Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Boundaries for Leaders... a book review


ISBN: 978-0-06-220633-6
$28.99 Hardback
April 2013

Book Description

An expert on the psychology of business and a co-author of the classic bestseller Boundaries explains how the best leaders set expectations and limits to get the results they want from their employees and from themselves.

In Boundaries for Leaders, Dr. Henry Cloud combines his knowledge of human behavior, business leadership, and neuroscience to help executives lead effectively, build organizational culture, develop strong teams, and get results from themselves and others.

What is a boundary? Simply put, a boundary is a property line that defines ownership, control, and responsibility. It sets limits on the behaviors and activities allowed on the property. Similarly, leadership success depends on shaping and defining organizational boundaries. When leaders set appropriate and healthy expectations that are in line with the ways people actually behave, organizations and their employees thrive. Beginning with a lucid description of how brains actually work, Dr. Cloud then applies those principles to the most critical aspects of a leader's work: how to manage teams, coach direct reports, and instill an organization with strong values and culture.

Filled with inspiring and practical examples, Boundaries for Leaders is essential reading for executives and those who aspire to lead-professionals who want to create successful companies, with more satisfied employees and customers, while becoming more resilient managers themselves. Its practical advice brings clarity and direction, helping leaders cut through the chaos and confusion, resulting in organizations that are positive and results-oriented. In short, it defines the essential boundaries that leaders must provide for their vision to become reality.  (
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As I complete my Business Management degree, I was looking forward to reading this book.  I want to be an effective leader who can encourage and motivate my employees and / or team members. 

I found Boundaries for Leaders to be long-winded and redundant.  I wanted to learn hands-on ways to become a better leader, but this is not what I found.  Instead of quickly consuming the book and its ideas, I trudged through hoping for better with each turn of a page.  Dr. Henry Cloud introduces a topic and then writes that he will delve into that later in the book.  Because of this, the book did not flow smoothly at all.

The basic tenets of trust, a positive emotional climate and culture were mere background information to Dr. Cloud's constant description of how your brain works.  I would have preferred these flipped - more information and ways to improve or maintain a positive working environment and less "brain talk."   

My rating: C
2.5 out of 5 stars

I received a complimentary copy of Boundaries for Leaders from for my honest review.



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