Leadership Aikido

The rapidly changing nature of today’s business world requires that people possess strong leadership skills that can direct current trends in the workplace and handle potential problems with efficiency, intelligence, and diplomacy. Author and management consultant John O’Neil shows us how the concepts of aikido–the martial art tradition that stresses victory without harm–can be used as a lifelong business practice. Illustrating his points with stories and experiences of high achievers in business, politics, and the arts, Leadership Aikido presents innovative skills that answer an urgent need as managers and employers rethink outmoded business paradigms in order to keep offices running smoothly, production levels high, and morale up. Employers and managers at all levels are looking to create programs that incorporate business requirements with their professional and spiritual goals. O’Neil provides a practical way to achieve this by teaching us how to embrace the philosophy of aikido, which can bring beliefs, perceptions, and actions into harmony and lead us down a path of continuous learning, inner personal change, and enlightened leadership.

This book explains how to identify the five inner enemies–failure to grow emotionally; failure to make creative decisions; failure to empathize; failure to manage ego; and failure to overcome alienation and boredom. We are given practical methods for overcoming these hurdles and are shown ways to assess and develop our leadership potential through self-discovery tests and interactive exercises that embrace the six master practices of aikido: cultivating self-knowledge; practicing the paradoxical art of planning; speaking the language of mastery; letting values drive our decisions; turning failure into success; and heeding the law of unintended consequences.

Stressing the need for balance and self-awareness in both business and life, John O’Neil reveals the secrets of this ancient art in an easy to understand and straightforward manner. His thoughtful presence and energetic style, imbued with the win-win ethics of aikido, ensure us that by adopting these practices into our lives, we will benefit both professionally and personally.

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