mark cerqueira well-rounded nerd

Manager Reads - Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader

A half year into the manager reads initiative we arrive at the eighth entry in the Manager Reads saga: Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader by Herminia Ibarra.

Who recommended the book? This book was recommended by a teammate, Jarret, and selected as the next book for the Twitch Leadership Book Club. While the word manager is in the name of the club, we welcome anyone who wants to improve on leadership and management. The ultimate goal is to leverage learnings from these books to help level up all of Twitch.

Judge the book by its cover, font, page quality? The cover of Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader is perfect: beautiful, simple, clean, powerful. The gentle blue tone washing over the cover contrasts well with the golden elements: the word Act, the word Think, and the flag on top of the mountain symbolizing the leadership challenges that need some conquering. The soft tactile feel of the book jacket is frosting on the cake. The inside of the book features bleed-free paper and good decisions on font and spacing.

Thoughts on the book and the big take-aways? The core of this book – the outsight principle – is that the only way to think like a leader is to first act. Ibarra explores three sources of outsight leaders should focus on:

  • Work on new projects and engage in new activities to practice new skills your new role requires.
  • Expand and strengthen your network to provide a more global view of yourself, your company, and the world.
  • Experiment with how you get things done to help break away from your ought self.

In short, you can’t contemplate and think yourself into becoming a better leader. As Ibarra succinctly concludes, “insight is an outcome, not an input” so the more opportunities you give yourself the better chance you’ll have of gaining meaningful insight.

Favorite quote from the book? “The fastest way to change yourself is to spend time with people who are already the way you want to be.”

Elevator pitch for suggesting (or not suggesting) the book? Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader provides a strong guiding lens to view leadership. It’s not about what makes great leaders great but focuses on how to become a great leader. It’s given me some comfort knowing that I’ll fail plenty as I take on new roles and experiment with how to tackle new challenges. Read it!

Notes in Evernote? There’s a lot of great information in this book. Feel free to review all 73.2 KB of my notes on 🐘.

Most of the world’s wisdom is written down in its best books. Manager Reads is a series covering books on management and leadership, focusing on books that can improve your own leadership with the wisdom of others. Enjoyed this post and want to see more? Check out more at Manager Reads.