- Hardcover: 288 pages
- Publisher: HarperBusiness; First Edition edition (April 11, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0060835907
- ISBN-13: 978-0060835903
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 94 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,579 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Quiet Leadership: Six Steps to Transforming Performance at Work Hardcover – April 11, 2006
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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.
“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)
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Two faults with the book: First, the title "Quiet Leadership" misses the potential audience of coaches (as professional coaches don't lead you but rather help you discover possible paths from which you choose your way forward), and the emphasis on QUIET may be unappealing to the often bold and noisy leaders who would most benefit from learning how to lead while coaching to better performance. Second, at times it seems the author is trying to impress me with how smart he is, and the "war stories" get in the way of getting to the meat of the techniques to use.
Still, I found great value in the book and highly recommend it to coaches and aspiring coaches, along with works by John Whitmore, Alan Fine, W. Timothy Gallwey. This book will help you learn better coaching questions to ask, help you better understand what goes on within your client's/coachee's mind and brain when you coach well, and get better at noticing your client's/coachee's reactions to your coaching efforts. I'm a better coach from having read and applied things David Rock presents.
I got a tremendous amount of value from his very first recommendation -- "let them do the thinking". This was something I was doing wrong for a very long time... every time I thought for someone, I diminished their ownership. The rest of the book is just as good, including the rather grandly named "Dance of Insight".
The initial chapters on the functioning of the brain are a tough slog. I wish that he had put them in appendixes. But make no mistake, this is a solid book.
Unfortunately the diagrams are low resolution in Kindle - I checked it out in iPad, Kindle Fire HD and it is very hard to read when you zoom in.
If this is fixed I would have given it 5 stars.
This book was simply not good. The main theme of the book is this: leaders need to teach others how to think. That’s a great theme and truly a great foundation to great leadership, however his “six steps” are convoluted and overbearing. In the book there is an image that attempts to demonstrate the “six steps.” In the image the leader is standing on a five-step platform (confused already?), three words emit from the leader, then in front of leader is a slightly ascending arrow with three stacking discs. There is even more on the image than I have described. It does not make a lot of sense, nor does the book.
Actually, I do not understand why the book is titled Quiet Leadership. I don’t feel like that was explained at all. Sure, to be a thinker you need to internalize a bit but that does not simply equate to quietness.
David Rock appears to have a lot of experience. I do not want to take that away from him, but this book was just not worth the read. This is a hard pass for me.