“The Tao of Leadership” is composed of passages that relate to leadership in the Tao Te Ching, attributed to Lao-Tzu, who is believed to have lived in China sometime between 570 B.C. and 490 B.C.
In his introduction, John Heider describes his book as one of China's best books of wisdom addressed to the sage and to the wise political ruler of the fifth century. In my opinion, it is the equivalent of the biblical book of the ‘Proverbs' of King Solomon which offer “instruction of wisdom, justice, and judgment, and equity” (Proverbs. 1; 3). The Tao of Leadership is clearly an excellent basis for leadership in practice and in action. It offers many insights for leadership reflection for strength and improvement. It draws on the order in nature as lessons for the leader to keep glued together group processes for harmonious accomplishment.
The first introductory chapter deals with what Tao is and what it is not. Simply put, Tao means “how: how things happen, how things work”. It appears to me like an instruction manual that a manufacturer provides for the practical use of a product. No wonder then it goes on to state that “Tao is the single principle underlying all creation. Tao is God” and all living things exist because of Tao. Knowledge of Tao makes for awareness of how things happen: “By knowing Tao, I know how things happen.” Since leadership entails broad knowledge, the leader must know Tao. This is all too familiar with the biblical quote: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge” (Proverbs 1:7).
[...] Good leaders are said to be clairvoyant; they seem to know the unknown. They must intuition and reflection rather than trying to figure things (chapter 14). The leaders were said to have practiced meditation. “Meditation grounded them in the infinite. That is why they sometimes appeared deep and inscrutable, sometimes even great” (chapter 15). The bible relates that before the start of his ministry, Jesus went into the wilderness to fast and meditate for forty days. The leader who takes time to meditate and reflect undoubtedly is able to place things and events in their right perspective. [...]
[...] Leaders with Tao leadership are like rivers and seas. They derive their power from the people, and to do so, they are ready to stoop low. They stoop to conquer, as the title of a book goes. This is consistent with Jesus' observation in Mark 9:35 anyone wants to be first, he must be the very last, and the servant of Polarities in nature are used as reference points. Chapter 77 states: “Natural events are cyclical, always changing from one extreme toward an opposite” Birth is juxtaposed with death; male with female; soft with strong. [...]
[...] President Carter is a case in point, an excellent man who was considered a weak leader. Reagan and Bush were considered tough and steely leaders who were given second chances. Solving modern man-made problems require visible and grit leadership. Nevertheless, the book is a must read for everyone in leadership, or aspiring to leadership. The Toa of Leadership teaches a balanced and focused leadership style for wise decision making and harmonious group interactions. References "The Tao of Leadership: Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching Adapted for a New Age" By John Heider 8th. [...]
[...] Next comes one whom they despise and defy”. This spectrum of leadership indicates the need for leaders to avail themselves of leadership courses such as offered through Tao of Leadership.” Nature's principles of force, energy flow, symbiosis, balance, and proportion: The book advocates for a way of cooperation with the course and trend of nature. Images of nature water, rivers, hills, plants, trees, ocean, and rock are amply used. It portrays lessons and ways of life to accommodate the tendencies of nature. [...]
[...] The Tao of Leadership is clearly an excellent basis for leadership in practice and in action. It offers many insights for leadership reflection for strength and improvement. It draws on the order in nature as lessons for the leader to keep glued together group processes for harmonious accomplishment. The first introductory chapter deals with what Tao is and what it is not. Simply put, Tao means how things happen, how things work”. It appears to me like an instruction manual that a manufacturer provides for the practical use of a product. [...]
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