Today, September 27th, is a special day for our colleague John Greenway from Mercuri Urval in London. Not only can he celebrate 30 years with Mercuri Urval, but he launches his new book, LEAD: 50 models for success in work & life, published by Capstone/Wiley.
Hi John, tell us a bit about yourself and your background?
You mention 30 years. Wow!
Within the business, I led the Executive Practice globally for a number of years, have worked from Panama to Japan, had the privilege to advise thousands of leaders, initiated and led numerous global accounts and been fortunate to have been trusted by many clients to act on their behalf.
I couldn't have wished for a better company and people to have worked with.
What inspired you to write?
It was more a case of "who", rather than "what". A good number of years ago a friend said, "John, you should write a book." My immediate reaction was – "Definitely not, it's far too hard work." I should have listened to my own advice!
Back in 2013, however, I took a crazy decision to create an app. I thought that it would be easier than writing a book. It was called "Leaders' Map". I thought it was fantastic, but unfortunately very few other people agreed – judging by the number of App Store downloads!
As someone who is not easily put off, I eventually took my friend's advice. I turned the ideas behind the app into a book. Later that year I wrote Leaders' Map: helping doers think and thinkers do.
Tell us about your new book.
LEAD: 50 models for success in work & life is co-authored with Andy Blacknell and Andy Coombe. It has been both great fun and highly challenging to write, but also to find a publisher who really "got" what we are trying to achieve.
It took us 24 months to get to the final product. So I was right after all ... it is hard work!
Who is the audience for your book?
Our Executive Commissioning Editor at Wiley, Annie Knight, was very keen, from the outset, for the book to attract the business traveller at airports and stations. So in answer to your question, LEAD is for the person who is on a journey and wants some help on the next leg of that journey! It does not matter whether they are just venturing out for the first time or are very experienced leaders.
What are the core ideas?
Our starting point is that life is not a straight line! Roadmaps may work for managers, but things are much more unpredictable for leaders.
To be successful, leaders have to do – and keep on doing – three things:
- Map the journeys that they want to make in work and life
- Navigate through life's twists and turns to success
- Grow themselves and others as leaders
What will the readers learn?
Because the book has 50 models – 20 of which we have created – we hope that there is a lot to learn and enjoy. But the real learning is that each leader has to clearly understand their unique context, dream their own dreams and lead from who they are.
We have tried to write LEAD in a coaching style. Our aim is to enable and equip each leader to become clearer and more confident in reaching their vision, living their values and achieving their goals.
Where can anyone who is interested find the book?
As of today, 27th September, we go live on Amazon. From October 4th LEAD: 50 models for success in life & work will be available in WH Smith's at airports and stations. We would appreciate anybody who can help create a bit of a launch wave. Thank you!
Any final words, John?
Leadership matters. When the leader gets better, everyone gets better.