dimanche 11 décembre 2011

Why Great Men Fall - A Review

Few months ago, I read Wayde Goodall's magnificent book - Why Great Men Fall. His view is balanced and persuasive. It touches many aspects of a leader's life. The full book title, "WHY GREAT MEN FALL: 15 Winning Strategies To Rise Above It All" says it all.

The basic question found in the book is this one: Why do leaders derail? One said: "He didn't have any fences in life – safety measures." Another said, "He could not believe it was possible that he would fall." When a broken leader was asked what he felt was the reason for his fall, he said, "I didn't give anyone permission to tell me about my blind spots, I only gave them permission to tell me what I wanted to hear." One pastor said, "I didn't listen to my wife."

The author defends in his work that it is dangerous for anyone to live without accountability. Ted Engstrom said, "An unaccountable spouse is living on the edge of risk; an unaccountable CEO is in danger of taking his company down a wrong road; an unaccountable pastor has too much authority; an unaccountable counselor has too much responsibility and needs too much wisdom to be able to handle it on his own."

He make the assertion that 'Accountability is friend'. He strongly advise successful people, "So keep your ego in check and find a group of guys that like you but are willing to shoot straight with you." He believe that in life you'll always get hurt. The worst one is the hurt of falling so he recommend then to be instead hurt the right way, the biblical hurt, `Wounds from a friend can be trusted' (Prov. 27:6)"

He remarks that in his investigation that "The thought that 'I can do one more thing', 'go a little further' and 'risk a little more' is the common denominator with all who think they can get away with `whatever'."

The author encourage virtue and listening to one conscious but he also caution the blind following of conscience. He believe that conscience is the most important thing in avoiding falling so long that the person has a good basis on which his conscious can work on. The reason is that the author believes like H.C. Trunbull that there is something greater than conscience that need to be in priory firmly established.

H.C. Trunbull said, "Conscience is not given to a man to instruct him in the right, but to prompt him to choose the right instead of the wrong when he has been instructed as to what is right. It tells a man that he ought to do right, but it does not tell him what is right. And if a man has made up his mind that a certain wrong course is the right one, the more he follows his conscience the more helpless he is as a wrongdoer."

So he believe in the famous saying, 'Follow your conscience', as long as the person following his/her conscience has not corrupted his/her understanding of what is right or wrong. Since he is a Christian, he recommend the Bible teaching as the basis to ground one's view of what is right and wrong.

I really found his view fascinating and quite compelling. I give this book a two thumbs up in the category of Applied Ethics and Morality. Here is the Book Contents:

1. Why Great Men Fall; 2. Entitlement (I Deserve This ...); 3. Entrepreneurs without Balance; 
4. Compartmentalization; 5. Expectation of Silence; 6. The Sex Issue - A Magnet for Women; 7. Integrity; 8. Anger; 9. Accountability - Ego in check; 10. Conscience - Compromise; 11. Mentors and Coaches; 12. Ethics; 13. Stress and Pressure; 14. Money; 15. Depression and Moods; 16. The one who can keep you from Falling.

I can summarize his book with this word of his: "Don't let your character get lost in the confusion of what you do."

Excellent reading. I recommend it!

Have a nice day and weekend in Jesus' name.

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