Review of “Leadership from the inside out” by Kevin Cashman

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In the second edition of his book, Cashman bring more case studies, tools and practices on the notion of leadership. For him the leadership and the person can not be separate, they should be perceive in a comprehensive way. Leadership is inside each of us and that is used in different areas of life. Leadership is according to Cashman an ongoing process.

It is during the course of one evolution, that the leader inside you will eventually come out as it grows. Generally speaking leadership is seen as a result and deliverable, when it is more about the process and way to reach deliverable. Although common definitions are echoes from western societies way of approaching life, people, work, etc….

Nonetheless, the author agrees with competency model, but by also balancing with “authenticity”, “influence” and “value creation”.

That is to say: authenticity; develops self-awareness that faces strengths, vulnerabilities, and development of challenges. While influence is about meaningful communication that connects with people, reminding self and others what is important. Finally the value creation consists on the passion and aspiration to serve, self, team, organization, world, family, community. Those concepts are essential for supporting various competencies or styles of the most effective, results-producing leaders.

The book is about the ongoing journey to discover and develop one’s purposeful inner capabilities in order to make a more positive contribution to the world. there are seven practices required to master this journey:

  • Personal Mastery
  • Purpose Mastery
  • Interpersonal Mastery
  • Change Mastery
  • Resilience
  • Being Mastery
  • Action Mastery

From these principles, an essential definition of personal leadership emerges: Leadership is authentic influence that creates value. This perspectives sows that leadership is not hierarchical but exists everywhere i the organization. The roles of leadership change, but the core process is the same.

Meaning leading equals to using authentic influence to create value. Some may influence and create value through ideas, some through people, and others through systems but the essence remains unchanged.

In conclusion, the author acknowledge the fact that there are as many styles of leaders as they are leaders.