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Losing It: Behaviors and Mindsets that Ruin Careers

1 rating: 4.0
2012 nonfiction book by Bill Lane

Why do otherwise brilliant and successful leaders fail – and often do so dramatically? How can you prevent your own career “train wreck” by learning from their experiences? This book distills the core causes of executive failure, … see full wiki

Tags: Book
Author: Bill Lane
Publisher: FT Press
Date Published: June 3, 2012
1 review about Losing It: Behaviors and Mindsets that Ruin...

Recognize your flaws and work diligently to correct them.

  • May 24, 2012
  • by
Rating:
+4
Author Bill Lane has been around the block a time or two. Among other things Lane worked side-by side with the legendary Jack Welch at General Electric for decades as his head speechwriter. Bill Lane is also a management expert, communications coach, writer, a highly sought after business consultant and lecturer. During his long and highly successful career Bill Lane has seen all too many talented executives implode due to character issues or personality flaws that these individuals either failed to recognize or neglected to correct. Aside from being a personal tragedy for the folks involved this is also extremely disruptive and very expensive for the companies that employed them. In an effort to help assist current and aspiring leaders avoid many of these pitfalls Bill Lane has written a dandy little book he calls "Losing It: Behaviors and Mindsets that Ruin Careers". Investing just a few hours to read and contemplate what Lane has to say in this book just might be one of the best decisions you will ever make. You are bound to recognize some of these foibles and weaknesses in your own make-up and Lane offers up numerous ideas and suggestions to help you to correct them.

First and foremost, Bill Lane believes that it is absolutely essential for an individual to maintain a moral ethical compass at all times. Building solid relationships is paramount in the business world and as such it is vitally important that you never lie, cheat or break the law. There are lots of gray areas in business so Lane recommends that if you are even a little uncomfortable with something err on the side of honesty and truth. Your reputation is far more important than any job or position. We have all worked with individuals with tainted reputations and once someone acquires that tag it is extremely difficult to change it. By all means, avoid arrogance. All of us get on our high horse at times and it can be a real turn-off for those we work for and with. In general, managers and co-workers respond to those who remain humble. Treat others the way you wish to be treated yourself. Now for those of us age 50 and older a real danger is being perceived as what Lane calls a "one-trick pony". This is a person who is content to live off the same achievement for years and years. He or she lacks curiosity and is generally averse to taking on new challenges. Learn why the "one-trick" syndrome is frequently a career killer and discover what you can do to avoid being pegged with this highly desirable moniker.

Throughout the pages of "Losing It: Behaviors and Mindsets that Ruin Careers" Bill Lane offers up a whole host of useful tips for surviving and thriving at work. As a leader, you should have precious little tolerance for "yes" people. This is a chronic problem in business, government and organizations of all kinds. Lane suggests that you surround yourself with smart people whom you can trust and turn them loose. Look for people who are willing to tell you the score no matter what. You will make certainly make better and more informed decisions as a result. Likewise, avoid wishing thinking. In Lane's experience this tendency has proven to be the downfall of all too many of his colleagues over the years. Great leaders are willing to face reality and make the difficult and unpopular decisions. This is the trait that separates great leaders from the rest of the pack. And for goodness sake, with whatever task you might be charged with on a given day "always be prepared". As Lane observes "I have seen many careers destroyed or set back by one, poorly prepared, rambling, artless and useless presentation". Not being prepared is simply unforgivable in today's highly-competitive business climate and it could well cost you your position.

Overall, I found reading "Losing It: Behaviors and Mindsets that Ruin Careers" to be a very good use of my time. I certainly recognized some of the flaws that Bill Lane outlined for us in my own approach to work. Hopefully, now that I am more cognizant of these tendencies I will not allow them to interfere with my continued success at work. "Losing It" offers considerable food for thought and posits many useful ideas for everyone regardless of your station in life. This project proves to be a very worthwhile undertaking. Highly recommended!

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May 25, 2012
This sounds interesting. Thank you for the persuasive recommendation. Well done.
 
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