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By @SimonCocking, can philosophy help you in the workplace? We consider this book which suggests you can. “What Philosophy Can Teach You About Being a Better Leader” was published on October 3rd, and is available from KoganPage here, written by the following 4 authors, Alison ReynoldsJules GoddardDominic HoulderDavid Lewis.

Traditional management practices, rooted in economics and psychology, have led to a focus on numbers and productivity rather than the people who make those numbers happen. This has resulted in trust in leaders and organizations being at an all-time low. What Philosophy Can Teach You About Being a Better Leader expertly counters this thinking and argues that those leaders who will win in the uncertain and complex world of work, are the ones focusing on their workforce and valuing its members as people, rather than just tools within the process.

What Philosophy Can Teach You About Being a Better Leader considers the main questions plaguing today’s leaders through the eyes of four of the greatest philosophers. With the help of Aristotle, Socrates, Kant and Nietzsche, as well as a whole host of other brilliant minds, they smash widely held workplace falsehoods and unveil a new model for empowerment, fulfilment and harmony at work.

What Philosophy Can Teach You About Being a Better Leader is a fascinating account of how we can reconnect company, people and shareholder interests. It answers perennial leadership concerns like questions of people engagement, key performance indicators or even generational differences at work through the lens of philosophy, with its focus squarely on how to live and help others live fulfilling lives at work.


Review of What Philosophy Can Teach You About Being a Better Leader

This is an interesting book. Can philosophy really help your business? The authors have selected a range of philosophers too, from Aristotle to Nietzche and many more. This does, potentially enable you to perhaps that flavour that suits you. As we read this, we did wonder if this was potentially offering everything to everybody, depending on which element works best for you?

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In its favour, reading, and contemplating a range of thinkers and ideas in a book like this, simply by the act of reading, and being offline to read this in a non digital way, it does reaffirm the importance of getting an overview on operational matters. This does help to potentially differentiate this book from mere leadership management books as it does go back to the original sources.

The challenge is always to take time out to read rather than merely scrolling and swiping. With such a wide range of philosophers included in this book there is the potential to find some insights and ideas that might work for your own business. It could also be said that after the exposure of some less than ethical practices by leading global tech brands recently it might also do no harm for their leaders to emerse themselves in a deeper study of ethics. Something which could benefit their operational ethos.

One to read on the daily commute or in your hammock perhaps?

About the authors

Alison Reynolds
Alison Reynolds is a business leader and consultant in strategy execution. She is part of the Faculty in Executive Education at Ashridge Business School.

More about Alison Reynolds

Jules Goddard
Jules Goddard is a Fellow of the Centre for Management Development at London Business School, where he has taught competitive strategy and creative marketing for 30 years.

More about Jules Goddard

Dominic Houlder
Dominic Houlder is an Adjunct Professor in Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management at London Business School. He is internationally recognised as a leading business strategist.

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More about Dominic Houlder

David Lewis
David Lewis is Programme Director for Executive Education at London Business School and a renowned strategy and leadership expert.

More about David Lewis

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