is too complex for me -- too many steps and substeps. These sections still have some value, particularly the ties to neuroscience, but I would recommend skimming those sections.
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