Reality-Based Leadership: Ditch the Drama, Restore Sanity to the Workplace, and Turn Excuses into Results
August 2010, Jossey-Bass
Leadership strategies grounded in reality and focused on results
Recent polls show that 71% of workers think about quitting their jobs every day. That number would be shocking-if people actually were quitting. Worse, they go to work, punching time clocks and collecting pay checks, while completely checked out emotionally. In Reality-Based Leadership, expert Fast Company blogger Cy Wakeman reveals how to be the kind of leader who changes the way people think about and perceive their circumstances-one who deals with the facts, clarifies roles, gives clear and direct feedback, and insists that everyone do the same-without drama or defensiveness. Filled with dynamic examples, innovative tools, and diagnostic tests, this book shows you how to become a Reality-Based Leader, revealing how to:
- Uncover destructive thought patterns with yourself and others
- Diffuse drama and lead the person in front of you
- Stop managing and start leading, empowering others to focus on facts and think for themselves
Equipped with a facts-based, confident approach, you will free yourself from the frustrations you face at work and transform yourself into a Reality-Based Leader, with the ability to liberate and inspire others.
Introduction: Calling All Leaders.
Part One Find Peace at Work.
1 You Are the Source of Your Suffering—and That's the Good News.
2 If You Argue with Reality, You Lose (but Only 100 Percent of the Time).
3 Would You Rather Be Right, or Wildly Successful?
Part Two Restore Sanity to the Workplace.
4 Lead First, Manage Second.
5 Play Favorites: Work with the Willing!
6 Change Is a Fact of Life—Get Over It! How to Bullet-Proof Your Employees.
Part Three Lead Your Team to Results.
7 Opinions No Longer Count—Actions Do.
8 Stop Judging and Start Helping: The Golden Rule of Teamwork.
Conclusion: The Reality-Based Leader's Manifesto.
Appendix 1 Alignment Survey.
Appendix 2 Self-Test: Managing Versus Leading.
Appendix 3 Feedback Frame.
About the Author.
Cy Wakeman is a dynamic, well-respected, national keynote speaker, workshop facilitator, and trainer who helps individuals and organizations achieve stellarresults. Cy's background combines four successfulbusiness start-ups with 18 years working and consulting in manufacturing, banking, government, high-tech,and healthcare. She is also an expert blogger forFastCompany.com.
—From the Foreword by Larry Winget, author, It’s Called Work for a Reason!
“Cy Wakeman deftly shows how Reality-Based Leaders embrace
personal accountability—and empower others to do the same.
This is a dynamic, winning book that all leaders and managers
looking to make their organizations outstanding should
—John G. Miller, author, QBQ! The Question Behind the Question and Outstanding!
“I haven’t been so moved by a business thinker and
visionary in years. Cy Wakeman’s message has been heard
before – that to truly succeed and grow, we have to check our
egos at the door. But never has this counter-intuitive
insight been so compellingly argued as in this terrific
—Doug Smith, CEO, Ervin and Smith Advertising and Public Relations
“Cy Wakeman’s approach to Reality-Based
Leadership is practical, relevant and exactly what
today’s leaders really need. This is definitely a must-read
for every success-oriented leader and manager.”
—Jeff A. Hurt, CEO, Southwest Credit
“Cy Wakeman is a brilliant story-teller and
coach. She has a profound ability to tell a story that makes
you laugh while at the same time cutting through your defenses to
help you recognize your need to change. I have worked with Cy for
years, and the lessons in this book have helped me create better
organizations and a better me.”
—Jason Lauritsen, vice president, Human Resources, Union Bank and Trust Company
“You can’t afford to lead your organization without
this book in hand! Cy Wakeman writes with candor, humor and
unconventional wisdom about how we can be wildly
—Amy Dorn Kopelan, president, Bedlam Entertainment Inc, and coauthor, I Didn’t See It Coming!
“Cy Wakeman’s book delivers a powerful message. The
bottom line- this is required reading for all leaders!”
—Russ Olson, President and CEO, Liberty Bank