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Thought Leadership: Prompting Businesses to Think and Learn [Paperback]

Laurie Young
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: 34.99
Price: 31.49 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

3 Oct 2013

Like most buzzwords, thought leadership is an often misused and misunderstood term. But what is it really? And why do many of the world's leading companies invest serious money and smart people into this mysterious practice, building dedicated business units to create it? It sounds like business jargon, but this ill-defined term captures a key practice that has been used for many years to create success for individuals, charities and vast companies.

Drawing on over 30 years experience engaging with thought leadership, Laurie Young provides an extensive examination of its history, its purpose, its future, and how you can make thought leadership work for you. Packed with ground-breaking case studies from global organisations such as IBM, Deloitte, Allen & Overy, Fairtrade, Philips and Unilever; and with over 50 unique interviews with some of the world's acknowledged business leaders, Thought Leadership can help anyone involved in the business decision making process to gain alignment across their company regarding the challenges they face.

Thought Leadership can come from any source in business - unique insight, research, executives, customer engagement, product managers, and expert professionals -. We all have knowledge, experience and a point of view. Laurie Young's accessible look at this fascinating and vital business practice is your first step to making thought leadership work for you and your organisation.

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Thought Leadership: Prompting Businesses to Think and Learn + Becoming the Expert: Enhancing Your Business Reputation Through Thought Leadership Marketing
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Product details

  • Paperback: 344 pages
  • Publisher: Kogan Page (3 Oct 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0749465115
  • ISBN-13: 978-0749465117
  • Product Dimensions: 23.4 x 15.6 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 691,640 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Laurie Young is a businessman who likes to write (see His expertise is primarily in the marketing and selling of services; a field in which he has some recognition around the world. He is trained to masters level and is one of the few independent advisers to the professions who has himself been a partner in a leading firm.

Laurie's career has included senior positions with BT, Unisys and PricewaterhouseCoopers. He has also founded, built and sold a company. He now divides his time between consultancy work, teaching, public speaking and writing. He has Chaired Fujitsu's "Customer experience management" panel and is on the Innovation Board of Allen & Overy.

He has advised senior executives in a wide range of different companies (on subjects like the transition from products to services or new service design). Over the years his clients have included: Russell Reynolds Associates, Deloitte, Philips, Ericsson, Ingersoll Rand, Microsoft, the BBC, Cable & Wireless, American Express and Nokia. He has given guest lectures at a number of universities (such as Wharton, Essec, Cranfield and Gothenburg).

Yet Laurie's first love is writing. He likes to find historical and academic evidence for the subjects he writes about. His primary interest is whether there is convincing experience to suggest that a business idea will work in practice and is more than just a fashionable fad.

He has published over a hundred articles and several books. One editor has described Laurie's writing as "evidential" and another as "beautifully expressed". His readers say that they like his ability to make complex subjects clear and to tell a business case study like a story. He has twice won international writer's awards.

Product Description


"This refreshing, original treatise takes on a rarely served but important topic. ...#8217;s insights to business leaders, students, investors and all who want to understand the power of thought leadership, including how to create, disseminate it and benefit from it."--getAbstract "Inc. "

Book Description

The first book to explore the use of Thought Leadership as a powerful business tool using

unique case studies from internationally renowned organisations such as Philips, Mckinsey, IBM,

Deloitte, Fairtrade and Unilever.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Marketing made simple 2 Nov 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Brilliant book I highly recommend it should give a lot of people a lot of good guidance the clue is in the title
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By ima
Beautiful book
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A comprehensive overview of an important marketing technique 10 Oct 2013
By John Gibbs - Published on
Format:Kindle Edition
Serious people who represent some of the world's most respected businesses make very effective use of thought leadership, which is the deliberate creation of ideas to help businesses succeed, according to Laurie Young in this book. It is something which is increasingly influential on buyer behaviour, and the best purveyors of thought leadership are becoming more organised and sophisticated with their programs.

The book outlines a range of attributes of good thought leadership:

* Informative and credible, prompting businesses to learn, investigate and change
* Visionary, shaping an idea and providing "foresight"
* Authentic, rather than empty hype
* Unique, although it can be based on recycled ideas
* Insightful, helping people to see things in new ways or solve new problems
* Communicating values that resonate with the intended audience
* Freely shared

The author claims that very little is written about thought leadership, but a quick search on Amazon reveals more than 30 books with "thought leadership" in their titles, with many more on content marketing, which is a closely related concept. Whilst this is the most comprehensive book on thought leadership that I have read, it fails to arrive at a concise definition, and as a result ends up encompassing things ranging from scientific research to innovative advertising, things which are clearly not, according to common understanding of the term, "thought leadership".

The Dove Real Beauty advertising campaign, for example, was a highly successful case of creating and communicating ideas, but did not in my opinion constitute "thought leadership" because it did not attempt to establish someone as a recognised authority in a specialised field. Thought leadership is normally regarded as a marketing technique for someone who is a provider of expertise such as a professional service firm, not for a company that sells products.

In my opinion, someone who is interested in pursuing a thought leadership strategy will find plenty of interesting material in this book, but would be well advised also to read a good book on content marketing for advice on how to use an integrated social media communication program.
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