From the former secretary of defense and author of the acclaimed #1 best-selling memoir"Duty, " a characteristically direct, informed, and urgent assessment of why big institutions are failing us and how smart, committed leadership can effect real improvement regardless of scale. Read more...
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From the former secretary of defense and author of the acclaimed #1 best-selling memoir"Duty, " a characteristically direct, informed, and urgent assessment of why big institutions are failing us and how smart, committed leadership can effect real improvement regardless of scale.
Across the realms of civic and private enterprise alike, bureaucracies vitally impact our security, freedoms, and everyday life. With so much at stake, competence, efficiency, and fiscal prudence are essential, yet Americans know these institutions fall short. Many despair that they are too big and too hard to reform.
Robert Gates disagrees. Having led change successfully at three monumental organizations the CIA, Texas A&M University, and the Department of Defense he offers us the ultimate insider s look at how major bureaus, organizations, and companies can be transformed, which is by turns heartening and inspiring and always instructive.
With practical, nuanced advice on tailoring reform to the operative culture (we see how Gates worked within the system to increase diversity at Texas A&M); effecting change within committees; engaging the power of compromise ( In the real world of bureaucratic institutions, you almost never get all you want when you want it ); and listening and responding to your team, Gates brings the full weight of his wisdom, candor, and devotion to civic duty to inspire others to lead desperately needed change."
- ISBN-13: 9780307959492
- ISBN-10: 030795949X
- Publisher: Knopf Publishing Group
- Publish Date: January 2016
- Page Count: 256
- Dimensions: 9.3 x 6 x 1.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2015-10-19
- Reviewer: Staff
Gates (Duty), a former U.S. secretary of defense, takes a powerful and pragmatic look at leadership in this book, a must-read for anyone who wants to be an agent of change within an organization. Drawing on his experiences at the Defense Department, the CIA, and Texas A&M University, Gates offers leaders specific ideas and techniques that enable them to successfully reform and improve their organizations. He goes on to expound on the qualities necessary for leading reform, including having a vision, strategic thinking, attention to implementation, transparency, a respectful attitude, and political finesse with stakeholders. The concepts come to life through Gatess clear prose and illuminating examples of his own successes and failures, from an unpopular tenure as deputy director for intelligence at the CIA during the early 1980s, to successful efforts to increase diversity at A&M and transparency at the postCold War CIA. Readers will be struck by Gatess humility, humor, and undeniable expertise. This practical, no-nonsense look at leadership will not only provide a useful guide but also serve as an inspiration for young people interested in entering public service. Agent: Wayne Kabak, WSK Management. (Jan.)