The Tao of Leadership: Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching Adapted for a New Age Paperback – 19 Apr 1986
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About the Author
Heider is a group leader and teacher of group leaders. He has studied and helped direct long-term programs at Esalen Institute, taught at the Menninger Foundation School of Psychiatry, served as staff psychologist at the Veterans Admin. Hospital.
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Top Customer Reviews
It's a source of timeless learning about leadership and how to deal with other people in an enlightened way. It's presented in a way which is more accessible to westerners than some of the more "poetic" interpretations but you have to be in the right frame of mind to take the learning on board.
It's a great source of ideas for dipping into and it contains some real insight into human beings and organisations.
Written in plain English it really explains Taoist philosophy, and later chapters show how to apply the approach in groups.
So it is practical and concrete in our every-day lives as well as giving a generally applicable model for life.
As John Heider explains in the Introduction to this volume, Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching "is one of China's best loved books of wisdom. It was originally addressed to the sage and to the wise political rulers of the fifth century B.C." Lao Tzu's book is "simple and makes sense. But even more important, is the fact that Tau Te Ching persuasively unites leadership skills and the leader's way of life: our work is our path." Here is my personal favorite among many passages in a work that offers timeless wisdom for each new age:
"Learn from the people
Plan with the people
Begin with what they have
Build on what they know
Of the best leaders
When the task is accomplished
The people will remark
We have done it ourselves."
The wisdom of these observations is relevant to our own age, especially given the unique challenges leaders now face. For example, how to increase and nourish positive and productive employee engagement at all levels and in all areas? How to develop and then sustain a culture of mutual respect and trust between and among everyone involved?
Heider suggests that Lao Tzu focuses on three separate but interdependent topics:
1. Natural law (how things happen)
2.Read more ›
It is a translation of the Tao Te Ching that is practical and thought-provoking for anyone in a management or leadership role. I've lost count of how many times I've replaced in-the-moment harsh and rash decisions with more enlightened ones just by referring to one of the brief chapters here.
The underlying approach to group dynamics is gentle and holistic. It helps you get over the insatiable need for ever-new complex techniques for dealing with people. You don't need them. Dealing with groups is simple if you keep it simple.
One of my favorite quotes: "Of course, the world is full of novelty and adventures. New opportunities come along every day. So what?"
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Bought for a friend as I knew how good it is. Very happy with purchase as is friend. prompt delivery.Published 11 months ago by Alastair Robertson
Possibly the opposite of most leadership books but ultimately time - tested and lots applicable to modern stressful living when going back to basics could relieve so much.Published 17 months ago by wellness pharmacist