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My Life in Leadership: The Journey and Lessons Learned Along the Way (J-B Leader to Leader Institute/PF Drucker Foundation) [Hardcover]

Jim Collins , Frances Hesselbein
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

4 Mar 2011 J-B Leader to Leader Institute/PF Drucker Foundation (Book 89)
In a clear and compelling voice, Frances Hesselbein delivers key leadership lessons. Tracing her own development as a leader, she narrates the critical moments that shaped her personally and professionally: from her childhood in Pennsylvania, to moving up from Girl Scout troop leader to Girl Scout CEO, to founding and leading the Leader to Leader Institute, to her friendships and experiences with some of the greatest leaders and thinkers of our time. Each chapter includes an inspirational story, a key lesson and how to apply it to daily life.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons; 1 edition (4 Mar 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470905735
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470905739
  • Product Dimensions: 21 x 15 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 765,277 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

‘…reveals her remarkable personal story and the principles that have served and guided her well throughout her extraordinary life.’  (Publicnet.co.uk, February 2011).

From the Inside Flap

Tracing her development as a leader, Frances Hesselbein reveals her remarkable personal story and the principles that have served and guided her well throughout her extraordinary life. Written in an intimate and compelling voice, this book delivers key leadership lessons applicable to leaders in every walk of life. My Life in Leadership offers a look at what shaped Frances Hesselbein as a person and as a leader, from her youth in the mountains of western Pennsylvania to her professional journey with the Girl Scouts of the USA where she went from troop leader to transformational CEO, and to how Peter F. Drucker chose her to found and lead the Drucker Foundation, now the Leader to Leader Institute. With excitement and humility, she relives the key moments that have shaped her life of leadership including the day she received our country′s highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. This remarkable book also includes stories about her world travels to deliver her message of leadership and her notable experiences with, as well as what she has learned from, some of the most distinguished leaders of our time including Peter Drucker; John W. Gardner; Max DePree; Presidents Clinton, H.W. Bush, and Reagan; General Eric Shinseki; Jim Collins; Warren Bennis; and Marshall Goldsmith. As inspirational as it is practical, My Life in Leadership is filled with Frances Hesselbein′s universal leadership lessons that will serve any leader, of any age, in any sector. "Through her life story you will touch the marrow of a unique contributor to humanity. This book′s appeal will transcend time and captivate the hearts of leaders around the globe." — Margaret Daniels Tyler , senior program officer, U.S. Programs, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Character and Commitment Count! 19 Oct 2011
By Donald Mitchell HALL OF FAME TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Hardcover
"And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope." -- Romans 5:3-4 (NKJV)

Long before I had the pleasure of meeting Frances Hesselbein, Peter Drucker used to tell me stories about her outstanding work for the Girl Scouts. I was not surprised when it was announced that the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonproft Management would have Ms. Hesselbein as its CEO. A lot of her work in the last twenty-one years has been for that organization (since renamed as the Leader to Leader Institute). I've also had the pleasure of speaking with her in the latter role and hearing many new stories about Peter Drucker. I was also honored to contribute an article to the Institute's magazine.

If you want to meet a remarkable leader, I recommend that it be Frances Hesselbein. She combines character, commitment to mission, inclusiveness, humility, and selflessness to a greater degree than in anyone else I've met.

The next best thing is to read this book. She tells it like it is. In fact, I was struck by how the words were almost verbatim to some conversations I've had with her.

Brava!
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple, but powerful all the same! 18 April 2011
By Srikumar S. Rao - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
No less a management authority than Peter Drucker lauded Frances Hesselbein as one of the greatest managers he knew so I have been intrigued by her for a long time. Frances has also been a guest speaker at my class at Columbia Business School and elsewhere so I know first hand that she can be an inspiring speaker. Her voice is low but her presence is large.

There is nothing "new" that you will learn from this book but the lessons are powerful and bear repeating. In fact, they bear repeated repeating. Define yourself, don't let others define you. Choose your battles carefully. Leadership is about how to be, not how to do. Get feedback - constantly - and heed it.

These "lessons" are not presented systematically in bullet points - rather you learn them through the narrative of Frances' story. The narration is smooth and the book is a quick read. Some parts are downright fascinating such as the state of the Girls Scout organization - disarray - when she came there and how she handles major crises such as the time when pins were found in several girl scout cookie packages. I wish some of our major corporations would have as forthright an approach.

Frances also talks about her relationship with Marshall Goldsmith, the leading executive coach. I had heard from Marshall about how it all came about and it was refreshing to get the story from Frances' perspective as well.

Frances is gracious to a fault and has the ability to make you feel welcome and important and this shows through in the many anecdotes she narrates. The important point to note is that this is not a "technique" she uses to build relationships, this is just who she is. And that is a point she does make but, being self effacing, she does not use herself as an example.

All in all a book to read and ponder. And then come back to from time to time to refresh your memory because it is so easy to forget.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Character and Commitment Count! 19 Oct 2011
By Donald Mitchell - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope." -- Romans 5:3-4 (NKJV)

Long before I had the pleasure of meeting Frances Hesselbein, Peter Drucker used to tell me stories about her outstanding work for the Girl Scouts. I was not surprised when it was announced that the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Nonproft Management would have Ms. Hesselbein as its CEO. A lot of her work in the last twenty-one years has been for that organization (since renamed as the Leader to Leader Institute). I've also had the pleasure of speaking with her in the latter role and hearing many new stories about Peter Drucker. I was also honored to contribute an article to the Institute's magazine.

If you want to meet a remarkable leader, I recommend that it be Frances Hesselbein. She combines character, commitment to mission, inclusiveness, humility, and selflessness to a greater degree than in anyone else I've met.

The next best thing is to read this book. She tells it like it is. In fact, I was struck by how the words were almost verbatim to some conversations I've had with her.

Brava!
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quite a Journey 18 Oct 2011
By Betty Shotton - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I have admired Frances Hesselbein as a leader for the past 35 years. She accepted the position of President of Girl Scouts USA when I was a Girl Scout Executive in Richmond, Va. She transformed the organization and made it totally pertinent to the needs of young women coming of age in the late 70's and into the 80's.
This book is a gift to leaders as they ponder what really counts. She shows how values of inclusion, respect, diversity, altruism and vision have played a critical role in her remarkable leadership success story. She traces her cultural roots and family influences and shows how they were instrumental in the development of her fine character. With an uncanny ability to enroll high level thinkers and business leaders in supporting her endeavors ,whether its Girl Scouts or The Drucker Foundation/Leader to Leader Institute, she reminds us that greatness doesn't have to come with money.When people are committed to something bigger than themselves, something that contributes in meaningful ways to our society and its future, miracles can occur.
This is a wonderful to read and inspiring book by a truly great leader.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Comforting and Inspiring 15 April 2011
By Caitlin G. Orbanek - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book reads like a story told by your grandmother- after your grandmother changed the world. It gives the true story behind the author's wisdom and her own inspirations. Her insights are backed by extensive experience, which is further supported by her own wholeheartedness. Frances looks back on her life, happy with what she sees, and passes that happiness on to the reader. "She lived the advice she gave." Just as Frances credits her grandmother with living the advice she gave, this book reveals that Frances also lives what she believes. It is a story of how foundational values enable a lifetime of service and success.

Although most of this book comes from the perspective of a woman working to serve women, her leadership is unfailingly universal. Frances clearly functioned behind the scenes, making big changes to leadership and management, for over three decades. She shows that providing opportunities for change can be more effective than forcing it.

The entire book is exceptionally smooth to read and will inspire you to live a fulfilling and happy life. It's only after you finish this book that you realize how much you learned.
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