- File Size: 396110 KB
- Print Length: 370 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1591848016
- Publisher: Portfolio; Reprint, Revised edition (January 7, 2014)
- Publication Date: January 7, 2014
- Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00G3L0ZTQ
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,721 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Leaders Eat Last Deluxe: Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don't Kindle Edition with Audio/Video
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I bought this book because 1) I am taking the step in my career of managing direct reports and so trying to consume as much useful content as I can, 2) it was recommended to me by multiple people, and 3) because a boss/mentor/friend of mine that I really respect loves Sinek’s “Start With Why.”
Writing: It’s not a fun or captivating read. He does not write to engage, entertain, surprise or delight readers. He is not particularly skilled with turn of phrase. I never laughed, or gasped, or really felt any emotion at all throughout this. This book (and perhaps Sinek) has no personality.
Content: Read the 2 and 3 star reviews already written here. It drones on and on about the same principle. This one company treated their employees well and everything went great for them. This other company treated their employees poorly and everything went badly for them. There are no practical applications to use in day-to-day life. If there are, I forgot them, because they were buried by chapter after chapter of the same stuff.
Extra insight on leading millennials: this part takes my review from 3 to 2 stars; it should not have been added into the book. At one point he says “this is not an older guy saying young people need to ‘do their time,’” yet that’s exactly what it is. He also includes tidbits like: take notes on paper, and don’t have your phone out on the dinner table. And then, at the end of his chapter on millennials, he includes advice to parents on limiting screen time. Sounds like his own vague agenda for the world, not advice on leadership. Also, Sinek does a really poor job of meeting people where they are. Screens are a major part of everyone’s life (not just millennials...) so trying to fight that and telling people they’re wrong for using screens, makes him come across as stodgy, holier-than-thou, judgmental, unrealistic, and not credible. Also, after a cursory google, it does not appear he has kids... so form your own opinion on whether he should be issuing parenting advice.
If he could take what he was trying to do with the millennial chapter (practical steps to execute day-to-day), NOT have done it for millennials (because most of his examples were crap, outdated, tone-deaf, over-generalized, condescending, and devoid of ANY nuance), and instead did it for the rest of the chapters, that would make this book a lot more useful.
A memorable segment was Sinek's discussion of our biochemistry as human beings involving endorphins, dopamine, serotonin and oxytocin. His explanation of the ways these chemicals differentiate us from all other species provided insight into our success as human beings by driving cooperation and receiving neurochemical benefits from advancing the greater social good.
Much of the book is not new, and Sinek tends to make broad generalizations that could easily be challenged. But as a conversation starter, the book is a refreshing addition to leadership literature and brings some new information and perspective to a discussion of leadership, while prompting consideration of broader issues of the values modern society embraces.
Top international reviews
This is classic Simon Sinek. He has no expertise - he's neither a top executive, nor a top business journalist, nor a top business researcher, but just makes stuff up and makes it sound good like the advertising executive that he is. He did this with Start With Why (but now claims Apple is an evil company that pays insufficient tax, even though he praised it in SWW) and repeats the formula here. Some of his arguments are completely ludicrous. He claims Wells Fargo is an ethical, motivating company founded on a Why rather than targets. This has been shown to be patently false as targets are what caused Wells Fargo to open fake bank accounts. Moreover, his argument for how Wells Fargo motivated employees was that a customer would come in and tell them a story of how their loan changed their life by allowing them to pay off a debt. He claims that Wells Fargo serves some higher purpose by doing this - when all it is is giving a customer debt to pay off debt, so the customer is just as indebted as before.
Sinek offers a brief explanation of how psychology and biochemistry guide our choices and behaviours. He then develops this by proposing his ‘Circle of Safety’ theory of human behaviour, and relates this to working environments. I found this part of the book the most compelling. Although not intended to be an academic text, he grounds his theory in scientific evidence, expressed in uncomplicated straightforward language. He also provides real-world examples to develop your understanding and to place his explanations firmly within a work or business context.
Further into the book historical context is given to support the observation that workplace cultures change along with the psychologies of those that inhabit them- I found this worthy of reflection, although it was a little long and tedious in places. Whilst not an instruction manual for creating workplace trust, nor a presentation of ‘The Business Case for Workplace Altruism’ it is possible to glean ‘dos and don’ts’ from the many case studies given.
Whilst undeniably hopeful, there are several areas for improvement. The book lost 2 stars because the examples became repetitive after the first few chapters; I found them excessive and unnecessary. They didn’t add anything to the argument being made. The structure and pace of the book also left much to be desired. I kept reading hoping that the last two-thirds of the book would show a development of the author’s ideas, but they merely re-stated the first third with another gush of case studies.
I think the ideas in this text would have been expressed in a more interesting way if they had been presented as a series of three or four essays. This might have curbed Sinek's habit of repetition and overuse of illustrative examples, making his arguments clear and more persuasive. He might have paced himself more effectively and linked his ideas better (for example his explanation of the Baby Boomer and Millenial work ethics).
Great book, inspirational and in typical Sinek style told upon stories, that stick in the mind and are then good for referencing to others.
Piece on millenials also very interesting and insightful as to why perhaps why many old schoool leaders struggle to get them on board.
The ideas and concept are found extensively elsewhere in leadership books. However if this was a first read in ‘enpowering’ leadership books it would be outstanding.
really is the theory to the practical of 'Turn the Ship Around'.
Most 'Management' books are utter drivel. This definitely isnt.