Review: Identity Leadership: To Lead Others You Must First Lead Yourself by Stedman Graham
Become a passionate, purposeful, and meaningful leader through identifying who you are, your strengths, and your skills.
New York Times bestselling author Stedman Graham's Identity Leadership is a very personal and prescriptive guide that is based on his philosophy that a leader can't lead others until he can first lead himself-the more he works on himself -- the more he can give to those around him. To know our purpose in life, we begin with our passions, skills, and talents, and with this book we learn how to channel the best of who we are to achieve success for ourselves and those we lead.
In Identity Leadership, Graham examines why self-awareness matters, how leaders lead, the importance of communication, and much more. He then shows the reader how to step into their role as a leader and create their identity leadership plan. Key to the journey is believing in yourself, knowing your competence, continually challenging yourself, and being patient with yourself. Graham uses anecdotes from his own life, as well as discussing successful leaders, to illustrate the importance of identity leadership in each of our lives.
Self-leaders can create a roadmap that leads to personal growth, development, and improvement of performance in every area of life. Identity Leadership provides the tools-self-awareness, emotional intelligence, discipline, and more-needed to continually plan and execute learning and development of our talents and skills. These tools enable readers to commit to a personal vision and lead with purpose.
To be honest, when I saw Stedman Graham, I immediately thought of Oprah. I really didn’t know much about him but greatly appreciate having the opportunity to learn about him from reading this book. Identity Leadership, really presents some great information and guidance to set roots and develop someone into a more purposeful leader. Getting to know his background, it was refreshing to read his perspective through his evolution of his personal experiences to his hard earned success.
There were so many moments that resonated with me. One of the things that stands out most with me is his commentary on the perspective of a twenty four hour period. He has two questions that became a catalyst for this thought provoking journey. What are we doing to empower ourselves? What are we doing to develop our gifts, our strengths, our talents? He said, “If you want your life to get better, then take control of it. It’s up to you and no one else. Don’t wait for others to define who you are or what your potential is.” Nothing could be truer.
What I found refreshing was his perspective on being an effective leader. Once you know who you are, than you can be an effective leader. You have to first learn how to lead yourself. You have to know what you are good at and be willing to put in the time and effort to be the best version of you. He shows you how to set your own path in motion. He shares successful leaders in their respective fields to show their path, obstacles and successes. He has exercises and shares tools to help build yourself. He shares nine principles that will achieve your vision and goals to maximize your full potential.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed his book and took away valuable and insightful information that will help for my own future. This would be a great resource for companies and business classes to incorporate in their curriculum. Anyone out there having goals or aspirations to evolve professionally should embrace the ideals and tools available in this book. I’m looking forward to reading his other books and gladly recommend checking this one out.