cover image Real-Time Leadership: Find Your Winning Moves When the Stakes Are High

Real-Time Leadership: Find Your Winning Moves When the Stakes Are High

David Noble and Carol Kauffman. Harvard Business Review, $30 (256p) ISBN 978-1-64782-393-1

Leaders must remain levelheaded to make it through crises, contend corporate leadership consultants Noble and Kauffman in their pragmatic debut. To help readers stay even-keeled through tough times, the authors outline their MOVE framework, which encourages being “mindfully alert” (know “what is needed from you as a leader”), generating options, validating one’s vantage point (make sure one sees the situation clearly), and effecting change. Client stories illustrate how the plan functions, such as when the authors emphasize the importance of “overcoming your instincts” (part of being “mindfully alert”) by telling how they counseled a young head of transformation to hold back her tendency to tackle problems “head-on” so that she might better confront downsizing her company’s workforce, which required “finesse” and deliberation. Noble and Kauffman outline four “stances” to help readers think about possible responses to a problem, suggesting readers consider what it would look like if they leaned in (took action), leaned back (observed then acted), leaned with (sought help), or didn’t lean (let the scenario play out). The focus on developing inner strength and mindfulness is encouraging and the advice straightforward, though the exhortations to remain calm and proceed through the steps of MOVE grow repetitive. Still, business leaders will find useful recommendations for dealing with turmoil. (Feb.)