If you saw my last post, which was my 1,200th on this blog, you saw me mention that the release of my latest book was coming today. Here it is; introducing Leadership Is/Isn't Easy!

Leadership is / Isn't Easy

Yes, that's the new cover, designed by Heather McCoy of 315 Designs. I'm not great at design, so I went to a professional and she did a great job.

Truth is, leadership is pretty easy for some people and fairly difficult for others. The book takes you through this via the tales told in the book. There are some things you'll identify with, some you won't, and some might even challenge your beliefs in what good leadership are. I don't attempt to change minds; just give you something else to think about.

I begin the sales copy with this phrase:

"Good leaders are sexy; great leaders are empowered! Bad leadership is draining, confining, irritating; you name it because you've seen it."

When I wrote my first book on leadership, I started by doing a little bit of research. I came across a statistic that said around 85% of all leaders had never led anything in their lives until they got promoted into management; tell me that's not scary.

Think about that for a minute. They never led a team of anything; they didn't even get to pick sides in pick-up games as a kid.

They never took the lead in any clubs. Maybe they never got to make a suggestion on which restaurant the group was going out to on Friday night.

Think about the best leaders you know of, the great ones. Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Oprah Winfrey, Warren Buffett... all empowered leaders, people who inspire others to do great things without having to micro-manage them. They take an interest in every step of the process but let people do their jobs.

While those people are great, there's also not that many good leaders. The reason they're sexy is because these are probably the people you work with on a daily basis if you're lucky.

These are the people you appreciate because of how good they are and how well they treat others, including you. You know them, and you like them. If you have an initial goal, you want to be like them, on the way to being great leaders. That's the reason I wanted to write this book.

Me, my parents
and grandmother

If I may, let me talk about the process of writing the book a little bit. If you click on the link you'll see the sales page but it won't have all the extra little details that I'm going to put here.

For one, the book is a compilation of both newsletters and blog posts I wrote on leadership from 2003 through 2008. I went through and selected what I considered as the best topics on leadership. Even though I don't mention it in the book, the articles are actually in date order except for the last one; I wanted it to be the last one, titled The Lost Art Of Thank You.

Over the course of 33 articles, I talk about bad leadership principles, things leaders need to know that they're going to encounter, how to identify how employees might think, how to improve skills, and how to make decisions.

I also have some interesting articles, two concerning the Iraq War at the time and two concerning how to gain a consensus. Those are intriguing for two reasons. They began as one article regarding the war and leadership and one article about consensus. Both were extremely long and unwieldy so I decided they needed to be written and broken into two each

Actually, even though the book began as a compilation of articles, it turned out that I had to rewrite more than half of them, all the earliest articles. When I started writing in 2003 I didn't have a style yet, and as I was reading through them I was suffering, and I felt bad for the people who were initial subscribers and thankful for those who stuck with me all those years, as I wrote that newsletter for 10 years. Yes, that means there will be a second book at some time... just not soon.

I started this project back in early 2013 by compiling all the articles I wanted. When I started reading... I knew I was in for a lot of work. Around that same time I started traveling back and forth to Memphis, and I didn't have a lot of time to devote to it.

Eventually I knew I had to get working on it, and I actually finished it in November. Then I let it sit... no idea why... but it's here now.

I hope you enjoy it if you buy it; let me know your thoughts along the way.