Review by Sydney Nyamasoka -- The Four Hats

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Sydney Nyamasoka
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Review by Sydney Nyamasoka -- The Four Hats

Post by Sydney Nyamasoka »

[Following is a volunteer review of "The Four Hats" by Drake E. Taylor.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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THE FOUR HATS OF LEADERSHIP is a book authored by Drake E. Taylor. The extension of the book’s title is, “BE WHO YOUR PEOPLE NEED YOU TO BE.” This is indicative of the intended on-point practicality of the book. The hats represent leadership thinking as; a farmer, a drill instructor, a psychologist and the third hat concerns the leader’s self-care hat. In the preface, the author expressly states that he intends the book to be a quick and easy read which is free of jargon prompting new leadership thinking. From this book, leaders learn how and when to use the hats.

The leader’s frame of mind on their role is fundamental to how they lead people. The metaphor of the four hats is interesting and deeply educative, pointing to the necessary skills a leader needs to become what his or her people seek in a leader thereby reaping the rewards from whichever process is being carried out. From the author’s background, one has to want to be a leader and acquire the relevant skills if they are to lead meaningfully. The obstacles that a leader faces have to be learning points. The leader should appreciate that he or she leads people who are motivated differently and this is a great challenge. The four hats allow for a 360 degrees-perspective to get the very best out of your followers and yourself. The author emphasizes that for one to lead successfully, they have to also know how to follow not just lead. The leader should pick the hat most appropriate for the situation.

To me, it is very rare to have a simple but highly educative study text. This book is powerful and the lessons from the four hats are incredibly helpful and realistic for any leader. All the insights from the four hats are applicable and indispensable. The farmer’s hat is needed at the very beginning of any project and in establishing the approach for the project. Additionally, there should be a goal in mind and knowing and communicating to the team that dedication is needed throughout the process. Care for the process, eventual results and team members is emphasized. I assume that the reason why this hat was mentioned first is because it helps with setting a foundation and initiating processes. The mention of the drill instructor’s hat was not a surprise to me because people can be stubborn, unreasonably fearful, sometimes dishonest thereby deserving some forceful and stern command. In the end, this hat is appreciated and respected. However, bullying and unethical commands in the corporate world or any other non-military environments are unacceptable. So, as a leader you must not be a dictator but rather emphasize the value of discipline, attentiveness and the resultant high quality work from which benefits are yielded for all. I appreciate the caution given by the author to all leaders as they reach out to, and put on, this hat.

The psychologist’s hat is for times of distress and where potential emotional harm can be done to your followers. I especially liked how the author differentiated the drill instructor’s hat from that of the psychologist. If a leader mistakenly puts on the hat not fit for the situation, unintended consequences can wrack havoc and demotivate followers. In these cases, a leader would need to carefully consider the problem at hand, exercise good judgement, thorough listening skills and offer emotional support. I would say that the psychologist’s hat has a lot in common with the farmer’s hat as the leader has to tend to his or her team members, followers, subordinates or employees. This hat is needed when you need to understand apparent problems, reason with, and understand your people better and deeper for their benefit and that of your organization.

A leader should have time for their personal care if they are to perform effectively in their leadership role. This form of care is metaphorically represented by the self-care hat. I agree with the author that this is the most important hat but one which is forgotten most of the times. If the leader cannot take time to care for their well-being outside work or even take breaks formally set at work then how will they understand that their subordinates need such self-care. From the book, I understood that a leader should be a human as he or she really is. Being human will make the leader sociable and this creates opportunities to know your followers, trainees and subordinates at a deeper and revealing level.

Drake E. Taylor has written very helpful and truly insightful content for leaders. I recommend this book to all leaders across the globe. The book was professionally edited, orderly arranged and neatly designed . There are very few and insignificant typos. I rate this book, “4 out of 4 stars.”

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The Four Hats
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Chipochashe
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Post by Chipochashe »

That is a very detailed review Sydney. Thanks. It seems to be a good book for all leaders. It certainly has many lessons. Being a leader is truly a balancing act. I would love to check this book out.
:D Only God gives the strength to smile in the face of death.
Sydney Nyamasoka
Posts: 238
Joined: 02 Jul 2018, 06:56
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 44
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-sydney-nyamasoka.html
Latest Review: Divided World by Kenneth Pickering

Post by Sydney Nyamasoka »

Chipochashe wrote: ↑27 Dec 2019, 09:39 That is a very detailed review Sydney. Thanks. It seems to be a good book for all leaders. It certainly has many lessons. Being a leader is truly a balancing act. I would love to check this book out.
Thank you Chipochashe for your appreciative and positive comment. This book is effective in its lessons for leaders!
Search for, and find, real meaning in life and live purposefully.
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Chipochashe
Posts: 620
Joined: 27 Jun 2018, 09:07
Currently Reading:
Bookshelf Size: 105
Reviewer Page: onlinebookclub.org/reviews/by-chipochashe.html
Latest Review: Body in the Woods by Behcet Kaya

Post by Chipochashe »

Sydney Nyamasoka wrote: ↑29 Dec 2019, 05:38
Chipochashe wrote: ↑27 Dec 2019, 09:39 That is a very detailed review Sydney. Thanks. It seems to be a good book for all leaders. It certainly has many lessons. Being a leader is truly a balancing act. I would love to check this book out.
Thank you Chipochashe for your appreciative and positive comment. This book is effective in its lessons for leaders!
You are welcome. That is great.
:D Only God gives the strength to smile in the face of death.
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