Leadership doesn’t happen without courage. In fact, leadership might be defined as “courage in action.” But the truth is that courage is poorly understood and not what you typically think. In their second original ebook, Finding the Courage to Lead, James Kouzes and Barry Posner offer a perspective on what ordinary leaders say about what courage is to them, and what their courageous experiences mean for the daily practice of leadership.
Courage is one of those big, bold words. It has the reputation of being something way out there on the edges of human experience, commonly associated with superhuman feats, life-and-death struggles, and overcoming impossible odds. It gives rise to images of daring feats of bravery and nerves of steel. It has such a mystique about it that many think the concept doesn’t apply to them. But, when you look beyond the headlines, you find out that this account of courage is certainly not the whole story.
There is very little relevant discussion of courage in the leadership literature. For all the talk about how leaders need to be courageous, there is next to nothing written about what it really means for leadership. Grounded in award-winning original research and rich with insight, Finding the Courage to Lead is valuable for leaders at any level to understand how courage shapes our leadership potential on and off the job, and is required reading for any fans of Kouzes & Posner’s work.