4 out of 4 stars
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The Leading Man by Stephen J. Blakesley is a self-help book designed to augment whatever knowledge one might already have about leadership. The leader, as the singer, Willie Nelson, pointed out was: Someone who walks fast and gets out in front of a group of people. He should have added, someone who runs fast, as well, in case the group of people is running. But it turns out; to lead takes more than that. It is more than just being ahead of a moving band.
It goes without saying that a leader has to have a follower or followers. Further, a leader must possess a presence that commands attention. There must be a vision about the desired destination that is clearly communicated to the followers in order to motivate and influence them to go along and accomplish the goal that will be credited to them. All these will be done by a leader possessive of the right leadership skills and emotional intelligence.
Stephen J. Blakesley synthesized in this book the attributes speculated to bring success to a leader’s endeavors. Or, on the least, kindle the dormant spark of leadership inherent in individuals who have the potential to lead. And whether true leaders are born or made, it would profit them immensely to give their talents some nurturing.
The book tells of a study about pitch and one’s ability to earn big money by simply lowering the pitch of one’s speech. I am just concerned that for a leader to hold the attention of an audience and communicate effectively, he must speak in a lively manner full of life and not sound boring or sonorous. And that is irrespective of the contents of his speech.
I dislike the shortness of the book. While it is true that conciseness is a virtue, however, clarity should not be sacrificed. Pardon my bringing this out, the book is akin to an instructional manual. The author should have spiced it up with related anecdotes or incidents in real life to illustrate the particular point elucidated upon in a chapter.
I have not come across an editing issue. Maybe, I’m not that adroit in finding one, for the prose proceeded smoothly to my delight. I will recommend this book to young adults, those we might consider as still on the developmental stage. This non-fictional read could be an extension to leadership training they might have been given in school or at work. The rating I give is 4 out of 4 stars.
The Leading Man
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