Tired of the negative, simplistic or “in the weeds” business books that wallow in the tactical at the expense of the big picture? Take heart and seek out a copy of the incisive and inspiring real-world vision of former Medtronic Chairman and CEO Bill George.
A featured commentator on National Public Radio and a former Business Week “Top 25 Manager,” George does not offer up sweet-sounding vagaries in Authentic Leadership: Rediscovering the Secrets to Creating Lasting Value. Instead, George delivers generous doses of wisdom that’s been tested in the boardroom, on Wall Street, and in some of the toughest and most competitive markets in the U.S. At the heart of George’s book is a call to leaders to empower the bold and brave leader waiting within most executives by developing the five essential dimensions of ethical leadership: purpose, values, heart, relationships and self-discipline.
Candidly discussing his own ethical dilemmas amidst his own attempt to grow as a leader for his large medical technology firm, George is at his best when recounting how he battled disparate forces – and the self-interests – emanating from shareholders, employees, the Food & Drug Administration, and others who were doing their best to pull him in sometimes conflicting directions…and in some cases, off the track of providing authentic leadership. Bottom line: George’s vision deserves attention. This is a CEO who increased the market capitalization of his firm by an average 35% each year in a twelve-year tenure, while simultaneously striving to raise his own ethics and demand more authentic leadership o f himself and those around him.