Book: Leader - Know, love and inspire your people£18.99
- This book actually goes beyond education, and many aspects of leadership are relevant for life, business and friendships.
- Of all the leadership books read, it is refreshing to see a new 'caring' approach that has love at the heart of the message.
- Throughout, the reader is challenged with self-reflective activities, real-life examples and introduced to inspiring people.
- The approach and examples towards leadership are inspirational, reflective and full of great guidance with how to proceed in life.
- The book is filled with reflective exercises, real-life examples and tips on how to tweak your leadership strategies.
Some people seem to be born leaders, and others are thrust into a leadership position not really knowing what to do as colleagues now look at them for inspiration. Schools are full of leaders – they can be within the management structure; they can be teachers leading sets of pupils, and can even be pupils whose personal qualities seem to gather a following of peers. No matter of their place within any organisation, great leaders all have one thing in common, they have become great by mastering three lessons: know your people, love your people and inspire your people.
So goes the message in Katy Granville-Chapman and Emmie Bidston’s new book “Leader – Know, love and inspire your people”. The book begins by inviting the reader to explore their own values and then using examples of well-known individuals who place their values at the heart of their lives. Being honest with yourself as you hunt your values is a challenge, and possibly an activity useful for self-reflection. Additionally, recognising your own strengths and building upon them is a critical development area for leaders helping authenticity when leading. The book progresses looking at how positivity and empathy are key cornerstones in helping build a team of people who will follow and endorse your leadership as you progress.
Love is something you don’t often come across when reading about leadership – and believe me, I’ve read a lot of leadership books and articles – highlighting how Gareth Southgate overcame (self-perceived) failure, challenging himself to learn and strengthen himself in areas of coaching where he needed more knowledge. The analogy over to education is easy to see and the key message of ‘loving’ a team is in terms of kindness. People mainly respond positively to kindness. In concluding the second chapter, we are reminded of a difference using an example from Simon Sinek (see TED talk here) comparing how people are rewarded in the armed services compared to business – ultimately, in the armed services, people are rewarded when they sacrifice themselves so that others may gain, whereas, in business, bonuses are given to people who sacrifice others so that they may gain! I’m not sure where educators stand in this comparison?
As a leader, inspiring your people needs to have meaning and purpose is advocated as being critical as members can demonstrate positive outcomes in their health. Building a purpose statement and finding your unique ‘why’ as a team are superb exercises to explore your cause and making it all visible.
Chapter 6 takes us into school leadership, encouraging empowerment among colleagues and encouraging hard work, grit and celebration. The key is for all to aim for excellence, appreciation of hard work and empowering people to succeed working towards the shared goal.
I’ve worked with leaders who have really good, honest intentions. I’ve also worked with leaders who are manipulative, conniving and risen to their position by being able to talk-the-talk, although they have little substance. Honestly, I can’t recommend this book highly enough. The approach and examples towards leadership are inspirational, reflective and full of great guidance with how to proceed in life. I’m keeping this book, and going to read it again and again and again.