"Learn Like A Leader: Today's Top Leaders Share Their Learning Journeys" edited by Marshall Goldsmith, Beverly Kaye, and Ken Shelton is an interesting book of essays by thirty-five different leaders. Some of them, very recognizable, such as Warren Bennis, Stephen R. Covey, and Spencer Johnson, all of whom have had multiple books on business best seller lists. Others might not be as recognizable to some, such as Beverly Kaye, Robert Fritz, and Homa Bahrami, however, all have interesting stories to tell regarding their learning paths. Some more interesting than others, but all make a point and fit nicely together.
To make the learning lessons more clear, the editors have grouped the essays into various categories, which include: lessons on leadership; crossroads and choices; leading, learning and teaching; seeing yourself as others do; developing self-knowledge; unlearning what you thought was so; pain is a great teacher; and mentors matter. Each of these sections has a number of essays and a conclusion by the editors summing up the lessons for the section. These summaries, or key learning points, provides a short summarizing paragraph and then some questions for the reader to ask related to the sections main topic. I found these to be a good way to bring the various essays together, and to make the reader think about how the stories shared might relate to the reader's own life and circumstances.
The essays themselves always opened with a short bio on the author, and then the shared experience and what was learned by the writer. They vary in length from three to eight pages, but most are around four pages long. Besides the questions asked in the "key learning points" at the end of each section, there are also questions to ponder at the end of each essay. Again, this allows the reader to reflect on how the writer's experience might help with the reader's life.
I enjoyed the book, and found it to be very easy to read a few essays each day over a week's time, while also taking a moment each day to reflect on some of the questions posed at the end of each chapter and then section. Obviously, there were some essays that I enjoyed and connected with better than others, but I did feel that all of the essays together accomplished the book's goal in providing a book of stories that convey not only the power of storytelling, but also in teaching, training, and mentoring. These are people to learn from, and I feel there is much to learn from these stories.
Alain Burrese, J.D. is a writer, speaker, and mediator who teaches how to live, take action, and get things done through the Warrior's Edge. He is an expert on conflict and mediates and teaches conflict resolution and negotiation. Additionally, he teaches physical conflict skills in his Hapkido and Self-Defense courses, lectures, and seminars. Alain is the author of Hard-Won Wisdom From The School Of Hard Knocks, the DVDs Hapkido Hoshinsul, Streetfighting Essentials, Hapkido Cane, the Lock On Joint Locking series, and numerous articles and reviews. You can read more articles and reviews and see clips of his DVDs as well as much more at http://www.burrese.com/ and http://www.yourwarriorsedge.com/