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Building Leadership Character
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Building Leadership Character

  • Amy Newman - Cornell University School of Hotel Administration, USA
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April 2018 | 288 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
Extending beyond traditional leadership books to offer readers a path for developing their own character, this compelling new text uses a storytelling approach and real-world cases to explore different dimensions of leadership character. With a clear, student-friendly writing style, bestselling author Amy Newman deftly captures various approaches in which corporations and people respond to situations in difficult times and learn from mistakes. Using real companies and situations, each chapter examines a leadership character dimension such as accountability, integrity, authenticity, and courage. Readers will learn to develop their own character, emotional intelligence, and leadership skills as they engage with assessments, reflection opportunities, and exercises.

 
Acknowledgments
 
Introduction
 
Chapter 1. Leadership Character in Context
Chapter Overview

 
Leaders Choose Character

 
Leadership Theories Have Evolved

 
Dimensions Focus Our Efforts to Develop Character

 
Leadership Character Has Organizational and Personal Benefits

 
Judgment Contributes to Ethical Decision Making

 
Corporate Failures Teach Us About Character—and About Ourselves

 
Learning From Corporate Failures

 
Respecting and Learning From Failure

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 2. Learning Character Lessons From Failure
Chapter Overview

 
Failure Is Critical to Success

 
People Fear Failure Because of the Pain

 
Learning From Failure Builds Character

 
Leaders Adopt a Learning Orientation

 
Forward-Looking Organizations Value Failure

 
Self-Reflection Helps Us Learn From Failure

 
Reflection Prepares Us Intellectually

 
Practicing Mindfulness Prepares Us Emotionally

 
Taking Care of Our Bodies Prepares Us Physically

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 3. Vulnerability: Risking Exposure
Chapter Overview

 
Volkswagen’s “Clean Diesel” Dupes Customers

 
Vulnerability Means Risking Exposure

 
Vulnerability Builds Connection

 
Apologizing Is Good for Business

 
Connection Is Built or Destroyed on Social Media

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 4. Authenticity: Living as Yourself
Chapter Overview

 
General Motors Delays Recalls

 
Authentic Leaders Are True to Themselves

 
Authenticity Doesn’t Mean Being Rigid or Morally Correct

 
Authentic Leaders Bring Their Whole Selves to Work

 
Self-Awareness and Self-Acceptance Help Us Feel Comfortable in Our Own Skin

 
We Want to Connect With Real People on Social Media

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 5. Integrity: Being Consistent and Whole
Chapter Overview

 
FIFA Leaders Disappoint Athletes and Fans Around the World

 
Leaders of Integrity Are Consistent and Whole

 
Behavioral Integrity Is Good for Business

 
Trust in Organizations Is Eroding

 
Leaders Who Model Integrity, Trust, and Transparency Cultivate Trust

 
Leaders With Integrity Tell the Truth

 
Investors Seek and Demonstrate Integrity

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 6. Accountability: Responding to Others
Chapter Overview

 
Wells Fargo Sets Unrealistic Sales Goals for Employees

 
Responsibility and Accountability Definitions Are Complementary

 
Leaders Avoid Accountability by Shifting Blame

 
Incentives and Regulations Ensure Some Accountability

 
Leaders Foster a Culture of Accountability

 
Accountable Leaders Admit and Forgive Mistakes

 
External Leaders Step in When Boards Fail

 
Whistleblowers Demand Accountability

 
Companies Improve Their Accountability

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 7. Courage: Standing Up
Chapter Overview

 
Samsung Botches a Recall

 
Courageous Leaders Fight for Worthy Goals

 
Taking Measured Risks Improves Outcomes

 
Courage Means Facing Our Fears

 
Public, Unpopular Decisions Take Courage

 
Courageous Leaders Tackle Different Conversations

 
Radical Candor and Radical Transparency Are Two Ways Leaders Demonstrate Courage

 
Self-Righteousness Needs to Be Controlled

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 8. Humility: Learning From Others
Chapter Overview

 
Constituencies Question Uber’s Ethics

 
Humble Leaders Recognize Their Own Limitations

 
Humility as a Management Strength

 
Humble Leaders Make Space for Others

 
Assessments Teach Us About Humility

 
Leading With Humility Requires Perspective

 
Humble Leaders Seek Feedback

 
Curiosity Is Associated With Intellectual Humility

 
Two Chefs Illustrate Humility

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Chapter 9. Compassion: Caring for Others and Ourselves
Chapter Overview

 
SeaWorld Fails to Respond to the Movie Blackfish

 
Compassion Alleviates Suffering

 
Responding With Compassion Involves Four Steps

 
Compassion Benefits People and Organizations

 
Compassionate Leaders Respond With Small Gestures, Comfort, and Empathy

 
Communication About a Suicide Offers a Model of Compassion

 
Self-Compassion and Gratitude Ease Suffering

 
Summary

 
Exercises

 
 
Summary
 
Notes
 
Company Index
 
Subject Index
 
About the Author

Supplements

Instructor Teaching Site

study.sagepub.com/newman


A password-protected Instructor Resources include
s author-created instructor’s manual with teaching notes, additional assignments, and additional examples as well as author-created PowerPoint slides.

“Amy Newman provides practical insight into the role of character in communications and reveals how understanding character can enable leaders to more effectively manage the many situations that stress-test character.  Character is about who we are. It is something that develops every day (for better or worse) and with this book, leaders can be more conscious about what leader character is and how to build it.”

Dr. Mary Crossan, Distinguished University Professor, Professor of Strategic Leadership
Ivey Business School – Western University

“At a time when ‘character’ is often thought of as something you either have or you don’t, Amy Newman stresses that it can and must be developed through reflection and practice. Readers will come away with motivation, examples and tools!”

Mary C. Gentile, Author of “Giving Voice To Values: How To Speak Your Mind When You Know What’s Right”
University of Virginia Darden School of Business

“Developing character is messy business, which is why it’s too often ignored.  Building Leadership Character tackles this difficult topic through clear examples and engaging discussion that stimulates thought-provoking questions about leadership, communication, and the choices leaders make.”

Judith Lee Brownell, Professor Management & Organizational Behavior
Cornell University

“This accessible, highly-readable book draws on contemporary business examples to highlight the importance of several aspects of leadership character. Each chapter provides a focus on a particular trait or attribute, backed up by relevant literature, examples, and a compelling case study.” 

Janie Harden Fritz
Duquesne University

“An excellent complementary textbook, focused on the set of virtues everyone involved in business needs to cultivate to make for truly human, giving, socially responsible business. I would recommend this textbook without hesitation as a required complementary reading for introductory courses in business management, organizational behavior and theory, management theory, marketing, management communication, and business ethics, among others.” 

Pedro David Perez
Cornell University

“This book breaks down the specific components of Leadership Character, connects each component to leadership communications, illustrates those components with real-world examples, and offers a series of exercises to help reinforce the lessons.” 

Risa M. Mish
Cornell University

“This text will help to actualize the changeable core dimensions of leadership character to achieve greater emotional intelligence in our students.” 

Herbert Z. Wong
John F. Kennedy University

“This is a leadership text that utilizes real-world examples and case studies to showcase the value of ethical leadership (character leadership) through a storyteller’s lens.” 

Jeff Zimmerman
Northern Kentucky University

“This well-organized book that explains leaders’ character building issues using many relevant cases/stories.” 

Keeok Park
University of La Verne

“A text dealing with the importance of character to the role of leader.” 

Mitchell R. Alegre
Niagara University
Key features

KEY FEATURES:

  • Each chapter examines one dimension of leadership character to help readers work towards becoming a responsible leader.
  • Real-world cases follow the steps of leaders of major companies, including SeaWorld, Wells Fargo, the NFL, Uber, and Volkswagen, as they respond to crises.
  • End-of-chapter exercises encourage self-development and skill building, while reflection questions, role-playing scenarios, and unique application exercises encourage critical thinking and work well for teamwork or individual completion. 
  • Annotated Company examples provide real company communications from leaders in a variety of industries to illustrate character dimensions.
  • Definitions, academic literature, and practitioner advice provide theoretical grounding and offer practical considerations for deep understanding of each character dimension.
  • Focus on learning from failure encourages students to adopt a learning orientation and to learn from their own failures.
 

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 6: Accountability

Chapter 7: Courage


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