Thursday, March 31, 2016

Book: A failure of nerve-Leadership in the age of quick fix

Ten years after his death, Edwin Friedman's insights into leadership are more urgently needed than ever. He was the first to tell us that all organizations have personalities, like families, and to apply the insights of family therapy to churches and synagogues, rectors and rabbis, politicians and teachers.

Failure of Nerve is essential reading for all leaders, be they parents or presidents, corporate executives or educators, religious superiors or coaches, healers or generals, managers or clergy. Friedman's insights about our regressed, seatbelt society, oriented toward safety rather than adventure, help explain the sabotage that leaders constantly face today.

Suspicious of the quick fixes and instant solutions that sweep through our culture only to give way to the next fad, he argues for strength and self-differentiation as the marks of true leadership. His formula for success is more maturity, not more data; stamina, not technique; and personal responsibility, not empathy.

This book was unfinished at the time of Friedman's death, and originally published in a limited edition. This new edition makes his life-changing insights and challenges available to a new generation of readers.

Introduction: The Problem with Leadership 1
1 Imaginative Gridlock and the Spirit of Adventure 29
2 A Society in Regression 51
3 Data Junkyards and Data Junkies: The Fallacy of Expertise 95
4 Survival in a Hostile Environment: The Fallacy of Empathy 132
5 Autocracy Versus Integrity: The Fallacies of Self 158
6 Take Five 187
7 Emotional Triangles
8 Crisis and Sabotage: The Keys to the Kingdom 229
        Epilogue: The Presence of the Past 248

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