Leadership Turbulent Times Review. Are you looking for a good read during the self-isolation period? What if you could get your hands on a book that is both entertaining and enlightening. The insightful Leadership: In Turbulent Times is unlike anything you know about history and its figures. It is the retelling of the details that we think we see, but we do not.
Pulitzer Prize-winning author Doris Kearns Goodwin sheds light on four former presidents of the United States of America and how they took action during, like the title gives away, times of crises. The four presidents that star in this historians’ book are Abraham Lincoln, Lyndon Johnson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Theodore Roosevelt.
From Lincoln’s time it is about the Emancipation Proclamation, From Johnson’s time, it is regarding the Civil Rights act, from Theodore Roosevelt’s time in office about the coal strike, and from Franklin Roosevelt’s about the first three months of the great depression.
Most people who pick up the book are usually the ones who are looking to understand leadership in the corporate world, and if that is so, you will not be disappointed. You do not have to be a history aficionado to enjoy this book as you will soon find out.
The book is divided into parts which structures the underlying qualities and obstacles of powerful leadership. Every President gets equal attention in the book one by one. The first part is the most interesting and seldom portrayed in history books. It is about how each leader recognized their ambition during the early years of their careers.
The second part is about how they overcame challenges. Most people would assume these challenges are about failing campaigns and intriguing politics. Still, as a real historian, Goodwin has painted a picture of what these leaders were really like at their core. This includes political defeats, mental setbacks, physical limitations, and unfortunate personal loss.
Then comes the third part, and that is where the author’s comprehensive assessment paves the way to how each American President used their unique qualities as men of authority and influence to find solutions to the turbulent times.
The four administrations have been studied time and time again under a microscope. However, Leadership: In Turbulent Times is not all gold stars and accolades. For instance, Abraham Lincoln’s actions were perhaps the turning point to shaping future presidencies, while Teddy Roosevelt’s most testing time as President was mere crisis management. Not that it is any less important for a leader to be able to execute.
That being said, the matter that defines the book is nothing like you would ever read in one bound copy. The skills and plans and the fascinating successes are refreshing.
Not that all of these presidents were perfect throughout the entire time they served. Goodwin is obvious on drawing that line but also gives the reader enough as to why she picked these particular leaders. Johnson’s part is covered expansively on his domestic policies, even though the leader faced a lot of criticism for the role he failed to play in dismembering the Vietnam War. The Vitenam War as one of America’s most significant setbacks in judgment according to the admission of its people.
The end of the book is a sweet adieu to the life of each leader. We measure up everything they achieved with the opportunities they were offered, tying the bow to the legacy each left behind.
There is much to take away and learn from Leadership: In Turbulent Times. Despite the lessons, it is a delightful read, as the reader goes through the career-threatening dilemmas and dramatic turn of events while each leader keeps his ambition intact.
It is essential to notice that the leaders Doris Kearns Goodwins writes about are far from the celebrity figures we are used to. It won’t be surprising if many felt like they just went through a short crash course in leadership.
Doris Kearns Goodwin began her career as a professor at Harvard. She has experience working in the White House and for jotting down the memoirs of Lyndon Johnson.
The author won her Pulitzer for No Ordinary Time, a narrative about the Roosevelts during the second World War. The author is also the recipient for a Lincoln Prize for Team of Rivals, which was the muse for the Oscar-winning movie Lincoln.
It is a polarizing world in which we live. The emerging cohort no longer believes in authentic leadership. It seems like the book was launched just in time for the world to pause and think about the strengths that lead to a leader.
Remember that great leadership is all about who people can actually look up to.
What is leadership, and what shapes a thriving society/ community/ corporation? You will not have to ask these questions as the answers will relay before you. Inversely as the people who look up to viable leaders, It allows us to reflect on ourselves and how we recognize our own path to success, and the part we play in validating leaders, as we ourselves are riddled with fear, emotion, and confusion during uncertain times.
It is a compelling book.
On Amazon, you buy the audiobook for key leadership insights at about $22.90, a paperback version for $12.15, and a hardcover copy for $19.23.
Leadership: In Turbulent Times is a New York Times bestseller and for a good reason too. Unlike most narratives that focus on wins and the life after as well. This particular book talks about the early development of a leader, and how to nurture that leadership through practice.
Goodwin’s companionable prose is an art that very few have mastered. You can be a good writer and still lack that. Leadership is a compelling historical read and based entirely on actual events.
The book is inspiring. It makes one reflect, and therefore is far from exclusivity. Something that is rare in modern literature.