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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it's still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Lead to Succeed: 10 Traits of Great Leadership in Business and Life Paperback – May 15, 2001

2.9 out of 5 stars 11 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

You gotta hand it to Rick Pitino. In the few years he's been president of the Boston Celtics and the team's head coach, he hasn't led them back to anything remotely resembling their former success--and yet most of the examples and anecdotes he employs in Lead to Succeed concern his dealings with that very team. You can look at that refusal to play down his time with the Celts as a bold assertion that true success is measured in modest increments and not in stats and profits alone. But then again... would Warren Beatty, Dustin Hoffman, and Elaine May collaborate on a book called Lead to Succeed at the Box Office and then spend the whole time talking about Ishtar?

As it happens, most of the real-life scenarios Pitino uses to illustrate crucial leadership traits--like having a concrete vision; building a "team ego"; acting with integrity, decisiveness, flexibility, and consistency; maintaining focus and discipline; and acting selflessly--are taken, not inappropriately, from his experiences in college-level and professional basketball, which means the book will probably resonate most with those who follow hoops. But Pitino fails to break new ground in his choice of the nonbasketball figures he profiles, bouncing from Abe Lincoln, Nelson Mandela, and Pope John Paul II to Steve Jobs and Moses (who, Pitino quips, not only led well but "had a pretty good boss" himself). The few women you'll find cited here, such as Margaret Thatcher and Golda Meir, don't exactly conjure up images of a warm and fuzzy earth mother.

That said, you can't say Pitino doesn't have a clearly defined vision of good leadership, because he does--and his vision definitely falls on the old-school side, with a heavy emphasis on personal responsibility, self-discipline, a strong work ethic, and humility. He seems to see his role as Celtics coach as more disciplinarian than New Age nurturer, and indeed the majority of his Celtics vignettes recount how he brought an ornery, pouting, preening, or spotlight-hogging player (he seems to have a particular beef with standout player Antoine Walker) into line with his tough-love leadership. You also can't fault him for the unswerving, blunt-as-potatoes wisdom and experience he shares on such universally respected leadership traits as putting the team before the individual, total honesty, refusal to delegate the dirty work to anyone else, keeping one's word, and good old-fashioned scrappiness. "You have to stick to it," Pitino concludes in this B-ball-centric but honorable and serviceable guide for leaders of all sorts. And he's the first to admit he means that as much for his leadership position as anyone else's. Say what you will about the Celts, you gotta give the guy credit for that. --Timothy Murphy --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Library Journal

From the Boston Celtics president and author of the motivational best seller Success Is a Choice.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Crown Business; First Edition edition (May 15, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767903420
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767903424
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,453,342 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Mark Faust on September 28, 2000
Format: Audio Cassette
As a leadership consultant and coach of 10 years working mostly with the titular heads of authority in high tech organizations, I research constantly for new perspectives and training tools that could be of use to the developing leader.
This is an outstanding tool.
Those who won't review it well, are probably "anti" fans of Pitino and/or those who are offended by his strong beliefs and values. But if one looks at this work objectively and doesn't prejudge this man as "only a sports coach," then you will find a fountain of pragmatic insight.
I challenge anyone to find a more practical treatise on developing leadership. Not Warren Bennis, nor even Peter Drucker write with more direct pragmaticism than this natural born leadership genius.
And know that I don't follow basketball close enough to have been prejudiced in favor of Pitino. I began the book with great skeptism and ended in awe of this non credentialed genius' simplicity and applicability to the art and science of leadership.
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Format: Paperback
I didn't know much about Rick Pitino until reading his book, now I can see why he's been so successful in his profession. It isn't just accomplishing goals, it's the winning lifestyle that makes results happen that cause this to be a "quality of life" book. Pitino is passionate about what he does and the people with whom he works. He writes of the maturation process he had to endure himself before arriving at a more holistic view of genuine leadership. Such a person views the success of others in their organization as a mark of personal leadership.
This book is packed with "behind the scenes" insights on Patino paying his dues. The coach is so right about there being no substitute for experience. Pitino is a highly ethical man also. That theme is consistent throughout the book as well. This one will charge your battery. I give it my "a-ok" endorsement.
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Format: Paperback
"Lead to Succeed" suffers from the same problem that many leadership books do. Leadership is a combination of an individual in a context, and many of Pitino's examples either don't translate well from coaching to business, or then end up being very generic ("be flexible" - gee, thanks, never though of that ;-)) The other problem is that Coach Pitino uses examples of his principles in his leadership of the Boston Celtics - but his tenure with the Celtics was not a success. He's a great coach, but I think his experience proves that effective leadership is context based. He was great at UK, poor with the Celtics, great at UL, etc.

I absolutely loved his earlier book "Success is a Choice" which translates very well into business. I'd recommend the earlier book more than this one.
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Format: Hardcover
This is an amazing book from cover to cover. I wouldn't know where to start giving compliments on it. I've read several books over the years on business, motivation, and leadership. This book is by far one of the top reads. I strongly recommend it to anyone looking to improve themselves as well as those around them.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is not one of Pitino's greatest efforts. As a leadership book, it lacks a certain bit of inspiration that is key to a good leadership guide. He uses many of his experiences in coaching in the NCAA and NBA as how leadership can be applied to business and life. Overall, a decent book, but for inspiration and guidance there are better choices out there.
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By A Customer on May 21, 2000
Format: Hardcover
I met Rick Pitino this morning during his appearance at the University of Notre Dame to address the Class of 2000. He highlighted some of the salient points from this book in his address. As with many motivational and leadership speakers, he has his own formula for teamwork and effective leadership. The common thread for these tips is open communication. Having open channels allows you to tap into your team as a leader to get their input for the task at hand, to convey your needs of them as a leader, and to motivate and inspire them to achieve great things- even beyond their perceived potential. All in all, a very good read and great gift for anyone you know who is working in teams or beginning their management career.
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