How To Lead Smart People Book Summary By Arun Singh and Mike Mister

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How to Lead Smart People is an indispensable resource for any leader looking to cultivate a successful and productive team.

Published in 2019, this book gives readers practical advice on how to lead in the current global landscape, giving them the tools they need to tackle today's challenges.

Included in its pages are essential tips that will help you foster teamwork and make your people work together harmoniously, while also pushing their boundaries and inspiring them to do great things.

You can learn how to effectively communicate with your team and handle complex issues while keeping everyone motivated along the way.

With its comprehensive approach, How to Lead Smart People provides everything a leader needs to be successful.

How To Lead Smart People Book

Book Name: How to Lead Smart People (Leadership for Professionals)

Author(s): Arun Singh and Mike Mister

Rating: 4.1/5

Reading Time: 22 Minutes

Categories: Management & Leadership

Author Bio

Arun Singh is an authority in the field of international corporate law and negotiation training, with over three decades of experience to back it up.

He has made a name for himself as a leading lawyer in this area and formerly served as a partner at KPMG Law, a well-known international law practice.

Professor Singh's expertise has also been called upon by some of the most respected business schools in both China and Britain, where he has worked as a visiting professor.

Moreover, his knowledge on corporate leadership and negotiations has been sought after by international organizations too, not to mention the UK Government who have consulted him on trade and investment issues.

Become A Smart Leader: How To Lead People Of All Backgrounds And Experiences

Smart Leader

Becoming a smart leader doesn’t just involve learning the skills and strategies of successful leadership, it also involves understanding the needs and motivations of your sharpest employees.

Your brightest team members have likely been doing well in their careers for a while, so if you can meet or exceed their expectations, they will be more likely to work with you.

In order to meet their needs, you need to understand who they are and what motivates them.

You should show them that you recognize their value as an employee and strive to create an atmosphere where everyone is encouraged to contribute and feels appreciated.

Leading smart people isn’t easy, but it is possible with empathy and understanding of their unique needs.

With real-world examples from other skilled leaders, you can learn how to build relationships with your sharpest employees and why including them in envisioning your company’s future is essential for success.

By addressing the needs of these driven individuals, you too could become a smart leader.

Assertiveness Is An Essential Tool For Achieving Your Goals

As a leader, it’s important to know not only how to recognize opportunities but also how to assertively capitalize on them.

This skill can be invaluable in helping you reach your goals and gain the respect of those around you.

Angela, the senior associate in her company striving for a promotion, is an excellent example of this.

When confronted with her manager’s unfair and manipulative demands of preparing another talk for him at an upcoming international conference, she was able to stand up for herself by using assertive language.

Assertiveness is about understanding your own rights and values, being confident enough in yourself to hold firm when communicating these needs, and respecting the needs of others as well.

It’s a valuable tool that can help you effectively achieve what you want – without resorting to aggression or manipulation.

Fogging, a self-assertion technique used by Angela at her conference, is just one way in which leaders can practice this skill.

She listened carefully and acknowledged her manager’s needs before addressing them in such a way that allowed her to maintain control over the situation while still taking his demands into consideration.

In the end she was able to focus on her own talk while advancing her career.

Therefore, smart leaders must always remember that adopting an assertive – rather than aggressive or passive – attitude can be key in helping them reach their goals!

How Conscious Listening Brings People Together And Produces Better Solutions

Johan, the managing partner at his law firm, was incredibly smart.

He knew that while hearing everyone’s opinions was important, he had to go a step further and really listen to them if any decision was going to be successful.

By taking the time to really comprehend what each person had to say and reflecting their feelings back to them through facial expressions and body language, Johan demonstrated that he truly understood the sentiment of each person’s thoughts – regardless of whether or not he ended up choosing their direction.

Johan soon learning that conscious listening – actively engaging in the discussion rather than passively absorbing it – produced better solutions as it united different people together in a way that no other mode of communication could.

In fact, by consciously listening, Johan (and other leaders like him) ensured that every voice is heard and can be amplified.

By taking the time to listen when discussing the potential acquisition with his team members, Johan showed that conscious listening can produce better results than just going off impulse alone.

The key message here is: Conscious listening produces better solutions.

Learn From Ayesha’s Mistake: Empower Your Team By Planning And Delegating Tasks Wisely

Delegating Tasks

Ayesha is a smart leader, capable of accomplishing difficult tasks with ease and speed.

However, her team’s level of satisfaction was surprisingly low.

When she consulted her colleagues, Ayesha discovered that her failure to delegate tasks was at the root of the issue.

Empowering one’s team and managing time efficiently requires creating an agenda and actively delegating tasks.

To do this, Write down five to seven priorities for your team—things that will truly move it forward.

After these have been identified, create a to-do list from them so you know what needs to be done.

As you tackle your list, make sure you delegate some of the less important tasks so as not to overwhelm yourself with work.

By doing this, Ayesha found that her team members were far more motivated than before and gained even more capability in their actions–not only did Ayesha have more time on her hands but also her team would become incredibly skilled due to their challenged assignments.

This not only attracted even more competent people interested in working in the environment she provided but also gave Ayesha a reputation as an encouraging leader who invested heavily in developing others.

It was through this process that true success was achieved!

Seeking Multiple Perspectives Is The Best Way To Make Smart Decisions

Leading smart people requires a leader to make wise decisions.

The key to making good decisions is valuing and including the perspectives of other people.

Eguono, an executive at a competitive company, found this out firsthand when he was presented with the opportunity to merge his firm with that of his old graduate program friend Ade’s.

Though he initially believed the complementary firms would make a great decision for both parties, he wasn’t sure if it was the best call to make.

To ensure the right outcome, Eguono created a task force composed of members with various expertise and backgrounds to thoroughly consider the situation and its implementation.

This method ultimately proved successful and taught Eguono an important lesson- smart decision-makers listen to and include others’ perspectives in order to make informed choices.

Even when time is short and there isn’t an opportunity to develop a task force or brainstorm with others, it’s still beneficial try and incorporate opposing views into your considerations before coming to any conclusions.

Gathering information from different sources helps you get closer to the optimal solution while also helping you avoid falling into decision-making paralysis.

Smart Leaders Adapt To Multiculturalism To Succeed In A Globalized World

Leading a successful team in today’s global world means being able to understand the diverse cultural backgrounds of each individual.

Smart leaders know that taking the time to learn about different cultures can lead to better communication and understanding within their teams, which can result in increased productivity.

In Peter’s case he had to adapt his leadership style to accommodate for his new multicultural team.

He took the time to learn about their cultural preferences so he could provide them with respect and motivate them properly.

He also realized that when it came to working with his Emirati associates he had to make sure that their dignity was never compromised and needed to establish common grounds before discussing an assignment.

At the end of the day, smart leaders must be willing to suspend their own assumptions and look into adapting their leadership style according to multiculturalism.

It’s important for leaders to reach out and talk with those who have been in a similar situation as well as gaining an understanding on how certain phrases carry different meanings from one culture to another.

This cultural fluency is key for leading a successful team.

The Power Of Mentoring And Reverse Mentoring: Leverage The Skills And Experiences Of Others To Facilitate Your Success

Skills And Experiences

Finding a mentor is essential for anyone who wants to succeed in the business world.

Just ask Suki, the young architect who sought out advice from a senior colleague and ‘mentor’ David, the head of production for an engineering firm.

Through conversations with David, Suki was able to get valuable insights into how to handle projects, issues with employees, and gain a better understanding of steps she needed to take to advance her career.

David never made any choices on Suki’s behalf – he was just there as a sounding board and guide.

Having someone with experience provide you with a shortcut when it comes to solving work-related challenges has long been seen as something that only older or more experienced colleagues can do – but not true!

You may also benefit from reverse mentorship – being taught by someone younger than you – depending on what specific skill sets you need to develop.

For example if you’re looking for cultural understandings then a ‘reverse’ mentor will be able to share their vision more easily than someone more removed from that culture themselves.

When Suki’s mentor left his company she was able to give back something other than just words of thanks; by setting up his social media profiles she gave him the means he needed to continue his successful career venture elsewhere.

The Lesson From Felice: Strengthen Your Team By Including Them In Crafting Your Vision

Felice, the managing of his law firm’s construction and civil engineering sector (CCEG), knew that in order to ensure the firm’s success, he needed to make some changes.

With new competition entering the field and a legal field for IT-development projects at stake, Felice considered expanding into IT law as an opportunity to stay ahead of the game.

But as a smart leader, Felice realized that simply imposing his vision on to his team wouldn’t get him far.

Instead, he took necessary steps in including stakeholders throughout the firm so that they could question and challenge his idea for developing a new specialization within the organization for IT law.

That doesn’t mean that communicating the strategy or steps needed should be kept out of the process.

But simply motivating your team with a brief and present tense vision statement which everyone can identify with is enough to set you off on a good start towards manifesting your vision.

The key message here is: involve your team in envisioning your company’s future; only then will they take on challenges and work together towards achieving it.

Wrap Up

The “How To Lead Smart People” book offers readers a wealth of insight on how to successfully direct and empower members of their team.

Throughout the book, key messages and actionable advice are addressed, guiding leaders in their journey to success.

Key Message: Smart people want to be understood, challenged, and included in the course of action.

Leaders should learn how to draw upon the capabilities of their team members, delegating tasks and amplifying their coworkers’ voices in order to address the company’s issues and shape its future.

Actionable Advice: One invaluable piece of advice from this book is to always give praise — smart people thrive when they receive positive feedback for their accomplishments, so as a leader you must encourage progress by providing an even balance of five pieces of praise for every one form of criticism or negative feedback.

Overall, “How To Lead Smart People” provides valuable insight that can help leaders check themselves as they develop into successful managers with stronger teams behind them.

Arturo Miller

Hi, I am Arturo Miller, the Chief Editor of this blog. I'm a passionate reader, learner and blogger. Motivated by the desire to help others reach their fullest potential, I draw from my own experiences and insights to curate blogs.

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