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Losing It! Behaviors and Mindsets that Ruin Careers: Lessons on Protecting Yourself from Avoidable Mistakes

By Bill Lane

Published by FT Press

Published Date: May 24, 2012

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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, demonstrates how to identify them in your own behavior – and helps you to eliminate or avoid them. Bill Lane, Jack Welch’s long-time colleague draws on his own experience as a GE insider as well as from extensive interviews with former GE executives now running their own companies, including Dave Calhoun (CEO, Nielsen); Jim McNerney (CEO, Boeing); Lloyd Trotter (retired Vice-Chairman of GE), Frank Doyle (ex-Executive VP at GE), Kip Condron (ex-CEO, Americas, AXA Equitable); Andrew McMahon (President, AXA Equitable), and many others. Together with these elite executives, Lane demonstrates how to avoid arrogance, recognize when you must micromanage, learn how to communicate far more effectively, maintain a relentless focus on what matters most, and avoid the temptations to sacrifice your #1 leadership asset: your integrity. Along the way, he offers hard-hitting insights on everything from choosing your battles to cultivating the “right” forms of paranoia. Losing It will be an indispensable resource for everyone aspiring to become a more effective leader, including managers at all levels, and all MBA candidates and executive education students.

Table of Contents

Introduction     1
Chapter 1: Losing It     9
Chapter 2: The Integrity Trap and Opportunity     23
Chapter 3: Presiding Is Not Managing     67
Chapter 4: The Imperative of Selective Micromanagement     81
Chapter 5: Dithering and Distractions     89
Chapter 6: Arrogance     99
Chapter 7: Reality     111
Chapter 8: Changing Yourself     125
Chapter 9:  Communicate     127
Chapter 10:  The Final Word     145
Index     159