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Theory U: Leading from the Future as It Emerges Paperback – January 1, 2009


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Theory U: Leading from the Future as It Emerges + Leading from the Emerging Future: From Ego-System to Eco-System Economies (BK Currents) + Presence: Human Purpose and the Field of the Future
Price for all three: $59.57

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 533 pages
  • Publisher: Berrett-Koehler Publishers; 1 edition (January 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1576757633
  • ISBN-13: 978-1576757635
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 1.4 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.9 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (46 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #42,039 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

In a world burdened with too much information, we are occasionally blessed with a genuinely new idea about how to perceive, think about, and act on our overly complex world. Scharmer's Theory U model of how to open our mind, emotions, and will to moments of discovery and mutual understanding is profound and much needed. Readers will be impressed not only by the depth of theory in this volume but also by the very practical approach that Scharmer provides us for enlarging our human capacity for growth. This will be an important book --Edgar Schein, Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus, MIT Sloan School of Management

This book is a must-read for all who are interested in the emerging future of leadership theory and practice. Otto Scharmer´s Theory U takes you on an exciting deep dive into the true center of leadership as a process of inner knowing and social innovation. With many tested and practical exercises drawn from a rich background of disciplines, this book will help you to discover and follow the path towards mastery on your own leadership journey. It pushes the envelope of current leadership wisdom and invites you to explore the strongest leadership tool there is: yourself. --Ralf Schneider, Head of Global Talent Management, PricewaterhouseCoopers

Otto Scharmer has given us a brilliant, provocative, and important book on the leading-edge of the "next big thing": integral thought. Highly recommended. --Ken Wilber, author, A Theory of Everything: An Integral Vision for Business, Politics, Science, and Spirituality --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

Praise for Theory U

"Scharmer's Theory U model of how to open our mind, emotions, and will to moments of discovery and mutual understanding is profound and much needed."
--Edgar Schein, Sloan Fellows Professor of Management Emeritus, MIT Sloan School of Management, and author of Helping "Pushes the envelope of current leadership wisdom and invites you to explore the strongest leadership tool there is: yourself."
--Ralf Schneider, Head of Global Talent Management, PricewaterhouseCoopers "The impact of the Theory U method on our organization is remarkable, but even more important is the amazing personal growth many leaders have experienced. Scharmer's work has allowed them to experience a new approach to the world."
--Marcia Marsh, Chief Operating Officer, World Wildlife Fund "Though many agree with Einstein's observation that `problems cannot be resolved at the level of consciousness that created them' the key question remains how to realize such a shift. Theory U offers a unique integral perspective combined with a practical approach to addressing the megaissues facing our world today."
--Jack Jacometti, Vice President, Global GTL Development, Shell International Gas Limited "This book is an inspiration. It gives definition to the mystery of the creative process."
--Eileen Fisher, President and Chief Creative Officer, Eileen Fisher Inc.


More About the Author

Dr. C. Otto Scharmer is a Senior Lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and founding chair of the Presencing Institute. He chairs the MIT IDEAS program, and co-founded the Global Wellbeing and Gross National Happiness (GNH) Lab. He also is a Vice Chair of the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council on New Leadership Models. He introduced the concept of "presencing" -- learning from the emerging future -- in his bestselling books Theory U and Presence (the latter co-authored with P. Senge, J. Jaworski, and B. S. Flowers), which have been translated into fifteen languages. His new book Leading From the Emerging Future: From Ego-system to Eco-system Economies (co-authored with Katrin Kaufer) applies Theory U to the transformation of business, society, and self. More information about Scharmer and his work can be found at: www.ottoscharmer.com and www.presencing.com

Customer Reviews

It is easy to read and I Love futuristic Books anyway.
Robert Taylor .
Theory U defines the processes of interaction, both internally and externally, and can lead the reader to a greater understanding of self.
Joy Baldree
This book is an essential read for anyone who works in a management or leadership role.
P. Petrie

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

82 of 88 people found the following review helpful By L. Zall on May 16, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I received the book a few days ago. I have ben reading for hours and hours, with just a few necessary breaks for digesting, reflecting, accepting and bringing my own thoughts together. This is one of the few books that is not just interesting when it comes to theory and methods. What makes it special is the mixture of theories and the authors own thoughts, experiences and break through thinking.

It has ben hard to lay the book aside, because it is so intense. And I know this is a book that I will read over and over again - with longer breaks under way - in order to have time for my own thinking. Soon it is time for summer vacation - then I will have lots of time to read the book again - at a lower pace - with the time to let my thougts wander. This is the kind of book that easily trap ones mind up to its own thinking.

To be more precise, what I found so interesting about this book:

- The Blind Spot - our unability to see our own weaknesses, what we do not understand and what we hide from.
- And, what is even more interesting: How to illuminate thr Blind Spot and make it clear to us how it stands in our way of dealing with life in a constructive way. We all have these Blind Spots - and we are unaware about them. Otto Scharmers openness in reveling his own Blind Spots through true life anecdotes made me see some of my own Blind Spots and gave me the will, the commitment and the power to face them. Facing them and seeing how they stand in the way of my True Self gave me the Willpower and Leverage to Confront them without hesitation or fear.
- Behind the Blind Spot lies possibilites to understand what we may be - what kind of a future we can create - in our Full Potential.
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58 of 66 people found the following review helpful By Christine Wank on July 8, 2007
Format: Hardcover
In his pioneering and brilliant book Theory U, C. Otto Scharmer, senior lecturer at the renowned Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is taking us on a journey to discover and fully use our sometimes hidden inner sources of generative power, creativity and freedom in order to address the current challenges and emerging complexities in the age of globalization. His book is a synthesis of more than a decade of diligent and in-depth research in the field of management and leadership asking how profound innovation and change comes into our lives, into working teams, organisations and even whole systems.

Scharmer proposes a new model for understanding and conducting profound change and deep learning. Instead of analyzing and referring to old patterns of the past which are often inadequate in addressing the current challenges of our time and which might be even part of the problem itself, his new focus rather is on learning from and bringing into life the best of all future possibilities - a process that he calls presencing.

The leverage and starting point of the journey are less a question of what we do or how we do something - it is much more a question of how we approach or attend to a situation before we actually do something: it is our interior condition, the so-called inner place where any social action is generated and comes into being. This inner place or source is decisive in shaping the quality and result of any social action.
It is exactly that perspective which is missing in our daily perception of the world, in management and leadership literature or even in science in general which is the reason why Scharmer calls it the blind spot of our time.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful By K. E. Schouten Faber on January 17, 2008
Format: Hardcover
A clear and concise view about leadership. A scientist who dares to incorporate spirtuality in his findings. It builds bridges between the businese world and the spiritual world. This is the way of the future and gives you the possibilty of really understanding the way to enrich your life in a corporate jungle. Every one, especially leaders should read this book.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Rolf Dobelli HALL OF FAME on February 22, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is an ambitious book. Leadership consultant and lecturer C. Otto Scharmer provides a theoretical framework for understanding the changes society faces and provides suggestions for institutional and personal transformation. Scharmer explains his process and its goals obsessively, even repetitively, walking you through multidisciplinary examples from his own experience, history and economics. He provides diagrams and breaks down his theories into numbered steps and rules. Still, you may find the book challenging, mainly because Scharmer is dealing with such large issues, but also because his ideas and vocabulary can get mystical. This book requires time and patience aplenty, but if you are open to such reflections, it could be for you. getAbstract recommends it to managers interested in personal change, organizational culture and futurism.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful By John Inman on November 24, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I was at a conference where Otto spoke just a few weeks ago and hearing him speak about Theory U and seeing his passion for the field was inspiring. I would say that this was not a book that I read, I studied it. Presence was an extraordinary conversation and this work helped me understand the depth and the power of the U framework in creating our future drawn from insights from the future.

This is not one of those fad books or consumer business books based on here is what I did so you should do it to. Understanding the U process is a journey and not something you read and go "do". I have a lot of learning and trying to do to start to realize the power of this framework. And there in lies the beauty of this work. I can revisit over and over again and I will never stop learning from the nuances contained within the book.

I highly recommend this book and Otto's other works if you are looking to help create sustainable changes in our world.
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