Leading at a Higher Level by Ken Blanchard
For about 25 years of working together, Ken Blanchard and his founding associates and consulting partners gathered to put into writing their collective wisdom on the subject of world – class leadership (Schofield, 2007). The people who shared their wisdom with Blanchard on the compilation of this book are founding associates Marjorie Blanchard, Don Carew, Eunice Parisi – Carew, Fred Finch, Laurence Hawkins, Drea Zigarmi and Pat Zigarmi. Blanchard’s consulting partners who extended their help include Scott Blanchard, Susan Fowler, Judd Hoekstra, Fay Kandarian, Alan Randolph and Jesse Stoner (“Blanchard to Release New Leadership Book With Insight from 14 Authors This Fall,” 2006). They cared to share everything they know about leadership. They advised that it is important for a leader to know who he is, where he is headed and what are the ways he will incorporate in order to get where he wanted to be (Audible, Inc., 2008). As it is a compilation of 14 different views from credible personalities, the reader can take comfort in the fact that “the book is not simply based on the views of an individual, but on those of a whole team of highly experienced people” (Schofield, 2007). “Blanchard argues that the term ‘leadership’ has for too long been associated with the accomplishment of results, whereas, ‘leading at a higher level’ is focused on the achievement of worthwhile results while acting with respect, care and fairness for the well – being of all involved” (cited in Schofield, 2007).
Leading at a higher level is not an exception. It is otherwise, a rule. The author shared the things they did quite well. Leading at a higher level happens when one set his sights on “the right target and vision.” Customer service is important. However, it is not only the customer who deserves a good treatment. The people who work with you and you work with also deserves the right treatment. These are the main ingredients of the right kind of leadership (Schofield, 2007). The “right target” company’s aims should include being a “provider, employer and investment of choice.” It is a must for the company to have a four – part vision. In here, the company’s purpose, image of the future, values and goals must be addressed (“Blanchard to Release New Leadership Book With Insight from 14 Authors This Fall,” 2006). There are four sections devoted for the reflection of each of these attributes. A thorough explanation of each attribute is given in every section of the book. Various tools and models are included to help the readers “asses themselves, other people and their organization against best practice” (Schofield, 2007).
Leading at a Higher Level seeks to produce leaders in each and everyone who wanted to be one. It teaches its readers how to “become more people – oriented, customer – centered, performance – driven and more focused on leading for a higher purpose and a greater good.” Blanchard is renowned for his situational leadership techniques. This are techniques that can help one be able to lead himself, his team and eventually the whole organization. There lies a “leadership point of view” in each and everyone of us. This book aims to awaken that thing deep within us. As great leaders have done in the past, this point of view may very well serve not just our professional lives but our personal lives too (Audible, Inc., 2008).
A new breed of leaders are needed in our world today. Customers who are not satisfied with our services today will run to our greatest competitors tomorrow. We have to beware because the enemies are very much willing to take over our lost opportunity. In this kind of tight competition, satisfaction will not suffice. We should do our best “to create raving fan customers” (“Blanchard to Release New Leadership Book With Insight from 14 Authors This Fall,” 2006). The most effective leader serve first and lead second (Blanchard, 2006).
(2006). Blanchard to Release New Leadership Book With Insight from 14 Authors This Fall. Corporate Training and Development Advisor, Volume 11, 1-6, 3p.
Audible, Inc. (2008). Leading at a Higher Level (Unabridged). Retrieved January 17, 2008 from http://www.audible.com/adbl/store/CJProduct.jsp? productID=BK_ADBL_000048
Entensor. (2007). Leading at a Higher Level. Retrieved January 17, 2008 from http://www.extensor.co.uk/book_reviews/higher_level/higher_level.html.
Ken, B. (2006). Leading at a Higher Level. USA: Prentice Hall.